Driven to Distraction: The Impact of Acne in a Digital Era


Posted: February 16, 2021 | Word Count: 814

With millions of people living, working, attending school and socializing through the lens of a computer camera, self-image and confidence are quite literally on display, especially for the 85% of teens and young adults with acne.1 New routines, habits and mindsets have been established in this virtual world that created new insecurities, but also unexpected opportunities for change.

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States and by now, many know the emotional toll it can take, but how does that translate to our new virtual presence?1,2 A recent study conducted by Galderma and Wakefield Research* revealed that teens and young adults are feeling hindered and distracted by their acne, and it’s preventing them from fully participating in their digital lives.3

Two-thirds (66%) of acne sufferers ages 14-29 are spending more time video calling than they were pre-pandemic, including a third (34%) who are spending an hour or more each day.3 To prepare for those video calls, the survey revealed acne sufferers spend an average of 22 minutes making an effort to conceal their acne with the right makeup, hair, outfit and lighting choices.3

Even with their best efforts to conceal their acne, young adults are still driven to distraction by the camera preview window. Among those who video call, an overwhelming 86% of acne sufferers report having missed what others are saying because they're distracted by assessing how they look on video.3 Many report that they would avoid speaking up while experiencing a breakout, so it’s no surprise that more than three in five young professionals (62%) say their acne has hindered their professional growth and half of students report it has had a negative impact on their grades and academic achievements.3

With these new, somewhat negative feelings and behaviors, also comes a positive one — the feeling of motivation. Almost two-thirds of acne sufferers who are spending more time on video calls (64%) report they now felt more motivated to seek out options to treat their acne with the help of a dermatologist.3 The next step? Ask a dermatology provider about AKLIEF (trifarotene) Cream, 0.005%, indicated for the topical treatment of acne. Containing the first retinoid molecule approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 20 years for treatment of acne vulgaris, AKLIEF Cream is proven safe and effective for the treatment of acne on the face, chest, shoulders and back.4,5

Life and today’s challenges do a good enough job at creating anxiety and insecurity, so acne shouldn’t be the thing stealing your focus and leaving you uncomfortable in your own skin. If you or a loved one suffers from acne, talk to a dermatologist about starting an acne treatment journey and visit AKLIEF.com to learn more. With clearer skin comes the confidence to enjoy life, on and off camera.

*The online survey, conducted in December 2020 among 2,000 nationally representative U.S. consumers ages 14-29 suffering from facial and truncal acne, was developed by Galderma Laboratories, L.P and Wakefield Research, using an email invitation

AKLIEF Cream U.S. Important Safety Information

Indication: AKLIEF® (trifarotene) Cream, 0.005% is a retinoid indicated for the topical treatment of acne vulgaris in patients 9 years of age and older. Adverse Events: The most common adverse reactions (incidence ≥ 1%) in patients treated with AKLIEF Cream were application site irritation, application site pruritus (itching), and sunburn. Warnings/Precautions: Patients using AKLIEF Cream may experience erythema, scaling, dryness, and stinging/burning. Use a moisturizer from the initiation of treatment, and, if appropriate, depending upon the severity of these adverse reactions, reduce the frequency of application of AKLIEF Cream, suspend or discontinue use. Avoid application of AKLIEF Cream to cuts, abrasions or eczematous or sunburned skin. Use of "waxing" as a depilatory method should be avoided on skin treated with AKLIEF Cream. Minimize exposure to sunlight and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and protective clothing over treated areas when exposure cannot be avoided.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.



[1] American Academy of Dermatology. Acne. https://www.aad.org/media/stats/conditions. Accessed August 23, 2019.

[2] American Academy of Dermatology. Acne can affect more than your skin. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/acne-and-rosacea/emotional-health-effects-of-acne. Accessed August 23, 2019.

[3] Galderma Laboratories LP Data on File. Wakefield Research AKLIEF Cream Survey Raw Data Readout. December 2020.

[4] British Association of Dermatologists. Topical trifarotene: a new retinoid. Br J Dermatol.2018;179:231-232.

[5] Tan J, Thiboutot D, Popp G, et al. Randomized Phase 3 evaluation of trifarotene 50 μg/g cream treatment of moderate facial and truncal acne.J Am Acad Dermatol. 2019. 80(6):1691-1699.

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