Acne on the face: the main causes

There is not a single person on Earth who has never faced acne. For some, this is a small nuisance, for others, a reason for serious worries. If there are a lot of rashes, they are accompanied by itching, discharge, an unpleasant odor, and leave deep scars.

In order to choose the right treatment strategy, it is important to understand correctly why they occur and to know about existing methods of caring for problem skin.

The reasons

The mechanism of the appearance of acne is as follows:

  • sebaceous glands intensively produce a secret, consisting mainly of lipids;
  • if there is too much of it or the texture is thick, natural outflow is disturbed, the pores expand;
  • pathogens multiply inside;
  • inflammation begins.

In the blocked pore, sebaceous plugs – comedones – form. Oxidizing, fat darkens, so-called black dots appear. Or the secret accumulates inside in the form of a dense ball. When the immune system fails, bacteria or a demodex mite quickly multiply in the excess sebum. The latter is normally present in most people and does not cause concern. If the population increases, the patient is diagnosed with demodicosis.

The disease proceeds rapidly, first papules appear – reddened swellings at the site of infection, and then pustules – bubbles filled with pus. In severe cases, the infection affects the deep layers of the dermis, infiltrates and whole conglomerates, interconnected by fistulous passages, develop.

It is important to understand: external manifestations cannot be cured without understanding the internal prerequisites. Accordingly, the fight must begin with a thorough diagnosis. 


Nicotine and tobacco combustion products negatively affect the entire body.

In particular, the development of acne contributes to:

  • Film formation from tobacco smoke tar. The exit from the pores is blocked. Not only are smokers at risk, but also those around them. If you can’t get rid of addiction, you should pay more attention to cleansing your face and protecting it with cosmetics. 
  • Narrowing of blood vessels by certain toxins. They destroy cell membranes and are able to accumulate in the body. Less fluid enters the glands, which means that the secret becomes thicker, which makes it difficult for its outflow. 
  • Slowing down the process of regeneration of epidermal cells. The stratum corneum on the surface becomes thicker, and its structure is denser. Numerous black dots and white, grain-like milia appear. 


Masturbation is not a prerequisite, but rather a trigger for skin problems. During orgasm, hormones are released that increase sweating and sebum secretion. True, this phenomenon is of a short-term nature and, subject to hygiene, does not lead to the formation of pustules.


Nervous pimples are possible due to an increase in plasma cortisol levels. The products of its metabolism – glucocorticoids suppress lipid production, reducing the barrier protective functions of the epidermis. It is not an excess of secretions that leads to infection, but their lack and microcracks arising from dryness, which become a gateway for pathogens.

At the moment, scientists are testing another hypothesis according to which stress provokes the appearance of acne. During the experiments, nerve fibers were found that transmit signals to the dermis and increase inflammation in it. While this assumption has not been finally confirmed, however, marketers are already in a hurry to launch the so-called neurocosmetics on the market.


Worm infestation leads to acne in two cases:

  • If the intoxication with the waste products of helminths is high. In this case, in addition to rashes, weakness, headaches, loss of appetite, and fever are observed. With alarming somatic symptoms, seek immediate medical attention.
  • If the larvae are located directly under the skin. This happens when a person unknowingly washed his face with contaminated water. The eggs of exotic parasites are found in tropical Asia, Africa and the countries of the Amazon basin.


This is a hormonal drug prescribed by your doctor. Acne is indeed on the list of side effects. It’s all about increasing the amount of estrogen and progesterone, which, on the one hand, promote the growth of the uterine epithelium and increase the likelihood of conception, and on the other hand, they affect the more intense secretion of sebum. If the need to take Duphaston is due to planning a pregnancy, then you just need to endure temporary troubles.


Chickenpox occurs with abundant formation of pustules throughout the body. If you dry the wound in time after the bubble bursts and prevent infection, everything will go almost without a trace. If pathogens, for example, Staphylococcus aureus, enter, it is possible to develop deep abscesses and pyoderma, which are not so easy to cure.


Excess salt during perspiration can crystallize, accumulate inside the pores, forming a breeding ground for bacteria. More often people with kidney dysfunction face this problem.


Some medications actually make the skin worse.

These include:

  • Hormonal pills. It is noteworthy that some oral contraceptives, on the contrary, improve the situation.
  • Lithium preparations used in the treatment of mental illness. Unfortunately, it is almost impossible to find analogues for them, which means that you have to sacrifice appearance for the sake of mental health.
  • Steroids. Their decay products change metabolism, the whole body is forced to rebuild. Against this background, skin reactions are not rare.


Sweets lead to acne because they increase the activity of androgens and insulin. Women also have male sex hormones. They make the sebaceous glands work harder. Insulin works in a similar way, plus glucose can be released in sweat, which provokes faster growth and multiplication of pathogens in the epidermis. This can be especially dangerous for diabetics, since they have reduced tissue regeneration. A small pimple can turn into a furuncle and a non-healing trophic ulcer.

Milk products

The main risk factor is individual disorders in the absorption of lactose and casein. In such people, the production of insulin-like hormones increases, which provokes acne. Allergic reactions should not be ruled out, manifested as small bubbles filled with transparent secretions.


Caffeine triggers the adrenal glands to release cortisol, similar to stress. In addition, drinkers often suffer from dehydration as it has a diuretic effect.


The link between alcohol consumption and acne is not fully understood. Probably, the reason lies in intoxication and lack of fluid in the body after the breakdown of ethanol in the liver. People with chronic diseases and gastrointestinal tract are at greater risk. At the same time, do not forget about sugar in sweet cocktails and liqueurs.


The connection between acne and chocolate is the same as with other fast carbs. Excess glucose and, as a result, insulin worsens the condition of the skin.

Treatment methods

10 Types of Acne and What They Mean

Getting rid of rashes is a long and gradual process. To get rid of defects once and for all, the approach must be as systematic as possible. You need to start with:

  • Endocrinologist visits.
  • Examination by a dermatologist and cosmetologist.
  • Refusal from bad habits, tea and coffee.
  • Drinking at least one and a half liters of clean water per day.
  • Revision of the diet in favor of a healthy diet, eat greens and vegetables more often, but cut fast carbohydrates as much as possible.
  • Testing of individual reactions to allergens and, if necessary, diet.

Pharmacy products

The most effective drugs sold in a pharmacy are:

Zinc ointment. It is applied pointwise, dries, eliminates itching. 

Retinoic ointment. Soothes, relieves irritation and redness. It is possible to use a cream based on vitamin A only at night, under the influence of ultraviolet light, the appearance of age spots is likely. 

Acetylsalicylic acid. Powder prepared from aspirin tablets is applied to inflammations, dries them. You need to be careful with this tool, it can cause burns and peeling. 

Creams and gels with antibacterial additives , differing in composition and principle of action. A doctor should select them.

Folk ways

Proven and affordable recipes help speed up the healing of acne and prevent relapse.

For the beauty and health of the face are used:

Chamomile decoction. A teaspoon or one filter bag is infused for an hour in 200 ml of boiling water, and then they wash and make compresses. 

Cereals. Dry rolled oats are crushed in a blender and boiled with boiling water. The resulting cooled gruel is applied for 15-20 minutes. 

Aloe. Freshly squeezed juice is diluted in water 1/10 and used for lotions and rubbing. You can apply the pulp as a mask, soak for 15 minutes, then rinse. 


You can forget about the problem forever if you approach the treatment in a comprehensive manner. First of all, it is important to determine the cause and eliminate it, and then to achieve the desired cosmetic effect.

event_note December 3, 2020

account_box Dr. Peter B Milburn

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