Warning! 92 Sneaky Causes Of Acne No One’s Telling You About

what causes acne

You cleanse your face, apply your moisturizer and do everything the internet says you should do to get rid of acne. But, why in the world are you still breaking out?

by Thank Your Skin | Last Updated: July 31st 2017

It’s easy to blame your monthly period for those annoying zits on your face. But, the truth is, there are tons of culprits behind acne.

From what you eat to what you wear, there are things you encounter and do on a daily basis that can make your skin break out. So, crack the code of your zits and permanently bid goodbye to pimples with the comprehensive list of sneaky acne triggers we have below.

In the mean time, check out this amazing infographic to get started.​

Your Diet

1. Leaky gut

A leaky gut happens when your intestines become more permeable. This means toxins and microbes can easily pass through your gut and travel through your bloodstream.

And to get rid of these toxins, your body pushes them out through your skin as acne, bumps and spots.

2. Eating spicy food

If you’re a fan of spicy foods, it’s time to take a break- especially if you’ve been having non-stop breakouts. You see, spicy foods are irritating and they can throw off your skin’s pH.

When your skin’s balance is disrupted, acne can happen.

3. Skipping meals

When you skip meals, your blood glucose rises and your body experiences a significant change in your hormones, including insulin. Once insulin increases, it will trigger your ovaries to produce more testosterone which can result in not just acne, but weight gain, too.

4. Bagels

Well, bagels aren’t the only foods that cause acne. Bread, in general, is problematic for a handful of reasons.

They contain gluten which can initiate an inflammatory response. They can also quickly increase your insulin which, as you know, can trigger acne.

5. Chips

Chips may taste great but the oils they are mostly cooked in contain a high amount of omega-6 fatty acids. These acids aren’t just bad for your skin for increasing inflammation, they can also be detrimental to your health when taken in excessive amounts.

The same is true with junk foods, too.

6. Chocolates

Who can resist a bite of chocolate? Well, if you have acne-prone skin, you have to really work on your self-control and sweet tooth.

It turns out that chocolate has the potential to cause acne because of its high sugar content. The quick sugar rush it gives can cause mayhem in your skin.

If you really need to treat yourself and indulge, go with dark chocolate instead.

7. Milk

Milk and dairy products are considered insulinogenic. They are those foods that, when eaten, can cause your body to produce more insulin.

And you already know what insulin can do to your skin.

Apart from that, milk is also believed to contain several types of hormones, including testosterone and estrogen. These two are closely linked to cases of acne.

8. Ice cream

Ice cream is one of the worst things you can eat when you have acne. Not only does it have a high amount of sugar, it contains dairy, too.

That makes two culprits!

9. Soda

Sodas are much like alcohol when it comes to their effects on the body. They don’t have any nutritional benefit and they pose a lot of harm.

When you drink a bottle of soda, it causes an insulin spike and then you get hungry after. This is one good reason why a lot of people constantly crave for it.

And the more you drink soda, the higher your insulin level becomes and the more acne you’ll get.

10. Pizza

Pizza, much like bagels and white bread, is considered a high glycemic food. It’s quickly digested which can cause a spike in blood sugar.

This can trigger hormonal changes which, in effect, can trigger acne. Whew!

11. Alcohol

The idea that alcohol can cause acne is more than just a myth. Well, apart from causing dehydration, drinking can also lower your immune system.

A low immune system means less efficiency in recognizing and fighting off threats and that includes acne-causing bacteria. Drinking too much alcohol can make you age faster, too.

12. Vitamin D intake

Vitamin D is an important vitamin for the function of several tissues in the body, including the skin. It protects them from bacterial irritation which, in essence, means decreasing the chances for your pores to become inflammatory zits.

When you don’t have as much vitamin D, you become at risk of zits.

And that’s not just a rumor. Research has actually established that people who have acne are vitamin D deficient.

13. Too much coffee

Does coffee cause acne?

Caffeine has an effect on your stress hormones. The more caffeine you consume, the more your stress hormones can get triggered.

These hormones, in turn, can initiate an inflammatory response and increase in your sebum production.

If you want to avoid acne or make your existing zits redder and more inflamed, skip the coffee. Or, at least, cut down your intake.

14. Peanut butter

Peanut butter tastes good but your skin might disagree. This tasty treat has a huge amount of omega 6 fatty acids which can trigger inflammation.

Apart from that, it also contains peanut agglutinin that can increase your intestine’s permeability, a.k.a leaky gut (refer to #1).

Your Skin Care

15. You’re forgetting to moisturize!

Now, this one is a major offense of most people with acne. They either fail to moisturize or they don’t know how to moisturize acne-prone skin.

When you don’t moisturize, you are practically depriving your skin the moisture it needs to protect itself and carry on its functions. So, what it does is produce more sebum to “compensate” for the moisture it “lost”.

Too much oil on an acne-prone skin is never good. Save your skin and your sanity by getting one of these best moisturizers for acne-prone skin.

16. You’re not reaching your back in the shower

Whether you like it or not, acne can happen on your back, too. That’s because you also sweat and produce oil there.

And, unlike the zits you can get on your face and neck, back acne tends to be more painful and bigger. To prevent those nasty spots from appearing on your back, pair the best body wash for acne-prone skin with a brush like this and make sure to scrub your back while in the shower.

17. You’re using regular soap

Regular bath soaps can be overly drying. So, instead of doing your skin a favor by cleansing it, you’re actually doing more harm.

These soaps can strip away your skin’s natural oils. And, when there’s not enough oil, your skin will be forced to produce more.

Soaps can also disrupt your skin’s pH, making it more vulnerable to damage and bacteria.

18. You’re using the wrong makeup remover

Removing your makeup before you hit your bed is a must for your skin type. Well, that goes for all skin types actually.

Unfortunately, some formulas tend to be damaging to the skin, like those non-rinse type. Since you’re not required to wash it off, makeup residues, dirt and oil can remain on the surface of your skin and clog your pores.

Instead of being in a hurry or too lazy, try one of the best makeup removers for acne-prone skin in this list. Or try the oil cleansing method with olive oil instead.

19. You’re using the wrong sunscreen

With its many benefits, wearing sunscreen before heading outdoors is non-negotiable. You can’t forgo protection just because you are breaking out.

If you are constantly having zits every time you’re wearing SPF, you’re probably using the wrong formula or the wrong ingredients.

You see, heavier and chemical-based sunscreens tend to be occlusive. They coat your skin and clog your pores.

20. You’re forgetting to clean your facial cleansing brush

Facial cleansing brushes are supposed to help give you a blemish-free complexion by exfoliating your skin’s top most layer. They are actually effective- unless they are not properly maintained.

If you’re not cleaning your brush with soap and water regularly, you’re just technically introducing bacteria into your skin. Gross!

21. You’re only using oily skin products

Oily skin is only one of the reasons why you can get acne. If the root cause of your breakouts is the bacteria thriving on the surface of your skin, you’ll have a hard time bidding your acne goodbye.

Instead of focusing on oil control, use products that contain acne-fighting ingredients. There are tons of skin care products that have salicylic acid which you can use every day.

22. You’re not upgrading your skin care routine

If you have been using the same set of skin care products without any results, you definitely need an upgrade. More frequent acne, blackheads and noticeably large pores are clear signs your routine isn’t doing anything for your skin.

Other instances you may need an upgrade include change of season or when you’ve moved to a new place. You may also need to switch products based on how your skin is behaving at a given time.

23. You’re taking too many hot showers

While hot showers are soothing and relaxing, they can actually be stressful for your skin. It can damage your skin cells, cause your acne to spread and even ruin your hair cuticle.

And if you’ve ever stepped out of a hot shower with your skin feeling taut, tight and itchy, that’s your skin telling you it’s dehydrated- not fun.

24. You’re using heavy moisturizers

Moisturizers are a must for your skin type, but you shouldn’t use just any moisturizer. Heavy moisturizers and lotions are mostly occlusive, which means they can clog your pores and make your acne worse.

Coconut oil tends to be occlusive, too. If you are thinking of using it to moisturize your skin, check first if it’s virgin coconut oil.

25. You’re not washing your face after working out

Working out may be great for your skin, but not all the time. When you work out, your body’s blood circulation increases and you sweat to eliminate toxins.

The problem happens when your sweat sits on your skin for too long. It can mix with oil, dirt and toxins.

Together, they can disrupt your skin’s pH balance and clog your pores. And if you’re taking supplements, like whey protein, you’re doing more damage to your skin.

26. You’re skipping toner

When you wash your skin, its pH gets thrown off and its natural oils get stripped away. Once that happens, your skin becomes vulnerable to bacteria and damage.

The best toners for acne prone skin can help you avoid that from happening. Plus, they can also pick up dirt and makeup residues your cleanser may have missed.

27. You’re not washing your face properly

The ingredients in your face wash need time to work. If you’re washing your face for only a few seconds, they won’t be able to do their job properly.

Dirt and oil can linger on your skin and there’ll be traces of makeup left. These things can spell bad news for your acne-prone skin.

The next time you wash your face, massage the product into your skin as you sing the alphabet song. Only then can you rinse off.

28. You’re using a body sunscreen on your face

Unless your sunscreen is clear about being usable on both your face and body, don’t attempt to apply your body sunscreen on your face.

Your facial skin is generally more sensitive than the skin on your body. If you use the body versions on your face, you can end up with irritation, dryness and inflamed spots.

29. Your anti-aging creams are causing the problem

Anti-aging creams are reliable when it comes to reducing fine line and wrinkles. Unfortunately, not all of them can work well on acne-prone skin.

One good reason is the preservatives they can contain, particularly Methylchloroisothiazolinone and Methylisothiazolinone. These two are known to trigger negative reactions even in small amounts.

30. You’re shaving with old blades

Shaving can give you smooth, flawless skin. But, it can give you acne and acne-like problems, too, especially if you’ve been using the same set of blades for awhile now.

Old blades can harbor bad bacteria that can get into your pores as the blades pass over your skin. The friction those blades create can also be irritating, particularly to delicate skin.

For sensitive acne-prone skin, try pairing the right shaving cream with the best razor for sensitive skin. And remember to replace your blades after two to three uses.

31. You’re using a dirty loofah

When you have breakouts on your arms and body, it can be quite tempting to use a loofah, like this one, to scrub them off. While it does help with exfoliation, the problem with loofahs is how they are prone to bacterial buildup.

Damp loofahs provide a good environment for bacteria to thrive in. The next time you use one, you’ll just be practically spreading more bacteria on your skin.

32. You’re overdoing spot treatments

Spot treatments are heaven sent for days when you need a quick fix for your zits. But, if you overdo it, your skin can end up looking and feeling much worse than when you started with the treatments.

The skin around your pimples can get red, inflamed and itchy.

33. You’re waxing too frequently

Waxing can keep you hair-free longer. Unfortunately, this does come at a price.

When you wax, the top most layer of the skin gets removed in the process. As a result, the area becomes vulnerable to a lot of things.

Even the simple act of touching it can lead to breakouts. Dirt and oil can easily creep into our pores, too.

34. Tanning

Tanning is tricky for acne-prone skin. Just think of it as a temporary solution.

At the beginning, it can actually help dry out pimples since UV rays have a drying effect. It can curb your skin’s excess oil production.

However, after the process, your skin will start to compensate and produce more oil to remedy the dryness. This can cause more breakouts.

Your Medications

35. You’re taking multivitamins and supplements

Multivitamins typically have three main components: vitamin B12 (we’ll get to this one later), B6 and iodine, which is a mineral. Although these vitamins and minerals are beneficial for your health, receiving too much of them can actually trigger acne.

Here’s a study to prove that.

Apart from those three, supplements like biotin, creatine and phentermine can also cause pimples.

But, take note. Not everything in multivitamins can cause. There are still the good guys, like vitamin A and Zinc.

36. You’re receiving Depo-Provera shots

Depo-Provera is a type of contraceptive generally administered via injection to the muscles. Since it is a synthetic hormone, it can create an imbalance in your body and cause a handful of side effects.

The list includes acne, weight gain and mood changes

37. You’re taking antidepressants

Antidepressants, particularly Zoloft, have been linked to cases of acne. Research suggests that it can be due to hypersensitivity to the drug and not the drug itself.

If you happen to experience breakouts while taking antidepressants, do not stop taking your medicine without consulting your doctor. You shouldn’t also take any oral medications for your acne as some of them can interact negatively with your antidepressant.

Instead, use a topical acne treatment, like ones that contain benzoyl peroxide.

38. You got Copper IUD

So, here’s the thing.

Copper IUD, especially hormonal IUD, can cause an imbalance in your hormones. It can trigger the production of your androgen hormones which, in effect, can make your oil glands more active.

In addition to that, hormonal IUD can increase your body’s estrogen level. When there’s too much estrogen, there will be an increase in your kidney’s copper retention.

As more copper is retained, the harder it will be for your liver to detoxify your blood. Toxins will build up and chronic acne can happen.

39. You’re receiving B12 Injections

Vitamin B12 injections have the ability to alter the genetic expression of P. Acnes which is a common acne-causing bacteria. The injections make these bacteria produce porphyrins that promote inflammation in acne.

Usually, when the injections are stopped, acne goes away, too. However, since vitamin B12 injections are essential for some bodily functions, you shouldn’t just stop receiving them because your skin is breaking out.

40. You’re taking steroids

Acne is one of the most common side effects of abusing steroids. Breakouts related to the intake of this artificial hormone typically happens in the back, face and shoulder.

When you take too much steroids, it tricks your body into believing it has more male hormones than it actually does. The “excess’ male hormones trigger more sebum production.

41. Your prescription medications

Apart from the medications mentioned above, there are tons of prescription medications that can also cause acne. The list includes antituberculosis drugs, halogens and anti-epileptics.

Technically, medications that can affect the immune system and stimulate insulin have the potential to trigger skin breakouts.

42. You’ve just started your acne medications

Usually, before acne gets better, it gets worse first.

There are acne medications that stimulate skin cell turnover to unclog pores and remove acne-causing bacteria. As the process takes place, inflammation is brought up and flare up happens.

43. You’re on birth control pills

Birth control pills, specifically those that contain progestin, are likely to cause acne because they are considered androgenic. They can stimulate increased sebum production which can cause bacteria to increase in number.

Your Makeup

44. You’re using fake cosmetics

Fake makeup products come at a ridiculously low price for a reason. They aren’t made from high-quality and safe ingredients and they’re not produced in a sterile environment.

Some of them can even contain illegal ingredients.

Because of how poorly they are made, fake cosmetics don’t only put you at risk of skin breakouts, they can also cause chemical burns, dermatitis and eye infection.

45. You’re not cleaning your makeup sponges and brushes

Makeup tools can harbor loads of bad bacteria and they can pick up dead skin cells. If they aren’t cleaned on a regular basis, there’s no chance for you to get clearer skin.

Ideally, you should clean your makeup brushes once a week, at minimum. They should be kept in an area where there’s free air flowing so bacteria won’t grow in them.

46. You’re applying thick foundation

Thick foundations are great for coverage but they don’t spell the same news for acne. Thicker foundations are usually more occlusive, making it hard for your pores to breathe.

Instead of layering too much product, use the best foundations for acne-prone skin instead.

47. You’re using the wrong makeup products

People with acne prone skin can use makeup, provided that they use the right makeup products. Anything that has fragrance, pore clogging ingredients, colorants and petrochemicals can cause mayhem to your skin.

Your Clothes, Fashion

48. You’re wearing tight collared shirt

Do you notice more zits on your neck? It’s probably that tight collared shirt you’re wearing.

Tight collars don’t allow for proper ventilation so you’re likely to sweat more there. It causes more friction, too, which can be irritating.

49. Your clothes are made from synthetic fibers

Unbreathable clothing isn’t just uncomfortable; they can cause painful body acne as well.

Synthetic fibers can mash up dead skin cells and oil together and push them down into your pores. These things can attract bacteria which can aggravate your acne or trigger a new breakout.

50. Your bra straps

If you are suddenly experiencing breakouts in your shoulders, chest area and back area, it’s probably the right time to throw out your favorite bra. Although a snug fit is essential for support, tight bra can trap sweat and bacteria.

It can affect your sleep and cause back problems, too.

51. You’re not sleeping naked

Sleeping naked is great for your sebaceous glands since it allows them to breathe. Plus, it can also decrease the level of cortisol, a stress hormone, in your body.

It can boost your body’s blood circulation, too.

52. Your yoga pants

Yoga pants, no matter how comfortable they are, can cling to your skin and trap bacteria. And if you’ve been wearing them for hours after your workout, you are sure to get a bumpy bottom.

So, if you want to avoid butt acne, make sure to bring an extra clean pair of yoga pants you can change into after your workout.

53. You keep wearing the same hat

Hats are great for those bad hair days. The same goes for headbands.

But, constantly wearing a hat or headband where makeup and sweat can build up around the rim can cause forehead acne. If you really need to wear a hat, don’t wear it for a full day and make sure you wash it often.

54. Your washcloths

Wash cloths are great for removing sweat after a hard workout, but be sure you are using a clean one every time you wash your face. If you’ll be using the one you used and hanged yesterday, you’ll just be spreading bacteria on your skin.

55. You wear a thong underwear when working out

During a workout, your yoga pants can trap in sweat and oil. If you’re wearing a thong under those pants, you’re not giving your skin any barrier from those acne triggers.

56. You wear scarves

Do you notice your skin breaking out more during the winter? It’s probably your scarf causing problems.

A scarf that’s wrapped a bit tightly can cause friction and irritation. It can worsen any existing acne you have.

Sensitivity to wool can cause issues, too. If you are feeling itchy and scratchy, it’s time to invest in softer winter scarves.

57. Your glasses

Glasses can cause acne because they easily get dirty. If you don’t wash and disinfect them or store them in their proper cases when not in use, they can easily accumulate dirt and bacteria.

They can also push heavy makeup into your pores, particularly around the area of the hip frames.

58. You’re wearing helmet with a chin strap

Helmets can obviously give you some good amount of acne, especially if they are sweaty and dirty. Before you wear one, make it a habit to wipe the straps first with antibacterial wipes.

Don’t forget to wash your face before wearing and removing your helmet, too.

59. Your tech accessories

If you didn’t get the memo, mobile phones contain much, much more bacteria than your toilet handle. Now, imagine what those bacteria can do to your skin.

60. Your toothpaste

Toothpaste contains ingredients that can cause acne, dryness, burning and irritation. Some formulas can even cause sensitivity reactions, like small bumps and rashes.

The way you brush your teeth can cause acne, too. To make sure that doesn’t happen, always brush your teeth before you wash your face.

This way, the bacteria from your mouth won’t linger on your skin for long.

Your Habits

61. Smoking

There are conflicting claims on the link between smoking and acne. Some say it does cause acne while others argue that it doesn’t.

But, one thing is for sure.

Whether you are smoking cigarette or weed, you can end up with skin that’s dull, wrinkly and saggy. It predisposes you to cancer, too.

62. You’re constantly touching your face

There are a lot of things wrong with touching your face.

For one, your hands come in contact with millions of bacteria from your phone, computer, door knob and all sorts of things. Touching your face with your dirty hands can mean transfer of those bacteria.

Touching can also lead to picking, such as what happens when you abuse meth. And when you pick at your pimples, you run the risk of making things worse (read: scars).

63. Your schedule

Having a very busy schedule can put a lot of stress on your skin. You’ll get less sleep, you’ll crave for sweets and you’ll have no time to do a proper skin care routine.

The more stressed you become, the more your acne gets worse.

So, take time off of your busy schedule to relax. Try meditating or working out.

You can also consider talking to your doctor about medicines that can help with your sleeping disorder. Adderall is good but take note that it can possibly trigger breakouts, too.

64. Your study habits

Staying up late to prepare for an upcoming test and feeling pressured about passing it are two things that can make you wake up with a large zit on your face. Instead of cramming, try studying a few days before your actual exam.

Not only will that help you avoid acne, it can help you feel more relaxed during exams, too.

65. Your drinking habits

Does drinking alcohol cause acne? It certainly does.

Alcohol can disrupt your hormone’s balance and that’s one of the main causes of skin breakouts. In addition to that, drinking booze can cause a spike in your insulin, too.

66. Traveling

The low humidity inside airplanes can be drying to the skin. This disrupts the skin’s barrier, making it irritated and itchy.

Apart from that, the sudden change in temperature and mineral content of water are common culprits of vacation acne, too.

Your hair

67. You got the wrong haircut

Technically, there is no wrong haircut. But, if you have acne-prone skin, it’s best to steer clear of hairstyles that will let your hair constantly rub on your skin.

Skip the bangs and don’t wear the same hairstyle every day. At night, pull your hair back as you sleep to keep it out of your face.

68. You are not washing your hair properly

If your hair is oily, the oils can get on your face and this can trigger breakouts. If your scalp is dirty, your scalp is likely to break out, too.

Not washing your hair properly can give you more problems than just smelly hair. To avoid acne breakouts, find the best shampoo for acne-prone skin, wash your hair and then the rest of your body.

This way, the bacteria and dirt from your hair won’t linger on your body.

69. You’re getting your hair products on your skin

There are ingredients in hair products that can clog pores. If they ever get in contact with your skin, such as when you’re spraying or applying them, don’t feel surprised if you end up with large zits later.

Layering on too many products can be occlusive to your pores, too. So, instead of spraying them to your hair, apply them with a comb or your fingers.

Your environment

70. Your air filtration system at home

If you’ve tried changing everything from your diet to your products and you’re still getting breakouts, perhaps it’s time to check your air filtration system at home. If it’s not regularly cleaned or its filters are not routinely replaced every 90 days, bacteria, dirt and dust can accumulate there and those things won’t be good for your skin.

71. The weather

A hot weather won’t only make you sweat more, it can also dry your skin out. And for someone with acne-prone skin, that’s never a good thing.

The same is true with drier climates and weather. Being exposed to these conditions can easily zap away your skin’s moisture, forcing your body to produce more oil than necessary.

72. The sun

A lot of people think that sun exposure can help remedy acne. The truth, however, is that skin darkening due to sun exposure only makes pimples a lot less noticeable.

They’re still there.

In reality, too much sun exposure can actually cause dehydration and this can stimulate an increase in your skin’s oil production. Once the tan fades, you’ll be left with an oilier skin and darker scars.

73. You’re blasting the AC

Being exposed to cold air feels nice, especially if it’s scorching hot outside. Unfortunately, this can put a toll on your skin as exposure to cold air can dry the skin out and make it look flaky.

If you can’t stand the heat and you really need to blast that AC, make sure you have a humidifier around to balance the moisture in the air.

74. Your water

You may not realize it but the water you use in washing your face can also cause acne. Hard water happens to make up 85% of all the water being supplied to American homes.

The problem with hard water is that it has a high mineral content. This prevents the water from reacting with your soap to create a lather.

So, instead of getting a foam, you get a soapy layer on your skin which can clog your pores and make your skin itchy and dry.

Your health

75. You have dandruff

Dandruff doesn’t only come with flaky and itchy scalp. Usually, there’ll be excessive oil and abnormal shedding of skin cells, too.

These things can clog your follicles and pores. The result? Well, you got it- acne.

76. You have a yeast infection

When your body has yeast overgrowth, its natural ability to fight off infections and bacteria dramatically decreases.

So, if you have existing acne, this can make things worse. And if you don’t, you’re likely to get one.

77. You have a cold

If you have a cold or any other illness, it’s likely that your immune system will be busy fighting off the infection. It won’t be as strong in fighting off the acne-causing bacteria on your skin.

78. You sweat a lot

Hyperhidrosis is a thing and it commonly causes acne and acne-like problems.

When you have this condition, your body produces excessive sweat. Sweat means moisture and it’s something bacteria really love.

Too much sweat can also block your pores and you know what happens with blocked pores.

79. PCOS

PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is a hormonal disorder that creates a disruption in your hormones. A person who has PCOS is likely to show signs of excess androgen, like infertility, abnormal periods and, yes, acne.

Apart from the actual medical condition, drugs used to treat PCOS, like prednisone, can also trigger breakouts. In some cases, supplements, like fish oil, can help.

80. Cushing Syndrome

Similar to PCOS, Cushing's Syndrome is also a hormonal disease. It mainly affects the body’s production of the hormone cortisol.

When there’s excessive cortisol, you can expect weight gain, muscles weakness, acne and slow skin healing. A person with Cushing Syndrome is more prone to infections, too.

81. Thyroid problems

Hypothyroidism doesn’t directly cause skin to break out, but it’s symptoms do. Low thyroid hormones can cause dry skin, low levels of progesterone and vitamin A which are common acne culprits.

While you can’t get rid of the acne associated with hypothyroidism without treating the condition first, there are things you can do to lessen the breakouts. One way to start is to use products for acne prone skin.

82. Puberty

Puberty causing acne isn’t really new. But, for teenagers experiencing breakouts at this stage, it can be overwhelming.

At this phase, several changes in the body are happening- from a change in voice, beginning of menstruation to sexual maturity. And all of these things involve fluctuations in hormones, an acne culprit.

83. Menopause

Like puberty, menopause involves changes in hormones. As testosterone levels rise, sebaceous glands are triggered and excessive sebum is produced.

This oily substance blocks the pores, resulting in inflammation and possible infection. The situation gets worse when menopausal acne happens with slower skin cell regeneration because of aging.

84. Your period

Before and after your menstruation, your body experiences a higher amount of testosterone in comparison with your female hormones. This excess testosterone, much like what happens with hormonal fluctuations, can send your sebaceous glands into overdrive.

85. Pregnancy

Acne during pregnancy is not uncommon. The high level of androgen during this period is what causes pregnant women to experience skin breakouts.

86. Your genes

We hate to break the bad news but acne can also be genetic in nature. This, however, doesn’t mean that you’ll get breakouts right away just because you have the genes.

It just means that you’re more prone and sensitive to acne triggers than other people.

87. Having big boobs

Big boobs aren’t always a nice thing, especially when the skin around the area starts breaking out.

This can happen when you wear tight bras or if you don’t wash your bras properly. Too much sweat and not drying sweat right away can cause acne, too.

Your partner, pets

88. Your pet

Your dog or cat might feel nice to hug and cuddle but think twice about doing that if you have acne-prone skin. You see, your pets can carry loads of critters in their body and these little bugs can crawl on your skin without you noticing them.

Their fur can also carry allergens from plants, chemicals and other animals.

89. Your boyfriend’s beard

If your skin is sensitive and acne-prone, you might want to spend a lot less time being near your boyfriend’s beard. A hairy face rubbing on your smooth face can cause irritation and friction.

These things can trigger your skin to produce more oil and that’s where the problem starts to happen. If your boyfriend can’t stand shaving, make him use a good antibacterial beard soap at least.

90. Kissing

Kissing won’t instantly make you break out. But, if your boyfriend isn’t fond of proper skin hygiene or he’s using products that don’t match your skin type, being in contact with him can be a problem.

Other causes of acne

91. Your bedding

If you have been sleeping on the same sheet and pillow case for quite a while, don’t wonder where you’re getting your acne from. Your beddings and pillow cases can accumulate dead skin cells, dirt and oils from you as you sleep and these things can invite bacterial growth.

Make it a habit to wash your sheets and pillow cases once or twice a week.

92. You are using the wrong detergent

Washing your clothes and linens can help control your acne. But if you’re using the wrong detergent, you’ll just be making things worse.

In washing your beddings, you can use a hypoallergenic laundry detergent or one that has antibacterial ingredients.

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Dr Kathleen May Eusebio-Alpapara

A board-certified dermatologist who practices both medical and cosmetic dermatology

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