Why does acne occur in adults?

In this article we review the causes behind the appearance of acne in adults, as well as some myths.

When we think of acne, we automatically imagine a teenager. But, did you know that acne in adults can also appear? So is.

If you are suffering from them, you will surely want to know the causes. Women are usually more prone to this problem, but there are men who are also interested in how to eliminate it.

In the following article we will unveil the mystery of why acne occurs in adults.

Acne in adults, not so “youthful” acne

Did you think that blackheads and blackheads were going to end when you reached adulthood? You haven’t been a teenager for years and yet they keep popping up? Quiet. This is a very common problem in the elderly.

Many are the causes of acne at ages “less expected” (to call it that).

  • It not only develops on the faces of those who when they were young had to try all kinds of creams, makeup and treatments to hide these annoying pimples.
  • Also, in those who have never had more than a handful of outbreaks throughout puberty.

Causes of acne in adults

The causes are so varied that not all could be listed. But we will list the most common so that you can have a reference:

Certain medications

  • Some drugs, especially those that contain corticosteroids, testosterone, or lithium, can promote acne in adults.
  • This is because these medications have hormonal effects, another cause of acne in adults, as we will see below.

Hormonal imbalances

Hormonal imbalances can increase the production of male hormones ( androgens ) and thus sebum on the inside of the skin.

  • This produces different skin lesions, including acne.


During this stage in a woman’s life, the skin can be affected by a large number of hormonal changes, which can cause acne to appear.

  • In addition to spots and stretch marks, pimples also appear on the face, back and chest.


In this case it affects both sexes. Various factors that cause us stress (such as the fast pace of life that is lived in large cities) can make our skin problems worse.

  • Stress increases the work of the adrenal glands that are responsible for producing fat, so it can worsen the acne that we have, although not cause it in principle.


Smoking is really bad for our health as we already know, because it can cause lung (including cancer), kidney or cardiovascular diseases.

  • The toxic substances in cigarettes enhance skin damage.
  • Several studies claim that most smokers have pimples.

Sun exposure

Lying in the sun for a while is not bad. The problem lies in spending hours and hours in the face of UV rays. Not using protection factor is also detrimental to the health of the skin and can lead to acne, as well as other serious diseases such as melanoma.

  • In addition, the exposure to the sun inadequate causes spots, redness and burns.

Popping the pimples

If every time a pimple appears you squeeze it with all you might, new breakouts are likely to develop. Why? Because popping the pimple damages the skin as indicated by the NIAMS.

In addition to leaving marks, redness and inflammation, the area can become infected when it comes in contact with bacteria laden hands and fingers.

  • In turn, acne can worsen if we have a bad habit of touching the skin all the time.
  • You will irritate the dermis and increase the production of sebum.

Using lots of scrubs

These products are believed to help remove pimples. While this is true, they should not be abused because they affect the dermis due to so much friction, as in the previous case.

Myths about acne

Next, we will also talk about some myths that circulate on the net about certain customs that cause acne, but that lack scientific evidence.

Lack of hydration or cleanliness

Many people believe that poor hygiene favors the production of sebum and fat. However, there are no studies to confirm this and dirt does not cause acne.

Obviously, it is important to have good hygiene habits in general, but washing more than usual will not end acne. In fact, excessive friction can make it worse.

Excess makeup and acne in adults

It is popularly believed that excess makeup causes acne. However, there are no studies that confirm this theory. The important thing is to clean our face well to remove makeup remains and not sleep with makeup, as this does not let the skin “breathe”.

If we follow these tips, cosmetics should not in principle make our acne worse. What is certain is that if we have acne, it is better that we avoid oil-based products because they can make our condition worse.

Feeding Habits

Eating too many high-fat foods is popularly believed to cause acne. However, there are no conclusive studies to support that claim.

You should avoid abusing fatty foods because they are bad for your general health, but not because they will cause acne.

As you already realized, there are many factors that cause acne in adults. If you recognize any of these habits, try to change them for healthier ones. This will help you regain the health of your skin.

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