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What are the Reasons for Acne on Face & Pimple Causes?

Reasons For Acne

Acne is one of the most common skin problems for people of all ages. Our bodies experience changes because of hormones, and these hormonal changes often lead to skin problems, weight gain, mood swings, and many other health issues.

People with acne might often wonder, "Why me?" But there are several explanations for the causes of pimples on the face or sudden acne breakouts. However, when it comes to the precise cause, it remains a mystery. Even if we do not know the "why?" we know the how. Acne develops through the pores (hair follicles) of our skin. These are closely associated with oil glands called ‘sebaceous glands', which produce sebum. Sebum is an oily substance that lubricates our hair and skin, and excess sebum release can lead to clogged pores and become the reason for pimples on the face or even painful acne.

When sebum is secreted, it also removes dead skin cells from the pore lining. If this secretion is excessive, it clogs the pores. Together, the sebum build-up and dead skin cells form a swelling around the pore, which becomes acne. Other causes of acne can be bacteria build-up inside the pore, leading to pus formation.

Causes or Reasons for Acne and Pimples

There can be several reasons behind acne and pimples on the face. Let's find out the common reasons:

Hormonal Changes

One of the major reasons behind acne and pimple outbreaks is hormonal changes. Hormonal changes occur in both men and women, often leading to acne on the face and other body parts. Hormonal changes are frequent in women during periods, pregnancy and puberty. Consumption of birth control pills and health issues like polycystic ovarian syndrome also stimulate acne.


Heredity plays a significant role in the persistence and cause of acne. According to a study published by the National Health Services, if both parents have had acne, the child is more likely to experience similar skin problems at an early age.


Medicinal reactions are very common, and certain medications can lead to the outbreak of acne-like eruptions or true acne. Specific drugs, like lithium, corticosteroids, birth control pills, testosterone, lamotrigine, antiepileptics, and phenytoins, can lead to acne outbreaks.


Many studies have shown that stress can induce hormonal imbalance. Even if it does not directly cause acne or is a prominent pimples on face reason, it can aggravate existing acne.


Propionibacterium acnes is a tiny microbe that lives in the oily region of the pores and aggravates an immune response that leads to swollen bumps. This bacteria is the major reason behind pimples on the face. 


Overconsumption of certain food items can become a common cause of acne formation. The excess consumption of fast food or deep-fried food, sugar, protein powders, chocolates, certain dairy products (butter and cheese), and food that can cause inflammation in the body leads to common acne causes. 


The use of certain cosmetic products for longer periods can stimulate acne formation. Common cosmetic products like creams, foundations, moisturizers, and overnight creams can harm the skin and give rise to common problems like acne and pimples.

Excess Oil Production

Excess oil production is one of the most common causes of acne and pimples on the face. People who have oily skin sure do have a glaze, but the major issue with this skin type is excess sebum production. This excess release of sebum often leads to the clogging of pores and, eventually, the formation of painful acne.

Clogged Pores

Often, your regular skincare routine is not enough to remove the dead skin cells, dirt, and oil formation, which becomes the major reason pimples come in the face. The excess oil and dirt causes clogged pores, painful acne, pimples, blackheads, and many other skin problems. Including common non-comedogenic skincare products like salicylic acid and retinol can help ease these issues.

What Causes a Pimple and Acne to Form?

According to experts, the most common reason for the cause of face pimples is a clogged pore. Pimples are very common when the skin releases excess sebum and is constantly exposed to dirt and bacteria. The increased presence of pimple-causing bacteria on your skin is a sign that needs better treatment and products.

The irritation and inflammation of the sebaceous glands or blocked hair follicles can also result in the breakout of painful pimples and leave behind dark spots. However, the good news is that pimples are easy to treat and can be prevented with certain medications and a skincare routine. Natural solutions like aloe vera gel, green tea, honey, and tea tree oil work like magic.

Similarly, the most common cause of acne is blocked hair follicles, better known as skin pores. When dead skin cells and excess sebum remain within the layers of your skin, it is very obvious that you have painful acne on your face.

Common Symptoms of Acne

Your body has a unique way of informing you about upcoming health issues. Similarly, the face on your skin shows many symptoms before acne breakouts. A pimple on the face, the formation of small papules and pustules, crusting of skin bumps, small cysts appearing on your face, increased whiteheads and blackheads, and redness around the eruptions are some of the most common symptoms of acne or your body's way of telling; you are about to experience the eruptions of painful acne.

What's the Difference Between Acne and Pimples?

While most of the people who experience skin problems consider acne and pimples to be the same, in reality, both of them are quite different from each other. However, the root cause behind the breakout of acne and pimples is failing to follow a suitable skincare routine. Let's find out the major differences between the two from the table below:

Features Acne Pimple
Definition It is a severe skin condition that results in itchiness, redness, and deep scars. It is a common symptom of skin problems.
Position Acne appears on the entire face. Pimples can appear on the face, neck, and chest.
Type Acnes are mostly hard cyst-like hard bumps, big and small in size. They do not have any puss-filled tips. Pimples are small, reddish bumps with clear or puss filling. They are softer and have an opening/ white tip.
Cure Acne requires weeks of systematic clinical treatments to achieve long-lasting results. Pimples can be cured within one or more days with home remedies or topical medicines.

Common Myths About Acne and Pimples

Several myths surround the breakout of pimples and acne; it is now time to bust them. Let's find out the common myths people usually believe in and how they differ greatly from reality.

Myth 1: Acne is Caused by Poor Hygiene

Your overall hygiene has not much to do with acne causes. In most cases, acne breakouts result from excess oil production, clogged pores, and hormonal imbalances. However, keeping your facial skin clean can remove bacteria that cause skin irritation, infections in sebaceous glands, and pimples or other similar small bumps.

Myth 2: Acne is Only a Teenage Problem

It is a very common belief that acne is a teenage thing and occurs only during adolescence or the teenage years. Although acne and pimples on the face are very common during the teenage years, they can appear at any point in the adult life cycle. 

Myth 3: Popping Pimples Makes Them Go Away

The worst myth people believe is that popping pimples and acne makes them go away; however, in reality, it can worsen the skin condition and give rise to many other problems. To many, popping pimples is a job of satisfaction, but it often leads to spreading bacteria and temporary scarring.

Myth 4: Only People With Oily Skin Get Acne and Pimples

Although people with oily skin experience the most pimples and acne, anyone with any skin type can experience these issues. Specific skin or health conditions, medicinal reactions, and hormonal changes can cause acne and pimple breakouts. 

Myth 5: Acne is Contagious

A specific group of people who do not experience acne issues consider it to be contagious and try avoiding contact with people experiencing painful acne breakouts. In reality, this is the worst myth people can believe in the 21st century, as acne is not at all contagious. It cannot spread through touch or saliva.

Myth 6: Acne Will Go Away on Its Own

When acne appears on the face, it means there are some underlying issues. Acne is a serious skin condition; if not treated in time, the condition can worsen and cause many other skin problems. Acne scars can become a nightmare if not treated properly.

When to See a Doctor?

Most people, when experiencing painful pimples and acne on their face, think it will cure with time; however, if not treated properly, they can worsen the skin condition, leaving behind everlasting scars, disrupting the quality and texture of the facial skin, or give rise to many other skin issues. When you discover that the acne that appears on the skin stays even after four to six weeks and keeps multiplying in number, it is a warning sign that you are facing extreme skin problems that need proper medical treatments.

Upon seeing a dermatologist or a specialist who deals with skin problems and offers effective acne treatment, they can suggest some common and effective medications like benzoyl peroxide lotions to soothe the skin, lighten the scars, and reduce the itchiness and redness. Most skin specialists offer OTC or over-the-counter medication treatments to relieve itchiness, pain, and facial swelling quickly.

How is Acne Treated?

Skin specialists treat people experiencing mild and moderate acne breakouts with antibiotic tablets and topical medicines like gels, lotions, and creams. Through systematic therapy, the skin shows positive results and prevents the patient from experiencing further breakouts. If the breakouts are severe, specialists suggest effective hormonal therapies, oral medications, and injections that help reduce the pain, redness, scars, and further breakouts. 

Can Acne Be Prevented?

Even if acne breakouts are unpredictable, it is possible to prevent them by adopting some common measures, such as:

Avoiding Sun Exposure

Sunrays are known to stimulate sebum secretion, block pores, and lead to acne or pimples. It is not just acne; the most common reason for face pimples is increased exposure to the sun.

Washing and Cleansing

Another common cause of pimples and acne is failing to wash and cleanse the face properly. Choosing products that remove oil, dirt, and bacteria from the face without affecting the quality of the skin is an excellent way to prevent acne and pimples.

Staying Hydrated

Drinking lots of water helps keep the skin hydrated, balance the immune system, and remove bacteria and toxins. This is why skincare specialists always suggest drinking enough water throughout the day.

Using Effective Acne Treatments

Preventing the outbreak of painful acne and pimples on the face is easy when you take precautions. Using cosmetic products that contain Salicylic acid and retinol and are free from irritation-causing ingredients like sulphates can improve skin clarity, reduce oil production, and eliminate the reason for pimples on the face. 

Living With Acne: Coping Strategies

To live with acne can be a nightmarish experience. The pain, the itchiness, and the deep scars, everything together, can lower self-esteem and push the person suffering to the verge of depression. However, with some effective coping strategies suggested by experts, you can make the situation much more bearable and easily overcome the problems.

The best way to deal with acne problems is to stop squeezing, picking, and popping those small bumps because this will only worsen your condition. Another effective way is to control your diet, drink lots of water, and be consistent with skincare treatments and medications.

You can also implement stress-reducing strategies to improve your condition, such as yoga, exercises, and meditation, and get enough sleep. Using gentle acne-care products with Salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, tea tree oil, retinol and resorcinol can reduce acne breakouts and make you feel better. 

Building Self-Esteem

The first step towards building or regaining self-esteem is understanding your skin condition, choosing skin-sensitive products, improving your lifestyle, and seeking help from an expert. Before you try thousands of lotions and gels to get rid of itchiness, pain, and scars, you must discover why pimples appear on your face and how these small bumps can lead to hard and painful acne later on when you ignore them for a long time.

Dr Batra’s® Homeopathy treatments can help you regain confidence and skin clarity. With effective skincare homeopathic therapies, medicines, and alternative solutions, we can help restore your faith and make your skin healthier and happier.

Seeking Support

Are you looking for expert guidance and want to eliminate all skin problems? At Dr Batra, we help you get cured through an effective and long-lasting homeopathic method. By analysing root causes, skin allergies, and components that your skin is sensitive to, we curate the best solutions that restore your skin’s clarity, shine, and texture. Call Dr Batra’s® today to book an expert consultation and say no to acne and pimples.


What is the cause of pimples on the face?

Pimples mainly appear on the face when the pores are clogged with oil, dirt, and bacteria. Each pore of your skin is made up of a hair follicle and a sebaceous gland that produces an oil-like substance called sebum; when the release of sebum increases, dead skin cells and oil trap the opening of the pores and result in pus-filled pimples.

What foods are the causes of pimples on the face?

An individual is more likely to have acne if their diet includes an excess amount of soda, white rice, white bread, cake, and food rich in carbohydrates and sugar.

What causes sudden acne breakouts in adults?

Acne on the forehead can be a reaction to certain cosmetic or hair products. The blocked tiny glands on the forehead below the skin's surface can lead to painful acne.

Why does my acne keep coming back?

Hormonal changes can be the most common reason your acne keeps returning. The body goes through many changes, including hormonal imbalance, and acne is one of those. Balancing your hormones and seeking effective and safe skin treatment can prevent further outbreaks.

What is the most common cause of acne?

The most common cause of acne is failing to maintain skin hygiene. Excess dirt, oil, and bacteria build up on the face can cause acne breakouts and leave deep scars.

How to avoid getting acne?

The best way to avoid getting painful acne on your face is to follow a proper skincare routine that prevents the excess buildup of dead skin cells, oil, dirt, and bacteria.

How do I stop acne breakouts?

The easiest way to stop acne breakouts is to keep your skin clean, maintain a proper skincare routine, use skin-friendly products, and opt for effective long-term acne treatments.

Does stress cause acne?

Although several studies have proven that stress cannot directly cause acne, it can trigger it or worsen the condition. An increase in stress can affect hormones and cause an imbalance, disrupting the skin's immune function and leading to increased acne.

Does drinking water help acne?

Drinking lots of water supports the immune system and boosts skin hydration, which in turn helps prevent the formation or increase in acne breakouts.



Went there for acne treatment. I was happy with the way of communication and understanding nature of Doctor. He explained to me about my skin related issues very well and ensured me about complete recovery after the medication. He is so kind and friendly. Highly recommended.

Ashutosh Mishra

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