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Thought acne breakouts and blemishes left you after your college? Think again. Acne in adults is more common than you think.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, nearly half of women over 25 still suffer from acne breakouts.
And shockingly, if you never had them as a teen, it doesn’t mean you are safe from breakouts.
Although the acne breakouts may look the same in adults, they’re a bit different from the ones you may have had in teens.
Acne in adults usually appears on the lower half of the face. And they usually appear as cysts or under the skin which is impossible to drain.
So what exactly are causing acne breakouts in your 30s? One culprit is changing hormone levels. Others include premenstrual dips or fluctuations during perimenopause.
But did you know, there are many other unexpected causes of acne in adults? Sometimes your skin-care regimen is to blame, and sometimes your lifestyle plays a major role.
If you’re confused about why acne breakouts are still frequent in your adulthood, here are 9 unexpected reasons you may be getting them.
Top 9 Unexpected Causes of Acne in Adults
Believe it or not, sometimes getting facial hair removal, or using excessive hair products can cause a breakout. If your hormonal balances are perfectly fine, then perhaps its time to revisit and reshuffle your beauty drawer a bit. Here are some common culprits.
Facial Hair Removal
Tweezing, waxing, shaving can all cause the skin tissue to swell. This opens up the way for acne-causing bacteria to enter deeper into skin pores.
Sometimes even topical products applied to your skin before hair removal can clog skin pores and promote a breakout.
Try to kill off some bacteria too by cleaning the hairy area thoroughly.
Cosmetics are notorious for clogging skin pores. They can combine with natural skin oil and cause breakouts.
But the real problem always doesn’t lie with the product themselves. It has more to do with the way you remove the makeup too.
Oil and dirt can easily buildup on makeup after a long day. This can trap acne-causing bacteria within the skin that results in acne.
After removing your makeup, make sure to wash your face thoroughly. If the problem persists, try washing your face before removing makeup as well.
If you can’t sleep all night because of a deadline or an important meeting the next day, you’re probably stressed out. Although stress alone can’t cause an acne breakout, it can accelerate the process.
Stress causes the body to release inflammatory chemicals and changes some hormonal balances. This triggers a breakout. So if you’re experiencing huge cyst-like pimples that are redder, bigger, and painful, they are probably there because of stress.
Most sunscreens are made with two active ingredients. The first is a long list of chemical agents that protect your skin from ultraviolet rays. The second is physical agents that basically sit on your skin surface and create an invisible barrier.
This barrier is bad news for your skin.
Sunscreens that contain titanium or zinc oxide can promote excessive sweating underneath them which can cause acne.
So next time you are about to apply sunscreen, make sure to read what ingredients you’re dealing with. Try to avoid sunscreens with pore-clogging physical agents.
If you think oily skin is the only culprit behind breakouts, think again. Dry skin can cause tiny cracks in the skin which can open doors for acne-causing bacteria to enter and multiply, resulting in a breakout.
Make sure to gently exfoliate the skins at least 2-3 times a week. Some moisturizers can clog your pores, so be careful what you’re applying. Always apply noncomedogenic moisturizers on dry skin.
Haircare products meant for styling commonly cause acne. These products increase oil in your scalp and forehead trapping acne-causing bacteria in skin pores.
Clogged pores can easily become inflamed and result in a breakout.
When applying hair styling products, make sure that you are applying it with your hands. Avoid using hair sprays because most of the times these products end up on your forehead.
After application, use a facial cleanser to remove any traces of the styling product from your forehead and face.
Skincare products are made to provide nourishment and care for your skin, right?
The truth is many skincare products are made with synthetic chemicals and other harmful ingredients that promote acne breakouts.
If there’s any skincare product that causes irritation, stop using it immediately.
Avoid switching too many skincare products rapidly. When you try a new skincare product, you are also providing your skin with new active ingredients, chemicals, and preservatives. These can irritate the skin which leads to acne.
Traveling a lot means changing environments and new challenges for the skin.
Every city, or country has its own humidity, weather, and water elements. Environmental changes can sometimes trigger acne breakouts since your skin is not used to the new atmosphere.
Expert travelers recommend washing your face with bottled water. They also recommend avoiding hotel soaps.
Diet and Lifestyle
If you thought eating chocolate and Mcdonalds no longer messes with your skin, you may be in for a surprise.
The diet-related causes of acne are still true to your age. A recent study found that carbohydrates that have a high glycemic index can increase the severity and development of acne in adults.
So do your best to cut back on junk food such as burgers, pizzas, fries, and other fried food. Instead, make a switch to veggies, fruits, grains, and high protein foods. But do this gradually to give your skin enough time to deal with the changes.