7 Most Common Causes of Breakouts

26 Feb

A break out can leave you wondering what you did to deserve it. Was it the chocolate you had a few days ago? Was it that time you forgot to wash your face before bed? While acne is generally linked to hormonal causes, there are certain situations that can contribute to break outs. Understanding some of the most common causes of breakouts will help prevent breakouts in the future. Below are the ten most common (non-hormonal) causes of a breakout.

1. Frequently touching your face.

It may be second nature to rest your face on your hand during a boring lecture, or when you start feeling tired at work – but stop to consider the transfer of germs that occurs every time you do this. Subconsciously touching your face throughout the day can transfer dirt and oil, which can later lead to clogged pores and subsequent breakouts. Also, consider the various objects that touch your face throughout the day. If you work in an office, take the time to clean your phone, and even your cell phone – as these objects can also accumulate dust and grime.

2. Dietdairy sweets

It’s a common belief that the consumption of chocolate and fried foods can lead to breakouts, but the truth is that foods that are heavy in dairy are more likely to cause skin issues. Studies suggest that breakouts that occur on the chin, jawline, and neck area are caused by a diet that’s too high in sugar and dairy. These types of food can negatively impact the digestive system, and the issues commonly manifest through the skin.

3. Stress

Stress is a part of almost every adult’s life, and most people understand that increased stress can lead to breakouts. Not only does stress encourage acne, but it can worsen other pre-existing skin problems like eczema and psoriasis. Stress is associated with increased levels of systemic inflammation, which likely contributes to the progression of such conditions.

4. Forgetting to wash your face


When you’ve had a night out, and maybe a few too many drinks, it’s easy to doze off and forget to wash your face. However, especially when you sleep with a face full of makeup, you’re practically asking for a breakout. Accumulations of oil, dirt, and makeup easily clog the pores and have all night to set in – forming inflamed pimples. If anything, it may be smart to invest in some face cleansing wipes – which are faster and less of a hassle than washing your face when you’re in a hurry.


5. Experimenting with new skin products

face products

If you suffer from acne, it’s likely that you may experiment with various products in the search for beautiful skin. However, using several types of products in small time frame can actually have adverse effects on skin. Be sure that you give new products a chance at addressing your acne before you switch, and that you are consistent with your regimen. It may take several weeks for a new product to produce results.

6. Travel

wiping faceEspecially when traveling involves long train or airplane rides, breakouts are more likely to occur. Airplane cabins contain low humidity, so the skin may overcompensate by producing more oil – leading to breakouts. It’s a good idea to wash your face before traveling, and to carry oil-absorbing face wipes on you during your travels.


7. Weather

The skin works to accommodate for changes in season – for example, it will produce more oil in dry climates, and less oil in humidity. However, when weather is inconsistent, the skin can become confused, making breakouts more likely. Protecting your skin from the sun with SPF and staying consistent with your skin regimen will help protect your skin from climate changes.


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