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26 Top Acne FAQs: Complete Acne Guide For Pimple-Free Clear Skin

acne FAQ

Acne can be annoying. One who is facing frequent acne breakouts knows what a big challenge it can be to heal the skin to get blemish-free clear skin. Acne is one of the most common skin diseases and affects both men and women. Sometimes acne can be ruthless and understanding the breakout causes can get tough. If acne troubles are clouding your mind and putting you in embarrassing situations our Acne FAQs are here to answer every query you might have about acne. This complete acne guide will help you in clearing your skin so that you can face the world with confidence.

These FAQs about Acne are most asked on the internet by people suffering from frequent acne breakouts. From tips and tricks to dos and don’ts, you have your Acne FAQs Answered in this post.

26 Top Acne FAQs

1. What is Acne?

Acne is a skin condition that occurs due to clogged pores with excess sebum. Our body produces natural oil, sebum, to keep the skin moisturised. When the hair follicles on the skin become clogged with excess oil and dead skin cells, it results in pimples whiteheads or blackheads. Acne is common amongst teenagers going through hormonal changes but can affect people of all ages. (1) 

2. What is acne-prone skin?

If you are experiencing frequent acne breakouts then you have acne-prone skin. For people with acne-prone skin, acne breakouts can leave your skin with acne marks, acne scars and inflamed skin. Keep reading this acne guide to find answers to your acne queries and check Acne Treatment FAQs.

3. Why Do I Have Acne? What Causes It?

If you have oily skin, you can expect acne. Acne develops when the skin’s natural oil sebum and dead skin cells block hair follicles. Acne-causing bacteria present on the skin can trigger inflammation and infection leading to severe acne breakouts. (2) 

4. What are the 4 stages of acne?

There are four stages of acne 

  1. Mild Acne – these are small concentrations of pimples or blackheads on the skin. They are not inflamed nor do they occur on a daily basis.
  2. Moderate Acne – consists of pustules, blackheads, papules and pimples on the skin. They can have red inflamed skin around them and can occur more frequently
  3. Moderate to Severe Acne – these acnes are inflamed and pus-filled. They can be cysts, papules or nodules.
  4. Severe Acne – As acne progresses into its severe stage, pustules, cysts, papules, and nodules become more prominent. Severe acne can occur in different parts of the body. (3)

5. What are the different types of acne?

There are different types of acne based on their structure. Acne can be classified as inflammatory and non-inflammatory acne.

  1. Non-inflammatory acne – They can start as micro comedones when dirt and debris get trapped in the skin’s pores. They are usually undetectable to the naked eye. A flare-up in this leads to inflammatory acne.
  • Whiteheads: They are non-inflammatory comedones or closed clogged pores. Whiteheads can occur when clogged pores from dead skin and sebum cannot open. Whiteheads are light in colour.
  • Blackheads: Blackheads are non-inflammatory comedones which are exposed to air. Due to this oxidisation, they become dark in colour.
  1. Inflammatory acne – When a severe build-up of sebum and dead cells clog the pores the mild blemish becomes a full-fledged comedone. These can be inflammatory and cause different other kinds of acne.
  • Papules: These are inflamed small and red acne on the skin. They might not always be visible to the naked eye.
  • Pustules: These are pus-filled inflamed pimples that purge when squeezed. They are raised and dome-shaped.
  • Nodules: These are large and hard lesions without any pus but they can be painful.
  • Cysts: They are deep, painful and pus-filled acne that can cause acne scars.
  • Acne Vulgaris: They are irregularly shaped lesions that are deep-seated in the dermis. (4)

6. What does acne look like?

Depending on which kind of acne you have they can have different appearances. Acne can be small, red bumps which are called papules or can be white pimples like pustules. Pustules are papules with pus-filled tips. They can also be large and solid without pus like the nodules. The most painful and unpleasant pus-filled lumps are cystic acne which will require medical attention. 

7. Can I use makeup if I have acne?

If you choose the right makeup products you can wear makeup even if you have acne. One of the most popular FAQs About Acne is always about makeup. Get the right oil-free non-comedogenic foundation if you have acne or acne-prone skin. Another essential is clean makeup brushes. If you have acne the bacteria can transfer from your face to the brushes and multiply easily. Always clean makeup brushes after application. 

8. Do and don'ts for acne?

If you are consistent with skincare and follow these dos and don’ts for acne you can reduce the chances of breakouts. 

Dos For Acne

Don’ts For Acne

Do use a gentle acne-clearing face wash

Don’t overdo face scrubbing

Do apply a light moisturiser even if you have oily skin

Don’t pop the pimples

Do clean your makeup brushes regularly

Don’t sleep with makeup on

Do change your pillowcases regularly

Don’t apply toothpaste to reduce acne

DO apply ice to reduce swelling

Don’t try random internet hacks without scientifically proven results

DO choose skincare products with green tea, salicylic acid or baking soda

Do not eat processed food or deep fried fatty food

Do eat a balanced diet with antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables

Don’t touch your face with dirty hands

Do consult a dermatologist for severe acne

Don’t self-medicate


9. How many days does acne take to form?

Pimples can take 1-2 weeks to fully develop and form. Even if it seems they cropped up overnight, it actually is a long process deep-seated within the layers of the skin.

10. How do we cope with acne?

Coping with acne might look like a big challenge but the key is to keep the skin clean so that acne-causing bacteria cannot infect the area and result in more acne breakouts. Go through this acne guide to know Acne Treatment FAQs if you are facing frequent acne breakouts.

Some of the things you can try to cope with acne are

  • Using a gentle face wash to clean your face
  • Following the right skincare regime for acne-prone skin
  • Following a well-balanced diet without processed food or sugar
  • Using sun protection regularly

11. Does Makeup Impact Acne?

Choosing the wrong makeup for acne-prone skin can worsen your case of acne. Choose oil-free non-comedogenic makeup products and keep your makeup brushes clean so that there is no impact on your acne. Ensure you are removing all traces of makeup before going to bed. (5)

12. Can Adults Get Acne?

Acne is common for all ages and both men and women can get acne. Most teenagers get acne due to hormonal changes in the body. But adult acne in the 30s, 40s and 50s is also a reality.

13. Are Acne and Rosacea The Same Thing?

No, they are not the same thing. Rosacea involves persistent redness and flushing while acne has comedones, blackheads and whiteheads which can also give rise to pus-filled cysts and redness on the skin. (6)

14. What are acne scars?

Acne marks and acne scars are two different things. While acne marks are the discolouration left after an acne breakout, acne scars are indentations in the skin when the top layer of the skin doesn’t fully heal or regenerate.

15. What Kind Of Treatment Works For Acne Marks?

Salicylic acid is one of the best treatments for acne marks. Use a salicylic acid serum to control acne breakouts and fade acne spots or hyperpigmentation left after a breakout. To answer Acne Treatment FAQs you can use skincare products enriched with green tea or baking soda skincare products for preventing acne breakouts

16. What’s the difference between Acne and Pimples?

The main difference is one is a disease and the other is a symptom. Acne is a skin condition that occurs due to the excess production of oil and the build-up of dead skin cells. When excess sebum and dead skin clump together and plug the hair follicle, bacteria present on the skin infect it and cause inflammation giving rise to pimples.

17. Does Drinking Water Help Acne?

Yes, you hydrate your skin from within by drinking an adequate amount of water. The more you hydrate your skin the lesser the chances of clogging your pores.

18. What Types of Foods Cause Acne?

High calories, fatty foods, refined carbohydrates and processed foods with preservatives increase the chances of acne breakouts.

19. Why Do Acne Occur On The Face?

This is one of the most common questions in Acne FAQs. While acne is mostly found on the face due to the presence of the highest concentration of oil glands, acne breakouts can also occur on the back, chest, shoulder and buttocks. (7)

20. Does Stress Cause Acne?

Stress doesn’t directly cause acne, but if you already have acne on the skin stress can worsen the breakout.

21. Is Acne A Sign Of High Estrogen?

Both men and women have estrogen hormones, however, women have a higher quality of estrogen. The rise and fall of estrogen levels can result in cystic acne on your skin. 

22. Is adult acne harder to treat than teenage acne?

Adult acne is different from teenage acne and can occur due to several reasons other than hormonal imbalance. Adult acne requires different treatments but it is not difficult to treat adult acne.

23. Can exfoliating help get rid of pimples?

Exfoliation helps to a great extent in clearing clogged pores. But excessive exfoliation can worsen acne and irritate the skin.

24. What do pimples in different areas of the body mean?

This is a common question in Acne FAQs. Here are some of the broad meanings

  • Hairline and Temples – check your hair care and hair styling products.
  • T –zone & Nose – You have oily skin for which you are getting acne
  • Cheeks – change your pillowcase often, acne breakout occurring due to friction
  • Jawline – hormonal imbalance
  • Chest, shoulder and back – acne caused by dandruff
  • Buttocks – improper personal hygiene

25. Are pimples/acne contagious? 

No. Acne is not contagious. You cannot catch acne from someone else. (8) 

26. Which pimple cream is the best?

Choose pimple creams enriched with natural ingredients like green tea, witch hazel and salicylic acids to treat acne. Use Lotus Botanicals salicylic acid serum to fade away dark spots caused by acne. You can also use Lotus Botanicals Green Tea Acne Defense Combo for complete care against acne breakout.

We hope these Acne FAQs will help solve all your queries about acne.  Follow the tips and dos and don’ts mentioned in this acne guide to preventing acne breakout. 

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