Acne has long been a problem for teenagers since the beginning of time. The stormy years of adolescents and teens across the board all share the very prevalent theme of struggling with acne. While it was considered to be a condition that only the youth struggled with, recent times have shown that acne has no biases. Acne is nearly as prevalent in adults as it is in teenagers. While the affected teenagers have a slightly higher count, the struggle for both parties with this condition is the same. Luckily, the study of this condition has gotten only more detailed and direct, with structured treatment plans at the discretion of doctors.
Whether you occasionally break out in acne on your cheeks, or you’ve dealt with this condition for several years, everyone knows that not all acne is created equal. There are different types of pimples,and the different areas that they’re found in point to underlying causes for the condition. Some pimples are rooted deep under the skin, while others seem to be only on the surface. Similarly, some acne is based mostly around the jawline, while other cases show prominent breakouts in the cheek area. If you’ve tried every method in the book to get rid of your acne, it might be time to look into the deeper causes. A common area that people break out in is on the cheeks. If this sounds familiar to you, here are 10 reasons you might be breaking out in acne on your cheeks.
What’s one thing you use in close proximity to your face every day? You can probably think of a handful of things, but the answer to this specific question is your phone. Recent years have shown a great boom in the usage of electronics and technology, including cell phones. These phones are useful for many things, but they don’t really help your skin out at all. In fact, your phone may the reason behind why you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks.
Throughout the whole day, your phone is either in your hand or in your pocket. You take it with you everywhere, and so, it’s exposed to a variety of germs and bacteria every day. While your phone may not actually look dirty, the screen and back casing of the device are teeming with microscopic bacteria. The door handle you touched after the guy who doesn’t wash his hands? The germs from that handle are now transferred to your phone. The next phone call you get, your face comes in contact with those same germs, and the end result is not pretty. These bacteria set up shop in your skin and cause acne breakouts.
You can combat your phone’s bacteria in a few ways. Start off by keeping an anti-bacterial wipe with you. Use this to wipe down the screen before you take a call. You can also use hands-free technology to avoid holding your phone altogether. No bacteria near your face means no acne on your cheeks.
When we picture bacteria and germs, the thought of dirt and grime comes to mind. But some areas that harbor many germs are closer than you think, like your pillow. Your pillow is a place of rest, but it’s also the place you return to every day. Didn’t wash your sheets for a few weeks? It’s on your pillow. Even if it doesn’t physically look like there’s anything on your pillow, chances are that it’s covered in an assortment of things that are sure to give you nightmares.
Your pillow is home to face oils, dirt, and dead skin. In fact, according to the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, you shed up to 1.5 grams of dead skin every day. That’s enough to give one million dust mites a meal and a full belly every night. When you rest your cheeks against your pillow, you’re exposing yourself to dirt, dust, oil, and a number of other things that don’t belong there. These work against your skin, and as you sleep soundly through the night, your skin battles these germs through infection. The next thing you know, you wake up with a pimple that seemed to grow overnight because that’s just what it did.
You can avoid breaking out in acne on your cheeks because of your pillows by simply washing them. Extend the cleanliness to the rest of your sheets as well, and give your whole bedding a wash at least once or twice a week.
If you’ve struggled with acne before, you know the drill of keeping your face clean. Utilizing a good face wash and following your routine are important steps. But there’s one thing that’s almost always forgotten. That would be where you keep your hands. If you touch your face often, whether it’s to clean it or to pick at a pimple, you’re spreading the germs from your hands to your face. Your hands are covered with bacteria, approximately 3,320,000 of them for the record, so there’s no shortage of contaminants.
The more you touch your face, the more you’re passing these germs from your hands. On top of that, if you have a habit of picking your pimples, not only are you spreading germs, but you’re putting your skin at a greater risk for scarring. Constant stress and infection through acne leads to scars and lesions, neither of which are easy to remove. It’s easier for you to break the habit of picking than it is for you to find a solution to the deep scars left behind.
You can avoid the hassle of this altogether by reducing the amount of times you touch your face. If you absolutely have to, make sure that your hands are washed and free of any oil or dirt. You probably touch your face more than you think, so stopping this habit is tricky for some people. But once you stop yourself from touching your face a few times, it becomes beneficial for you and your skin.
7Quit the Cig
No one needs a reminder on how smoking negatively affects your health. Anti-drug education is taught throughout the school for a reason. The fact that there’s a warning for your health on the actual product and cigarette pack itself should be reason enough to not smoke. But people still do, and some find that they struggle with acne as a result. Although smoking can’t be labelled as a direct cause of acne, studies show that there’s a strong correlation between the people who smoke and those who struggle with acne. Acne was found to be more prominent in the people who smoked.
Smoking negatively affects the skin just like it affects like the lungs. While lung problems for smokers are numerous, skin problems are just as plenty. For starters, smokers increase the chance of clogging their pores with dirt, smoke, and dust found during a smoking session. These components block the pores of the skin and form acne on the surface. Similarly, the nicotine in cigarettes tightens these pores, making it more difficult to expel oil. This oil becomes backed up in the pore and creates a pimple in its place. Finally, as nicotine is a drug in itself, it affects the hormones and different substance levels within the body. This imbalance of the system creates the perfect chaos for acne to form. If you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks and you smoke, it might be time to quit. Not just for your inside health, but for your outside health as well.
6Sun Screen Scaries
You can avoid breaking out in acne on your cheeks because of sunscreen by simply choosing the right type of protectant.While summer is incomplete without catching some rays, if you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks, these very rays might be behind it. Before you head out to enjoy the warm sunny weather, you’re likely applying a nice layer of sunscreen, and for good reason. Evidence from the Skin Cancer Foundation shows that more people are diagnosed with a form of skin cancer than all of the other types of cancers combined. That staggering statistic may make you want to lather on even more layers of sunscreen, but that’s where it starts to get tricky.
Different sunscreens have various thicknesses, but generally speaking, they’re all thicker than a regular cream. The viscosity and stickiness of sunscreen makes it the perfect candidate to clog up your pores. This is especially true if you put sunscreen on your cheeks before you head out. The combination of thick protective cream and the sweat your body produces often proves to be too much for your skin and encourages the growth of acne. However, you don’t have to sacrifice sun protection for a healthy skin appearance.
You can avoid breaking out in acne on your cheeks because of sunscreen by simply choosing the right type of protectant. If you find that your skin is sensitive to a chemical sunscreen (destroys UV light through a chemical reaction), switch to a physical sunscreen (actual layer of protection between the sun and your skin). This small change is all you need to get the best of both worlds.
One thing that many people underestimate is the power of water in your body. Not only does water make up 60% of the human body, it serves so many purposes in the different bodily systems. Water helps regulate body temperature, assists in getting oxygen around the body, and forms saliva, to name a few of its wonders. So, imagine what happens to your body when you don’t have enough of this water to go around. Obviously, your body continues to work, but focuses on keeping the integral organs functioning. Eventually, even these organs start to suffer, and your body starts shutting down. In the case of your skin, you need to hydrate it from both the inside and the out.
Sufficient water levels in the body should keep your skin looking great, and in turn, reduce the appearance of acne. However, the cheeks are the areas of the face that are the driest. This area doesn’t have as many oil glands as the ‘T-zone’ does, so it lacks the natural hydration it receives from the body itself. Your cheeks need more help in getting the necessary moisture. If your cheeks are particularly dry, this could be a reason why you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks.
Dry skin is more susceptible to irritation, so hydration does the opposite. You can add some moisture back into your skin by using a lotion after you clean it. If your skin is very dry, you may need a thicker lotion to penetrate deep into the skin.
4Not So Smooth Shaving Cream
You probably know that your body reacts to anything and everything around it. The food you eat, the air you breathe, the environment you live in, all of these factors affects your overall health. This is also true for items you use in your day-to-day life, but don’t necessarily ingest or wear. Things like detergent, shaving cream, and shampoo fall into this category. You use them externally, but they still have an effect on your body. A common ingredient in these items is sodium lauryl sulfate. This is what manufacturers use to create the lather in your body wash and shaving cream. As that’s a big part of the functionality of those items, you’re likely to find sodium lauryl sulfate used in many different shaving cream brands.
However, certain studies recorded that many people are actually allergic to this ingredient. Sodium lauryl sulfate irritates the skin of some users, and irritation opens up the door for acne. So, while you think you’re soothing your skin by using shaving cream, you might actually be irritating it even more. Similarly, some people are sensitive to the fragrances in some of these products. If you suspect that you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks because of this ingredient, you can find several different shaving creams and other self-care items that don’t contain sodium lauryl sulfate. It’s even easier to find fragrance-free options for these products. Doing a little research to find these items is well worth it when you reduce the appearance of acne on your skin.
3Too Much Power in Your Punch
If your skin is excessively dry, you should refrain from using face washes with salicylic acid.Acne users are always being offered advice on the latest face wash to grace the market. Even with the great strides made in the dermatology department, sometimes the best of the best products fail. It all depends on your skin type and body health overall. There are definitely a lot of options when it comes to choosing your face wash. One thing you should keep in mind is your skin sensitivity. A common ingredient that’s found in acne face washes and over the counter medication is salicylic acid. This ingredient works well in reducing the bacteria that causes acne, but more so for oilier skin types.
A common side effect of salicylic acid is dry skin. So, if you’re using this type of face wash to reduce the acne on your cheeks, chances are that it’s too strong for your face. Instead of helping your skin, this product dries it out even more, and the less moisture you have, the worse condition you put your skin in. While salicylic acid is by all means an effective ingredient, it just doesn’t work for some skin types.
If your skin is excessively dry, you should refrain from using face washes with salicylic acid. Instead, focus on products that are specifically designed to clean sensitive skin, without removing too much moisture. You should also stick to gentle products that don’t have the properties of a scrub. These products are also tough on the skin, and while they work great for oily surfaces, they don’t help dry ones.
2Too Much of a Good Thing
There are several reasons to visit a dermatologist aside from wanting to reduce your acne. A dermatologist is one of the best people you can consult in to get the information you need on what’s going on with your skin. If you have light acne on your cheeks, your dermatologist may prescribe a spot treatment medication. This is usually an ointment that’s meant to be dabbed directly onto a pimple or cyst. After that, depending on the brand of spot treatment, this medicine generally dries out the pimple and reduces its appearance and redness. Many people find spot treatments to be effective, but this isn’t the case for everyone. If you’re using your spot treatment too liberally or if you’re using it too many times in a week, you might actually have the opposite effect.
Using a spot treatment all over your face instead of just on the pimple dries out the rest of your face, making it easier for newer pimples to form. Similarly, if you use your spot treatment every day instead of a couple of times in a week, your skin is likely to dry out excessively. Too much of a good thing usually turns out to be unfavorable, and this is also true for spot treatments. If you think that overusing your spot treatment is why you’re breaking out in acne on your cheeks, just lighten up a bit. You should use your ointment no more than every other day to ensure it doesn’t dry out your skin altogether.
1Is It Even Acne?
It’s always frustrating to see a new breakout on your face when you wake up. At times, you might find yourself fighting a losing battle with your acne. Even the medicine your doctor prescribed is slow to work. In this case, you might want to consider getting a second opinion on your acne diagnosis. While it seems like a pretty discernable condition, acne is actually very similar to rosacea. Acne and rosacea are both conditions on the face, but rosacea doesn’t have a well-known cause like acne does. Rosacea is also more likely to appear in the center of the face (think nose and cheek area), while acne can be found literally anywhere on the face and body. These conditions look similar because they both cause redness in the face and can be chronic.
Battling acne is tough, but maybe looking at it from a different angle can help your situation. If the condition you’re fighting is not even acne, the medicines you use to combat it are likely to be ineffective. In this case, you should talk about your concerns with your doctor. Explain how you think you might have rosacea instead of, or along with, your acne and show the reasoning behind it. It’s possible that your doctor may have missed some symptoms pointing to rosacea. A second opinion and more thorough look into your case can help you and your doctor get to the bottom of things and decide if it’s even acne you’re struggling with or a different condition.
Acne is something that affects people from all walks of life. Because so many people are affected by it around the world, there are actually millions of distinctive circumstances all with the common factor of acne. You have the different forms of acne itself, like outward pimples or inward cysts. Then you have the different causes for the acne breakout. Clogged pores, blocked hair follicles, and excessive oil production are a few of the main reasons, but it really could be a combination of all three. On top of that, different skin types and lifestyles affect the type of acne the shows up and the duration it stays for. So, it’s easy to understand why acne doesn’t have a clear cut treatment plan for it.
Even with all of the recorded cases of acne, some people still feel isolated in their situation. Breaking out in acne may feel like something you’re struggling with alone, but in reality, many people go through similar situations every day. Finding a solution to your acne may be as simple as asking someone else what they’ve tried. If that’s not your style, your doctor is your best resource on finding tried-and-true methods of treatment to assist you. Regardless of the type of treatment plan you use, it’s important to remain diligent in your application. Any product you use to change the hormones in your body requires a longer period of time to show effectiveness. Keeping that in mind can help you remain optimistic as you try different forms of treatment.