10 Reasons you’re Breaking out in Acne in your 50’s

10 Reasons you’re Breaking out in Acne in your 50’s
10 Reasons you’re Breaking out in Acne in your 50’s

10 Reasons you’re Breaking out in Acne in your 50’s


It is difficult to reach your adult years, and still have to deal with issues from your teens. Once you reach a certain age, you expect to be free of things like acne. By the time you are in your 50’s, you expect to be able to attend work, or a party without having to use excessive amounts of concealer. Yet, a big, red pimple may appear when you least expect it. You may even get full-blown acne. You find yourself scouring the facial care isle at the pharmacy for remedies that you have not used in 30 years. Except now, you are also dealing with dry or aging skin, making it much harder to treat acne that needs drying out.


If you find a bit of acne on your face during your 50’s, there are some different health issues that may need to be addressed. Treatment may also be a bit different, as you may need products for combinations skin. In your teens, oily skin products may have been the number one choice. I can be difficult to accept blemishes in your 50’s, as you approach social situations. Most people, at this point, have become used to enjoying a clear face. Many even use less makeup than they did in their early years, due to the ongoing clear skin. This luxury may come to an end in your 50’s, however, until a proper remedy is found.


If you aren’t sure what is going on when acne strikes, consult your doctor for an evaluations. This list of common ailments may also help you figure out what is going on, and prompt some changes. Always make sure you eat well, get enough rest, and stay hydrated, as well.

10Perimenopause or Menopause

Menopause may cause acne in your 50s


For women, the years prior to menopause can bring about a plethora of unpleasant symptoms. Once menopause starts full force, there are still some issues with hormones. Hormone changes can begin several years prior to complete menopause. This is called perimenopause. As the body prepares for the end of your childbearing season, hormones may go up and down. During this time, women may experience hot flashes, difficulty sleeping, and irregular periods. During this time, acne may also make a comeback.


These massive changes can bring on mixed feelings about life, as women begin to reevaluate their purpose. Some take it harder than others, the worry and stress of this emotional time can also contribute to health issues. Acne has a tendency to appear when cortisol levels are high, which happens when people are stressed out or anxious. This can be remedied by talking to someone who has been through menopause. They can understand your feelings and physical symptoms. Sometimes you may simply need someone to listen, or you may appreciate some advice.


Acne may be only a temporary part of perimenopause and menopause, however. Eventually the hormones level out, even though the norms remain different. Many women opt for hormone therapy to help ease the transition, while others take a more natural route of replenishing their bodies. Whichever you choose, acne may still be an inconvenience for a while.

9Birth Control

Birth control can cause or worsen acne


Birth control may be used late into the 50’s for several reasons. Pregnancy can still occur during the process of perimenopause and early menopause. It takes time for the body to make a complete change. Periods may occur irregularly, leaving women without a set menstrual schedule. Ovulation can occur, even if a period has not been seen for several months. This makes it difficult to maintain proper birth control. Pregnancies during menopause are often unplanned.


Birth control may also be used to treat the hormonal fluctuations during menopause, as well. The birth control pill is the most common form of medication used for this purpose. Women who are trying to avoid pregnancy may also use intrauterine devices. These also release hormones. Both options, and any other hormone based medication, can contribute to the appearance of acne. Testosterone injections also raise the chances of experiencing acne in your 50’s.


Women often use different types of birth control throughout their lives. It can help to look back over the years and determine which ones caused acne prior to menopause. You may be able to identify the culprit. Your body may react differently to medication during your 50’s, however, it can help to avoid pills that you seem to be sensitive to.

8Facial Treatments

Facials may exacerbate skin problems


Both men and women often have a difficult time accepting the visual signs of aging. Many seek out cosmetic relief through facial treatments. These can vary from home remedies to medical interventions. Facial peels are a common treatment to help rejuvenate the skin. These are often done to treat acne and dull skin. When your cells are not turning over fast enough, you can present with a dull appearance. A skin peel may cause some trauma or irritation to the skin, however. This trauma can result in acne soon after the procedure.


Plastic surgery may not directly cause acne, however, the treatment afterwards may cause some acne for a while. The wounds from plastic surgery must be tended to properly, to avoid scarring. This may include the use of a large amount of antibiotic ointment and bandages. These items do not allow the skin to breathe and may assist in clogging your pores. This can cause acne.


Hormonal changes during the 50’s can also cause the growth of unwanted hair on the face. Women usually do not accept this change well. Waxing is a common form of hair removal that can be done at the salon, or at home. The skin can easily become irritated when hot wax is used. The hair is ripped out by the root, and even skin without hair is affected by the wax. The irritation can cause a breakout afterwards.


7Cosmetics or Facial Products

Cosmetics can irritate your skin


Many women enjoy trying out new cosmetics and facial products. During the 50’s many people, both men and women, try to find products to bring back a youthful experience. These trials are not always beneficial, as new products may irritate the skin. You can develop and allergy that results in a temporary breakout. Constant use of any cosmetic or cream can clog pores, making acne more likely.


Facial masks are another product that people like to try. Once you are in your 50’s, you may opt for a moisturizing or rejuvenating product. Some people that have persistent oily skin may even still be using clay based masks in their 50’s. Masks are often designed to draw out the impurities from the pores. When this happens, acne may follow. Bacteria and other contaminants may reach the surface of the skin when a facial is done. This cause acne to occur. After the acne clears, however, a clear face may prevail. The removal of impurities causes a temporary flare-up, in these cases. Sometimes things get worse on their way to getting better.


Many individuals in their 50’s have a cabinet full of facial creams. The ads for these creams, most likely, promised younger skin in just a few weeks. It can be difficult for your skin to handle a myriad of skincare products. It is best to find a few that work, and stick to a consistent regimen. The use of too many different products may cause irritation, and acne.


Your genes play a role in acne


Genetics play a big role in many health issues, acne is one of them. If you had terrible acne in your teens, your children may experience the same thing. Look to your parents to find information on acne at different life stages. Your mother can help you understand how menopause is handled in your family tree. The men in your family can help shed some light on the subject, if you are a male.


Some people also have naturally oily skin. This may persist throughout your lifetime. If the oily hair and face did not go away after the teen years, you probably have a genetic predisposition for this skin type. Products for oily skin can be harsh. These strong products can be irritating for people in their 50’s, as the skin is often more delicate. You may need these products to control oil, however, they can also irritate and make acne worse in your 50’s.


If you have oily skin that has been passed down through the generations, acne may never completely go away. It can definitely lessen as you age, however, the oil continues to clog the skin. This oil can be more bothersome in the warmer months, and in humid environments.

5Bacterial Presence

Bacteria = acne!


Bacteria is the major cause of acne. It can be difficult to keep your skin free of bacteria, as many people touch their faces or have excessive oil. Oil can cause bacteria to become trapped beneath the surface, resulting in acne. Bacteria from our environment makes its way to your face when you touch other items, and then touch your face. It is not just kids that touch their face all the time. Individuals in their 50’s are probably unaware of how much they actually touch their face. This happens when deep in thought at work, and often when you are tired.


As your go through life, you may have to take antibiotics from time to time. Some antibiotics do not help when used too often. Your body can build up a resistance to them. There is also bacteria in the environment that is resistant to antibiotic treatment. This type of bacteria can make its way to your face, causing acne that is difficult to treat.


Your skin is your first defense against the dangers of pathogens. When bacteria or viruses try to attack, your skin often wards them off. In some cases, however, bacteria lives on your skin. It also can make its way into your pores, causing your skin to fight back with white blood cells. This is what causes the puss you find in acne spots.


An adverse reaction to a prescription can cause acne


The medications we take tend to increase as we age. This is because a variety of ailments can show up once you reach your 50’s. You may need daily medications to control things like arthritis, thyroid dysfunction, or hormonal fluctuations. Medication can change the way your body reacts to the world around you. Antibiotics often kill of more bacteria than necessary. The good bacteria often goes out with the bad. This can cause an imbalance in your body. Acne is more likely to occur when your body is undergoing changes. Yogurt or other probiotics can help, if this is the case.


Some cancers appear as people age, as well. Some chemotherapy drugs are known to cause acne. Anxiety and depression often require daily medication, as well. Lithium is used for bipolar disorder, and has been proven to cause acne in adults. Anything that aims to fight infection or illness can be hard on your body in a variety of ways. Acne can easily result when this happens.


Medication use may not be able to be avoided. Therefore, you may have to find other ways to deal with the resulting acne. A good diet and proper vitamin supplements can help to restore balance. Regular exercise also gets your blood flowing, empowering your system to fight illness.

3Rigorous Physical Activity

Sweaty clothes and dirty exercise equipment can cause acne


Exercise is a great way to fight acne, as it keeps your body healthy. Rigorous exercise, however, can also lead to excessive sweating. Sweat can clog pores, causing acne. During workouts, you may also touch many things that are covered in bacteria. Exercise equipment at the gym, may harbor large amounts of pathogens. We often touch our faces without thinking, when sweat gets in our eyes. Try not to rub your face or eyes with your bare hands or a towel that has been on the equipment. Use a fresh towel that has been in around your neck, or even the inside of your shirt. These actions can help you avoid bringing extra acne causing bacteria to your face.


Active people in their 50’s may enjoy biking, hiking, or camping. Extended outdoor activities can contribute to acne, as you may not have access to your regular skin care routine. Camping, especially, requires that many luxury items be left at home. Campsites may also have limited access to water or bathrooms. While you are roughing it in the outdoors, find a convenient way to keep your skin clean. Facial cleansing wipes are easy to tuck into a backpack, and can be used throughout the day.


Rigorous exercise is normally good for your skin, as sweat remove toxins from your body. Most people feel healthier, overall, when exercise is a part of the daily routine. Do not let the potential for acne curb your exercise routine or love of the outdoors. You simply need to initiate proper prevention methods to keep acne from popping up. Even if you do get a few little pimples, your excellent health is worth the trouble.


Proper nutrition is essential. Avoid those foods that trigger outbreaks


Proper nutrition is often the first thing to go when life gets busy. Individuals in their 50’s are likely to have older or teenage children. Teenagers have busy social lives. Parents often feel like they are back in the elementary school carpool days when their children become teenagers. It can be a scheduling nightmare to get multiple children to all of their events. Teenagers become involved in sports, clubs, and social groups long before they are able to drive. This leaves the transportation up to the adults. This massively busy schedule often leaves little time for cooking and preparing healthy foods.


Healthy foods usually require more prep than processed foods. It is worth the effort, but it can be difficult to find the time. Individuals in their 50’s are most likely still working full time at their career, as well as raising kids. Mothers that stay at home are incredibly busy with daily necessities and the lives of the children. It is often tempting to stop at a fast food restaurant when returning from a late practice or activity. Keep fruits and vegetables on hand that do not require large amounts of preparation. Most people enjoy an apple, banana or sugar snap peas when they are on the go.


Vitamin deficiencies can become apparent after a certain amount of time without proper nutrition. You may find that you have several symptoms that stem from a poor diet. Fatigue, lethargy, and frequent illness can point to poor self-care. Instead of binging on vitamin C every time you become ill, take the initiative to consume the right amount of vitamins on a daily basis. Many stores cell pre-cut and pre-packaged vegetables and fruits. You may be able to shop accordingly when making the change over to better nutrition.

1Lack of Sleep

Getting enough sleep is crucial. It allows your body to repair itself and rest.


This is a problem that occurs across many generations. During your 50’s, however, it can become worse. A variety of factors may contribute to this issue during your 50’s. Certain medications can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep. This may be because of side effects. Restlessness, nausea, and headaches may be caused by some medications. These issues can keep you up at night. The illness or condition that warrants the use of the medication may also be the cause of late night waking. Arthritis pain may keep you from sleeping well, and hormonal fluctuation may cause hot flashes or nausea. It can be very difficult to sleep when you are uncomfortable. Sleep deprivation deprives your body of repair time. This includes the appearance of your skin.


Lack of sleep in your 50’s can also be caused from simple overscheduling. You may stay up late to finish a project for work. Many parents also begin to lose sleep around this time, as they wait up at night for teenage children to get home from social engagements. When they are little you sleep less due to feedings and diaper changes. When your children are older, you stay up late to make sure they arrive home safe or call for help. Many parents, simply lose sleep worrying about their kids. This lack of sleep, combined with stress, can up your chances for acne.


Far from retirement, most people in their 50’s still carry on with demanding jobs. The business world does not slow down just because you have reached your 50’s. People that are in difficult financial situations may have also been working two jobs all along. This may have been feasible in the younger years, however, it begins to take its toll at this age. When people have to overextend themselves to make ends meet, stress and sleep disturbances can occur. Acne is not far behind, when proper rest is not possible.




There are many reasons that acne may make an appearance in your 50’s. This can be an unwelcome annoyance, as you thought acne breakouts were far in your past. It is important at all stages of life, to reevaluate your healthcare needs. Our bodies change as we reach different life milestones. The decade of your 50’s can bring new norms that need to be adjusted to. Women go through the most changes during this time.


Women must deal with the end of their childbearing yeas sometime during their 50’s. This encompasses more than the physical acts of perimenopause and menopause. Many women become very emotional over this change. Mothers, especially, feel the effects of not having the option to have more children. Those that never had children may also take this very hard. The hormonal changes, alone, are enough to set off acne flare-ups. The emotional effects add stress that can also increase the chances of acne.


Women are not the only ones taking the 50’s hard. Men may have issues with their aging looks, and turn to facial treatments. Increased stress for them can also bring about acne issues. Facial treatments, aimed at younger looking skin, can also irritate the delicate skin on the face. This irritation contributes to acne. Men and women, both, have a lot to deal with as they approach their 50’s. Acne, unfortunately, comes along with the many changes during this time. Thankfully, there are many successful treatments available.