The issue of pimples and acne is something no one is immune to. It starts at adolescence, and for some, can last long into adulthood. Unfortunately, there is so much information out there about how to deal with pimples, it’s hard to tell what’s true and what’s not. We all want to know where pimples come from, and more importantly, how to get rid of them and keep them from popping up in the first place. Luckily, there are real answers to these questions.

Pimple Questions Answered

The primary cause of pimples is actually a whole cycle of events. It begins with the overproduction of oil, which can then become trapped in the pores by blocked hair follicles. Then the pores become clogged and bacteria starts to grow inside the hair follicle. This bacteria is calledĀ P. acnes.

The amount of oil the body produces is partly genetic, so there isn’t much that can be done about that. The body’s reaction to the different hormones it produces can also lead to pimples and acne. Despite these uncontrollable factors, all is not lost in the acne war. There are some behaviors and habits that can leave you more vulnerable to these ego-deflating skin blemishes, and avoiding them is key.

How To Control Acne

Anything that causes your skin to dry out excessively will likely cause your body to produceĀ more oil to make up for it. Too much heavy topical acne treatment, smoking cigarettes, and spending too much time in the sun can cause or exacerbate acne.

Using pore-clogging products on your face or in your hair can also lead to acne issues. Pay attention to the oil and silicone content in these products, as those things could be causing acne.

Avoid behavior that spreads bacteria around your face, like touching it with dirty hands, scrubbing it too hard to clear up current acne, or picking at pimples. You should also try to find a way to control your stress. Stress causes your skin to produce hormones that activate oil glands and thus clog pores. This can cause a feedback loop of continuous stress and acne as each triggers the other.

What You Eat Can Affect Your Face

Finally, there is a lot of talk about the connection between diet and skin health. While there is no scientific proof that specific foods lead to better skin, what is clear is the connection between gut health and skin health.

One way to keep your gut healthy is to consume plenty of probiotics (which occur naturally in plenty of foods like yogurt and pickles). The link between probiotics and a pimple-free life is still being studied, but there is no question that gut health and skin health are intrinsically related.