10 Myths About Acne

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The world of skincare is full of myths and misconceptions. In particular, you’ll find many many myths floating around about acne. 

Skincare myths can be confusing. They’re often formed as a result of old wives’ tales and passed around by unreliable sources. The irony is that mistakenly believing them and following them can damage your skin and lead to even more breakouts! 

We’re here to debunk some of the biggest acne myths based on our knowledge of skin science and years of experience in the beauty world. Read on for 10 of the most common acne myths and the facts behind them: 

Myth 1: Eating chocolate can cause acne 

The truth? You’ll be happy to know that there is zero valid scientific evidence to support this commonly shared myth. Eating chocolate in moderation won’t cause acne. Hallelujah! However, studies have shown that a diet that’s high in sugar can lead to breakouts. So stick to the occasional chocolate bar and dessert and you’ll be fine! 

Myth 2: Only teenagers get acne 

This one’s entirely false, too. As many adults quickly learn, acne doesn’t just affect us in our teen years. Although it often kicks in when we’re teenagers, acne can continue to follow us well into adulthood. Sadly, acne doesn’t have any age limits and adult acne is quite common. 

Myth 3:  You can get acne simply by touching your face 

Luckily, this isn’t entirely true. While you can transfer bacteria from dirty hands to your face if you touch it without washing hands, this in itself isn’t enough to cause acne. We’d still recommend washing your hands frequently and keeping your hands off your face to stay healthy though. 

Thinking of popping a pimple? Make sure you wash those hands thoroughly first to avoid an infection. 

Myth 4: Toothpaste can get rid of acne 

We’ve all heard this one: some people swear by toothpaste as an effective spot treatment. And it’s not exactly untrue. Applying toothpaste with baking soda, alcohol, or hydrogen peroxide directly onto a blemish can dry it out; however, the other ingredients that work so well to whiten your smile may prove too harsh for your skin. So you’re more likely to irritate your skin by dabbing toothpaste onto it. Stick to targeted spot treatment creams instead. 

Myth 5: Moisturizing can make acne worse 

This is a myth that can actually harm your skin if you abide by it. All skin types need moisture, including acne-prone skin. Moisturizing your skin won’t lead to pimples, especially if you’re using a product with acne-fighting ingredients. In fact, skipping the moisturizer will actually lead to excess sebum production that can clog your pores and cause more spots. 

Opt for a moisturizer packed with powerful pimple preventing ingredients like the PharmaClear Acne Treatment Moisturizer

Myth 6: Eating greasy food can cause acne 

Although we’re not advocating consuming too much junk food, there’s no link between eating greasy food and breakouts. Feel free to indulge in the occasional french fry without worrying that it’ll show up on your face the next day, although you should opt for healthy, nutrient dense food for optimal skin (and overall!) health! 

Myth 7: Acne means your skin is dirty/unclean 

This myth still persists, even though it’s entirely untrue. Acne isn’t caused by dirty skin. Pimples occur when pores become clogged with oil, bacteria and/or dead skin cells. So while bacteria does contribute to acne production, it doesn’t take into account other factors like stress and hormone production that can also greatly affect the appearance of skin.  Sadly, this myth often leads to people overwashing their face, which strips it of its natural oils and leads to acne. 

Forget about the idea of acne equating to dirt and requiring an aggressive treatment plan. Create a consistent skincare routine with milder products packed with proven acne-fighting ingredients and you’ll see results over time. Wash your face just twice a day with a cleanser specially formulated for acne-prone skin, such as the PharmaClear Acne Treatment Cleanser

Myth 8: Acne is contagious 

False, false, false! Despite common belief, acne cannot be transmitted from one person to another like other bacterial infections; however, we still recommend that you don’t share towels and pillows with anyone (for hygiene reasons). 

Myth 9: You can scrub acne away 

This is another acne myth that’s quite harmful for your skin if followed. Scrubbing your skin too much will not get rid of acne. In fact, treating it too harshly and using abrasive ingredients will leave your skin irritated and dry and can also cause micro-tears in the skin that can result in further irriation. 

We’re not saying exfoliation won’t help, but choose to exfoliate using a gentle facial scrub. And limit your exfoliation to 2-3 times a week.  

Myth 10: Tanning will help clear up your acne 

This myth stems from the fact that you may see a temporary improvement in your acne after a day in the sun. Although there’s a shred of truth to it, sunning yourself really isn’t the most effective treatment for acne. In fact, too much sun can do your skin a lot of harm and sunburns can inflame your breakouts further. Protect your skin and keep it healthy with a moisturizing sunscreen, even on overcast days!