There's nothing more frustrating than an unexpected breakout, especially when you've been washing your face daily and moisturizing like no other. Although most of us are aware that we have to cleanse our skin and remove makeup to avoid acne, there are a myriad of other weird reasons you could be breaking out. Anything from your daily diet to the types of products you use in your home could be wreaking havoc on your skin.
"The most common causes of adult female acne include hormones and stress," says dermatologist Tsippora Shainhouse, MD, FAAD, FRCPC to Bustle over email. "Second is bacteria and skin irritation."
Environment can also play a role in your skin's health and appearance. "Patients are probably surprised that weather changes can affect their skin," says Shainhouse. "Dry, cold outside air coupled with dry indoor heaters, can dry up the outer lipid barrier of the epidermis."
If you have sensitive skin, you're much more likely to be affected by environmental factors, so it's important to know what other sneaky things could be contributing to those pesky pimples. If you're experiencing weird bouts of acne that you can't seem to kick, it may be from one of these six unsuspecting reasons you're breaking out.
1. You're Kissing A Bearded Partner
"The prickly hairs in your partner's beard can absolutely cause a pink irritated rash on your lower face" says Shainhouse. "It can present itself as pink bumpy pimples, deeper cysts, or just a pink itchy rash." The rubbing and irritation of your partner's hair follicles on your skin makes it pink and inflamed, and if bacteria gets into your pores, it can trigger a bacterial acne flare.
2. You're Using Too Many Products
"Believe it or not, some personal care products are not noncomedogenic, meaning they may clog the pores," says dermatologist Dr. Julia Tzu of Wall Street Dermatology over email. "Or you may also be applying products in which the ingredients interact with each other to cause an irritant reaction."
3. You're Using Your Cell Phone Too Much
"You can think of your cell phone as a petri dish brimming with microorganisms," says Tzu. Considering we carry our phones around almost everywhere we go, placing it down on public places, it's important to be mindful of the dirt it can carry. "Contact of the cell phone with facial skin can easily cause breakouts because of bacteria."
4. Your Laundry Detergent Is Irritating
Certain laundry detergents contain fragrances and chemicals that can irritate skin and potentially clog pores. Fabric softeners and dryer sheets actually leave a coating on fabric like pillowcases, which can be problematic for people with sensitive skin, says Shainhouse.
5. You Haven't Changed Your Pillowcase
"Grease from your scalp and products from your hair build up on your pillow case," says Shainhouse. "If you don't change it frequently enough, the oils can potentially trigger and acne reaction on your face." Additionally, if you don't wash your hair daily, Shainhouse recommends sleeping in a loose ponytail to keep your hair off your face.
6. You're Drinking Too Much Alcohol
"Dehydration is never great for the skin and too much alcohol actually places physiological stress on the body that can lead to acne," says Tzu. And if you're one to sleep with your makeup on after a long night out, your skin is getting a double whammy of damage.
Try focusing on your habits and adjusting accordingly if you notice your skin is being particularly hard to deal with lately.
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