If you’ve suffered from acne for a long time, you probably know the common acne causing triggers. Stress, hormone fluctuations, irregular sleep schedule, a long night of partying, and picking at your skin are likely to cause new breakouts almost immediately.
But what about the less commonly known triggers? The more you know, the easier it will be to keep your skin under control. Below is a list of 8 acne triggers you probably don’t suspect.
- Makeup & Cosmetics:
This one is pretty obvious, but it’s SO important that it’s worth going over anyway. Check the ingredients of anything that touches your face against our Pore Clogging Ingredients List. You’ll be surprised how many cosmetics contain pore cloggers and still have “non-comedogenic” on the label. Loose mineral powder is your safest bet, but not all loose powders are safe!
- Haircare Products:
Many shampoos, conditioners and leave-in styling products contain comedogenic ingredients. They will leave a residue on your hair that will get onto your face throughout the day, especially if you are working out or sweating. These haircare products will also work their way into your pillowcases, causing breakouts on the sides of your face and cheeks. Always check anything that goes in your hair against our Pore Clogging Ingredients List to be safe.
Sodium Laurel and Laureth Sulfates are in most toothpastes on the market. They can actually leave a residue on your skin long after they are washed off. If you’re acne-prone, these ingredients are extremely irritating. Be careful not to get any toothpaste on your skin when brushing your teeth, or switch to a sulfate-free toothpaste like Sensodyne or Kiss My Face brands.
- Fabric Softener & Scented Detergents:
Fragranced products will leave a waxy residue on your clothes, pillowcases, and towels. Avoid dryer sheets and liquid fabric softeners on anything that will touch your face. Just use a “Free and Clear” detergent to wash and an anti-static ball when drying clothes.
Chemicals in the swimming pool and even salt-water can actually cause acne. There’s a really simple fix for this one – just put a thin layer of Vaseline on your face before swimming and it will protect your skin from the water. Wash off as soon as you’re done swimming. Sounds strange, but it works great, and Vaseline won’t break you out.
- Birth Control:
Side effects to different birth control methods vary so much from person to person that it’s hard to say how you’ll react. Mirena, Paragard, Depo Provera, and some low-dose pills are what appear to be the most acne-aggravating in our experience.
- Vitamins and Supplements:
Certain supplements can trigger breakouts. Some of them aggravate your pores, some cause changes in your hormones, and some cause changes in the structure of your skin cells. Supplements that can aggravate your skin include but are not limited to: spirulina, whey and soy protein, creatine, most multi-vitamins, high doses of iodine, and biotin. Biotin is sneaky – look for it in B-complex, multis, and “hair, skin and nails” supplements.
- Recreational and Prescription Drugs:
Most of these cause changes in your hormones or leave your skin too damaged to be able to heal itself. These include but are not limited to: marijuana, alcohol, cigarettes, cocaine, amphetamines, Adderall, Lithium, and some anti-anxiety / anti-depression drugs.