Understanding Acne

Understanding Acne

Your breakouts can sometimes make it difficult to face your reflection in the mirror. Maybe all you see is your acne. But you are not alone. There are people just like you who have all different types of acne. Some have mild or moderate cases, while others have more severe acne. In fact, acne affects many people—your family, friends, and even some of your favorite celebrities have acne.

By now, you’ve probably heard different myths about the causes of acne. “Your skin must be too greasy.” “Maybe you’re just not washing your face enough.” But most of those myths are just that—myths. Acne isn't your fault. In fact, the causes of acne are often related to hormones and genetics.

Girl with acne holding lunch tray

The underlying causes of acne

Acne starts deep under the skin with oil-producing glands that may create the environment for bacteria to grow. This may sound gross, but a normal amount of oil is actually just what your skin needs. The right amount of oil helps keep your skin moisturized and looking healthy. But when you have acne, your glands produce excess oil and your body isn’t able to shed dead skin cells quickly enough. This may lead to bacteria building up inside your pores, creating red, swollen, tender bumps that erupt within the skin. Yeah, not good.

Acne poll question

Do you feel like your acne affects your mood?

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Get to know the different types of acne

Acne comes in many different shapes and sizes, with symptoms ranging from mild to severe. Which type of acne looks familiar to you?

What's going on with my skin?

If you’re concerned about your acne and the effects it may have on you and your skin, take the acne-assessment quiz. It may be able to help you determine if it’s time to talk to your dermatologist and take on your acne.


I’ve had acne for longer than 6 months:


I feel like I miss out on experiences because of my acne:

Enter your email address below to get your customized acne-assessment summary based on your answers. That way, you can work with your dermatologist to determine which treatment may be best for your type of acne.

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