Chin acne, let alone any acne on your face and body, can cause a lot of emotional distress due to its painfulness, itchiness, unsightly appearance, and other symptoms that never seem to end. Read on to learn the causes and how to get rid of chin acne.
In general, acne, which is “a skin condition that occurs when your hair follicles become plugged with oil and dead skin cells”, can affect a person of any age but usually targets those of ages 15-35. It can affect any part of the body but mostly occurs the face where it can concentrate on certain parts such as the chin.
Acne on the chin and also around the mouth can come in all shapes and sizes ranging from small, irritated bumps to large, inflamed pustules that seems to be rooted deep underneath the skin. These different types of acne around the mouth and the chin are signs of an underlying issue, which vary from hormonal problems to poor diet, but where there’s a problem, there’s also a solution.
Causes of Chin Acne
One of the most stubborn causes of chin acne is hormones. Because of hormonal changes in teenage years and even up to your 20s and 30s when most people expect acne to be gone, acne can appear on the chin. This is because those with imbalanced hormones and chin acne tend to have a higher level of androgens, “male hormones”, present in their body, which clog hair follicles by triggering increased oil production (sebum), and thus, creating more acne.
Hormonal imbalances can occur in everybody through genetic predisposition or hormonal shifts in the body as we age and tend to cause cystic acne on the chin and even acne under the chin. Hormonal shifts include, but are not limited to, transitioning into teenage years and adulthood, experiencing menopause, and even getting off your birth control pills.
Women are more susceptible to hormonal chin acne not only because of their monthly cycles but because of Polycystic overy syndrome (PCOS), which is when small cysts grow on ovaries (more on PCOS). The small cysts on her ovaries then cause a woman’s sex hormones to become imbalanced and produce more androgens than normal, which ultimately leads to increased oil production, more clogged hair follicles, and more cystic acne on the chin.
Hormonal chin acne can also be caused by the consumption of a poor diet. When a diet is high in saturated fats, processed foods, and refined sugars, it can increase the production of androgen levels. Foods such as white bread, pasta, chocolate, and sugar boost insulin in your body, which can increase oil production in your skin or add to pore-clogging cell growth.
Dairy also is a large contributing dietary factor for chin acne causes because of the hormone IGF-1 in milk, which is a growth hormone. Dairy causes inflammation in the skin, causes spikes in insulin just like bread, pasta and chocolate, produces excess sebum (oil), and even glues together dead skin cells inside pores, which lead to even more clogged pores.
According to Chinese face-mapping, which says parts of our face are linked directly to various organs of the body, the chin is connected to the small intestine. This organ is responsible for digesting and absorbing food. It cannot easily break down processed foods or foods high in fats and oils so expels these toxins through the skin.
Stress & Sleep Levels
Stress can increase acne because of cortisol, the stress hormone, and increased glucocorticoid production, which leads to skin structural and functional abnormalities. According to a Stanford University study published in the Archives of Dermatology in 2003, researchers concluded that the severity of acne correlated highly with stress levels.
Bacteria from several sources such as your hands, your cell phone, and pillowcase, which all have direct contact with your chin, can get trapped in your pores and lead to acne.
Use of Products
Products such as lip balm, makeup, and even, toothpaste can cause acne around the mouth and chin because of the chemicals they contain such as Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, which irritate your skin.
Now that we’ve looked at chin acne causes including hormonal chin acne and cystic acne on the chin, let’s look at how to get rid of chin acne.
Products to Get Rid of Chin Acne
- Treat your acne topically with over the counter products such as Neutrogena All-in-1 Acne Control Daily Scrub (CVS, Walmart, etc.) and Kate Somerville’s Anti Bac Clearing Face Lotion (Sephora).
- Exfoliate your skin once a week to scrub off extra layers of dead skin cells that could clog your pores.
- Keep your skin well moisturized with an oil-free moisturizer such as Clean & Clear’s Advantage Acne control moisturizer (CVS, Walmart, etc.). If your skin is too dry, your skin can actually overcompensate for the dryness and produce more oil.
- Visit your dermatologist, and get prescribed a topical cream, oral retinoid, or even an oral androgen blocker.
Tips to Get Rid of Chin Acne
Visit a gynecologist to see if you have PCOS or if going on birth control pill will help your acne.
Try taking supplements (under the guidance of your physician) such as Zinc, Omega-3, Vitamin D, and B-Complex.
Exercise to decrease androgen levels.
Drink more water to help eliminate toxins.
Eat more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and less sugar, processed grains, and saturated fats. Basically, eat foods with a low-glycemic index.
Eliminate dairy and other inflammatory foods that cause spikes in insulin for at least two weeks.
Stress & Sleep Levels
Exercise 30 minutes a day, which will reduce cortisol levels and allow your skin to regenerate. Exercise allows helps the body get rid of toxins and brings oxygen to your skin, which makes it harder for acne bacteria to thrive.
Get a full night’s sleep, which reduces cortisol levels.
Refrain from resting your chin on your hands, which has a lot of bacteria and can transfer to your face.
Clean your phone often as the bottom of it often rests on your cheeks close to your mouth and chin.
Change your pillowcase every week to reduce bacteria build up and transfer.
Use a sharp and clean razor on your face when you shave because dull and dirty blades can cause inflammation.
Switch up your toothpaste to one without Sodium Laurel Sulfate to see if that’s the culprit.
Change your brand of lip balm or chapstick to see if its chemicals cause the acne around your mouth and chin.
One of these solutions or a combination of them will help clear up acne on the chin with a little bit of patience and persistence.