Acne myths

Despite being one of the most wide spread skin conditions, acne is also one of the most poorly understood. There are many myths and misconceptions about it:

"Acne is caused by a poor diet"

So far, research hasn't found any foods that cause acne. Eating a healthy, balanced diet is recommended because it's good for your heart and your health in general.

"Acne is caused by having dirty skin and poor hygiene"

Most of the biological reactions that trigger acne occur beneath the skin, not on the surface, so the cleanliness of your skin has no effect on your acne. Washing your face more than twice a day could just aggravate your skin.

"Squeezing blackheads, whiteheads and spots is the best way to get rid of acne"

This could actually make symptoms worse and may leave you with scarring .

"Sexual activity can influence acne"

Having sex or masturbating won't make acne any better or worse.

"Sunbathing, sunbeds and sunlamps help improve the symptoms of acne"

There's no conclusive evidence that prolonged exposure to sunlight or using sunbeds or sunlamps can improve acne. Many medications used to treat acne can make your skin more sensitive to light, so exposure could cause painful damage to your skin, and also increase your risk of skin cancer.

"Acne is infectious"

You can't pass acne on to other people.

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 19 Jan 2018
Medical Author: Dr. med. nhs