Acne in Adults: Types, Causes, Treatment & Home Remedies

Acne is something that nobody wants to get. It is a nightmare for most of the teenagers. But acne can appear during adulthood also. This type of acne is called ‘Adult Acne’. Adult Acne can make your self-conscious and embarrassed, and you feel reluctant to face the crowd. So, let us have a look in to the causes and treatments of adult acne.

Adult Acne Cure Tips

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Different Types of Acne in Adults:

Adult acne may be of different types and so it is important that you learn about them and identify the type you have, so that you can treat it the right way.


Cyst is a sac-like lesion and it is filled with a substance that is liquid or semi liquid in form. This substance consists of white blood cells and infectious bacteria. Cyst is extremely painful and inflamed like nodule. Cyst leaves behind scars and blemishes once it goes away. In an extreme condition of breakout called nodulocystic, both nodule and cyst occur together. You cannot cure it with usual topical and oral treatments.


Nodule is tender and huge in size. It is lumpy and filled with pus. It occurs deep in the skin and is often accompanied with inflammation. After it goes away, a scar is formed on the skin. Nodule is often painful and no remedy other than isotretinoin is effective for it.


Papule is commonly known as zit or pimple. It is a small and firm bump that is red in color. It is made up of swollen blood cells and does not contain pus in it.


Pustule is a pimple that is filled with pus. Pus is a whitish substance that consists of dead white blood cells. This type of ace is commonly found in hair follicles and sweat glands.

Causes of Adult Acne:

Discontinuing birth-control pills:

Many women, when they stop using birth-control pills, suffer from acne breakout. This is because these pills may be regulating the hormones and preventing breakouts.


Adult acne can also be hereditary. So if you have it in the family, you may also suffer from it.

Having Hormonal imbalance:

One of the main causes for acne in women is hormonal imbalance that takes place during puberty, periods, pregnancy and menopause.

Medicines you take:

Some of the medicines that you take can cause breakout of acne as a side effect. Anticonvulsants, corticosteroids and sobriety drugs are some among them. Instead of discontinuing the use of these drugs, ask your doctor to change the medicine, so that such issues do not arise.


Stress is one of the major causes for adult acne in women. When you are stressed, there is increased production of androgen hormones, which stimulate the oil glands in the skin and the hair follicles. As a result, they become overactive and lead to acne eruptions.

Some personal care products:

Some oil-based sunscreens and hair greases can cause acne to occur. So, if you have acne prone skin, you must be very careful in selecting the skin and hair care products. You can select products labeled ‘non-comedogenic’ or ‘non-acnegenic’.

Adult Acne Treatment:

Prescribed Medication for Adult Acne:

There are two types of prescribed medications for the treatment of adult acne, which are topical and oral.

Topical Treatments:

Topical treatment is done externally and includes creams, gels, lotions etc.

Benzoyl peroxide:

It is a beta-hydroxy acid and it penetrates deep inside the skin. This way it helps in unclogging the pores and killing the germs that cause infection. Many of the anti-acne products contain Benzoyl peroxide.

Salicylic acid:

This is an inflammatory chemical that is topically applied on the area affected. Many of the face washes that you get in the market contain salicylic acid.


This is Vitamin A in the cream form and it helps in cleaning the pores, thus preventing breakouts. Women must be very cautious when using Tretinoin as some health and skincare risks are associated with it.

Oral Treatments:


Tetracycline and minocycline are two of the most effective antibiotics for the treatment of adult acne. Although they help in treating adult acne, they may cause skin sensitivity in many patients.

Contraceptive Pills:

Contraceptives help in neutralizing the effects of sex hormones that cause inflammation of pores. This way you will be able to overcome acne formation.


Isotretinoin is a derivative of vitamin A and when taken orally, it helps in reducing excessive production of oil and prevents the collection of oil in the pores. This medicine is effective for patients suffering from heavy cystic acne. Pregnant women are advised not to use it as it is associated with many health risks.

Home Remedies for Adult Acne:

Herbal tea:

Poor diet and improper functioning of the liver can cause acne and pimples to appear. Under such conditions, herbal teas can help prevent acne. Green tea, chamomile tea, licorice tea and rooibos tea are some of the herbal teas that are very effective for treating acne. These detoxify your body and provide you clear and healthier skin.

Herbal steam:

Herbal facial steam can also help you get rid of adult acne. Herbal steams are made from organic herbs and essential oils, and help in unclogging the pores and cleansing your skin deeply. This way you will get a clear and healthy skin that looks rejuvenated and soft.

Juniper oil:

Juniper oil has antibacterial properties, which help in destroying the bacteria that is responsible for causing acne on your skin. It also has astringent properties, which help in unclogging the pores and cleansing your skin.


Probiotics help in keeping a balance between the advantageous and injurious bacteria in your body. They also reduce swelling and the production of sebum. Having probiotics with healthy diet is an effective treatment for adult acne.

Vitamin A:

Vitamin A is very effective for healing acne damaged skin. It is found in high quantities in many of the vegetables and fruits. It is also excellent for your eyes and the skin. Having a diet containing vitamin A snacks is an excellent alternative to prescribed topical treatments of acne. You may also take Vitamin A supplements after consulting your doctor.

Boil 2 cups of water and steep the herbs. Then cover your head and keep your face a few inches above the bowl. Steam for 5 to 8 minutes and then pat dry your face. Now apply the moisturizer on your face.

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