Medically reviewed by Minimalist Health Specialist -  Written by Viddhi Patel (Journalist) on 22nd Oct 2020

Here's how you can ditch chin acne! Read about the causes and treatment

how you can ditch chin acne

You got up from the bed bright and happy! Ready to fight the world and just then, you see an uncalled for guest perched on your chin. Although every nerve in your body may try to reach out to the pimple and squeeze the life out of it, calm yourself and read on to find out why they show up repeatedly and how to treat them- the right way. 

What is chin acne?  

Chin acne may have several reasons to greet you, but some ingredients have been researched that are efficient in treating pimples on your chin and other areas.

The oil on your skin that occurs naturally traps debris, dirt, and bacteria in the pores around the face, neck, and back. This process turns the pores red and inflamed, resulting in pimples.  

What is hormonal acne?  

They are usually an outcome of hormone fluctuations during puberty or the menstrual cycle. However, anyone at any age can get a pimple on their chin.

The type of flare-up can identify hormonal acne. It is usually cystic chin acne or comedones.  

Cystic chin acne- Large, red sore bumps.
Comedones- Whitehead bumps, they do not break the surface.

The severity of your pimples decides whether you should opt for over-the-counter products or consult a dermatologist.

Figure out what exactly is inviting them, and choose the right plan for yourself.  

Here's everything you need to know to identify your acne and the right ingredients to act on them. 

Culprits of chin acne

Acne, anywhere on the skin, forms when hair follicles clog up with oil or dead skin cells, resulting in dark purple or bright red bumps, blackheads, whiteheads, or pustules and papules.

Oilier skin, going to sleep with makeup, and not washing your face thoroughly lead to gunk or bacteria build-up and more pimples. Stress, certain medications, or refined carbs or chocolate-infused diets may also be the reason for your spots.

Pimples on some regions of your face have varying causes. Research suggests that chin and jawline pimples are mostly related to hormones, predominantly in women. Although not typically dangerous, they cause quite a nuisance. Read on to find what causes them.  

Hormones and chin acne 

Puberty makes a person vulnerable to breakouts, but fluctuating hormones do too. Hormones play a significant role in making a woman susceptible to acne even after her teen years.

I said 'women' because they are more likely to get these kinds of pimples on the chin/jawline than men due to the increase in female hormones, which stimulates the oil glands and produces sebum excessively.

According to research, hormonal acne forms a U shape on your face, flourishes on the sides of the cheeks & around the chin. For instance, it is comparatively more likely for a breakout to occur on your chin a week or so before your period. The other skin-messers are pregnancy, perimenopause, and menopause.

Androgens, the sebum producers, are the hormones that are responsible for stimulating the sebaceous glands. Sebum is responsible for further clogging pores, leading to pimples.

Adulthood is when hormones are most prone to fluctuations. Pimples on the chin come and go any time during this period.

Androgen production can also stimulate during monthly periods and due to a condition like polycystic ovary syndrome.   

Stress and acne 

Cortisol, an inflammatory stress hormone, produces oil excessively and cause spots.  

Beauty sleep and acne  

Psychological stress increases 14% for every hour of sleep you let go of night, leading to skin function abnormalities and structural abnormalities. Depriving your body of sleep also affects insulin resistance, increasing sugar levels in your body as a result, causing acne.  

Birth control pills 

When you are on birth control pills, they combat androgen circulation and decrease sebum production. But coming off the drug leads to gearing up of the hormones and leads to overproduction of sebum. 

Underlying medical conditions  

Irregular periods, excessive hair growth, rapid weight gain when combined with chin acne, or acne, in general, could be related to PCOS or any other endocrine disorder.

Rosacea, a reason for facial redness, can potentially give you hot, pimple-like bumps. A person's blood vessels become visible, leading to noticeable redness, in some cases causing the skin to form pus-filled spots resembling pimples.

Ingrown hair, a shaved/tweezed hair that can grow back into your skin- may lead to inflammation and trigger the chin pimple by becoming red and painful. Men are likely to suffer more due to shaving, but anyone can get ingrown hairs.  

Treating chin acne the right way  

Breakouts are not great to look at, but that desperate urge to pop pimples and make it vanish is real! Just avoid doing it. Prodding and picking will do no good and help the bacteria reach other areas of your skin, dabbling with the chances of more pimples and your healing process.

A study suggests that adult females with acne and pimples are prone to mild-to-moderate depression or anxiety symptoms. It may even affect their ability to concentrate on work or school.

Please get rid of them through OTC or prescription topical treatment designed to kill the acne-causing bacteria or reduce oil production to keep your clogs from blockage.

There are many treatment options to choose from, but not all may work for you, and not all are created equal. Some pimples of mild nature or pustules require little work and can be typically treated with acne creams available over-the-counter, and some require a professional's consultation.

Acne washes to creams and spot treatments, the options might overwhelm you, and the fact that we have to deal with it even after our teen years. Adult acne should not have been a thing! But it is, and it might hit us in our 20s and 30s or even past our 50s.

Every person is unique and reacts to treatments uniquely. The following are all the kinds of treatments available for your acne self-care.  

Listed below are the most talked about and trusted acne treatments for mild, occasional, and specific moderate acne.

Topically diminishing chin acne.  

The most common acne treatment, which is topical application, works by killing acne-causing bacteria, unlike others, which decrease acne's oil. Retinoids, benzoyl peroxide, antibiotics, or salicylic acid are the ingredients included in topical acne treatments.

Salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, although take time, dry up the pimples effectively.

Salicylic acid  

The got-to fix for pimple-covered preteens, salicylic acid, is the active ingredient in many acne washes and spot treatment categories.

This beta-hydroxy acid (BHA) works on dissolving excess oil and exfoliates the dead skin cells gently. The anti-inflammatory properties of salicylic acid help the inflamed cystic breakouts, resulting from deep blockages in the hair follicles rupture in the skin.

Toners, moisturizers, or leave-on treatments containing salicylic work better than a face wash. As more the time salicylic gets with your skin, the more it can work on it. But do not over apply. It will dry your skin out. One product containing salicylic acid per day is wiser than lathering it excessively for faster results.
Also used in chemical peels, this peeling agent decreases skin lipids effectively.

Salicylic acid is less potent than retinoids but works similarly. 

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Benzoyl peroxide 

An antibacterial ingredient, benzoyl peroxide, effectively kills acne bacteria, the cause of breakouts.
The anti-inflammatory properties of benzoyl help in reducing acne symptoms.

Stick to 2% benzoyl peroxide formulations, like that of minimalist. The formula, a powerful acne eraser, and deep-skin exfoliator penetrate the pores killing acne-causing bacteria and gets rid of skin debris, dirt, and oils. Stronger ones aggravate our skin rather than the bacteria.

But some arguments don't favor benzoyl entirely. The leave-on creams and cleansing treatments might dry out sensitive skin and bleach your clothing. Tingling and sun-sensitivity are other side effects.

Antibacterial ointments are often used by combining benzoyl peroxide and retinoids to fight skin bacteria and boost inflammation.  

Lactic acid  

An AHA, lactic acid, is a chemical exfoliant but gentler. A good option for people with sensitive skin and who require an exfoliating acid. Lactic acid draws water to itself and can potentially hydrate as it is a humectant. Dry or sensitive skin benefits from lactic acid without the typical irritation.  

Retinol 

Retinoid creams benefits for antiaging are well known, but these vitamins potentially work on clearing of acne. Retinoids speed up skin cell turnover, decrease sebum production, and exfoliate.

This anti-inflammatory agent is beneficial in preventing the clogging of follicles other than the treating part. OTC retinol and prescription length retinoids help post-acne problems like hyperpigmentation too.

Tretinoin, adapalene, and tazarotene are creams and gels that keep the breakouts at arm's length by evading the clog up of dead skin cells in hair follicles.

The core of topical therapy, retinol, takes patience. It takes months to show results. Religious use maintains its benefits.

But the downside is that they can be irritating. It is not advised for people with sensitive skin and conditions like rosacea and psoriasis. Start with low concentrations as a recce to see how your skin reacts.

Dryness, itching, and redness of the skin are the side effects of topical retinoids.   

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Glycolic acid  

Also, an AHA, glycolic acid exfoliates, ridding the skin of dead skin cells, which clogs the pores. Like salicylic, glycolic is found in moisturizers, serums, peels, and washes. 

Azelaic acid  

Azelaic works by killing bacteria-causing acne and reduces swelling. Topical forms of azelaic acid are available to treat pimples. The gel form of azelaic acid is an enrichment of acne-therapy.

According to AAD, unlike many other acne treatments, azelaic acid can be used when pregnant or breastfeeding.

Side effects of azelaic include itching, dryness, and tenderness. 

Oral treatments  

Medications that work internally are prescribed if you have red swollen pimples like cysts and nodules. Antibiotics (act on bacteria and decrease inflammation), birth control pills (to regulate acne), and isotretinoin, are prescribed by dermatologists.  

In-office treatments 

Laser therapy, chemical peels, or extraction can help clear up chin acne, but the pimples are likely to rise again after these treatments as the root cause is not usually addressed. 

Minimalist's Advice 

Avoid the breakouts from making a comeback by following some simple rules like,  

  • Don't touch your pimple,  
  • Wash your face two times a day,
  • Use sunscreen,  
  • Don't pop pimples, 
  • Follow a skincare regimen,  
  • Avoid harsh scrubs,  
  • Eat a healthy diet, keep away from oily food with excess sugar, 
  • Don't touch your chin and jawline,  
  • Use oil-free makeup.  

Chin is comfortable to touch. When you lean on a desk with your hands on your face, it spreads the dirt, oil, and sebum to the chin area. You should be cautious with these habits and do not squeeze the pimples out of habit.  

Fun Fact-

Diet and stress a significant role in your acne flare-up. Entire populations of Papua New Guinea's Kievan island and Aiche tribe in Paraguay reported zero acne. And it is considered that it majorly relates to their refined sugar-free and processed foods free diet. 

The Bottom Line  

Chin acne is common, and you don't need to stress. A little effort goes a long way. Good hygiene and self-care can effectively help your overall skin health.

No matter what the age, you may have to live with acne. If OTC is not working for you, talk to your dermatologist.