This misconception isn’t entirely true but it’s not entirely false either. Let’s look at it a bit closer to see what we mean by this.
First, when it comes to sweat, remember that it alone doesn’t cause acne. Sweat is simply droplets of water being released by the body to keep it cool. There are no bacteria or other harmful elements in sweat itself.
When you sweat you do capture bacteria and germs that are already present on the skin or underneath and this gets wrapped up in some areas of the skin. This is why your underarms and bottom of your feet have a bad odor when they sweat – the bacteria that are there are caught in the sweat and released. But when it comes to sweat on your face, the sweat itself is not causing bacteria or bringing it to the face in of itself. If your face was clean before your workout, there’s probably no need to use a harsh astringent or cleanser afterwards simply because you have sweat on your face.
As for chocolate, caffeine, and acidic foods, it is true that these things can seemingly irritate the face at times but usually this is just for those who have a certain sensitivity to these foods. If you’re allergic to chocolate and the special oils it contains, your face will probably break out when you eat it. The same can be said of caffeine and virtually any other type of food you can eat.
Many people eat acidic foods or drink a lot of caffeine and don’t have a problem with acne or ever break out into pimples, so you can see how these foods don’t cause acne just automatically or in of themselves. On the other hand, anyone that notices that they seem to break out after having chocolate or a lot of coffee or any other food should make a note of that. Just like one person can have allergies while another person doesn’t, you need to be aware of your own system and what causes reactions with your body and on your face.
When it comes to makeup and other facial products, it’s true that at one time these were made with such skin-irritating ingredients that they did clog the pores and cause acne. Additives and other ingredients were so harsh that they did what that defective skin does – form a barrier over pores and hair follicles so that dirt and oil couldn’t escape, resulting in acne. It’s true also that many brands of makeup were oil-based so that if someone were prone to acne, the makeup just made it worse.
Today however dermatologists and makeup manufacturers have come a long way toward understanding this problem, and most brands are now what is called non-comedogenic, meaning that they don’t clog pores. The vast majority are also water based rather than oil based, so the mixture doesn’t clog the pores and cause an oil buildup on the face.
Of course there are still a few brands, typically the cheapest ones, that have very bad ingredients that are damaging to the skin and that may still cause acne, but these are few and far between. If you’re using any of the higher end brands then you shouldn’t have a problem. Ask someone at your makeup counter for a recommendation as to what would be best for your skin, and don’t hesitate to consider switching even if this means a few more dollars out of your pocket. After all, your face is something that everyone sees every day, so why not spend a few more dollars for makeup that will do the job and not cause additional problems with acne?
Stress and acne.
There does seem to be a link when it comes to stress and acne. There may be a few reasons for this, but typically it is because the body is reacting to stress by protecting itself physically.
Usually when a person is in a stressful or panic-inducing situation the body will respond with that “fight or flight” response, diverting blood from areas such as the digestive system arms to the important muscles of the legs, readying itself for a confrontation or to run away.
In much the same way, the body may respond to stressful situations by producing even more oil on the skin than before. It may be doing this to ready itself for a physical attack or simply because many of the bodys systems get perverted when under pressure and stress. Blood circulation is affected, as is the amount of hydration you have in your system. Oxygen reserves can be depleted and even the muscles can suffer needlessly.
This added oil can result in acne if one is predisposed to having that skin that doesn’t stay open and that allows it to build up in the pores and hair follicles, or if there is just so much oil on the face that it can’t be rinsed away under normal conditions.