Good Habits For Fighting Teen Acne

Good Habits & Regimens For Fighting Teen Acne

Supporting good skincare habits is crucial to success with teenage acne. Try to steer your child away from social media myths, and help them understand that acne doesn’t go away overnight. You’ll want to find a dermatology practice to prescribe a regimen that will help stop outbreaks and prevent scarring.

Here are some skincare tips that should be part of your teen’s anti-acne regimen:

Tip #1: Don't wash too much or scrub too hard

Dirt doesn’t cause acne, and excessive scrubbing can leave healthy skin dry and acne-prone areas irritated. Habitual over-washing may also stimulate extra oil production, which could result in more breakouts.1         

Tip #2: Don’t squeeze or pick

Squeezing or picking blemishes – with fingernails, pins or anything else – can cause greater inflammation. Messing with a pimple can also increase the damage to the surrounding skin, so the blemish is more likely to leave a permanent acne scar.2

Tip #3: Hands off!

Propionibacterium acnes (the bacteria that causes breakouts) is a normal resident of the skin; it doesn’t lead to acne until it gets trapped inside the hair follicle. If your child spends a lot of time touching his or her face, chances are bacteria is being driven into the pores – where it can begin its dirty work.2

Tip #4: Work out, wash off. Immediately

Exercise generates heat, and clothing and equipment cause friction. After a workout, heat and moisture are trapped against the skin. So whenever possible, encourage your teen to shower immediately after exercising.3

Tip #5: Find a regimen and stick with it

There’s a wide range of treatments available, many of them over-the-counter, and there’s a good chance one of them will work for your teen. If you start treatment before your acne gets severe, you’ll have a better chance of avoiding physical and emotional problems down the road.5 But changes won’t happen overnight. Give any skincare regimen a fighting chance by sticking with it. After sufficient time, if your acne hasn’t improved in a couple of weeks or gets worse, see your dermatologist for medication and additional skincare tips.2,4


  1. AAD. 10 Skin Care habits that can worsen acne. Accessed March 8, 2022.
  2. AAD. Pimple Popping: Why only a dermatologist should do it. Accessed March 8, 2022.
  3. AAD. Is your workout causing your acne? Accessed March 8, 2022.
  4. AAD. 9 things to try when acne won't clear. Accessed March 8, 2022.
  5. AAD. Acne can affect more than your skin. Accessed August 26, 2022.

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