Why Adults Still Get Acne

Why Adults Still Get Acne

Unfortunately, many people struggle with acne well into their 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond. Whether your acne breakouts occur occasionally or have become a constant problem, the team at Sasaki Advanced Aesthetic Medical Center in Pasadena, California, can help.

Led by world-renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Gordon Sasaki, the Sasaki Advanced Aesthetic team offers a wide range of surgical and nonsurgical skin care services designed to meet your needs, including treatments for adult acne.

Check out these facts about the causes of adult acne and treatments that help clear and prevent breakouts.

How common is adult acne?

Acne, the most common skin condition in the United States, affects about 50 million people between the ages of 12 and 24, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. In addition, millions of Americans experience acne after age 24 (adult acne), and those numbers continue to grow. According to its most recent estimates, the AAD believes that up to 15% of adult women struggle with moderate-to-severe acne.

So, what’s causing my adult acne?

Causes of adult acne can vary. Your experience at Sasaki Advanced Aesthetic Medical Center starts with a thorough evaluation to determine the type and potential causes of your acne.

Generally, however, underlying drivers of adult acne include:

Fluctuating hormone levels

A hormone imbalance can lead to acne breakouts, which may help explain why individuals born female are more likely to develop adult acne than individuals identified male at birth.

Fluctuating hormones around your menstrual periods or during pregnancy, the time leading up to menopause (perimenopause), and menopause (when your periods cease entirely) can trigger acne outbreaks. You may also notice problems when starting (or stopping) birth control pills.


Your body produces more androgens (sex hormones) when you’re stressed. Androgens stimulate the oil glands to produce more substances that can clog hair follicles, leading to acne. Testosterone is the most familiar androgen, and though it’s more prevalent in men, women also produce small amounts of testosterone that may increase under stress.

Family history

If your parents or siblings also struggle with acne, you may be genetically predisposed to developing adult acne.

Hair and skin care products

Many hair and skin care products, including sunscreen, moisturizers, and cleansers, can clog pores and lead to acne breakouts. Dr. Sasaki recommends anyone with acne-prone skin check their product lines to be sure they’re non-comedogenic (won’t block pores), non-acnegenic (not likely to cause acne), and oil-free.

Specialists at Sasaki InnoVessence SkinCare Center, part of the Sasaki Advanced Medical Center’s multi tiered practice, can create a medical-grade skin care regimen that nourishes and revitalizes your skin without encouraging acne.

Medication side effect

Some medications can trigger acne breakouts. As part of your evaluation, Dr. Sasaki evaluates your current medications and supplements list to determine if one or more are affecting your skin. For prescribed medicines, Dr. Sasaki develops a treatment strategy that helps control acne breakouts while you’re on the drug.

Treating adult acne

Based on your evaluation results, acne treatments at Sasaki Advanced Aesthetic Medical Center may include the following:

Dr. Sasaki also offers advanced treatments for pigmentation changes and scarring related to acne outbreaks. You may also benefit from a personalized skin care regimen that can help prevent future flare-ups.

Schedule an evaluation at Sasaki Advanced Aesthetic Medical Center for effective acne treatment at any age. Call the office, or contact us online for more information.

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