Why You Have More Acne Breakouts in the Summer

Looking good in your summer clothes should be the only thing on your mind - not worrying about breakouts. But when the temperatures rise, so do pimples. Luckily, you don't have to spend your whole summer hiding away.

Why the Summer Months Bring on More Breakouts

The reason acne gets worse in summer isn't because of sun exposure. Most of the time, it's due to increased oil production, sweating, and more clogging of the pores that can occur in warmer temperatures.

Even though the weather is hot, people still put on sunscreen, lotion, body butter, or oil to keep their skin looking good. But when these products are mixed with sweat, dirt, and other things, it can cause more pimples.

In the summer, sweating more can cause pores to get clogged or blocked. Some sunscreens and moisturizers, especially the thicker ones, can worsen acne by clogging pores even more. Acne is a condition that many different factors can influence. For example, your body's hormones and androgens can play a role. 

Additionally, acne is more likely to form in areas of your body with more oil production. Triglycerides in these areas can feed bacteria and cause more inflammatory acne. However, it all starts with small obstructions in the pores that turn into microcomedones.

How to Treat Acne

Many acne products are available over the counter, but that doesn't mean they will all work for you. If you have mild acne, such as blackheads and whiteheads, you may be able to find a product that contains salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to help. Some acne products that were once only available with a prescription are now available over the counter. 

1. Avoid Heavy Lotions or Creams

During the winter, you can get away with using heavier lotions and creams to protect your skin from the dryness that comes with colder temperatures. However, in the summer, you should switch to lighter moisturizers or a more water-based sunscreen to help prevent clogged pores.

2. Use a Foaming Cleanser 

Foaming facial cleansers are typically recommended during the summer months. In the winter, however, it's best to switch to a hydrating or creamy facial cleanser to help prevent your skin from drying out. Of course, this isn't a hard and fast rule. The cleanser you use may vary depending on your skin type. If you're unsure which one is best for you, a dermatologist can help.

3. Remove Dirt and Sweat

No one wants to be sweaty and sticky all day long. So when the weather is hot, you might need to shower more than once. It's fine to wash off the sweat, dirt, and grime but don't overdo it. Showering or washing your face after working out or being outdoors and sweating is essential. Twice a day is the maximum amount you should shower or wash your face. 

During this time of the year, more people want to exfoliate their skin and wash more frequently, but this can actually cause skin irritation. Washing and scrubbing can irritate the skin and make it harder to treat acne. So shower or wash your face twice daily, including after workouts or extended periods in the sun.


There are many great skin care products that you can use during the summer without having to risk more breakouts. However, if you're facing a skin care dilemma, don't hesitate to consult with a professional.

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