What causes Pimples?

acne conglobata

Growing up isn’t a choice. While we all wish for the everlasting youth of Peter Pan, we eventually end up as awkward teenagers on the brink of puberty. So a part of growing up includes the infuriating period in life where pimples, acne, and bad skin can haunt our days. Today, we talk about what causes pimples.

The secret behind pimples

A pimple is a skin abnormality that occurs when glands known as the sebaceous glands get clogged and cause an infection and swelling. These glands, when functioning normally, secrete oils that contribute to oily skin.

The clogging of the sebaceous glands can result in anything from a benign blackhead to a severe cyst formation. Therefore, never turn a blind eye to the changes in your skin.

What causes acne?

Most people come across pimples at some point in their life, regardless of how good a condition their skin may be in and how much care they take of it. Factors that may be influential are:

Hormonal changes

This is the main reason why puberty brings with it an avalanche of many skin issues for teenagers. Right from the onset of puberty, hormonal changes begin to take place in the human body. In this stage, excessive hormones make the sebaceous glands produce excessive oils. If secreted, this leads to oily skin or a scalp. However, it’s when these glands get clogged that pimples occur.

Dietary effects

Most dermatologists tend to advise against the consumption of junk food and processed sugary products. There are also some food products that may contain a specific hormone or substance that could trigger acne, such as dairy products.


Just as we always watch what we eat to manage our weight, we should also watch what we apply to our skin to contain acne and pimple outbreaks. When used on the skin, greasy or oil-based makeup tends to have an adverse effect, clogging your pores in the process. To avoid this, make sure you remove any skin products or makeup you use on your skin before going to bed.


A leading contributor to acne outbreaks tends to be stress. As per a study conducted at Stanford University, a correlation between stress levels of students writing their final exams and the acne outbreaks they faced was demonstrated. So if you’re having acne/pimple issues, it’s probably a good idea to work on bringing your stress levels down.


If you are using pharmaceutical products that are known to influence hormone levels, they could very well be the reason behind your acne breakouts.

Picking at it

Often, the temptation to pick at or squeeze a pimple wins over even the most resilient of us. However, this only leads to scarring and further spreading and deepening of the infection.

Ways to treat pimples

Simple solutions exist that help counter these factors, including physical exercise to relieve stress and open up pores. Or keeping the skin clean consistently to avoid any build-up of oils. However, it is advised to seek a dermatologist’s help in figuring out the proper skin care regimen and products for your skin, as store-bought creams and gels could very well end up worsening the problem.

The silver lining

These are just a few of the many important factors that could lead to pimples.

Pimples are just one part of the many different skin conditions that are referred to as “acne,” and it might seem daunting to read and understand about it all. However, once we know the cause of the issue, identifying possible solutions and preventative measures becomes much more manageable. 


1. What food causes pimples?

Foods that are rich in sugar, fried food, junk food and food that you might be allergic to can cause an outbreak of pimples.

2. How do pimples go away?

Depending on the type and what causes pimples, there are various treatment options ranging from topical creams, medications to dermatological interventions.

3. Does toothpaste work on pimples?

Do not believe the myth that toothpaste will make your pimples vanish. It will only make it worse.

4. How do you get rid of pimples in minutes?

You cannot get rid of pimples in minutes. Visit a dermatologist and get proper treatment for your pimples and acne.

Struggling with a Skin or Hair issue? Download the CureSkin App now by clicking here to get the best treatment. It’s easy, fast and affordable!



Picture of Dr Jisha Gomez

Dr Jisha Gomez

She is a highly skilled dermatology physician with strong expertise in improving skin & hair health through the development of corrective treatment combinations. She completed her Post-graduate Diploma in Dermatology from Cardiff, UK & Fellowship in Aesthetic Medicine (FAM) from the Institute of Laser and Aesthetic Medicine, Delhi with over 5+ years experience treating skin patients. She has worked in Government hospitals in Trivandrum and Bangalore. She is actively involved in creating awareness for healthy skin, breaking the social stigma based on skin colour & stopping steroid abuse in our country.