Why Is My Acne Getting Worse All of a Sudden?

Why is my acne getting worse all of a sudden? This is a question I’ve asked myself many times while staring in the mirror when I was younger. There is almost nothing more frustrating than random acne breakouts. Especially when you feel you are doing everything right.

But have you considered everything that you are doing? There are many habits we follow each day subconsciously, without thinking. Perhaps one of these habits is to blame.

Why is my acne getting worse all of a sudden? Your acne could be getting worse due to one of many bad, acne-causing habits. Here are 10 common, daily habits that cause acne:

  1. Not Changing Your Pillowcase
  2. Not Washing Your Face After Exercise
  3. Not Washing Your Make-Up Brushes
  4. Long Bangs On Your Face
  5. Not Replacing Your Make-Up
  6. Using the Wrong Products
  7. Not Washing Your Hands
  8. Re-Using Razors
  9. Not Cleaning Your Glasses or Sunglasses
  10. Not Cleaning Your Phone

Why Is My Acne Getting Worse All of a Sudden? 10 Acne-Causing Habits

1. Not Changing Your Pillowcase

The first bad habit that can lead to a breakout is not changing your pillowcase more often. Our hair is like a magnet for dirt and other environmental pollutants. You may wash your hair in the morning which is fine, but then at night, you’re tired, you’re all sweaty, and then you lay on your pillow.

You sleep to the side or toss and turn and all that oil built up on your hair will get onto your face. So it is best to change the pillowcase more frequently, especially if you typically have oily skin or an oily scalp.

2. Not Washing Your Face After a Workout

The second bad habit is not washing your face after a workout. The more you sweat, the more likely you are to produce oil, and the bacteria that is on our skin feeds off of the lipids, and the salt, and the sugars of our sebum. And so, after you exercise, try to wash your face and for some of you if you can just go a little bit inside the scalp area because a lot of that comes down onto our face.

If you’re doing errands after you go workout, and you sweat a lot, it’s not enough to take a towel and wipe it down, you’re going to have to rinse it off your face. This will bring down the level of bacteria that potentially can cause you to break out.

3. Not Washing Your Make-Up Brushes

The number three daily habit that could be causing breakouts is for the women who don’t wash their make-up brushes. You really must wash them because, especially if you tend to have oilier skin, then that oil can get onto your brushes. The oilier your skin is, the more that you’re going to have to wash your make-up brushes. If you have a synthetic brush, then you want to wash with antibacterial gel-based soap or cleanser.

If it’s a real hairbrush, such as a brush with animal hair, you don’t want to wash with an antibacterial soap. Preferably, wash with a tea tree oil-based shampoo. When you put the cleanser or the shampoo on your make-up brushes, it’s going to emulsify, and so it’s not going to lather as much.

So you want to keep washing your brushes and rinsing them until they lather up pretty good. You will know that they are clean when there’s no more make-up that keeps reappearing after washing them.

4. Not Replacing Your Make-up

If you are taking a dirty brush, and adding it to your dirty make-up, that oil and the bacteria collect on your make-up. So the fourth bad habit that leads to breakouts is for women who don’t replace their make-up. So if you are asking yourself, “why is my acne getting worse all of a sudden?”, you want to replace your make-up.

Especially if you tend to do make-up touches throughout the day when your face is oily, and you’re using the same make-up, that make-up can go rancid pretty quickly. Every time you’re re-applying, then that bacteria multiplies on your product. That same make-up could be causing you to break out.

See the below video for more tips on getting rid of acne:

5. Long Bangs on Your Face

The next bad habit that is an issue is long bangs. This can be for gals and guys. A lot of times, what people who break out do is they want to hide the breakouts. So they’ll pull their bangs in front of their breakouts, or for women who have back acne, they’ll try to, if they’re wearing a sundress, they try to cover it with their hair.

What happens is, on your scalp, your scalp is producing up to two times more oil, and typically the oil is a little bit thicker to get onto the hair to keep your hair soft. That oil is getting onto your forehead, or onto the sides of your face, as well as your back. So try to keep those bangs away from your face!

6. Using the Wrong Products

The sixth bad habit you may be doing is using the wrong products. Avoid products that go on your face or your body that contain: Talc, Mineral Oil, Petroleum-based products, heavier oils, or synthetic fragrances, as they tend to be “comedogenic”.

This means they can have a clogging pore effect. This also includes more intense blushes and intense-colored eye-shadows that tend to have these irritating chemicals in them.

For men, you all should avoid heavy-scented aftershave products. A lot of them tend to contain alcohol, and alcohol can dehydrate the skin. If you have oilier skin, then these alcohol-based products will make your skin produce MORE oil causing MORE breakouts.

Many products also are very, very heavily scented with synthetic fragrance and that can tend to irritate the skin and clog the pores.

7. Not Washing Your Hands

This may seem like something your mother told you but must be mentioned. A bad habit that will lead to breakouts is not washing your hands frequently and touching your face. Some people are not aware of how much they touch their face when they’re bored or just when they’re brushing their hair away from their face.

If you must touch your face, then try to use the other side of your hands, the backside of your hands to push up your glasses, to move the hair away from your face. Use the part of your hand that is not where you touch doorknobs, toilet handles, etc.

Harmful bacteria stick to the tips of your fingers, and so if you’re always touching your face, you can cause breakouts that way as well. I remember being in shock when learning that there are more germs on a doorknob than on a toilet seat.

Not to gross you out! Just wash your hands frequently, and get into the habit of not touching your face, or using the backside of your hand if must.

8. Re-Using Razors

Ladies and gentlemen, I understand razors can be very expensive. Razors are meant to be used once. And so, when you re-use a razor when you are shaving any part of your body, it’s also taking off the dead skin layers and getting trapped between the razors.

So when you keep re-using it, the bacteria level grows on the razors, and every time you shave you’re causing micro-contusions in the skin.

These are microscopic little cuts in your skin, and that bacteria can get back into the skin, which is why you can get the bumps, or what’s called “pseudofolliculitis barbae”.

Especially if you have those razors that are double or triple razors..avoid those. Get the cheap, single ones and then just use them on a daily basis, just single-use, and just by doing that, you can reduce the number of bumps that you have.

9. Not Cleaning Your Glasses or Sunglasses

The ninth bad habit is not cleaning off your glasses and your sunglasses. The reason why is because we are constantly wearing our glasses or sunglasses. If it’s hot, we’re also sweating, and if you’re a girl and you’re wearing make-up, this adds even more problems.

On the underside of your sunglasses and the area where your nose rests, that’s where you have a lot of your oil, your dirt, and your make-up. And most of us don’t clean our glasses or sunglasses every single time that we use them.

So remember to keep them clean, and I don’t mean just wiping them off, you need to use a cleaner to break down the oil and the dirt that’s on your sunglasses.

10. Not Cleaning Your Phone

The tenth bad habit that can cause breakouts is not cleaning your phone frequently. Our phones are our security blankets – we’re always using our phones, we’re always holding them or keeping them beside us. We’re always placing them everywhere as well, and this leads to bacteria getting on our phones.

So disinfect the phones, and how you can do that is getting the disinfectant wipes and on a daily basis, learn to wipe them down, because you’re always putting it near your face, you’re always touching this inadvertently. There have been studies showing fecal matter on phones. Ugh!

Sorry to gross you out again but it is important to be aware of this, especially if you are one to keep your phone close to your face through the day.

For even more reasons why you could be breaking out, see the below video:

Conclusion – Why Is My Acne Getting Worse All of a Sudden?

So if you are asking yourself: “Why is my acne getting worse all of a sudden?”, consider the everyday habits that you follow. There are 10 common, daily habits that cause acne:

  1. Not Changing Your Pillowcase
  2. Not Washing Your Face After Exercise
  3. Not Washing Your Make-Up Brushes
  4. Long Bangs On Your Face
  5. Not Replacing Your Make-Up
  6. Using the Wrong Products
  7. Not Washing Your Hands
  8. Re-Using Razors
  9. Not Cleaning Your Glasses or Sunglasses
  10. Not Cleaning Your Phone

Related Questions

Does washing your face make acne worse? It is important to wash sweat, dirt, and other pollutants off of your face. However, do not wash too much, or with too hot water, or with irritating soaps as these can all irritate your skin.

Does making out make you breakout? When you make out with your partner, both your faces create oil and friction that can cause your skin to breakout. If your partner has facial hair, this can also irritate your skin.

Does acne get worse before it gets better? As the skin cells turnover and replace themselves, this can cause inflammation and make the acne worse. It is a difficult and confusing time for many but just hold faith as it often gets worse before better.