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7 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Use Accutane or Birth Control for Acne

People are constantly seeking the best treatments to fight acne. Two of the most commonly discussed options are accutane (isotretinoin) and birth control pills.

While these may seem like quick and effective solutions, they have their own drawbacks. This blog post will explore seven key reasons why using Accutane or birth control for acne might not be the ideal solution for everyone.

Also read: How to choose the best acne treatment

Biggest Take-Aways:

  • Birth control and other oral medications for acne come with a range of side effects, including hormonal imbalances.
  • The effectiveness of Accutane in treating acne can vary greatly depending on the individual's type of acne and medical history.
  • Topical treatments like creams can offer a targeted approach for various types of acne without the hormonal side effects of oral medications.
  • Exposed Skin Care offers a comprehensive topical solution for acne, suitable for various acne types and free from hormonal side effects.

Hand holding different color pills

Reason 1: Hormonal Imbalance and Its Repercussions

Hormones play a critical role in the formation of acne. Often, hormonal acne occurs when androgens, a group of hormones, cause the skin to produce excessive sebum.

This leads to clogged pores, making you more susceptible to acne. Accutane and birth control pills, particularly oral contraceptives that contain hormones like estrogen and a form of progesterone, aim to manipulate your hormonal balance as a treatment for acne.

However, altering the body's natural hormones can have far-reaching consequences. It might exacerbate conditions, such as hormonal imbalance, and cause mood swings or depression. 

The number of side effects associated with messing with hormones should make anyone pause before choosing Accutane or birth control for acne treatment.

Reason 2: Unpleasant and Often Severe Side Effects

Accutane is often considered a 'miracle cure' for severe acne, especially cystic acne that does not respond well to other treatments. Birth control pills are also approved for acne treatment and may work well in some instances of acne, particularly acne in women.

However, both treatments come with a long list of side effects. The severe side effects of Accutane can include hair loss, inflamed bowels, and even birth defects. With birth control pills, the side effects can range from mild to severe, including blood clots and heart-related issues.

Girl experiencing hair loss

If you are looking for less severe acne treatments, you may want to explore creams and oral antibiotics or other methods that have a smaller list of potential drawbacks.

Reason 3: Effectiveness Varies from Person to Person

While Accutane can effectively treat severe types of acne, its success rate is not 100%. The same goes for using birth control for acne treatment. Many people do not respond well to these treatment plans; in some cases, acne may worsen.

Factors like your medical history, hormonal balance, and acne type can all affect how well these treatments work for you. The pills containing different doses of estrogen or even drospirenone may work wonders for some but could be less effective for others.

Reason 4: Birth Control and Pregnancy Concerns

Oral contraceptives are often used to prevent pregnancy and are recommended for acne treatment. However, relying on birth control for acne may have its pitfalls.

Taking birth control pills to treat acne can become complicated if you decide to start a family. The transition off the pill may lead to a flare-up in acne and the risk of birth defects if you become pregnant while taking certain types of medication like Accutane.

A worried pregnant mother

Reason 5: Long-Term Antibiotic Use

Many people who use Accutane or birth control for acne also use antibiotics as a combination treatment. However, prolonged use of antibiotics can have its own set of issues.

Long-term use of antibiotics can lead to antibiotic resistance. This makes the treatment less effective for your acne and puts you at risk for developing other infections that are resistant to antibiotics.

Reason 6: Financial Constraints

Using birth control or accutane as a treatment for acne is often expensive. While some may argue that the cost is worth it if the treatment is effective, it's crucial to consider the financial aspect.

Suppose you're dealing with adult acne or even persistent acne that's not classified as severe. In that case, there may be other, more affordable treatments available that don't come with the high financial and health-related costs.

Man worried about money

Reason 7: The Unknown Long-term Impact

Many studies discuss the short-term effectiveness of using Accutane or birth control for acne. However, there is limited data on these treatments' long-term impact, especially regarding potential risks and benefits.

Without comprehensive, long-term studies, it's difficult to fully endorse using Accutane or birth control pills for acne treatment. There's a need for more research to ensure our content is accurate and to understand the long-term implications of these treatments fully.

A Better Alternative: The Benefits of Using Exposed Skin Care for Acne Management

While many turn to combination birth control pills or topical medications that doctors often recommend for treating acne, these options may come with a set of complications. Fortunately, Exposed Skin Care offers products that help clear the skin without risky side effects.

Exposed Skin Care Ultimate Kit

The benefits of Exposed Skin Care are:

  • Effective Topical Solution: Unlike oral medications, Exposed Skin Care offers topical creams that target acne formation directly.
  • No Hormonal Side Effects: You won't experience the hormonal imbalances often seen when taking the pill or other types of birth control recommended for acne treatment.
  • Suited for Various Acne Types: Our products respond well to various types of acne conditions, whether you have inflammatory acne or a milder form.
  • No Risk of Birth Control Side Effects: Our treatments sidestep the potential adverse effects of the birth control pills used to treat acne, such as those containing drospirenone.

Exposed Skin Care can improve acne without the risks or complications that birth control or Accutane as an acne treatment may introduce. With Exposed Skin Care, you can enjoy being acne-free without the downsides of these treatments.


The quest for an effective acne treatment often leads individuals to consider Accutane or birth control to treat acne or other strong medications. While these might be powerful tools in combating acne, the side effects can be quite concerning.

Accutane or birth control pills as acne treatments may not work uniformly for everyone. In some instances, they could worsen the acne condition rather than improve it. Therefore, weighing the potential risks and benefits of such treatment methods is crucial.

On the other hand, topical solutions like acne creams can offer a more targeted treatment that works well for various types of acne without the hormonal side effects. Products like Exposed Skin Care provide topical solutions and has helped many to achieve clearer skin.

In the end, tackling acne is not just about eliminating the symptoms but about finding a comprehensive solution that allows for sustained relief without detrimental side effects. Whether you take birth control for acne or opt for other treatment paths, the goal is to find an approach that brings you not just temporary relief but long-lasting skin health.


Is birth control effective in treating acne?

Yes, birth control can be effective for some people, but it often comes with various side effects.

What are the side effects of using birth control for acne?

Side effects can include hormonal imbalances, increased risk of blood clots, and even worsening of acne in some cases.

Can birth control pills improve all types of acne?

No, the effectiveness of birth control varies depending on the type of acne and individual medical history.

What are topical treatments for acne?

Topical treatments include creams and ointments applied directly to the skin. They often have fewer side effects compared to oral medications.

What is Exposed Skin Care?

Exposed Skin Care is a skincare line offering topical solutions for treating acne effectively without the hormonal side effects of many oral treatments.