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Acne in Seniors (Causes, Treatments, and More)

Although acne is commonly linked with puberty, it's not limited to the domain of the young. Acne in seniors is more common than many realize, and understanding it is crucial for maintaining healthy skin in one's golden years. 

This blog post will delve deep into senior acne, exploring everything from its root causes to effective skin care strategies.

Also read: How to choose the best acne treatment

Biggest Take-Aways:

  • Seniors, like teenagers, can experience acne, but the triggers and factors contributing to its onset may differ due to age-related changes.
  • Women, as they age, might see a surge in acne breakouts due to hormonal changes.
  • Effective acne treatment for seniors requires a comprehensive understanding of both visible symptoms and underlying causes.
  • Exposed Skin Care provides a specialized solution for seniors, treating acne at its root while catering to the unique needs of older skin.

Senior woman checking her skin with hand mirror

What is Acne and Why Does It Occur?

Many people mistakenly believe that acne is solely a teenage concern. In reality, people of all ages can experience acne breakouts, which is challenging for seniors who thought they'd left such skin troubles behind.

Understanding Acne

At its core, acne is a condition where the hair follicles become clogged with oil and dead skin cells. This clog can lead to various skin lesions, including:

  • Pimples: Pus-filled lumps.
  • Blackheads: Open clogs where the top surface is dark.
  • Whiteheads: Closed clogs.

Although acne is often associated with hormonal changes during puberty, senior women and men can also develop acne due to various factors, some of which are specific to the elderly.

Common Causes of Acne in Seniors

Unearthing the causes of acne in seniors is the first step to understanding how to treat it. Several factors can lead to breakouts in the elderly.

Hormonal Changes

Senior women, especially, tend to undergo hormonal changes as they get older. For instance, testosterone, an androgen hormone, can increase oil production in the skin's oil glands. This extra oil, or sebum, can clog pores and cause adult acne.

Senior woman undergoing menopausal symptoms

Medication Side Effects

As seniors get older and perhaps need more medications, some of these drugs might list acne as a side effect. For example, medications like anabolic steroids and some chemotherapy drugs can cause or worsen acne.

Age-Related Skin Changes

As we age, our skin undergoes various changes. The skin may produce more sebum, and slower skin cell turnover can clog pores. Furthermore, older skin may not respond to stress similarly, making it more challenging for seniors to manage breakouts.

Lifestyle and Skincare Factors

While seniors live independently and make choices for their skincare, they might be using products that don’t clog pores or might not be cleaning makeup regularly. 

Moreover, skin care products not designed for their skin type can lead to breakouts. Using a gentle cleanser and opting for non-comedogenic (oil-free) skin products can make a significant difference.

Treating Acne in Seniors

Identifying the root cause of acne is vital for its treatment. Here are some solutions tailored for seniors.

Over-the-Counter Solutions

Many over-the-counter skin care products are available to treat acne. Ingredients such as benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid can help clear acne breakouts. Additionally, using non-comedogenic products can help ensure they don’t clog pores.

Senior woman applying face cream

Topical Treatments

Topical treatments, like retinoids, are pivotal in treating adult acne. They help in the faster turnover of skin cells, ensuring fewer clogs and breakouts.

Medication Approaches

In some cases, doctors may prescribe additional medications to tackle senior acne. For instance, a medication called spironolactone can counteract testosterone's acne-causing effects. For severe cases, isotretinoin, an oral medication, may be prescribed.

Alternative Therapies

Some seniors find relief in treatments like chemical peels or microdermabrasion, which help to exfoliate the skin and unclog pores.

Home Care Assistance for Senior Acne

Sometimes, the best approach combines professional treatment with home care assistance. Here are some strategies:

Diet and Nutrition

Eating nutritious foods can positively impact the skin. Although no specific dietary ingredient directly causes adult acne, a balanced diet affects overall skin health.

Senior couple buying healthful foods and fruits

Stress Management

Stress can make acne worse. Breathing exercises, hobbies, and other activities can help relieve tension, reduce stress levels, and ultimately give the skin a chance to heal.

Daily Skincare Routine

Establishing a daily skincare routine is paramount. This includes using a mild cleanser, applying suitable skincare products, and ensuring they are non-comedogenic to prevent pore clogging.

Hygiene and Environment

Seniors can also make changes in their living environment to help their skin. Ensuring clean pillowcases, avoiding touching the face, and regularly cleaning makeup brushes can prevent acne breakouts.

Benefits of Using Exposed Skin Care for Senior Acne Management

Managing acne in seniors can be a unique challenge, given the various factors that can contribute to acne at this age. Exposed Skin Care provides a balanced care method specifically formulated to address the common skin disorders that seniors face.

Exposed Skin Care Ultimate Kit

The benefits of Exposed Skin Care are:

  • Targeted Acne Treatment: The products delve deep to treat the root causes of acne, ensuring effective treatment of acne, whether it's mild or severe acne.
  • Holistic Care: Beyond just treating acne lesions, the range also helps boost the skin's response to stress, which seniors usually associate with aging.
  • Suitable for All Skin Types: Whether acne persists due to hormonal changes that senior women experience or other reasons, Exposed Skin Care offers solutions that may be better suited for the specific needs of older skin.

Incorporating Exposed Skin Care into the senior care regimen can make a tangible difference, ensuring seniors enjoy clear, radiant skin.


Acne, a condition most usually associated with the turbulent teenage years, does not discriminate by age. Seniors, too, can get acne, and it's a concern that often takes many by surprise. The reasons behind this late-onset acne can be multifaceted.

From hormonal changes that women tend to experience as they age to medications, the underlying causes can be vast. Moreover, other factors like underlying disease and the skin's changing response to stress further contribute to acne in the elderly.

Acne treatment for seniors needs a more nuanced approach. Addressing the specific challenges that come with age, like cognitive decline and common skin disorders, is essential.

The treatment of acne in seniors is not just about addressing the visible acne lesions; it’s also about understanding the root causes, whether it's the products used, environmental factors, or internal health issues.

This is where Exposed Skin Care comes into play. With a balanced care method, it offers solutions that may be better suited to the unique needs of senior skin. It stands as a beacon in senior care for those grappling with persistent acne issues.


Why do seniors get acne?

Seniors can experience acne due to various factors, including hormonal changes, medications with acne listed as a side effect, underlying diseases, and products that clog pores.

Is senior acne different from teenage acne?

Yes, while the fundamental cause, clogged pores, remains the same, the triggers and skin's response to stress might differ due to age-related factors.

Can women be more prone to acne as they age?

Yes, hormonal changes that women tend to experience as they age can lead to increased acne breakouts.

Is there a connection between cognitive decline and acne in seniors?

While not directly causing each other, seniors often associate the stress from cognitive decline with an increased response to skin disorders like acne.

How can Exposed Skin Care help seniors with acne?

Exposed Skin Care offers a balanced approach specifically formulated for older skin, addressing root causes and providing effective acne treatment.