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Bacterial Acne on Face? (Causes, Treatments, and More)

Though many associate acne with hormonal changes during puberty, it can affect people of all ages. Among various types of acne, bacterial acne on the face stands out as a stubborn and often misunderstood condition.

Understanding bacterial acne and differentiating it from other acne types, such as hormonal or fungal, is vital in creating the right treatment plan. This guide will delve into the causes, symptoms, and treatments, equipping you with the tools to manage and overcome bacterial acne on your face.

Also read: How to choose the best acne treatment

Biggest Take-Aways:

  • Bacterial acne on the face is different from hormonal and fungal acne. Understanding its causes and symptoms and choosing the right treatment options is vital for management.
  • Treatment varies from over-the-counter products to prescription medications and home remedies. Tailored approaches are necessary to address individual needs.
  • Prevention through understanding one's skin and avoiding actions that clog pores or trigger acne is key to maintaining healthy skin.
  • Exposed Skin Care offers a comprehensive solution that helps treat various types of acne, including bacterial and hormonal, making it an essential tool for those seeking an effective acne treatment.

Close up of young woman with bacterial acne on face

What Is Bacterial Acne on Face?

Defining Bacterial Acne

Bacterial acne is a type of acne that occurs when bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) gets trapped inside hair follicles. This leads to inflammation and the formation of pimples, cysts, blackheads, and whiteheads.

Symptoms and Causes

  • Red Bumps and Pustules: These may look like normal skin breakouts but often feel tender and inflamed.
  • Clogged Pores: Oil and dead skin cells clog pores, creating a breeding ground for bacteria.
  • Excess Sebum Production: Overactive sebaceous glands produce sebum, an oily substance, leading to the development of acne.
  • Differentiation from Hormonal Acne: It's crucial to tell if acne is hormonal or bacterial. While hormonal acne tends to occur in patterns and may be related to hormonal fluctuations, bacterial acne may not follow a specific pattern.

Bacterial Acne vs. Other Skin Conditions

Understanding bacterial acne on face requires differentiating it from other skin conditions like:

  • Hormonal Acne: Often linked to hormonal changes and imbalances.

Teenage boy popping hormonal acne

  • Fungal Acne: Also known as folliculitis, it may look like bacterial acne but requires different treatments.
  • Acne Vulgaris: The common skin condition that may encompass both hormonal and bacterial acne.

Treatment Options for Bacterial Acne on Face

Over-the-Counter Solutions

  • Benzoyl Peroxide: Helps treat bacterial acne by killing skin bacteria.
  • Salicylic Acid: Assists in unclogging pores.
  • Topical Retinoids: Promotes healthy skin by preventing dead skin cells from clogging.

Home Remedies

While not a replacement for specialized acne treatment, some home remedies can alleviate symptoms:

  • Avoiding Products that Worsen Acne: Some skin products might lead to or exacerbate acne breakout.
  • Regularly Wash Your Face: Gentle cleansing helps remove excess oil and dead skin cells.

Woman happy washing face

Prescription Treatments

  • Oral Antibiotics: Prescribed by a doctor specializing in skin diseases, it targets bacteria that cause acne.
  • Hormonal Treatments: Certain medications may help balance hormones if acne is hormonal.

Preventing Bacterial Acne

  • Understand Your Skin's Microbiota: Knowing your skin may help you select appropriate skin products.
  • Avoid Actions that Clog Pores: Such as excessive touching or using heavy make-up.
  • Monitor Your Skin's Response to Treatments: Different treatment options may work for different individuals.

Managing Acne with Exposed Skin Care

Acne, whether hormonal or bacterial, remains a major concern for people with this prevalent skin condition. Discerning whether acne is hormonal or bacterial is crucial for effective treatment, as the symptoms and causes may differ.

Exposed Skin Care Basic Kit

Here are some benefits of using Exposed Skin Care:

  • Addresses Various Acne Types: Treats bacterial acne, hormonal acne, and even fungal acne, ensuring a comprehensive approach.
  • Informed by Clinical Studies: With insights from various clinical studies, this product targets the root causes of acne.
  • Effective Against Acne Scars: Not only treats active acne flares but also addresses acne scars.
  • Prevention and Treatment: Works on hormonal imbalances that likely cause acne and offers over-the-counter acne solutions to treat existing breakouts.

Whether dealing with hormonal changes that lead to hormonal vs. bacterial acne or needing a more robust treatment for severe acne, Exposed Skin Care can be an efficient tool. By understanding the role of oil glands and skin microbiota, this product helps treat acne effectively and provides a reliable treatment path.


Understanding acne and its various manifestations is critical to effective treatment. A complex interplay of factors such as bacteria, hormones, and clogged pores causes acne. The presence of acne-like symptoms can also lead to confusion with another skin condition, underscoring the need for careful analysis and treatment.

People with acne often struggle to find the right solutions, as acne requires a multifaceted approach. Study finds that individualized treatment addressing specific acne causes is usually more effective.

Products like Exposed Skin Care play a pivotal role in acne treatment by offering targeted solutions for different acne types, whether bacterial, hormonal, or even resembling other skin issues that cause small but significant disturbances.

The treatment of acne goes beyond mere cosmetic concerns. Persistent and untreated acne is likely to cause scars and may even contribute to broader skin health issues. Embracing products and treatments that recognize the role of various underlying factors of acne can help treat this pervasive skin condition effectively.

Dealing with acne is a journey that involves understanding its many faces and utilizing comprehensive products like Exposed Skin Care. These tools empower individuals to reclaim their confidence and enjoy healthier skin.


Q: What is the difference between hormonal vs. bacterial acne?

A: Hormonal acne usually follows patterns and is related to hormonal changes, while bacterial acne occurs when bacteria clog hair follicles.

Q: Can normal skin care routines treat bacterial acne?

A: Regular cleansing can help, but specialized acne products, including benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid, are often more effective in treating bacterial acne.

Q: How can I tell if my acne is hormonal or bacterial?

A: A specialist in skin conditions can assess your symptoms and causes to determine whether your acne is hormonal or bacterial.

Q: What role does sebum production play in bacterial acne?

A: Overactive sebaceous glands that produce sebum can clog pores and lead to bacterial growth, triggering acne.

Q: Can I use the same treatment for fungal acne and bacterial acne on face?

A: No, fungal acne, or folliculitis, requires a different treatment from bacterial acne. It's essential to understand your specific acne type for effective treatment.