Breaking Down Breakouts: Why + How to Help

SkinMPLS (1 of 1).jpg

We’ve all been there before. We wake up in the morning, slowly peel ourselves out of bed and make our way to the mirror. On bad skin days, we’re usually greeted with an unexpected and unsightly blemish. The first thing we usually do is try to identify the source of our skincare woes. Was it that chocolate bar I ate last night? Is it because of my upcoming presentation at work? Unfortunately, pinpointing pimples isn’t always a logical process.

Skin Stats: Did you know that a pimple can form
30 to 90 days before it breaks the surface?

If you are the victim of an unexpected breakout, take a moment to pause and breathe. Know that it’s temporary and that it happens to everyone. You are human, and you aren’t alone on your skincare journey.


If you are experience more breakouts than usual,
here are six explanations for why it could be happening:

1) Stress: Anxiety and stress are often the culprit of complicated breakouts. And once you get a zit from stress, there’s a good chance that you’ll stress out about it even more. It’s a vicious cycle, but there are ways to help. Try relaxing with lavender essential oils, schedule a massage or participate in a low-key restorative yoga class. Sleep can also help reduce stress if you’re getting a lack of shut-eye.

2) Hormones: Unfortunately, we don’t have much control over hormones themselves. However, we can control how we take care of our skin during particularly volatile spells of hormone changes (periods, pregnancy, menopause, etc.).

3) Bad Skincare Products:How often are you reading the labels of the products you apply to your face? If the answer is never, you may have found another source of your breakouts. Many products claim to be good for your skin, but they actually contain ingredients that clog pores, cause redness and contribute to acne. How can we break this cycle? Use your Skin MPLS aesthetician as a resource! Bring your products to your next appointment and ask for recommendations on makeup, lotions, cleansers, scrubs or serums that will help your face, not harm it.

4) Linens: The things that we put on our face and bodies (even if just for a moment) can cause blemishes and irritation. If your linens (pillowcases, sheets, towels, washcloths) aren’t frequently washed, you may be unknowingly exposing yourself to extra dirt, grime or bacteria. Make sure you are regularly washing and thoroughly drying your linens to avoid any unwanted breakouts.

Another tip that often is forgotten is in regards to laundry soap and dryer sheets. Did you know that dryer sheets actually contain waxes that are left on the material? These waxes can be blamed for clogged pores and breakouts! Lastly, make sure to choose dye-free laundry soap. Too many chemicals, scents and softeners can do more harm than good. When it comes to laundry, we like to keep it simple.

5) Diet: This is an age-old beauty debate! Much like what you put onyour skin, what you put in your body has a significant impact on how you feel and (eventually) how your skin appears.

So, what foods or snacks are harmful for your skin? What are better for your skin? The unfortunate answer is that everyone is different and that no diet is a one-size-fits-all solution. Although every person is unique, but there are a few known foods that can help improve your skin. Head for the produce section on your next grocery trip and grab these items:

  • Strawberries, citrus fruits, red peppers and broccoli: These foods are rich in vitamin C, which is key for the production of collagen.

  • Sunflower seeds and almonds: These foods are bursting with vitamin E, which lies within the top layer of your skin and can protect you from free radicals and damaging UV rays. Hooray for nature!

  • Leafy greens: Leafy greens will become your best friend, and all you need to do is simply add them to your favorite salad recipes! Beta-carotene is a carotenoid. Our bodies can convert beta-carotene to vitamin A which regulates cell production and turnover which can help your skin become smooth.

  • Water: This one seems like a no-brainer, but it’s the easiest to forget about. Our bodies are comprised of mostly water, so when you become dehydrated, your skin becomes dry, too. Usually your water intake is calculated by your body weight and height. Try this helpful tool from CamelBak to calculate how much water you need!

6) Your Hands: Our hands do so many things. Research has shown that we touch more than 140 objects every day. That’s a LOT of items which can also mean… a lot of germs. If we aren’t washing our hands properly, problems can happen with our skin. If you touch your face, you could be unknowingly transferring acne-causing bacteria to your face. When possible, avoid touching your hands to your face, resting your hand on your chin, etc. It’s an easy way to avoid complicated blemishes!


At the end of the day, staying on top of good habits is key! However, there are steps you can take if you have an unbearable breakout that needs attention! Just book an appointment with us, and we’ll take great care of your skin. Rest assured!

If you missed our recent post about the best topical vitamins for your skin, you can catch up here. We promise it won’t disappoint! Don’t forget to follow @SkinMPLS on Instagram for more exclusive tips, tricks and information.