What Cause Adult Acne – Simply Explained

Adult Acne is different than you think

The common belief is that acne mostly haunts teenagers when their body is going through hormonal changes, that acne will disappear once a person enters their twenties, and that acne will never appear again.

This is not accurate- adult acne is a reality and breakouts often occur during the twenties, thirties, and even into the fifties.

Adult acne is different from your teenage years and affects women more than men. While teenage acne typically breaks out on the forehead and cheeks, in adult acne, the affected areas include the jawline, the neck, the lower part of the face. Sometimes, if you have a more severe case, it will appear on the entire face. Adult acne may also appear as body acne in the back of the chest.

Teenage acne includes blackheads, whiteheads, small zits, and cystic bumps. Adults experience acne in the form of deeper nodules and red bumps.

The great news for adult acne sufferers is that Grace Skincare Clinic is the leading acne treatment center in HCM and our staff has successfully treated thousands of cases. So, we can help you achieve the clear smooth complexion that you always thought you would have as an adult.

The causes of adult acne

There are many things that trigger adult acne breakouts or that exacerbate existing breakouts:


Hormones are chemical messengers in the body that help to regulate various bodily functions and processes. Fluctuations in hormone levels are responsible for a variety of problems in health, including acne. For example, before and during the menstrual cycle or even during menopause, women often experience acne breakouts due to changes in hormone levels. These changes and fluctuations in hormone levels are unpredictable and typically beyond your control. Abnormal changes in hormone levels, however, can be treated through medication.

Pollution and Environment

This is one of the major causes of acne. The dirty and dusty air in Ho Chi Minh City along with the high heat and humidity clogs skin pores, trapping bacteria inside and causes inflammation. This can be partly addressed through preventive measures such as wearing a face mask or avoiding direct exposure to moto and car exhaust and dust while driving. However, living in Ho Chi Minh City may not be completely avoidable.


Whether we want to accept this or not, Grace Skincare Clinic has observed through thousands of client visits, that stress impacts overall health and can trigger acne breakouts. Too much stress can send the sebaceous glands (glands in your skin that secrete sebum which coats your skin and hair) to go into overdrive, thereby making your skin more oily. For stress sufferers, it is important to identify developing coping mechanisms. Meditation and deep breathing, as well as a regular exercise routine, can help keep your stress levels under control, boosting your overall well-being.

Hairstyling products

Not one of the reasons one would typically associate with acne. But hair-styling gels and creams are a prime suspect in causing forehead acne. These products can trickle down to the forehead skin, clogging the pores, trapping bacteria, and leading to infection and inflammation which manifests as red, angry-looking pimples.

Using the wrong skin-care products

If you have oily skin chances are you use specific kinds of products that you think will keep your skin relatively dry, but you should be very careful to never dry out your skin (hint- avoid alcohol-based products).

Using the wrong skin-care products can cause acne
Using the wrong skin-care products can cause acne

If you have oily skin, you should factor this in even while choosing sunscreen; pick a variety that does not have moisturizing effects as this will only make your skin oilier and increase the chances of an acne breakout. If you are unsure, give our Beauty Advisor a call or check in with our Dermatologist before picking a skin-care product. Avoid changing products very often as this can also irritate the skin.

Over-cleansing of the face

It’s time to stop the myth that acne happens when the face is not washed frequently. In fact, the opposite might be true in some cases. Avoid frequent cleaning and scrubbing of the face. Look at all your skincare products ingredients (and again, avoid products with alcohol). Do not make your skin too dry, as it will lead your natural body instinct to compensate through the excess production of sebum and that will lead to more acne.


High carbohydrate diets including excessive white rice, bread, or too much sugar may result in acne. Dr. Thao has read many studies that conclude that dairy products are known to trigger acne. While tolerance levels will vary from person to person, you should examine your own history to see if previous breakouts of acne have often coincided with certain things that you are eating or drinking.

Mobile phones

Surprise, but your best friend can be your worst enemy- the cell phone surface is a happy breeding ground for bacteria as it is frequently in contact with your hands and many other unclean public surfaces. Chances are you hold the phone too close to the face while talking, allowing the bacteria on your phone surface to migrate over to your facial skin and to trigger acne. Additionally, holding the phone close to your face can also create pressure on the sebaceous (oil) glands, stimulating them to produce more sebum and consequently leading to acne flair-ups.

Grace Skincare Clinic can help improve your skin health

If you are wondering how to solve these pimples without acne scars and other side effects, Grace Skincare Clinic will give you the best solution. At Grace, we have Dr. Hun Kim Thao has treated more than 30,000 clients in her 15-year career and is considered the leading expert on acne care in Ho Chi Minh City. Through her vast experience in helping clients achieve clear skin and improved skin health, Dr. Thao and our staff adhere to a conservative treatment approach generally involving oral and/or topical medications and a facial care program for your own skin condition: Acne Facial, Intensive Facial, Comprehensive Supplementary Therapy with vitamin C…

Author: Bác sĩ Da liễu Hun Kim Thảo

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Grace Skincare Clinic
An international cosmetic dermatology clinic in Vietnam using FDA and CE-approved medical devices and treatments.

Mayfair Suites, 102ABC Cong Quynh, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam
Book your appointment: https://www.graceskinclinic.com/book-now
Tel: 0822-531-223
Hotline: 0961796809

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Lencci Tran

0-09-2019 "I would love to thank Dr. Hun Kim Thao and her amazing staffs for helping me through a skin improving journey over an almost year while I was staying in HCM. I received acne facial and peel every other week and the service was superb! Each procedure was well explained and Dr.Thao was very attentive. I loved her holistic way of approach to improve patient's skin. Not only she prescribed very effective acne gel but also shared great tips such as reducing the amount of simple carb intake, cutting down sugar, and most importantly highlighting the importance of getting enough sleep. She even recommended a well known doctor in town who could help me with my sleeping problem. In addition, the price was very reasonable and I was very happy with all the service I got from Grace Skin Clinic. Oh Dr. Thao even asked her staff to make me a cup of tea one day as she she thought I looked overly exhausted. I was very moved. How warm hearted she is! I will definitely recommend this place to anyone who wants to check up their skin and improve their skin. Amazing place!"

Youngjoo Shin – Expat living in HCM 

This place is amazing; they help me improve my terrible skin condition which had affected my identity, and my confidence for many years. I have been visiting Grace Clinic during summer time for the past two years, and every time I am here, they create a different program in order to fit my skin condition and my limited time. Furthermore, people from Grace Clinic always greet me with warm hearts. They once invited me to have boba tea with them which made me no longer feel like a customer but a friend which it has created a friendship overtime. I cannot stress how highly I would recommend this place. Again, they are amazing and very professional. There is one thing, you can do walk-in just fine but it would be better if you schedule the appointment so they can prepare and create the best service for you.

An Nguyen – HCMC University Student (Overseas)

I absolutely love the ladies of Grace Skincare. I was staying in Saigon for 6 months and came here with acne and a congested skin from my travels. So happy I found them! Their prices are reasonable compared to other “expat” clinic that I went to. I bought the 10 facial package for a really good price and am really happy with the result of my skin after following all of their consultations. Acne has cleared up and now we’re focusing on my other skin concerns such as dark spots and hyperpigmentation. I highly recommend this clinic. They truly want you to walk out with skin you feel confident in. I’m going to miss this place and the ladies I got to connect with during my time here.   Amazing results · Expert facials · Great deals · Professional products ·Licensed skin care professional · Experienced skin care professionals

Deanna Hong – HCMC, Yoga Instructor

Hey guys it’s been 3 weeks since we came for our treatment. I can honestly say it’s the best I have had done.  Andrew and I look fresh without being overdone. We both had people say how refreshed we look after our holiday. Honestly they wouldn’t be saying that if they knew how much beer and yummy Vietnamese food we consumed when we were there. I can honestly say Andrew and I will be back. And I am telling all my friends how fantastic you guys are and how professional the consultation was. I have yet to find someone in Australia who is so thorough. Thank you, Kylie

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I had a acne treatment here last month and now it's improved a lot. I must say that this place is very professional, modern equipment, especially the thoughtful doctor! I'm impressed!  

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Grace Skincare Clinic has a great and friendly service and that have a centrally located clinic. I highly recommend them!

Alexis Linh Ly, HCMC- Business Owner

The owners are wonderful people. I had a good experience and can sincerely and highly recommend everything about Grace Skincare Clinic!

Sandra Menhart – New York, NY, Visiting Profesor

I was so embarrassed with the scars and pigmentation marks on my face. These are from old sports injuries and harsh products on my legs from childhood accidents. I am fed up with using so much concealer makeup on my face and am never able to wear a skirt with confidence. I heard about the Grace Skincare Clinic pigmentation lightening treatment from a friend.  I took 6 treatments & used skincare product as Dr. Thao  instructed  and now my skin is beautiful and permanently clear. It was worth every penny.

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as Tet is coming, I highly recommend this place for a weekend retreat, skin detoxing or even an urgent package to soothe and smooth your skin. I got back my healthy skin after just 02 week following the instruction of Dr Thao Hun and it cost me 200,000 for medical consultation fee only. Wonderful!

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