6 Types Of Acne And Their Treatment

What Is Acne?

Acne is a broad term that refers to various skin conditions like bumps, blemishes, breakouts, pimples, etc. Acne is a condition that can be severe or mild and can affect everyone in different ways. There are so many kinds of acne and a variety of best acne treatments, so identifying the distinction can be difficult. Let’s look at the six different types of acne, the way they appear and look, and what you can do about it.

What Are The Different Types Of Acne?

Different Types Of Acne

Whiteheads Acne

In the majority of cases, acne occurs because the pores on the skin are blocked. Acne can occur because there are too many oil glands or bacteria or cell production, or even as a result of hormonal fluctuations.

Whiteheads on nose and whiteheads on chin, also called closed comedones, occur when the pores are blocked to the point of creating a tiny white bump on the top of your skin. Now the question arises how to remove whiteheads? It is important to remember that whiteheads cannot be removed or repaired by squeezing them. Please don’t attempt to remove them by yourself. If you don’t, you’ll be left with acne scars.

How To Get Rid Of Whiteheads Acne?

Over-the-counter (OTC) best acne treatments for whiteheads acne comprise salicylic acid, sulfur, or benzoyl peroxide. These products can be applied directly to the whitehead or as a whole facial treatment. These products help in removing dead skin cells as well as excessive oil. Benzoyl-peroxide is the most effective solution, while sulfur is the most gentle for your face. Salicylic acid could help in preventing acne that isn’t inflammation-free from coming back in the near future.

Topical retinoids made of vitamin A can be beneficial for treating acne that isn’t inflammatory. Examples include retinol and the adapalene (Differin) and Tretinoin (Retin-A). Retinoids aid in clearing acne by clearing pores that are clogged with dead skin cells and oil. Retinoids are a part of the American Academy of Dermatology considers Retinoids to be “the core of topical therapy for acne.”

Blackheads Acne

Like whiteheads, blackheads acne appear like black spots on the surface of your skin. They’re referred to as open comedones due to the fact that the pore’s head remains open while the remainder of the pore has become blocked. Blackheads can be removed through squeezes; however, this is not recommended as it may cause damage to the skin.

How To Get Rid Of Blackheads Acne?

The best acne treatment choices for blackheads acne are similar to treatments for whiteheads. Avoid using pore strips for pulling out blackheads. Pore strips are an unavoidable, temporary solution that could damage the skin’s top layer and can cause acne to worsen.

Papules Acne

Papules acne are tiny red bumps that appear when excess oil or facial cells overtake pores and combine with the skin’s bacteria known as Cutibacterium acnes. They are also known as C. acnes (formerly Propionibacterium acnes). The contents of the blocked pore are released and allow bacteria to move out into the skin tissue. The bacteria create inflamed lesions. Papules do not contain pus.

How To Treat Papules Acne?

The OTC best acne treatment of benzoyl peroxide could still be effective in the treatment of acne papules (and other types of acne that are inflammatory) due to its antibacterial capabilities. Furthermore, your dermatologist might suggest topical retinoid antibiotics and birth control tablets (for women whose acne is aligned in conjunction with menstrual cycles) to combat inflammation acne. Antibiotics can help in the elimination of C. acne bacteria, and birth control pills may aid in reducing oil production by decreasing the number of androgens. Androgens are male hormones that sex; however, they can be found in both women and men. They may increase levels of the oil in your skin.

Pustules Acne

Pustules acne are tiny lumps that bulge outward with white centers and red, inflamed skin that surrounds them. They typically appear in groups around the face, chest, or back. Pustules develop when pores become infected; however, they may also result from hormonal changes that occur in the body. They’re similar to papules. However, pustules are a source of the yellowish liquid known as pus.

How To Treat Pustules Acne?

Pustules that are popped can cause bacteria to multiply; Don’t attempt to squeeze or pop them. Only your doctor will be able to remove pustules.

Similar OTC and prescription best acne treatments that are used to treat papules also apply to pustules. The use of antibiotics is generally advised to rid the body of the pus-filled with bacteria.

Nodules Acne

Nodular acne is characterized by red or flesh-colored bumps that are located beneath the surface of your skin. The majority of acne that is nodular is due to an infection caused by the C. acnes bacteria that causes an infection that is painful deep inside the pores.

How To Treat Nodules Acne?

Because OTC acne treatments operate at the surface of your skin, they’re not as effective as treatments for acne nodules. A dermatologist can prescribe you benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, antibiotics, retinoids to help you get rid of acne nodules.

If the medications aren’t working and your doctor recommends draining the nodules manually or with a laser chemical peel, a procedure that eliminates the outer skin layer.

Cystic Acne

The most severe form of acne is cystic acne. It’s caused by an infection that is deep within the skin. Acne cysts can be large and red. They are inflamed, painful, and filled with pus. Cysts are less abrasive than nodules due to the fact that they’re pus-filled, and they often rupture, infecting surrounding skin.

How To Treat Cystic Acne?

Cystic acne treatment is among the most difficult of acne treatments. A dermatologist does cystic acne treatment by using medicines such as isotretinoin (an oral retinoid that is sold under the names Claravis, Myorisan, Zenatane, and other) topical retinoids, antibiotics, birth control pill (for women), and spironolactone (Aldactone). Spironolactone, similar to birth control, can lower androgen levels. It is, however, only utilized to treat acne in women as it may cause undesirable adverse effects on men.

It is possible that you require several medications to rid yourself of acne cysts. Your doctor may suggest injecting the cysts that are stubborn with steroids for cystic acne treatment for immediate relief and to eliminate the inflammation.


General Causes Of Acne

There could be many contributing factors for acne genetic history, excess androgen hormone, excessive oil production, bacteria, pollution, and other environmental factors. While some of these might be controlled, others are not.

Hormonal Changes

With the onset of puberty, there are too many fluctuations in the level of hormones in the body. Acne vulgaris is known to occur due to these hormonal changes, so it’s sometimes referred to as “hormonal acne.” Excessive androgen hormone production leads to excessive production of sebum by the skin glands that cause acne.

Variations in the levels of hormones, especially estrogen and androgen, are common in women that are in line with their menstrual cycle. On the other hand, the man experiences major hormonal fluctuations in their teens only, which subsidizes over a period of time.

Hereditary Factors

Acne is also associated with hereditary factors. Generally, people whose parents have dealt with acne are more like to get acne due to the genes they carry. Although it is not a genetic disease, there is a definite link the one’s genes and the presence of acne in their body.

It’s not only acne but several other types of skin conditions that can be attributed to the genetic information one carries. Have you ever thought about why your skin is excessively dry or oily? Well, it has a lot to do with your family history. Although, there is nothing to worry about as the situation can be controlled very easily by using a vegan moisturizer and a mild face wash as it can prevent acne flare-ups.  

High-Stress Levels

While not always but sometimes the stress can also trigger the onset of acne. This is often visible in persons working in unhealthy and stressful work environments or in students when they are preparing for their finals. In a study conducted among 2000 students between the age group of 20-24 years, researchers were able to establish a correlation between the amounts of stress levels and the severity of the acne problem one has.

When your body is stressed out, it releases hormones like adrenaline and cortisol. These fluctuations in the levels of hormones in the body result in excessive secretion of oil, which may result in an acne breakout.


What Can I Do About It?

Now when we have discussed the type of acne and various factors associated with it. Now it’s time to discuss how to manage acne what we can do to cure acne or prevent it at all.

Acne Management

It is always better to take timely steps to prevent acne. There are a few simple steps that you can follow to lower the possibility of acne or reduce existing acne by identifying the cause. Taking care of your skin and body inside out can make a huge difference. If you need to use any acids or active particles, make sure you use them in a moderate amount to avoid any permanent damage to your skin.

Healthy Diet & Nutrition

As we have seen, hormones play a significant role in the onset of acne, so keeping your hormones in balance can greatly help in managing acne. There are several factors that affect the hormonal secretion in our body. PCOD and diet affect hormone levels. Also, the changes in the fat composition in the body can also contribute to hormonal changes.

Moreover, excessive consumption of fatty acids and simple sugars may worsen your acne. This is due to the reason that these food items cause excessive production of insulin and androgens. Due to this, there is an excessive level of sebum production in the body that causes acne. So it becomes all the more important to maintain a healthy diet.

Certain food items that are rich in Vitamin C and antioxidants content helps reduce acne due to their inflammatory properties. Also, omega-3 fats and fiber rich food also contribute to reducing acne. However, it has been observed that certain food items may trigger inflammation in some people that may worsen acne. Generally, these foods include dairy products and gluten-rich foods. It is always advisable to consult a dermatologist if the situation worsens to find out the possible triggers.

Healthy Diet To Prevent Acne

Proper Sleep & Meditation


High-stress levels have been linked to the onset of acne or worsening the situation. Many studies suggest that excessive stress might increase the cortisol hormone levels in the body. These higher hormone levels trigger the immune system and cause inflammation of the skin. Take proper rest or sleep to bring down the hormonal imbalances in the body. Doing regular physical exercise and mediation can also help bring down stress levels.

Avoid Stress To Prevent Acne


Studies conclude some antibiotics, vitamin B12, and birth control pills may badly affect the hormonal levels in the body and hence may worsen acne. So it is always advisable to take advice from your doctor when you start taking any hormonal medications to rule out any possible side effects.

Sun Protection

If you already have acne, then it is highly recommended to wear sunscreen when you step out of your home. Try a mild, oil-free sunscreen with a high SPF factor in a humid environment. Always use non-comedogenic skin care products to help the skin stay hydrated and healthy. Talk to an expert to find out the best sunscreen product ideal for your skin type.

Use Sun Protection To Prevent Acne

Final Takeaway

Acne is an inflammatory skin condition that happens when the hair follicles in your skin become clogged with pollutants, bacteria, excess oil, and dead skin cells. Different types of acne like whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, cysts, and nodules are attributed to different internal and external factors. Since Different types of acne have different triggering factors, there can’t be a single way or method to treat acne. Acne can be prevented in certain situations by doing some dietary and lifestyle changes. Most of the time, acne can easily be managed at home by following a personally-tailored skincare routine.

Although if the situation worsens, it is always advisable to consult a well-qualified medical professional without any further delay.

Also Read: 15 Best Acne Creams To Buy In 2022 – A Review Guide