Acne happens when sebum, an oily substance, clogs a person’s pores. Around 80 percent of Americans experience this skin condition at some point, according to UCLA News.
Here’s the rub: bacteria that causes acne is part of everyone’s skin. Yet there are people who only get the occasional pimple. Why are some women more acne-prone?
The exact cause of acne is not clear but hormones called androgens play a part. Androgens enlarge the skin's oil glands and produce more sebum, WebMD reported.
According to both the American Academy of Dermatology and WebMD, several things can bring about acne.
One possibility is fluctuating hormone levels which increase androgens. Fluctuation occurs during menopause, perimenopause, pregnancy and when women start or stop taking oral contraceptives.
Stress and genetics are other possible factors. When you're stressed, androgen production increases. If one or both of your parents had acne, you may get it as well.
Certain cosmetics, skin care products and medications can also cause acne.
However a recent study may actually provide an answer as to why some women are more acne-prone than others.
Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Washington University in St. Louis, and the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute (LA BioMed) discovered that acne bacteria contain bad and good strains. Having too much of the bad strain causes acne.
"We learned that not all acne bacteria trigger pimples; one strain may help keep skin healthy," principal investigator Huiying Li, assistant professor of molecular and medical pharmacology at UCLA told UCLA Newsroom.
Unfortunately the answer to the question as to why some women have more or less of the good or bad strains isn’t yet known.
For the study, researchers investigated the microbe, Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes). This bit of bacteria flourishes in oily pores.
Using Bioré Deep Cleansing Pore Strips, they extracted P. acnes bacteria from the participants’ noses. The volunteers included 49 people with acne and 52 with clear skin.Read more in Your Ultimate Guide to Beautiful Skin
"Adult Acne." American Academy of Dermatology. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Nov. 2016.
Innes, Emma. "Why Some People Get Spots and Others Don't: Scientists Discover the 'bad' Bacteria That Gives Us Blemishes." Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 2013. Web. 02 Nov. 2016.
Schmidt, Elaine. "New Study Could Explain Why Some People Get Zits and Others Don't." UCLA Newsroom. N.p., 2013. Web. 02 Nov. 2016.
"Skin Conditions: Teenage Acne." WebMD. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Nov. 2016.