4 types of acne and how to treat them


Not all acne is the same; There are many types of acne and everyone has a different type of acne. Knowing which type you are dealing with will help you choose the most effective skincare products.

Acne is a common skin condition and acne is one of its main symptoms. All acne begins with a blocked pore or comedones . At first, these are small lumps that are not associated with inflammation. However, when bacteria infect a comedo or become irritated when squeezed, it turns into an inflamed pimple with redness and swelling. The four main types of inflamed acne are:

  • Papules
  • Pustules
  • Nodules
  • Cysts

Diet and acne

There are many myths about the dietary causes of acne. Some of them are true, others are false. Interestingly, medical science does not associate rashes with junk food, but rather with some "healthy" food groups .


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Papules are inflamed spots that appear on the surface of the skin. They look like red bumps or bumps on the skin; they do not have a white head.

Papules can be large or small and can appear anywhere on the face or body, including yours:

  • Neck
  • Breast
  • Back
  • behind
  • Ass


Papules occur when the wall of the hair follicle is broken, which we often call it sometimes . This allows cell debris and bacteria to enter the dermis (the deepest layer of the skin).

The breakdown of the pore wall occurs when a follicle becomes blocked and fills with dead skin cells and oil. The pressure of squeezing a blackhead or clogged pore can also cause a rupture.

Whatever the cause of the rupture, it causes inflammation in and around the follicle. This area turns red and swollen, forming that hard red bump we call a pimple.

Watch out

First things first: do not squeeze the papule so that it reaches the head. Most likely, it won't remove dirt from the pore, but will simply make the pimple hurt even more. Most papules heal quickly and without scarring because they are shallow.


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Pustules are the "typical" pimples: red and swollen with a clear head. The head is usually white (which is why these spots are also called white corners ), but it can also be cream to yellow in color. Sometimes a brown spot can be seen in the middle of the pimple head. It is a comedonal nucleus or a plug of debris within a pore.

Pimples range in size from small to quite large. They develop in the same areas as papules, namely the face, back, and shoulders.


Pustules follow papules. Once a pore has ruptured, the body rushes to fend off bacteria and help the wound heal. To do this, it sends white blood cells to do their job. The consequences are the formation of pus.

It is a mixture of pus, dead skin cells, and excess oil that gives the pustule a white coating. This is the same as you squeeze out of a pore when a pimple appears.

By the way, popping pimples is a bad idea. When you pop a pimple, you can inadvertently push the contents deeper into the pore, making the pimple worse.

Watch out

As with papules, mild acne or occasional pustules can be treated at home with over-the-counter creams or benzoyl peroxide cleansers. Acne remedies that contain salicylic acid can also help dry up occasional pustules.

If you have a lot of ulcers or are very inflamed and difficult to control with over-the-counter medications, you should see a dermatologist. Prescription medications, such as topical retinoids or combination acne treatments, can help clear these breakouts.


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Nodules are a serious type of acne. Nodules are large, inflamed formations that appear as hard, painful bumps under the skin. Where papules and pustules appear on the surface, the nodules form deeper into the skin.


Acne nodules form when the follicle wall breaks deep within the dermis. Contaminated debris from the follicle enters the dermis and infects adjacent follicles. This area swells significantly due to damage and irritation, making the nodules quite painful.

As with pustules, the nodules may be filled with pus, but because they are located so deep in the skin, you will not see a white head.

Watch out

Random nodules can usually be treated at home. (Women are especially prone to them during their menstrual cycle.) If you have a sore spot, you can freeze it to ease the swelling and make you feel better. Again, don't squeeze them!

Because the nodules are so large and deep, it can take several weeks to several months for them to heal completely. Do you want to get rid of this big pimple quickly ? One option is a cortisone injection , but you will need to see a dermatologist to do this.

If you are prone to nodular rashes , you should definitely make an appointment with a dermatologist. These types of acne do not respond to over-the-counter acne treatments. You will need a prescription acne medication to treat it.


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Cysts are very large, inflamed formations. They look like soft, fluid-filled lumps under the surface of the skin. Acne cysts are the most serious form of acne and are very painful.


Like nodules, cysts begin with a deep rupture of the follicle wall. A membrane forms around the infection in the dermis as the body tries to protect itself from the infection and protect the rest of the skin.

As the acne cyst rises to the surface, it damages healthy skin tissue and destroys the follicle. Acne scars are very likely to appear .

Many dermatologists say that the term "cyst" is incorrect because these types of blemishes are not cysts in the true sense of the word. Instead, they say that acne cysts are actually severe swollen nodules. Therefore, both acne cysts and acne nodules are often used to describe severe inflammatory acne breakouts.

Acne cysts are filled with pus and often blood. Complete healing can take from several weeks to several months. Never, ever try to remove an acne cyst yourself. If they need to be drained, it should be done by a doctor.

Watch out

If you are prone to cystic acne , see a dermatologist. Acne medications that you can get from the drugstore simply will not clear this acne, and there are no home remedies that can successfully cure cystic acne. You will most likely need an oral acne medication like Absorica (isotretinoin) to control this severity of acne.

Cystic lesions easily lead to scar formation. The sooner you see a dermatologist about acne, the sooner you will see improvement.

Get the word of drug information

While getting acne from time to time is not a problem, if you are constantly battling breakouts and struggling to control them, it's time to make an appointment with a dermatologist . This is especially true if you are prone to larger blemishes, such as acne nodules. Medications can help clear your skin, so don't wait to call.

Frequently asked questions

  • Dark spots caused by acne can be treated with retinoids like Retin-A . It can help reduce pigmentation and scars that remain after acne has healed.

  • Squeezing or developing pimples can lead to permanent scars and painful, irritated pimples. This is due to the fact that pimples penetrate the skin further. In some cases, the appearance of acne can lead to a bacterial infection on the fingers.

  • Hydrocolloid patches, sometimes called "acne stickers," can help clear acne quickly. This allows the medication to reach the site, prevents sun damage and bacteria that can irritate the pimple, and keeps it from getting itchy. These products can be found at your local pharmacy or drugstore.

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