Adult Acne; A Complex That Impacts Your Self-Confidence

Last updated by Katie M.

I was relatively spared by acne as a teenager. However, I have to say that I’ve become disillusioned in the past few years. Depending on my hormonal cycle, spots pop up on the lower part of my face and ruin my life. I don’t have patches and rashes all over my face like some people, but it already has a huge impact on my self-confidence. Why? What is it that makes us feel so bad?

Adult Acne; A Complex That Impacts Your Self-Confidence

The causes of adult acne

Before we talk about the impact on self-esteem, we need to understand why we get acne as adults. Most of the time, it’s possible to have avoided acne as a teenager and to get it much later. In fact, 70% of people affected by adult acne are over 26.

61% of cases of acne affect women, compared to 39% of men. As a woman, we are therefore affected more! Not least because our bodies undergo many more hormonal changes than men: pregnancy, stopping or changing contraception, menopause, etc. And the icing on the cake? As women, we get acne on the face whereas men tend to get in on their backs. What an injustice!

➜ You should know: women who have acne in adulthood often suffer from stress or general anxiety.

You may be interested in this article >>> 5 Effects stress has on my skin

How others view our acne

Visually, acne in adulthood is even worse. We have even deeper, inflamed lesions, mostly located on the lower part of the face. These spots are typical of our hormonal cycle! For me, I often get acne breakouts just before my periods. Even though I’m careful to eat certain foods during my periods and even before, it’s not enough. But beyond being bothered by these spots and the pain, it’s above all how others view you that causes suffering…

The violence of words

Suffering from acne as an adult isn’t easy for your self-confidence. Indeed, most of the time, people make horrible remarks. Acne is associated with dirty skin or poor hygiene. We’re told to go and wash our faces, eat differently, stop wearing make-up, go back on the pill, etc. 

The impacts on your self-confidence

It’s very important not to minimize the pain you feel about your acne. Acne is considered as a teenage problem, so when you get it as an adult, you can feel alone. The comments about your skin have repercussions on your self-esteem. Most of the time, you feel helpless, and this drop in confidence leads to more anxiety and a very poor self-image. The impacts can be more serious, leading to psychological suffering and impostor syndrome.

Moreover, when I see the violence of words, I have just one desire: to isolate myself or spend a crazy amount of time covering up my acne. Wearing a mask has even become a shield and I don’t want to stop. It’s become a way to hide and escape the gaze of others.

➜ When you have acne, you wear make-up for hours, you dress according to your acne (if you have it on your body), sometimes you don’t want a romantic relationship, you cry in front of a mirror… It’s a real source of suffering that shouldn’t be ignored.

You may be interested in this article >>> 9 tips to boost your self-confidence

A long treatment for acne

The best way to get rid of acne is to see a dermatologist, who will be able to suggest different treatments. However, these often contain a molecule called isotretinoin. It’s very effective, but has aggressive side effects for your skin and mucous membranes.

⚠️ Above all, Health Authorities have recognized that it can cause symptoms of depression. It is therefore vital that you mention any psychological or psychiatric disorders.

Whether you start treating your acne or not, it’s necessary to work on your self-confidence. It is by increasing it that you will be able to face the gaze of others. You will be able to build yourself independently of others and the effects of acne will be less devastating. This is why it’s important to seek help.

Editor’s note: Love yourself!

Acne, cellulite, wrinkles, etc... Everyone has their own complex! And what if we finally decided to accept ourselves as we are? A few love handles here, a few wrinkles in the corner of your eyes there… What does it matter? Wouldn’t the whole point be to make peace with yourself and learn to love yourself? Easier said than done?

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!


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Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

Wengood's playlist


  1. Only LoveBen Howard
  2. Let It BE - Beatles Awaken2Now (See Thru Oppositional 2’s)
  3. Fix YouColdplay
  4. Beautiful DayU2
  5. Thinking out LoudEd Sheeran
  6. White FlagDido
  7. Lay Me DownSam Smith
  8. Nine Million BicyclesKatie Melua
  9. Put Your Records OnCorinne Bailey Rae
  10. Summertime SadnessLana Del Rey
  11. Imagine - Remastered 2010John Lennon
  12. Shake It OutFlorence + The Machine
  13. Space Oddity - Love You Til Tuesday versionDavid Bowie
  14. What A Wonderful WorldLouis Armstrong
  15. With Or Without YouU2
  16. HelloAdele
  17. Don't Stop Me NowQueen
  18. Skinny LoveBirdy
  19. WingsBirdy
  20. Californian SoilLondon Grammar

"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde

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