A lot of you with acne might be wondering ‘at what age does acne go away?’. This might be because you wish that it will just disappear on its own with time. However, I am sorry to break this news – acne does not go away just because we reach a certain age. I myself have been fighting acne for the past 12-13 years since I was 19-20 years old. I used to think acne is for teenagers only and I will not have it in my 20s. Boy I was so wrong. Check out another article about my 12-year battle with acne and my acne before after. In this article, we will try to answer the question ‘at what age does acne go away?’, so read til the end!
Age and acne
Many of you might have acne during the puberty years, that is around 12-17 years of age. During that time, the acne is mostly hormonal. Teenagers might suddenly have more active hormones, which contribute to more active oil glands. It is common for teenagers reaching puberty to suddenly feel that their skin becomes more oily. Without proper hygiene routine or skincare routine, this oily skin can cause acne if not treated well.
However, you might think that after we pass that age, we will not have acne anymore. Wrong! There is something called adult acne. Adult acne can affect people 20 years and above. This might be caused by stress, hormonal imbalance, and a myriad of other factors. Personally I did not have acne during teenage years, but I only started to have it when I was about to hit 20 years old.
Even beyond 20s or 30s, people can still get acne and breakouts. I saw older people in their 40s/50s before who have acne. However, this is normally not as prevalent and we will discuss why later.
Skin changes at different ages
When you see young adults, you can see that their skin is more supple, smoother and bouncier. This is because they have more skin elasticity as well as moisture/hydration. The moisture and hydration is also contributed by the natural oil in the skin.
As we get older, our body metabolism slows down and our skin regenerates more slowly. The oil glands also become less active. At the same time, hormonal changes as we become older might make our skin lose hydration more easily as well. Not only the skin becomes less elastic as we grow older, it becomes drier too. Check out my other post on age defying lifestyle to make sure that your skin does not age as fast!
Having said that, the probability of getting acne is lower as we become older. But it does not mean that it is certain for everyone as there are older people with acne too. This is why answering the question at what age does acne go away is not simple at all.
Does acne really stop once we reach certain age?
If you have oily skin in your teens or 20s, you might observe that you have less oily skin in your 30s. And if your acne is due to improper skincare or hygiene routine, yes you might see your acne disappears as your skin becomes less oily. However, there are many factors that can cause acne that can still persist in your older age. For example, many women have PCOS in their 30s or 40s as well, and they might still have acne due to this hormonal issue even at that age. Therefore, there is no guarantee that acne will stop showing up as we get older.
From my own experience though, my hormonal acne started in my early 20s and I did notice drier skin towards my 30s. Now I am 31 years old, I get acne when I am dehydrated from within or if my skin is dehydrated. For example, after those nights when I drank too much alcohol or if I do not put moisturizer a few nights in a row. I still have one or two acne around my mouth nearing my period. However, I thank God that I no longer have massive breakout like what I had in my 20s. It took me ~12 years to reach where I am today.
So, at what age does acne go away?
So to answer the question at what age does acne go away, there is no answer to that as everyone is built differently. Some only have acne in their teens and not anymore after that. Some like myself have acne in their 20s and carry on to have it in their 30s although milder. Whereas some have acne all the way from teenage years to their 30s or 40s. There is no one size fits all for acne.
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