Patients sometimes ask us if sweat causes acne. Dr. Schweiger explains that, “Sweat does not directly cause acne. The sweat glands are not the same as the oil producing glands, so sweat alone does not attract the p. acnes bacteria.” A condition called acne mechanica does exist in athletes. This type of acne results from the combination of heat, friction and covered skin. We sometimes see this in our patients who often wear helmets or tight exercise clothing. Our recommendation is that patients exercise in cotton clothing and shower soon after finishing their workout.
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