What Causes Chest Acne?

Hey, gang! Beth here once more with the latest Health Base informational article.

This week I’ll be looking at the topic of chest acne. In particular, I’ll be focusing on the main causes of this skin issue as well as answering the all-important question of whether or not it can be cured.

Unfortunately, this bacterial infection can spring up in multiple locations on our bodies. I’m sure you will agree that this is just one of the many very annoying aspects associated with this problem.

In saying this, there are three specific areas where recurring pimples are most common – they are the back, the chest, and, of course, the face.

For this piece, I’ll be focusing on the chest. So, without further ado, let’s jump straight in and look at some causes as well as possible prevention methods.

The Annoyance of Chest Pimples

Annoying is a pretty apt description, let’s be honest! Sure, chest pimples mightn’t be as bad as full-blown facial acne, but it’s not far off! At least pimples on the face can be ignored to some extend. However, when they are located on the chest, it’s very easy for irritation to occur due to the friction of clothing or jewelry which will ultimately serve as a constant reminder of problem!

Despite this, and as is the case with most mild skin issues, this one can indeed be prevented. A key to this prevention, and also the treatment, is to understand how and why pimples may pop up on our upper torso in the first place.

So, with that said, let’s now look at these oh so common yet avoidable causes.

The Most Prevalent Acne Causes

1 – An Unhealthy Diet

OK, let’s begin with an obvious one. I think we all understand that our skin is a pretty accurate reflection of our diet.

If we have an unhealthy diet, or if we are missing something vital from it, then our skin will usually let us know.

When it comes to breakouts on our chest, or indeed in general, a poor diet is a leading culprit.

The reason for this is quite straightforward and can be broken into two factors:

Healthy diet can prevent pimples

1 – consuming an excess of food that has little to no nutritional value more often than not means that a person is missing out on foods that supply vitamins and minerals. This means that our skin and bodies are not getting what they need in order to stay healthy.

2 – such unhealthy foods also bring with them artificial sugars, preservatives, coloring agents, and a whole host of other man-made elements that are not good for us. These elements will ultimately cause our skin to decline in health.

Ways to Remove the Risk: try your best to have a balanced and healthy diet. Of course, you can have your pizza, chocolate bar, or can of fizzy drink, but this is not the type of food that you want to be consuming on a regular basis. These foods are best seen as treats in which you have infrequently. [1]

2 – Hormonal Changes

So, the first cause is one that we can have complete control over and therefore it is very much manageable. This second one lies in stark contrast to this, unfortunately. Hormones, and the changes that they can cause in our bodies, are something that we have little to no say in.

What’s worse still, the effects of hormones can affect all age groups as well as both sexes. When we think of hormonal change, we often see it is an adolescent problem. [2] However, when it comes to pimples in the chest area, it’s been proven that adults are also susceptible.

Ways to Remove the Risk: like I said, there’s not a whole lot that can be done for this particular event. You can certainly limit the potential worsening of hormonal related acne by being mindful of the other causes that I’ll outline in this article.

If you are suffering from severe breakouts of pimples that you believe are linked to changes in your body, then I’d recommend that you visit your local health professional. He/She will be able to recommend a top-quality treatment option.

3 – Exercise Causes Pimples…Huh?!

Worried about acne-causing exercise

I’ve news for you…LIFE ISN’T FAIR!!! OK, OK, that’s perhaps a bit dramatic on my behalf, but it really does seem unbelievably unfair that exercise can cause skin problems such as acne. Like…is exercise not meant to be good for us?!

Yes, it is, and I am not for one second saying you should stop exercising regularly. The benefits of doing so for your overall standard of living far outweigh any potential negative.

What I am saying, is that life is very rarely simple.

You see, as we work out, there is quite a bit of sweating going on as well as friction between our skin and clothing. This combo can actually cause chest pimples to erupt on our chest.

Ways to Remove the Risk: thankfully enough, this cause is one that can be controlled quite comfortably. First of all, if possible, try to wear loose clothing on your upper body. This will minimize the friction as well as allowing your overheating body to cold down.

Secondly, try your best to shower or wash promptly after your workout. This will remove all that sweat that has accumulated on your chest which will then limit any potential negative occurrences. [3]

4 – Cosmetics

This is a cause that not many people are aware of and, as such, it goes under the radar somewhat. This then leads people to misdiagnose their problem which, in turn, results in quite a lot of frustration and despair.

Whether it be deodorant, aftershave, perfume, or even a moisturizing agent, there is a slight possibility that your skin may react in a negative fashion when introduced to a new agent. This is usually a sign that you are allergic to something that’s contained within the product you’re applying to your skin.

Over the years, I have found that moisturizers of an oily consistency are very culpable when it comes to causing chest breakouts. This is because such oily products actually block pores due to their thick consistency. This causes dirt, sweat, and other nastiness to become trapped in these pores which can then lead to eruptions of pimples occurring. Not good!

Ways to Remove the Risk: if you notice that you are experiencing chest pimples or skin rashes on your chest, then perhaps refrain from using your preferred cosmetic application for a few days. If the issue subsides then perhaps you will need to rethink your choice of perfume or aftershave. Or, if you are particularly fond of a particular scent, simply refrain from applying it directly to your skin. [4]

With regards to the oily moisturizer issue, my advice is to simply avoid such products. There are tonnes of oil-free moisturizing products out there to choose from.

5 – Dry and Dehydrated Skin

Dry skin is something that everybody should actively avoid, regardless of whether they’re prone to acne or not! When our skin becomes dehydrated and dry, this kick-starts a reaction in our bodies that can ultimately be detrimental. This reaction comes in the form of our body upping the production of oil/sebum in order to counteract the dryness in our skin. This overproduction of natural oil can then trap the flaky skin, that has come about because of dehydration, within our pores. As we all know, pore blockage is acne breakout 101!

When it comes to skin dryness, the sun is another factor that you should be wary of. People often think that exposing our skin to the sun is a good thing.

Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but it really actually isn’t!!

The sun is basically a giant oven in the sky, and, like any oven, it bakes and dries out whatever lies directly under it…including our skin!

While the sun does supply our complexions with some positives, too much of it will have a significant drying effect.

This will then lead to the aforementioned sebum reaction from our bodies.

dangers of the sun

Ways to Remove the Risk: it’s a good general rule of thumb to try and stay hydrated all day long. Allowing your body to become dehydrated is never a good thing, and this especially prevalent for our skin. The simplest way to do avoid this is to stay conscious about your water intake. No need to drive yourself demented, but rather just keep sipping away at a bottle throughout the day.

In relation to the sun, my advice again is just to stay conscious. The sun, and its power, is definitely something that needs to be respected. If you are going to be out on a warm day for a prolonged period, then please ensure that you apply the correct level of sunscreen.

My Final Word

So, there you have it, those are the leading mischief makers when it comes to the chest acne causes. As you can see, the majority of these causes can be easily prevented or treated by simply applying some common sense.

As is the case with most health concerns, if you possess a balanced lifestyle, then you will naturally circumvent a massive amount of potential skin related issues, including chest pimples. Ultimately, when it comes down to it, the easiest method of staying free of negative afflictions is to ensure that your physical self is as healthy as possible. It’s not rocket science, folks!

To recap, below are the main culprits to look out for:

  • A Poor Diet
  • Changes at Hormonal Level
  • Unsanitary Exercise Habits
  • Cosmetics
  • Skin That's Dry or Dehydrate

Check out our relevant content!

For a thorough breakdown of everything to do with acne, please check out our complete guide. In this piece, we examine all of the pertinent issues regarding this bacterial problem. In addition, feel free to read some of our other articles and reviews.

After all…more information = more knowledge = more capable of staying healthy! 😊

Wishing you the Best Health,



1. https://www.rd.com/health/beauty/chest-acne/

2. https://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/acne/what-is-acne#1

3. https://www.healthline.com/health/beauty-skin-care/chest-acne#shower

4. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/how-to/a41902/how-to-prevent-and-treat-chest-acne/


Hey, people! Beth here with some info. about little old me! I'm a regular writer for The Health Base. My education and passion lies in the skin care & aesthetics field - areas that I'm constantly looking to become knowledgeable in! Get in touch if you wish to know more about me - you can do so here. Bye :)