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Are All Pimples Acne?

By: Our Team

6/5/2024

    Bumps on the skin are common, but not all pimples are acne. Acne vulgaris is the most common type of acne. Acne vulgaris typically presents with various types of lesions, including:

1. Comedones: These are non-inflammatory lesions characterized by clogged pores. These are commonly known as whiteheads and blackheads.

2. Papules: Small, red, tender bumps that result from inflammation and swelling of the hair follicles.

3. Pustules: Similar to papules but contain pus at the tip, appearing as white or yellow bumps on the skin.

4. Nodules: Large, painful, solid lesions deep within the skin, caused by the buildup of oil, bacteria, and dead skin cells.

5. Cysts: Deep, pus-filled lesions that are often painful and can lead to scarring.

     While these are the primary types of lesions associated with acne vulgaris, pimples, in a general sense, can refer to any small, raised skin lesions caused by various factors. Some “pimples” may not be related to acne at all and can result from other conditions or factors, such as:

1. Folliculitis: Inflammation of hair follicles due to bacterial or fungal infection, often resulting in small red bumps or pustules similar to acne lesions.

2. Milia: Small, white bumps that form when dead skin cells and keratin become trapped beneath the surface of the skin, typically occurring around the eyes, cheeks, and nose.

3. Rosacea: A chronic skin condition characterized by redness, flushing, and small, pus-filled bumps (pustules), often mistaken for acne.

4. Periorifical Dermatitis: Red, bumpy patches around the mouth, nose, and sometimes eyes that’s often accompanied by mild itching or burning sensations. It can be triggered by skincare products, steroid creams, and hormonal changes.

5. Contact Dermatitis: Skin irritation or inflammation caused by contact with certain substances or allergens, resulting in red, itchy bumps or blisters.

    Acne vulgaris is a common cause of pimples, but not the only cause. It's essential to differentiate between various types of skin bumps to determine the appropriate treatment and management strategies. If you're uncertain about the cause of your pimples or if they persist despite over-the-counter treatments, consulting with our team at OneSkin Dermatology can help provide an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.


* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.