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Acne on Forehead – What are the Causes?

Aug 6, 2023

Causes of Acne on Forehead

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Worried about your skin condition? Get in touch with best of our skin specialists in Pune. For a skin treatment, book an appointment with our dermatologists near you +919584584111

Forehead Acne – The Possible Causes

Forehead Acne – How do they appear?

Acne on Forehead – Prevention and Treatment

Acne is a skin condition which is caused by the clogging of hair follicles on the skin. Dead skin cells and dirt when mixed along with sebum, cause the plugging of hair follicles and skin pores. Bacteria growing in these clogged pores can cause infection and skin inflammation. 

There can be various types of acne, ranging from blackheads, whiteheads, papules, to pustules, nodules and cystic lesions. Forehead is one of the most common places to find acne. It is considered to be a part of the oily T zone of the face, where the concentration of oil  glands are higher than other parts of the body. Let us understand the reasons for forehead acne, its identification, and treatment. 

Forehead Acne – The Possible Causes

Appearance of acne on the forehead is quite common.  The root cause of acne breakouts is the blocked hair follicles on the forehead. 

Forehead Acne – The Possible Causes

All over the body, we have sebaceous glands. They produce the oily substance called sebum which moisturizes our skin. These sebaceous glands are concentrated on our face, scalp, chest and back. Commonly, the sebum tends to rise up and accumulate around the hair follicles. Most often, when this accumulated oily substance is mixed with dirt and dead skin cells, they lead to clogging of follicles. When these clogs  become infected with bacteria, it leads to formation of acne.

Below are the few possible causes of acne on the forehead.

  • Excessive Sebum – Excessive sebum can lead to  clogging of pores consequently causing acne. There can be multiple reasons behind excessive oil production in one’s body. Few of them are changing hormones, stress, and certain medications. 
  • Hair – Hair can be another source of acne breakout on the forehead. Oily hair, untimely hair washes, and frequent use of hair products like oils, pomades, gels and wax are known to be the potential causes behind forehead acne. The so-called hair care and styling products often contain ingredients like heavy oils and butters, leaving your forehead oily and turning it into a nurturing ground for infectious bacteria on the skin pores.

causes behind forehead acne

Even hairstyles with hair covering the forehead can create a microenvironment for bacterial growth due to clogging skin pores with sebum and sweat, leading to acne. 

  • Dandruff  – Dandruff can fall off your scalp, clog the pores and trigger acne on the forehead. 
  • Makeup – Application of heavy skin creams and makeup products can trap the dirt particles within the skin pores clogging them and causing acne. 
  • Touching – Repetitively touching the skin or scratching the forehead, can transfer the dirt from our nails and hands to tiny skin pores which will eventually be blocked. 

Forehead Acne – How do they appear?

Forehead acne appears in various forms. 

  • Comedones, which are small whiteheads and blackheads. Commonly, forehead acne is the result of occluded pores. Thus, whiteheads are often observed on the forehead.
  • Papules and Pustules are the less common forms found as forehead acne. Papules are inflammatory red bumps, while pustules are red bumps which have white centres.

Acne on Forehead – Prevention and Treatment

Acne on Forehead – Prevention and Treatment

Forehead acne is often preventable with certain improvements in lifestyle habits. Simple actions like regularly washing the face, and cleaning it, dabbing or washing of sweat and not allowing it to stay for long on the face, avoiding frequent use of  hair products and skin products like pomades, hair gels, hair oils, and make up products can aid prevent acne on forehead

Keep these few points in mind to prevent forehead acne, or keep the existing condition from getting severe. 

  • Wash your face twice a day. Pat dry, without rubbing.
  • For oily and greasy hair, wash often, with shampoos specifically used for treating oily hair. 
  • Avoid touching your forehead or scratching or rubbing it with your fingers, thereby preventing the transfer of dirt particles into the skin pores. 
  • Do not allow hair to constantly come in contact with your forehead.
  • Wearing hats, caps and bandanas can lead to sweat accumulation within the pores. Avoid wearing them for long periods of time. 

There are some natural remedies which may help prevent and control acne breakout on the forehead. Some of them include aloe vera gel treatment and green tea extract. If you are not sure how severe your condition is, prefer to consult an acne doctor in Pune for a treatment prescription. 


Forehead acne is not specific to any particular age group. Though commonly observed in teenagers, when they hit puberty, anyone can get acne on forehead, due to various reasons as discussed above. 

It is important to maintain facial hygiene along with a clean hair and scalp routine in order to prevent accumulation of excessive sebum in skin pores which is the leading cause of forehead acne. 

If your acne problem persists even after trying out good skin care and home remedies, visit a dermatologist for better diagnosis and management.

For treating your skin condition, feel free to get in touch with one of our best dermatologists in Pune. You can also call on +919584584111 to book an appointment at one of our skin clinics near you.


Dr Dhanraj Chavan

About the Author: Dr Dhanraj Chavan

Dr. Dhanraj Chavan is a globally trained, young, and dynamic dermatologist. He is a Consultant Dermatologist and Varicose Vein Specialist at Clear Skin, VeinMD, and HairMD.

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