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Acne On Black Skin

Updated on July 27, 2009

Acne on black skin can be similar to acne on white skin. It is not just teenagers that suffer from acne. It can occur to anyone and at any age. There are several reasons why certain people are affected by a sudden breakout of acne and we are lucky to be able to find a good choice in acne prevention creams.

People with black skin can suffer from the after effects of acne which include scarring and the darkening of the skin. This is due to hyperpigmentation. The melanin in black skin reacts quickly to the onslaught of acne by increasing its production. This can result in a dark shadow appearing on and around the acne spots which usually then remains long after the acne has been treated and clears up. It can take months even years for these dark marks to disappear. Some women resort to using foundation makeup to cover the marks or using skin lightening treatments to improve the colour by bleaching out the spots.

Acne on black skin can be treated with good quality products
Acne on black skin can be treated with good quality products

What Causes Acne?

Acne is caused by a build up of dead skin cells and oil.  Normally the body is able to get rid of the excess cells and oil by reaching the skin’s upper layer and being washed away naturally.  However the cells can for whatever reason get stuck together and are then unable to disperse normally.  This results in a blockage.  This build up increases until it has nowhere to go but upwards toward the surface of the skin.  The end result is that a spot appears on the surface of the skin.

There are different types of acne that can occur to people at any age. Some types are quite common and can be cleared up quite easily with over the counter acne creams and lotions, while other types can be quite painful and can look unsightly.  This can make some people very self conscious about their appearance and can lead to low self esteem.

The different types of acne are as follows:

Whitehead – a small bump that has a white colour head.  This type of spot is usually quite small.  It does not break through the surface of the skin but does has a little pus on the end which looks white, which is how it got its name.

Blackhead – a small bump that looks black in colour.  This type of spot actually does break through the surface of the skin.  The reason it is black in colour is because the pus reacts with the oxygen in the air.

Papule – a flesh coloured bump which can also look red in colour depending on your skin colour.

Pustule - a white pus filled bump with a red ring around it. This is similar to a whitehead but much larger.

Cyst – a larger pus filled bump which can be very delicate and painful to the touch.

Whatever type of acne you have, you should try not to squeeze the spots. This could cause a further infection if you open up the spot.  Also black skin could end up getting dark scars.

The reason for the initial blockage that leads to acne can be due to, among other things, a hormonal imbalance caused by young people going through puberty, the time just before a woman gets her period and during pregnancy.

Acne on black skin can be uncomfortable but one you know what causes these breakouts, you can start looking for ways to cure it. You can choose over the counter methods or you can visit your doctor to get a prescription if you feel that you need stronger medication to help. Get as much information as you can about curing acne  and black skin care so that you are well informed about what type of solution is best for you.


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  • Tiptopcat profile image

    Victoria Virgo 8 years ago from London, UK

    @Research Analyst - thanks for stopping by. Always great to get even more tips on getting rid of acne.

  • Research Analyst profile image

    Research Analyst 8 years ago

    I have found a great natural home remedie for removing acne form black skin is herbs such as bergamot, chamomile, dandelion root, juniper, lavender and witch hazel have excellent astringent properties.