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Why Soap Causes Pimples and Acne & How You Can Prevent It

Updated on August 29, 2017

How important is it really?

Some people wash their face and hands before they go to bed, some people don't wash their face and hands at all. This can affect your health because by doing this, you are more prone to getting sick and diseases because you are carrying more germs. Your immune system is constantly fighting off bad bacteria and by not keeping clean, your giving your immune system loads more work.

When your immune system is down, you get sick with the Flu and colds, you get aches and pains because it can't keep up with all the bad bacteria. So keeping your hands and your face clean is not only to avoid pimples but to keep your body healthy and keep your immune system up so that it is able to to fight the bad stuff and get rid of the bacteria.

Keeping your hands clean can help prevent the spread of the germs and spreading of pimples. Keeping your face clean will help prevent pimples from forming and will help your face age slower as it will be healthier.

What is a Pimple? - Pastules

A pimple is a tiny swelling in the skin that is caused blocked pore. Returned or more than 1 pimple is referred to as acne.

A pimple forms when dead skin attempts to escape off but can't, because of a blockage in the pores which is usually caused by sebaceous glands that produce to much sebum, which is supposed to work to keep your skin healthy.

Most people who notice pimples immediately think to squeeze and pop the pimple. When in actual fact there is a way you have to do it and if not done correctly you can cause the blockage and infection to go deeper into the skin.

I'm a hygiene freak. I'm like obsessive-compulsive when it comes to washing your hands - Kelly Clarkson

What is a Blackhead? - Papules

A blackhead is an opening on the skin that has a blackened mass of skin debris covering the opening. A closed comedo (is a hair follicle that is filled with keratin and sebum) is a whitehead, while an open comedo is a blackhead.

Blackheads are supposed to be the first stage of acne, they form before the bacteria penetrates the skin. They are often spotted on the nose and chin. Blackheads are not only black but some can also be yellow in colour.

You can remove a blackhead with a comedone extractor, you can find it below.

Squeezing a pimple, The correct way! - Only in an emergency!

Before doing this make sure to keep your hands germ free and clean unless you want to spread the pimples.

Clean the area with disinfectant. Take 2 pieces of tissue, wrap one around each thumb. Applying gentle pressure to the pimple with both thumbs, in tiny circular movements and continue changing direction. The pimple should pop (remember not to push to hard as it drive the bacteria and infection deeper and damage the skin) and if it does not pop, using a sterile lancet (needle) carefully enter into the pimple from one side (horizontally) and exit. This should make a tiny opening in the pimple for the bacteria to leave. Dispose of the needle and do not re-use.

Why you should NOT use soap on your face

Soap contains sodium hydroxide which is an alkaline that eats through your acid mantel. It is very acidic and has a high pH balance. Normal healthy ph balance soap is 4.5 to 5.6.

Acid mantel - This is combined on the surface on the skin by sweat and sebum, it is a protective shield which helps to control bacteria levels and prevents infection and diseases and also acts as a natural moisturizer.

Soap eats your skin (your faces skin is very thin compared to your body's skin) which causes bacteria to live and grow inside the skin which leads to acne and pimples. On your face you have tiny hairs everywhere which you can hardly see, these hairs are called vellus hairs (usually short, thin and blonde). Each one is connected with a hair follicle which produces sebum(oil) , it is a fatty acid which lubricates the hair shaft that is what keeps the skin moist.

Bar soap also drys out the skin giving it a tight feeling and should only be used on the body as the skin on the body is not as sensitive.

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Hygiene is two thirds of your health - Lebanese Proverb

Advice from An Expert

One of the most important things to remember, in our daily lives is to always keep your hands clean preferably by bottle soap because every drop is untouched unlike bar soap that lays in it's own bacteria that has formed due to it constantly being moist. Another thing with bar soap is that not only are you picking up your own bacteria you washed off the last time but you are picking up everybody else's because everybody in the house uses it.

Try to avoid touching and picking on your face during the day as you can spread the bacteria which will then cause pimples. This may be difficult for most people as it can become a very bad habit but it will make a very big difference at the end of the day.

Never purchase skin products from local stores and super markets because some of them can contain sodium hydroxide which drys your skin out and eats away your acid mantle which will then lead to unwanted pimples. Always buy a professional salon range such as Dermologica which is one of the leading brands in salon products.

Another thing is, before you go to bed at night and when you wake up in the morning, always cleanse, tone and moisturize. Cleansing your face removes all bacteria, oils, make-up as well as harsh chemicals. Toner removes excess cleanser, left over make-up and gives the skin a refreshing feeling because it has chamomile and fruity acids.

Before applying make-up always apply an SPF to keep your skin looking great (except at night as it will dry your skin).

Note : People with dry skin should not use a toner as it will dry it out more.

What do you use? - Only logged in Squidoo members please

What do you use, bar soap or bottle soap?

Tips for Women

Women wear make-up every day and when they get home, removing the make-up is the last thing on their mind when it should be the first. Does leaving make-up on while you sleep cause pimples you ask? Yes! It certainly does.

During the day your skin does not work as hard as it does during the night while you sleeping so while you are asleep your skin absorbs what ever is on your face.

What make-up does is, it blocks your pores while absorbing what ever is on your skin, leaving your skin not able to breathe. The reason why your skin is unable to breathe is because the foundation is so thick and clogs the pores on your face.

Why use Spot Gel?

Spot gels are especially designed to target pimples. Spot gels are very acidic, it is this way so that the gel can dry out the pimple and kill what ever is inside the pimple. Spot gels are very effective and work quickly to dry out the pimple allowing it to scab faster and heal quicker.

The spot gel below is one of the leading brands in salon products and works great.

It is recommended that you only apply spot gels on to the pimple and not your whole face or else your face will dry out. Wash your hands before and after with anti bacterial bottle soap.

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      @maryLuu: I think you guys should still use bottle soap. Because the germs fromt heir hands get on their face. I don't know if you guys share a bar of soap to wash hands. But even if you don't, say they wash their hands with their soap. Even if they don't touch the doorknob after doing their business,they are going to touch other things with germs/bacteria on it. So when they go to shower,they will put this back on their own soap. And if they put their soap back into the box wet,bacteria will grow. Unless,they dry it off with their towel the use to dry off with. But I still say it is safe to use bottle soap.(bodywash) Dove bodywash is a good idea because it does not leave soap scum and does not make your skin tight. Its also a scent that both male/female can share.

    • srsddn lm profile image

      srsddn lm 

      6 years ago

      Very useful information which all of should know and practice.

    • maryLuu profile image


      6 years ago

      I knew all the things but it's been a pleasant reading, anyway.

    • rawwwwwws lm profile image

      rawwwwwws lm 

      6 years ago

      Thanks for sharing! I appreciate this.. I would of never guessed!

    • taryn-bubbles profile image


      6 years ago

      Fabulous lens.. Glad you're getting the word out there about how bad soap is for your face :)


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