This Is What Really Causes Baby Acne

It feels nearly impossible not to break out into a grin when you see a baby. Just the sight of their chubby cheeks, little baby shoes, and soft skin can immediately turn many of our frowns upside down. The next time you find yourself making googly eyes at an infant, you may notice they appear to be in the midst of a breakout. Acne may be more common on those lucky folks currently enduring all the wonders puberty has to offer. However, pimples, acne, and breakouts can erupt from the day we are born. 

According to Verywell Health, newborn acne (also known as neonatal acne) is a common condition and shouldn't be a cause for concern. The most likely areas to erupt with a breakout are on the nose and cheeks, though it can happen anywhere on the skin. There is no need to grab the bottle of salicylic acid, or the little baby Bioré nose strips (We're kidding, those don't exist). Luckily for the baby and its many admirers, their complexion is likely to clear up on its own. 

We can blame the mother's hormones

Baby acne may clear on its own, but why are breakouts so common at the very beginning stages of life? What to Expect claims that baby acne can be blamed on exactly what causes an 8th grader's acne: hormones. However, it's not caused by their own hormones. Baby acne develops from the leftover hormones from the mother, which could still be circulating in the baby's bloodstream. These maternal hormones can stimulate the babies' oil-producing glands and cause pimples to pop up on the surface of their skin. The tiny bumps on your baby's face are likely acne, but they may also be a rash or tiny cysts, commonly known as milia. 

Whether it is a rash, milia, or acne, do your best and refrain from picking at it. Verywell Health claims all your baby really needs is for you to wipe their face with water and a soft towel to keep it clean. Baby acne typically goes away after a few months. If you're worried about the confidence-destroying scars that acne creates on adolescent and adult skin, there is no need — baby acne doesn't typically leave any scars on the skin. Now that we know baby acne is harmless and extremely common, we can get back to soaking up the uplifting effects of admiring an infant.