Saturday, January 4, 2014

Does Caffeine Cause Acne?

If you frequently consume caffeine, you may often wonder whether or not caffeine causes acne. Caffeine comes in many different forms, but the most commonly consumed form of caffeine is coffee.  Majority of people consume 1-2 cups of coffee each morning. While there have never been any actual studies on the correlation between caffeine and acne, some professionals claim that it may in fact increase the chances of having frequent breakouts.  This is not necessarily a result of the caffeine itself, but rather the effects that the caffeine has on the body that can lead to increased chances of acne and breakouts.

So, how does caffeine cause acne? Well, consuming high amounts of caffeine can lead to dehydration if not balanced out with a substantial consumption of water.  Doctors suggest that for every cup of coffee (or energy drink) that you consume, you should also consume 1-2 eight oz. glasses of water.  This helps keep you hydrated despite caffeine's dehydrating effects.  When you are dehydrated it can leave your skin vulnerable or prone to more breakouts, so that is one way that caffeine may be causing your breakouts.  Secondly, caffeine stimulates the adrenal glands which can lead to an increased stress level. When your stress level is increased it will initiate a higher amount of androgen hormones in your body.  If you're familiar with hormonal acne, you probably know that hormonal imbalance is a high contributor to acne.  If you are constantly consuming caffeine you could be putting your body into a constant state of hormonal imbalance without even realizing it. This could lead to what appears to be hormonal acne, but may actually be caused by high intake of caffeine.  If you're concerned that your caffeine consumption is causing your acne, try going without caffeine for a few weeks to see if it has any affect on your acne and breakouts.


My personal experience has led me to conclude that when I consume higher amounts of caffeine, I tend to breakout significantly more.  Even though I have finally gotten my skin under control, when I consume more caffeine I see a noticeable difference in my skin.  My acne goes from "barely there" to "full-blown breakout" within just a few days of increasing my caffeine intake.  I've since switched my daily cup of coffee for green or white tea in the morning.  Although my daily cup of tea does contain caffeine, it is significantly less than the amount of caffeine in coffee.

So, to answer the question does caffeine cause acne...I would say that it definitely can be a contributing factor! However, each of us is different so the only way to tell is to go without your caffeine fix for a few weeks.

*I am not a medical professional and this article is purely based on my own research and experiences.  Always consult with a doctor when it comes to any medical conditions, such as acne.