Discover What Acne Says About Your Health With A Modern Approach to Face Mapping Acne

Anyone who’s ever experienced acne has asked themselves the same question “what’s causing acne to appear”? You wonder what acne says about your health, if you’re doing something particular to trigger it and how you can cure it as swiftly as possible.

acne face mapping

Face mapping acne

Acne Face Mapping

One of the earliest forms of identifying medical conditions that cause acne came thousands of years ago through the ancient practices of Chinese medicine. These days, it’s known as face mapping acne and is still found in ayurvedic practice.

Face mapping is founded on the belief that the face acts as a map to the body’s organs.
The idea behind face mapping is that acne in certain areas of your face is a signal of a health issue elsewhere in your body. For instance, acne on your cheeks could be a sign of an imbalance of your liver and lungs.

There have been moves to update face mapping to account for modern dermatology practices. But, it’s not backed by scientific research. And you know how important scientific facts are to us here at Brains Street!

Instead, we follow a more modern approach to determine what acne says about your health. So you can finally answer the question, could acne be a sign of something serious?


Acne on the hairline and forehead

Noticing acne appearing on your hairline or forehead? Chances are, it has a very practical culprit. So it’s unlikely that you need to worry about any health conditions.


Hair care products

Certain hair care products contain more oil than others. And it’s easy for this oil to find its way into your skin, especially if you have a fringe or a hairstyle that means strands regularly touch your face.

Try to find the culprit by reviewing the ingredients for oils and other potentially irritating ingredients. The American Academy of Dermatology Association recommends avoiding haircare products that don’t have the following words on the label:

- Won't clog pores

- Oil-free

- Non-comedogenic

- Non-acnegenic


Sweat and bacteria

Thought exercise was good for your health? It is! But it might not be so good for your acne. InSweat, oil, dirt and bacteria can come together to trigger certain types of acne, especially on your hairline and forehead. But there are steps you can take to mitigate the issue.

Be sure to take aclean towel with you to each workout, so that you can quickly wipe away sweat as it appears. Avoid sharing helmets with fellow exercisers (and don’t even get usstarted on sweaty headbands!). And try to wash your face as soon as possible after exercise.A mild cleanser should do the trick, or a simple splash of water if that’s not available to you.


Regular physical pressure

If you’re still finding that you’re experiencing acne on your hairline, look for anything that might be regularly placing pressure on that area of your skin. According to theNHS, regularly wearing items that place pressure on the same area of skin could cause acne to appear.


Headbands are a particularly common culprit, especially if they are considerably tight on your skin. It’s also worth checking for hats, helmets and other headwear that sits along or around your hairline.


Acne on the t-zone

The t-zone is known for being a particularly oily area for many of us. Why? It simply has more oil glands.

Since acne is generally caused by overactive sebaceous glands (too much oil on the skin), the skin’s oil is likely to be the trigger here. Our skin needs a certain amount of sebum to stop our hair follicles and skin from drying out, but when there’s an excess it can become problematic.

It’s likely that you’re experiencing acne on your t-zone because excess oil is mixing with dead skin cells, causing pores to become blocked and spots to form. This isn’t a health concern but it can certainly be frustrating.

To treat t-zone acne, try using Niacinamide, which is clinically proven to regulate sebum production. Another ingredient to look out for? Multi Acids (Alpha Hydroxy Acid and Beta Hydroxy Acid). These will encourage skin cell turnover and dislodge dead skin cells. You can find all these ingredients inour Advanced Anti Breakout Routine set. 


Acne on the chin or jawline

Acne on your chin or jawline can be asign of hormonal fluctuations. This hormonal acne is especially common in teenagers, where jawline acne can be a sign of puberty. It’s thought that increases in testosterone during puberty (essential for the development of male sex organs and for muscle and bone strength in girls) can trigger teenage hormonal acne.

In later life, women are more likely to experience acne than men. This is a result of hormonal changes due to periods, pregnancy or polycystic ovary syndrome.

If you’ve noticed acne appearing on your chin or jawline and it definitely isn’t connected to your period or pregnancy, your body could be trying to tell you something about your health. Whilst it’s important not to worry before speaking with a medical professional, thereare medical conditions that cause acne. It’s worth chatting to your doctor just in case it could be a sign of polycystic ovary syndrome.

To treat hormonal acne, we recommend iS CLINICAL Active Serum. This is an excellent companion for blemish-prone skin types, leaving you with smoother, clearer and more radiant skin after use!


Acne on the cheeks


Acne on the cheeks can be a little harder to diagnose. But there’s one big (not so fashionable) trend that we’ve seen popping up since 2020… Maskne. This type of acne is called acne mechanica, caused by an item trapping heat and rubbing the skin’s surface. In this case, that item is your mask.

Since we all know that masks help toprotect our health (and the health of others), “Maskne” shouldn’t put you off wearing one. Instead, try to get into the habit of usingMedik8’s Balance Control Pads right after you take your mask off for the day.

These easy to use pads are pre-soaked in maximum strength Salicylic Acid and remove oil and dirt from your pores, minimising your chances of developing acne under your mask. You can even keep them in their portable pot inside your bag, so you can use them on the go too.



If you’re the proud owner of a beard (pandemic related or otherwise) unfortunately, you’reincreasing your chances of acne appearing underneath.

Whilst this acne likely isn’t a sign of anything serious, itis an indication of dead skin cells building up in or under your facial hair. These dead skin cells then combine with your skin’s natural oils to form spots.

So, what do you do instead? For starters, ditch the beard oil. We want to minimise the amount of oil going onto your skin, not increase it.

Then, tryMedik8’s Surface Radiance Cleanse. Uniquely formulated with both Alpha Hydroxy Acids and Beta Hydroxy Acids to break down impurities and remove dead skin cells, this should work through your beard to remove blockages and prevent blemishes.


Acne rosacea

Occasionally, acne on your cheeks could be caused by a medical condition. Bumps or uneven skin, pimples and redness on the nose and cheeks might be a sign ofrosacea.

Often described as a type of acne, early signs of rosacea include blushing and stinging when using certain skincare products. For this reason, it’s important that you opt for products that are suitable for sensitive skin.

Rosacea is a long term health condition that is more common among adults (mostly women) over the age of 30. Its triggers include sun exposure, heat, stress, aerobic exercise, caffeine, and certain foods such as more spicy meals.

To treat acne rosacea, we recommend iS CLINICAL PRO-HEAL SERUM ADVANCE+. With its healing and reparative benefits, PRO-HEAL SERUM ADVANCE+ will help revitalise compromised skin due to rosacea.

It is important that you speak to a doctor if your symptoms of rosacea doesn't go away within 3-4 weeks of using this serum.


Need some help choosing the right treatment for your acne? Book a free virtual skincare consultation to find your perfect pick:


Written by Brains Street

August 12th, 2021