You are currently viewing Can PCOS Cause Severe Acne?

Can PCOS Cause Severe Acne?

During puberty, it’s normal for pretty much everyone to get acne; your body is dealing with a ton of different, complex hormonal changes! However, many women with PCOS struggle with severe acne even after puberty has taken place. No fun, right? If you have PCOS and you feel like your skin hates you, then you’re in the right place. 

Today, we will take an in-depth look at how PCOS is connected to severe acne and how we can get a grip on it.  So let’s jump into it!

can pcos cause severe acne

Is PCOS Related To Acne?

Yes, PCOS can cause severe acne and this is actually a common symptom of this medical condition. According to research, up to 43% of women with PCOS also have acne, and it is a significantly higher percentage than those women who don’t have PCOS! This research includes data from 240,000+ women, so the results are as accurate as it gets, boo boo.

To put it short, acne is one of the common dermatological manifestations in PCOS. This leads us to the next question of why PCOS causes acne in the first place.

Well, one of the key features of PCOS is that it increases male hormones (aka androgens) in the body. These hormones are associated with excessive hair growth on the body, hair loss on the head, irregular periods, weight gain, and acne. In addition, androgens also cause progressive acne and even cystic acne in some cases.

The excessive formation of androgens in the body causes the skin glands to increase the production of sebum (oily substance). Over time, the dead skin cells and the sebum build up inside the hair follicles &  trap nearby bacterial cells. This causes inflammation on the skin’s surface which eventually leads to acne.

Another factor that causes acne among women with PCOS is high blood sugar levels. For women with PCOS, the development of insulin resistance is very common, which leads to a build-up of sugar levels in the body. The high sugar levels in the body also leads to inflammation which can turn up in the form of acne!

pcos acne in women

Which Body Parts Does PCOS Acne Affect?

Acne caused by PCOS occurs primarily on the face, chest, and back. Since one of the main causes of PCOS acne is a hormonal imbalance, the areas that are sensitive to the hormones tend to be the most affected.

In general, these are the areas where PCOS acne can appear:

  • Upper Neck
  • Chin
  • Jawline
  • Cheeks
  • Chest
  • Upper Back

As you can see, PCOS acne tends to be more apparent on the face rather than on other parts of the body. In that sense, PCOS acne is no different than the non-hormonal type of acne.

The appearance of PCOS acne can be of different forms depending on the situation. Normally, it can be pustules, whiteheads, blackheads, or a combination of all!

When the acne gets more severe, it can transform into cysts, nodules, and inflammatory lesions as well. The formation of cysts, nodules, & inflammatory lesions also increases the chances of post-acne scarring.


Is My PCOS Acne Reversible?

If we talk about PCOS acne, it will depend on what you are doing to treat the underlying causes of PCOS in the first place. So that’s why I’m here for you in order to help you bounce back!

So, as long as you work towards managing the high androgen levels & high glucose levels, it can take anywhere from 3 to 6 months for the acne to clear up. But, of course, each body is different. The good news is that you are not alone in this.


How to Deal With PCOS Acne

So far, we know that PCOS acne results from elevated androgen levels in the body. But what about fighting back and eliminating acne for good? Well, one of the ways you can bring the fight to PCOS acne is with food!

Including foods that are rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and Zinc can help you speed up this process. You can also take specialized PCOS supplements that will help you balance out the hormones wreaking havoc in your body.

There are many nutrients and vitamins which can help you to prevent and soothe painful acne breakouts. Here’s a short list of nutrients that can be useful against PCOS acne:

  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Selenium
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids

These nutrients basically work by reducing inflammation and scarring, which ultimately helps you keep the acne under control.

acne in women with pcos

Take The First Step NOW and Win The PCOS Acne Battle!

Now, let’s look at a free meal plan that can put you on the path to glowing, gorgeous, and acne-free skin:


Breakfast (Kale & Spinach Pancakes)

These delicious kale & spinach pancakes are rich in Vitamin C, which is incredibly helpful when it comes to repairing and even preventing acne scars. In addition, Vitamin C can also help you achieve a more even skin tone!

  1. Add 1 cup almond milk to 1 cup oat flour.
  2. Now add 3 egg whites and 1 tbsp of sweetener (I like granulated allulose, monkfruit, or even coconut sugar)
  3. Blend all the ingredients.
  4. Add a handful of spinach & kale.
  5. Blend once again.
  6. Pan-fry the batter into pancakes.
  7. Add toppings of melted almond butter and cacao nibs.


Lunch (BBQ Chicken Sweet Potato Sliders)

For lunch, you can enjoy BBQ Chicken Sweet Potato Sliders. Being high in Vitamin C, these yummy cute sliders can help you achieve a more even, smoother skin tone! In addition, they help capture those pesky free radicals in the body to breathe more life into your skin cells. 

And to top it all off, BBQ Chicken Sweet Potato Sliders are also PCOS friendly & will help you to manage your symptoms like a champ!

  1. Mix 4 oz shredded & cooked chicken with salt, pepper, & BBQ sauce (sugar-free).
  2. Take 1 steamed sweet potato and slice it into 1/4″ rounds.
  3. Add toppings of cilantro and sliced red onion.


Snack (Everything Edamame)

This easy snackie offers you a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids, which lower inflammation. In turn, this helps in clearing the acne from your face & other parts of the body.

  1. Take 1 cup of steamed edamame (you can find frozen edamame in the freezer section of your grocery store)
  2. Sprinkle it with everything but the bagel seasoning.
  3. Enjoy!


Dinner (Coconut Lentils)

For dinner, you can try coconut lentils which offer you a healthy boost of zinc. This helps to lower testosterone levels in the body, which can clear up your acne.

  1. Cook 1.5 cups of lentils with 4 cups of water until tender.
  2. Now take a large skillet and saute 4 minced cloves of garlic, 1 tbsp coconut oil, & 2 tbsp of minced ginger for 2 minutes.
  3. Add 1 tbsp turmeric, 1.5 tbsp curry powder, 1/8 tbsp cayenne, and 3/4 tbsp of salt.
  4. Cook for 1 minute. Then move it to low flame.
  5. In the end, add 1-2 tbsp sweetener, 1 + 1/4 cup of canned coconut milk, and cook for an additional 4 minutes.
  6. Add lentils and heat to serve.

pcos boss academy twd

Join My PCOS Programs

Do you want access to more PCOS-friendly diet plans like the one mentioned above? Then join one of my PCOS programs!

I’ve been guiding women through PCOS symptom mastery, permanent weight loss, and optimal fertility for many years. So what are you waiting for? See you on the other side boo! Click here.

Leave a Reply