Does Kissing Cause Acne?

The act of kissing inherently does not cause acne. Sometimes breakouts do occur after makeout sessions. This is often due to irritants from products on the other person’s lips. This can be lip balms, glosses, or even leftover food. Sometimes oils from facial hair or the hands of the other person can cause acne after a makeout session. Of course, kissing itself does not cause acne in this situation. In fact, Kissing can ultimately decrease stress, which in many cases is good for reducing acne. 

Is Acne Contagious?

Acne is one of the most common skin disorders on the planet affecting over 85% of people between the ages of 12 to 24 years old. That being said, acne itself is not contagious. This means you can kiss away and not worry about “spreading” your acne. If you do get acne after kissing someone it is most likely because they touched your face and their hands had dirt or oil on them. If you are worried about spreading acne during a kissing session, make sure your hands and face are clean. It is easier to catch other conditions such as herpes, warts, mono, and the common cold from kissing than acne. As these conditions are actually contagious through kissing. 

What Causes Acne? 

The main cause of acne is inflammation.  Environmental toxins, processed foods, and oil buildup all cause inflammation which presents itself as an acne breakout on the skin. The best way to prevent acne is to eat a healthy diet and exercise regularly. For a more comprehensive understanding of your skin problems which looks at diet to hormones to nutrients, check out the Definitive Clear Skin Resource Kit. 


Stress is one of the leading factors of inflammation throughout the body. When we are stressed out and anxious, our bodies produce excess cortisol, inflaming various organs, including our skin. This leads to excess sebum production and clogged pores. Research shows that wounds also heal slower under stress. This may help to understand why acne heals slower, and scarring is more prevalent when someone is under high stress. 


Our facial hygiene and a proper skincare routine are great ways to prevent acne. When dirt, oils, and sebum build-up, it cogs the pores and creates zits. Using a daily face wash and moisturizer is the best way to prevent this. 


While the term Maskne has skyrocketed with the covid pandemic, dermatologists have acknowledged the issue of maskne for a while as it is common in professions that require the use of all-day mask use. This primarily includes students, construction workers, and people in the medical field. While this isn’t a huge problem, maskne definitely causes for some people who wear masks multiple hours per day. Using the same mask for extended periods of time causes hot air to be trapped in the masks, which causes moistness that leads to bacterial growth. Additionally, masks absorb dirt and oil from your skin and rub it all over your face when you wear them for extended periods of time.  The best way to avoid this is to use a clean mask and have a proper face regimen, including a good cleanser

Poor Diet 

Surprisingly to many people, our diet has a massive influence over our skin. And our overall health. When we eat processed, fatty, fried, and oily foods. They tend to inflame us more and cause excess sebum production. These include popular classics such as burgers, pizza, white bread, chicken wings, and chocolate.  Foods high in omegas may help to reduce and fight acne. Find these omegas in eggs, fish such as salmon, flaxseeds, carrots, spinach, and more. 


Like all aspects of our health, genetics play a large role in acne. Of course, this can be managed with proper regimens, but can still predisposition many people. While there is no specific gene that exists for acne. Genes that control inflammation in the body and impact how hormones play a role in our skin health. 

Best products for acne:

Benzoyl Peroxide 

Benzoyl Peroxide is a topical antiseptic found in all kinds of the top products for clearing away acne. Benzoyl peroxide also comes in prescription level creams medications, facial washes, and lotions. It peels away dead skin cells to exfoliate the face and provide glowing skin. This helps with unregulated bacteria growth and oils. Benzoyl  Peroxide is one of the most potent chemicals for reducing redness and inflammation in acne treatment.  

Glyceric Acid

Glyceric Acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid that helps to exfoliate dead skin cells and excess sebum in the oil glands. It’s pretty sensitive on the skin and helps to mimic the natural oils of one’s face. One of the great things about this acid is that it helps attract and retain water in the skin. As we age, we lose hydration which can cause breakouts and dull-looking skin textures. Face Wash, made for sensitive skin that contains glyceric acid, is one of the most beneficial treatments for preventing acne. 

Salycic Acid

Salycic Acid is one of the most popular and researched compounds for treating acne. This acid breaks down the bonds between skin oils to help smooth away unwanted bacteria and cells. Salycic Acid washes are great for getting rid of clogged pores while making skin clean and clear.

Originally Published: December 23, 2021

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I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their acne naturally. If you cannot easily find an answer to your question on the website, please reach out to me by email ([email protected]) or send me a message on Instagram or Twitter. I will reply within 24 hours.

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sam wood is GoodGlow's Chief Editor
Analyzed by Sam Wood
Hi I’m Sam Wood. I’m the chief editor, lead acne expert, and health coach behind GoodGlow. I’m also an author of one of the top selling acne books on Amazon, a husband, father of two, and a pretty good cook!

I’m so glad you found GoodGlow and hope the information I have spent the last 10 years cultivating will help you clear your skin and improve your overall health.

I began experiencing acne breakotus as a sophomore in high school, but unlike most of my friends, my acne actually got worse as I got into my 20s. I exercised regularly, ate healthy (or so I thought) and spent hundreds of dollars a month on high end skincare products and supplements to help clear my skin. Despite these measures my acne breakouts and scarring only got worse as the years wore on.

This greatly wore on my self confidence and mental health. Simple things like taking pictures or going out with a large group made me feel self conscious. So I avoided these situations whenever I could help it.

As a last ditch effort I decided to try an extremely restrictive diet recommended by a close friend with an autoimmune disease. After following this diet for about two months my skin started to clear for the first time in over 8 years. The good news is that this restrictive diet is not actually necessary for 99% of people to permanently clear their skin, and over the course of a few months I was able to add back about 90% of my “normal diet”.

After clearing my skin I spent the next 4 years self experimenting on myself with different diets, supplements, skincare products to try and find a pattern for what was triggering my acne breakouts. I even tried different meditation, ice baths, and accupuncture to try and isolate the root cause of the breakouts.

In the end I realized that an extremely restrictive diet was not necessary for clear skin. The most important thing to do is to avoid inflammatory foods in your diet. Some common examples of this are fried foods, alcohol, sugar, and dairy.

Most impoirtantly I stopped reading trendy websites for skincare advice and began reading medical journals authored by dermatologists and nutritionists. Although the information in the articles was great the information was not easily understandable to most readers (including me). I spent hours dissecting individual posts and looking up terms I did not understand. Over the next 6 months I gradually began to understand these journals and started self experiemting some of the research on myself.

After experiencing quite a bit of success personally, I started sharing my research on forums and with close friends struggling with acne. When I shared the research it was in easy to understand, plain English. Everyone I talked to loved what I had to say and kept asking more and more questions. So I decided to start a blog so I could just send someone a link when they asked a question instead of rewriting something I had sent 100 times before 😅

While the same directional principles apply to everyone, acne is very personal and should be treated on an individual basis. That’s ultimately why I created GoodGlow. To help everyone reverse engineer the root cause of their acne and clear their skin permanently.

To date I’ve helped over 2,500 people clear their skin using a natural, holistic approach. If you are unable to find an answer to your question in any of the articles my team has written please reach out and I will do my best to guide you to the proper information and resources so you can make a thoughtful, informed decision. Read more of Sam's articles.

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