Acne has a mind of its own, some may say, because its arrival is never predictable, except of course around the time of your period. Having said that, those with oily and acne-prone skin will agree that they usually get acne on their T-zone, which includes the forehead, nose and chin. The reason being, this area is usually oilier than the rest of the face and we all know acne is the result of a clogged pore. The pores on your skin get clogged with dead skin cells, mixed with excess oil and bacteria. However, there’s another area common for acne to develop — the jawline. This type of acne is known as jawline acne and is more common among women than men.

The jawline isn’t as oily as the rest of the face, so what causes acne to develop here? While the formation of jawline acne is the same — pores that have oil trapped along with dead skin cells — experts say it is a result of fluctuating hormones. This is one of the reasons why jawline acne makes an appearance right before or during your periods. If you are dealing with jawline acne, chances are it is being caused by hormonal fluctuations. To understand the topic in detail and learn how to treat jawline acne, we contacted Bangalore-based dermatologist, Dr. Divya Sharma. Here’s a detailed guide on how to deal with jawline acne.


What are the causes of jawline acne?

What are the causes of jawline acne?

The causes of jawline acne can be both hormonal and external. In this article we will take a look at both to determine the exact reason why you may be suffering from acne on your jawline.

1. Hormonal fluctuations

Hormonal fluctuations

It is mainly caused by excessive androgen production or increased sensitivity to circulating hormones known as cutaneous hyperandrogenism. They are ‘felt more under the skin’ as compared to the skin’s surface. It is not seen usually in physiological acne or prepubertal acne. Excessive weight gain may also lead to dyslipidemias which may cause nodular or jawline acne.



Many women suffering from polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) often complain of acne which is painful, lumpy and nodular in the chin area when touched. Most of the women also may have hirsutism, thinning of hair, scalp flaking and some other signs of hyperandrogenism.

3. Beauty products

Beauty products

All your skincare and makeup products contain some form of oil, this can clog pores and lead to acne. It is important to use non-comedogenic products, especially if you have oily skin, and you have to get rid of makeup before going to bed.

4. Medicines


Some types of medicines are also known to cause acne in the jawline area. If you are on steroids to tackle issues like depression or bipolar disorder, then you must know that jawline acne is one of its side effects.

5. Playing musical instruments

Playing musical instruments

You may not have guessed this one was coming, but it's true! Musical instruments like the violin that are held close to the chin area can transfer bacteria on the skin and lead to acne. Clean the instrument before and after use to keep the bacteria off your face.


How to treat jawline acne effectively?

How to treat jawline acne effectively?

Now that you know the causes of jawline acne, the next step is obviously to learn ways to treat it. If your jawline acne is getting worse, it is best to visit a dermatologist to get an expert opinion and an effective treatment plan.

1. Oral medicines

Oral medicines

Oral contraceptive pills containing drospirenone and Ethinyl estradiol are prescribed for the treatment of jawline acne caused by hormonal fluctuations. Antiandrogen like cyproterone acetate and spironolactone are also useful alternatives to reduce acne. In patients suffering from PCOS, metformin and sometimes other insulin sensitising agents are added.

2. Topical creams

Topical creams

Retinoids in a topical formulation may help in reducing scars, but these patients may require a hormonal treatment alongside to bring jawline acne under control. Products containing benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid may also help treat the acne. One needs to be patient with topical treatments as they take 6-8 weeks to show results.

3. Healthy lifestyle

Healthy lifestyle

It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and exercise daily. This will not only help maintain a healthy weight but will also be beneficial for your skin. The sweat released during exercise flushes out toxins from the skin and makes your skin healthy and clear. It is also important to watch what you eat.

A low carbohydrate, high protein diet keeps the insulin levels in check and hence improves the hormonal levels in the body. Stress and late-night sleeping hours may also contribute to excessive androgen receptor sensitivity. So, make sure your stress levels are also in check.

4. Visit an expert

Visit an expert

If the above-mentioned treatments for jawline acne don't work, it is important to visit an expert to get your hormonal imbalance under control. Visit a dermatologist to get the right treatment plan. A customised treatment in association with an endocrinologist and gynaecologist may be useful in certain cases.


Is there any way to prevent acne on the jawline?

Is there any way to prevent acne on the jawline?

A holistic approach is needed to prevent jawline acne. Here are a few things you can do to prevent acne on the jawline area.

  • A balanced diet, rich in fibre and probiotics helps optimise gut health, thereby improving skin conditions like acne.
  • An active lifestyle that includes exercising is recommended. This will improve overall health and keep skin problems at bay.  
  • It is very important for patients to shed excessive weight and improve their insulin levels by exercise and diet. If you have gained a lot of weight in the past few years, focus on reducing it to improve bodily functions.
  • Skincare products should be non-comedogenic. One should not forget to moisturise, even if they have oily skin as most of the patients with jawline acne have dry skin. Your skin tries to compensate for the dryness by producing excess oil.
  • Avoid touching or picking on existing acne no matter how tempted you get. Touching jawline acne will only make it worse by spreading the bacteria to nearby pores.
  • Do not use scrubs on active acne, as it can make the condition worse.
  • Make sure you wash your face after wearing a helmet, playing a musical instrument and a workout session to remove sweat and bacteria from your face.

FAQs about jawline acne

FAQs about jawline acne

Q. What foods cause jawline acne?

A. Certain foods especially processed and fried food can cause jawline acne. These include dairy products, refined sugar and carbs, deep-fried food, chocolate, whey protein powder as well as foods that you may be allergic to. It is important to eat a balanced diet rich in healthy nutrients and vitamins to keep jawline acne at bay.

Q. Is acne on the jawline hormonal?

A. Yes, jawline acne is linked to hormonal fluctuations in the body. However, that’s not the only reason why you might be breaking out in the jawline area. Poor skincare habits, unhealthy diet, pore-blocking cosmetic products, wearing a helmet and use of certain musical instruments is to be blamed for jawline acne.

Q. How do you fix jawline acne?

A. The first thing to do is visit a dermatologist to get to the root of your problem. If your jawline acne is hormonal, they will suggest you visit a gynaecologist or endocrinologist. If not, they will prescribe the right products and a skincare routine that will fix your jawline acne and prevent future breakouts. Apart from this, eating healthy food and regular exercising is very important to prevent jawline acne.