What causes acne vulgaris?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Acne vulgaris is caused when sebum (the natural oil the body produces to moisturize and waterproof skin and hair) backs up in the hair follicle. The fats contained in the sebum attract bacteria, which break the fats into fatty acids, causing an inflammatory reaction that results in the lesions known as acne.

Continue Learning about Acne

What role does the sebaceous gland play in acne?
Dr. Doris Day, MDDr. Doris Day, MD
Acne occurs in areas where there is the highest density of active sebaceous glands. It is usuall...
More Answers
What is acne vulgaris?
Joshua A. Zeichner, MDJoshua A. Zeichner, MD
Acne vulgaris is the medical term for common acne.
More Answers
Why did all these bumps suddenly form on my face?
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MDDr. Mehmet Oz, MD
A sudden arrival of a lot of bumpy formations on your face could be an outbreak of acne. This skin...
More Answers
How do hormones affect acne?
Diana MeeksDiana Meeks
It's pretty commonly known that acne is affected by levels of hormones, which is why it's so common ...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.