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Image / Style / Beauty

Why am I getting these spots? The answer mightn’t be the most obvious…


By Aisling Keenan
05th Oct 2020
Why am I getting these spots? The answer mightn’t be the most obvious…

Unusual spot break-outs can happen from time to time, and if it’s not the norm for your skin, trying to figure out why you’re getting them can involve quite an amount of detective work. Before you blame the ask, here are some things you mightn’t have thought of…


We’re all aware of the more common reasons you might be getting spots here and there. Hormones is a big one, genetics is another, but there are some reasons you might not think of immediately that are worth looking at if you’re plagued by unexpected and unusual pimple appearances.

Your pillow

Change yours regularly, or risk break-outs caused by bacteria that hangs out in the nice, warm cotton that is your bedspread. Even if your pillow doesn’t look dirty, there are so many dead skin cells there that you could practically recreate a whole face – sounds icky right? Take my advice, keep your pillow cases on a strict three-day rotation.

spots

Your shampoo

When you think about it, it’s not just your skincare and make-up that comes in contact with your face. Your shampoo makes it down onto your face too, at least a little bit.

If you’re noticing spots around your hairline, it could be shampoo that isn’t being properly rinsed. I would always splash water on my face post-shower to make sure all the shampoo is gone. Alternatively, try a shampoo that’s free from ingredients you wouldn’t put in your skincare.

spots

Your hands

You might not notice it, but you could be giving yourself spots from holding dirty, greasy hands on or near your face. If you sit at a desk and prop your chin on your hands at times, this could be causing break-outs.

spots

Your make-up brushes

Think about it – not only are make-up brushes depositing make-up on your face, but as they do that, they are collecting bacteria and dead skin cells. Likewise, the bacteria is multiplying in the moisture of the brushes as they sit in their storage. So, nevermind great foundation application – a great reason to keep your brushes clean is to avoid getting spots as a result of them.

spots

Photography by Jason Lloyd Evans.

Read more: Are you concealing spots the right way?

Read more: 5 spot-zappers to use when it’s a really bad time to get a pimple

Read more: These 4 products completely transformed my skin (and my self-confidence)