Does Vaping Cause Acne? Important Info If You Vape or Use Nicotine
There’s a link between vaping and acne that takes many young people by surprise. Vaping, or inhaling and exhaling aerosolized nicotine through an e-cigarette has soared in popularity over the past few years. While most are familiar with nicotine’s impact on general bodily health, many aren’t expecting vaping to give them bad skin.
Can nicotine cause acne? And, if you’re dealing with breakouts, do you have to give up your vape?
Or are there effective acne treatments you can turn to when your skin needs a little extra help?
Let’s talk about the connection between vaping and acne, then go through the options you have to clear up your skin after vaping.
The Science of Acne (It’s More than Skin Deep)
Acne is a very common and accepted rite of passage, especially for young people. But it’s important to realize that acne is, technically, a skin condition that means something less-than-healthy is happening with your skin.
Acne occurs when your hair follicles get clogged or infected. A wide range of factors can make this happen, from hormonal changes to genetics.
Lifestyle factors also significantly contribute to the development of infected skin and resultant breakouts—which makes what you eat, what you do, and how you treat your skin really important in maintaining a clear, healthy glow.
How Does Vaping Affect Your Skin?
Vaping can lead to some pretty serious unwanted medical outcomes, including blood vessel and lung damage. That can have indirect effects on the health of your skin, of course—but, as it turns out, vaping also has a direct link to skin damage and skin aging.
When you vape, you introduce harsh chemicals into your body. These include nicotine as well as propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin.
To put it lightly, your body (and your skin) is not used to these chemicals. When your body comes into contact with nicotine, propylene glycol, and the other components in popular vaping products, your skin can react with inflammation, oxidative stress, and cellular damage.
This leads to a long list of skin concerns associated with vaping:
- Vasoconstriction, or tightened blood vessels, which limits oxygen and nutrient supply to the skin and can lead to fine lines and wrinkles
- Dryness due to the presence of propylene glycol, which can damage the skin barrier and may also contribute to premature aging
- A further damaged skin barrier due to the presence of vegetable glycerin, which can also expose the skin to increased environmental damage
- Triggered skin allergies or eczema due to irritation
- Possible thermal or even chemical burns, if the vaping device malfunctions
And then, of course, there’s the link between vaping and acne specifically.
Can Vaping Cause Acne? Here’s How it Happens
When you vape, you experience an instant rush of dopamine. You feel relaxed. It feels good.
Unfortunately, while you’re getting that rush of pleasure, there’s a cascade of chemical events happening that, a few days later, can result in clogged pores and hard-to-manage acne.
Let’s take a look at what’s happening in the various layers of your skin:
- After inhaling tobacco or nicotine, your body starts going through its inflammatory response. This leads to oxidative stress, which can disrupt your body’s normal process of creating and balancing your hormones.
- This can result in your body’s creation of an excessive amount of sebum oil production. When this happens, your skin can get a little too oily, and your pores a little more clogged than normal.
- When your skin is inflamed, that can also disrupt your skin’s usual ability to heal and repair itself. This can allow acne to form more easily in the first place and impact your body’s way of healing acne scars after the fact.
- If you engage in long-term vape use, your skin’s normal protective barrier will get weak and damaged. This may result in more frequent breakouts, as well as a breakdown of collagen (a key skin component that keeps your skin bouncy and healthy).
- To add to the chaos your skin goes through after vaping, the liquid contained in vape pens and e-cigarettes can dry out your skin. This can tell your body to create even more sebum and oil, which can clog your pores further.
- Finally, consider the fact that people who vape tend to touch their faces more, to wipe off any vapors that settle on their skin while vaping. This can transfer bacteria from hands to faces easily, which also contributes to breakouts and skin barrier damage.
This sequence of events connecting vaping to bad skin outcomes can cause you to wonder:
Is it possible to enjoy nicotine and avoid drastic, day-ruining acne?
Can You Vape and Enjoy Clear Skin at the Same Time?
Here’s the truth: Maintaining clear skin while you vape can be challenging.
When you vape, you’re giving your skin a lot to deal with. Skin health won’t just happen on its own if you’re vaping—you’re going to need to establish a thoughtful, powerful skin care routine to combat what vaping can do to your skin.
To mitigate any redness, inflammation, acne, collagen loss, or premature aging associated with vaping, you may wish to:
- Keep vaping to a reasonable minimum.
- Select vapes that contain nicotine-free liquids, when possible.
- Select vapes that contain fewer chemicals, when possible.
- Cleans your skin after you vape to remove any chemicals or toxins.
- Apply moisturizer after cleansing to protect your skin barrier.
If, after you implement this routine, you find you still are battling frustrating acne, it may be time to explore high-quality treatment options to bust your breakouts.
Treatment Options for Acne After Vaping
Have concerns about acne? Think that it might be exacerbated by vaping, and you’re in need of an effective acne treatment option that can help you enjoy clearer skin?
Here, you’ll find a list of common, popular medications and treatments that can help. We’ll also touch on antibiotic treatments (and why you might want to consider them). Buying these drugs from Canada or internationally can yield significant savings as well.
Traditional Acne Medications
Retin A Cream (tretinoin) is an effective acne treatment that’s good for long-term use. It shows the most improvement when you use it consistently, over time. It’s also a good option for fading acne scars and improving skin texture, but you should be aware—it can come with an initial purge phase where skin can worsen prior to improvement.
You can buy Retin A Cream through NorthWestPharmacy.com for a little under $1.00 per gram and the generic for even less.
Retin A Micro Gel (tretinoin) is also effective at both improving skin texture and reducing breakouts. Its initial purge phase can come with redness, skin peeling, and initial flare-ups.
You can buy Retin A Micro Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $2.30 per gram and less for the generic.
Finacea Gel (azelaic acid) can be a great option for people who have sensitive skin. If your acne is due in part to inflammation or skin conditions like rosacea, this might be a good alternative to tretinoin.
You can buy Finacea Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $1.30 per gram but the generic version is even less expensive.
Stieva A Cream (tretinoin cream) is, like Retin A products, a tretinoin cream that can help users fade scars and achieve smoother skin. Anecdotally, patients note that Stieva A Cream may have a longer adjustment period than other similar products, but if you’re looking for something that your skin can get used to over time, this may be worth considering.
You can buy Stieva A Cream through NorthWestPharmacy.com for approximately $0.75 per gram.
Retin A Gel (tretinoin) offers patients a similar experience as Retin A Cream and Micro Gel, just in a gel formulation with a slightly different consistency. If you haven’t had an optimal experience with either of these other products but still want to benefit from tretinoin, Retin A Gel could be worth discussing with your doctor.
You can buy Retin A Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $0.90 per gram and much less for the generic.
Finacea Cream (azelaic acid) is a good treatment to consider if you’re dealing with mild to moderate acne, especially if you’re also experiencing inflammatory or sensitive skin conditions such as rosacea. The azelaic acid in Finacea Cream decreases the amount of keratin your skin produces. Since keratin can lead to acne development, reducing it can help clear up your skin.
You can buy Finacea Cream through NorthWestPharmacy.com for approximately $2.30 per gram but save still more on the generic.
Aczone Gel (dapsone) is a type of acne treatment used to treat “acne vulgaris,” or a type of inflammatory acne. As you might expect, Aczone Gel is an anti-inflammatory medication with anti-bacterial function as well. It promotes reduction of acne and quick healing.
You can buy Aczone Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $1.85 per gram with the generic costing less.
Differin Gel (adapalene) is a type of topical retinoid, much like tretinoin. Differin gel works by modulating your skin’s rate of cell growth. It also works to decrease swelling and inflammation.
You can buy Differin Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $1.00 per gram. Consider the generic we offer for bigger savings.
Differin XP Gel (adapalene) is very similar to Differin Gel; it’s just a stronger concentration. If you like the way that adapalene works on your skin but need a solution for more persistent acne cases, Differin XP Gel may be worth considering.
You can buy Differin XP Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $3.00 per gram.
Cleocin T Gel (clindamycin) is a type of antibiotic gel that patients can use topically to treat acne they’re experiencing. As an antibiotic, Cleocin T Gel works by stopping bacterial growth, which can reduce the number of acne lesions you experience.
You can buy Cleocin T Gel through NorthWestPharmacy.com for just over $1.00 per gram. Save even more on the generic version that we offer.
Antibiotic Tablets for Acne
Oracea (doxycycline delayed release) is a tetracycline antibiotic that can treat a wide range of infections, including those that cause acne. Oracea helps promote skin health by reducing bacterial growth and associated inflammation.
You can buy Oracea through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $4.50 per tablet but the generic version we offer is considerably less expensive.
Vibramycin (hyclate doxycycline) is an antibiotic that can also treat bacterial infections. If you’re dealing with infection-related acne, perhaps due to facial contact with vaping liquid, this antibiotic may be able to provide some help.
You can buy Vibramycin through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $4.10 per tablet or save 80% or more off that price by purchasing the generic version.
Tetracycline (tetracycline) is another type of antibiotic that can inhibit bacterial growth and, if it works well for you, reduce the severity of your acne.
You can buy generic Tetracycline through NorthWestPharmacy.com for approximately $0.20 per tablet.
Erythromycin Base (erythromycin) is an antibiotic worth checking out if you deal with severe inflammation. Many of these antibiotics perform similar functions. Your doctor can help you determine which is best for you, or if there is an order in which you should try these medications to figure out the best possible treatment plan for you and your skin.
You can buy generic Erythromycin Base through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $0.50 per tablet.
Minocin (minocycline) is a type of tetracycline antibiotic known particularly for its effectiveness in reducing inflammation. It, like other acne-targeting antibiotics, works by reducing the type of bacterial growth often associated with acne.
You can buy Minocin through NorthWestPharmacy.com for around $2.25 per tablet but the generic version is much cheaper still.
Periostat (doxycycline) is a lower-dose form of doxycycline. If you have issues with higher-dose antibiotics, it may be worth looking into Periostat to see if you can achieve results without undue side effects.
You can buy Periostat through NorthWestPharmacy.com for approximately $1.80 per tablet.
Cleocin (clindamycin) is an effective anti-acne antibiotic. It can help stop bacteria growth and reduce acne lesions.
You can buy Cleocin through NorthWestPharmacy.com for about $1.50 per pill or check out our generic version for a much lower price.
Does Vaping Cause Acne? If it Does, Buy Acne Treatments Here
When your relaxation aids result in stressful acne, that can be frustrating. Needing to pay top dollar for your acne treatments can be stressful, too.
Fortunately, when you buy your prescription and OTC acne products through an online Canadian pharmacy and international drugs website, you can benefit from significantly-slashed prices and convenient, time-saving shipping options.
Interested to see what NorthWestPharmacy.com can offer you?
Chat with one of our friendly customer service representatives, or read one of our hundreds of thousands of satisfied online pharmacy customer reviews. When you find what you need, checking out is simple! The team at NorthWestPharmacy.com looks forward to supporting you and your skin’s best health.