May 19, 2024
Does Vaping Cause Acne

Even though vaping is often considered a better option than smoking cigarettes, there is no denying that vaping has its share of health risks. So, if you are a vaper who frequently experiences breakouts on your skin, you may wonder whether vaping is responsible for it. Does vaping cause acne? 

Yes, it can indirectly cause acne. Despite the absence of a direct relationship between acne and vaping, the health risks linked to vaping can play a role in causing acne breakouts and other skin issues. In that sense, vaping could be among the factors causing acne for a vaper.

Read the whole article to understand how vaping can be related to skin problems.

Does Vaping Cause Acne? 

You get acne when your skin’s pores get clogged by dead skin cells and oil. That results in pimples on your face, shoulders, and other areas. Acne develops from the formation of dead skin cells, bacteria living in your pores, and the production of excess oil or sebum. 

Now, what does vaping have to do with it? Vaping dehydrates your skin. Each time a user vapes, it decreases the supply of oxygen to their face, causing their skin to get dehydrated and suffocate gradually. 

Consequently, as your skin gets dry from habitual vaping, your body reacts to it by producing more sebum. When that sebum clogs your pores, it leads to acne breakouts and other skin issues. 

Note that your diet, lifestyle, hormones, and other factors can also be responsible for acne. However, if you are a vaper, it will also indirectly contribute to that. Scroll down to find the connection between acne and vape.

The Potential Connection Between Vaping And Acne 

According to researchers, the elements in vaping could cause acne in the following ways.

  • The nicotine in your vaping can cause inflammation while tightening blood vessels. Your breakouts can get worse due to that. 
  • The chemicals, i.e., acrolein and formaldehyde, and flavors added to your vape can irritate your skin and pores.
  • Vegetable glycerine and propylene glycol in your vape juice can block pores. 
  • If you have a habit of touching your skin with your vaping device, it will transfer bacteria and dirt. 
  • Vaping can cause dehydration, vitamin deficiencies, and an unhealthy diet. They are all linked to acne.
  • When you exhale the smoke, it stays around your face for a while, bringing out your skin’s moisture and causing dehydration.
  • The heating coils of e-cigarettes typically consist of chromium and nickel. They can give you swelling lips and skin rashes, irritating your facial skin.

Unlike cigarettes, vaping does not touch its user’s skin directly. However, the ingredients that you inhale can stimulate acne. So, while there is nothing to reaffirm the claim that vaping is directly tied to acne, it is still better to be aware of the consequences its ingredients can cause. 

What Are The Other Skin Health Concerns Related To Vaping? 

Premature Aging 

Your skin has to remain well-hydrated to be healthy and look lively. But when you vape regularly, you are at a risk of dehydrating your skin. Over time, it can give you dark circles, skin irritation, wrinkles, textural inconsistencies, and fine lines. 

Lower Healing Capacity 

The inflammation caused by nicotine can reduce your blood flow, lowering your skin’s healing capacity. For instance, your blemishes might take too long to heal, and when they do, they leave deep scars. These happen when your skin’s healing facilities fail to work efficiently.

Oxidative Stress 

Inhaling the toxins from vaping will weaken the protective barrier of your skin. When they give your skin oxidative stress, free radicals or toxic molecules interacting with your skin cells multiply in your system. They damage proteins, DNA, and cellular structures and exacerbate skin conditions like psoriasis, acne, and rosacea. 

Cigarettes VS. Vaping: How Do They Affect The Skin? 

At this point, you might wonder about how cigarettes affect your skin. It has been established long ago that smoking cigarettes is related to skin cancer, dehydration, premature aging, and other skin problems. 

Moreover, smoking has its own condition that you can get solely for smoking too much. It is the smoker’s acne or atypical post-adolescent acne (APAA). So, that means both cigarettes and vaping affect your skin negatively in similar ways, but cigarettes are worse. 

Can You Get Acne From Second-Hand Vaping? 

Again, findings on the effects of vaping on passive vapers are inconclusive. But bear in mind that when someone vapes in front of you, you are also exposed to its smoke. So, there is a chance you might experience skin issues from second-hand vaping as a vaper would from direct consumption.

What Other Factors Can Cause Acne? 

Acne, an inflammatory condition of the skin, develops when the skin’s hair follicles get clogged with excessive sebum production and dead skin cells. Such conditions can result from other factors apart from vaping only.

For example, you can genetically inherit this skin condition. Hormonal imbalances can also result in acne. If you have acne, check your diet and cosmetics. Unhealthy food habits and oil-based cosmetics can block your pore linings and trigger acne. 

Additionally, too much exposure to the sunlight (especially if you do not use sunscreen), stress and anxiety, certain medications (steroids and lithium), pregnancy, and insulin resistance can be the other factors causing this skin problem. 

So, if you are a vaper and have acne, consider these factors along with your vaping habit to identify which factor or factors are behind it.

What Can You Do If You Vape And Have Acne?

  • First of all, consider quitting vaping or reducing it at least. That will quickly and visibly improve your skin condition. 
  • Do NOT pick at your pimples, no matter how tempting it seems. It will only worsen the situation by spreading bacteria and increasing inflammation. 
  • Consider switching to high-quality nicotine-free vapes to reduce the risks of skin issues caused by nicotine intake.
  • Eat healthy, sleep well, exercise, and use quality skincare products. They will help your skin get enough oxygen and stay hydrated. 
  • If the condition gets severe, consult your doctor for professional suggestions.

How To Prevent Acne When Vaping? 

If you want to make sure you do not suffer from acne while continuing your vaping habits, try to stick to the following maintenance routine. 

  1. Drink lots of water every day and eat watery vegetables and fruits. It is one of the most effective ways to keep your skin hydrated and healthy. 
  2. Do proper skincare. For example, shampoo your hair regularly, use gentle and alcohol-free products, wash your skin twice daily, and avoid sun exposure. 
  3. Exercise regularly, particularly swimming and jogging. They will enhance the oxygen levels of your body, increase skin elasticity, and improve your complexion by detoxifying pores.
  4. Keep your caffeine consumption in check. 
  5. Try to get a sound sleep of 8 to 10 hours every day. 
  6. Always remove your makeup before sleeping.
  7. Avoid stress and anxiety. 
  8. If you are pregnant, have hormonal issues, or take medications that can cause acne, talk to your physician to treat your skin.
  9. Be very careful not to let the vaping device touch your facial skin. Always put it on a plain and clean surface. Furthermore, practice cleansing your hands before you touch your face. It will help you avoid passing on oils and dirt that block pores.

Will Your Skin Damage Reverse If You Stop Vaping? 

It definitely will. When you stop vaping, your blood flow will increase, followed by significant drops in the levels of carbon monoxide. Your skin will improve by getting an uninterrupted supply of antioxidants and oxygen. Besides, the production of new and healthy skin cells will go back to normal. 

All this will not only heal your skin damage but also deter further issues from bothering your skin. Plus, a healthy lifestyle with improved skincare will make things even better for you. 


Does vaping cause acne? To straightly answer your question, it does. Yes, there is yet to be concrete evidence against its direct impact on your skin. That said, it is undeniable that its ingredients are detrimental to your skin. 

While more research is needed in this area, stay aware of the repercussions I discussed today. Besides, try to develop a healthy lifestyle to prevent acne. If you are a vaper and have acne, quit or reduce vaping and look for the other causes. In case it looks alarming, always consult a professional for medical treatment.