6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

There are 2 categories in which acne blemishes fall under. This depends on if they cause inflammation or not. That being said, there is non-inflammatory acne and inflammatory acne.

Inflammatory acne is more severe compared to non-inflammatory acne, and most of the time, you should see your doctor for treatment.

We want to explain what causes the most common types of acne before continuing treatment.

Types of Acne And Causes

6. Pimples

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

They are non-inflammatory meat or white bumps or patches that generally have a white center surrounded by a red halo. In some cases, the hair may come out of the center or appear stuck inside.

Causes: Blackheads are formed by dirt, oily sebum, and dead skin cells clogging the pores. These are closed inside the pore.

5. Blackheads

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

Just the opposite of pimples, blackheads (non-inflammatory) are small dark or black spots that appear as bumps. In general, the skin around the black point is normal and the center is darker.

Causes: Just because they are darker in color doesn’t mean these spots have more dirt in the pore. It is just a sign that the pores are enlarged and caused by clogged hair follicles.

4. Papules

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

Papules are inflammatory acne located below the surface of the skin. The skin around these spots is usually red and swollen.

They are tall, pink, solid, and smooth. But compared to the two types of non-inflammatory acne, they do not have a visible center and aren’t widened.


  • Skin infection (molluscum contagiosum)
  • The development of small blood vessels (cherry angioma)
  • Warts
  • Eczema
  • Allergic reaction

3. Pustules, Otherwise Known as Pimples

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

The spines are swollen and larger, with a circular center. The center is filled with yellowish/whitish pus on a red skin base. In fact, they closely resemble larger whiteheads but inflamed.


  • Most common allergic reaction to food or environmental allergens.
  • Insect bites (poisonous)
  • When the skin is clogged with dead cells and oil

2. Nodules

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

Swollen, painful, and hard nodules located on the lower part of the skin are known as nodules. This type can become serious and cause skin complications such as scars and dark spots.

Causes: They are considered inflammatory acne and form when clogged pores damage cells and tissues deep below the skin’s surface.

1. Cysts

6 Different Types of Acne (Pimples) and What Might Cause Them

When the pustules become infected, they begin to become painful. It is when the pustules become a cyst.

Cystic acne consists of painful, large but soft white or red nodules located deep in the skin, even deeper than the nodules.

They are also filled with pus. In fact, they are considered to cause serious skin complications, such as scarring.

Cause: infected pustules

Do you suffer from acne? What type? What treatment helped you?


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