Using milk on your face for acne? Don’t do it, here’s why

Milk is not only beneficial to our body it is beneficial to our skin as well.

Milk contains many nourishing minerals and vitamins that keep us healthy on the inside as well as keep our skin healthy on the outside.

This ingredient has been used for centuries in skincare and it is still being used today in various skincare products.

It contains vitamin A, vitamin D and lactic acid. So does using milk on your face for acne work? This article looks into it.

Milk has moisturising and skin-soothing properties, it can also help to exfoliate the skin.

The lactic aid in milk is a gentle chemical exfoliator. This ingredient is well used and well-loved in skincare.

But out of all the products you can use to fight acne milk shouldn’t be your acne-fighting choice

Using milk on your face for acne

Is milk good for acne?

Milk is not good for acne.

Many claim that you can use milk in the formula for your DIY acne treatment but in reality, the milk won’t do much to help decrease the appearance of acne.

There are a couple of reasons why using milk on your skin may seem like a good idea.

It contains vitamin D, a lack of vitamin D is linked to acne developing on the skin.

It is moisturising, your skin produces sebum (skin oil) when it becomes dry, this excess sebum mixes in with your dead skin cells and causes acne.

Keeping your skin moisturised can help prevent new acne from forming.

Milk is soothing to the skin, this can help with the redness and pain you may feel around your acne.

All this is great but it won’t really help you deal with your acne like products developed to target acne can.

In fact, if you apply milk to your face the high-fat content of the milk can mix with the sebum and the dead skin cells of your skin and clog your pores.

In addition, drinking milk has been linked to developing acne. If you have acne rather stick to products designed to treat acne or use other natural acne treatment options like using tea tree oil.

Why is my face breaking out?

Breakouts happen when the pores on your skin become clogged and create blemishes. These can show up as whiteheads, blackheads or pimples.

The skin produces sebum and sometimes produces sebum in excess.

The skin also sheds dead skin cells but the dead skin cells don’t always fall off the skin but rather sit on the skin.

When the excess sebum and dead skin cells mix and get into the pore the pore becomes clogged.

If the clog looks white it is called a whitehead. When the clog becomes exposed to oxygen in the air the exposed area turns black and the blemish is called a blackhead.

When bacteria on the skin enters the clog the blemish is called a pimple. The contents of the pimple will become infected and turn into puss.

Pimples can become red, inflamed and even painful.

What really gets rid of acne

Thankfully there are various treatments that can help get rid of acne. Here are some treatments you can use to get rid of your acne:


These are chemical exfoliants, AHA’s include lactic acid and glycolic acid to name a few.

These ingredients slough off dead skin cells from your face by separating the dead skin cells from the newer fresher skin cells thus removing them from your face before they clog your pores and cause acne.

They also break up the contents of the clogged pore helping to greatly reduce the acne on your skin

This exfoliator contains AHAs, it is well-loved and widely used.

Benzoyl peroxide:

This ingredient kills off acne-causing bacteria on your skin. This eliminates the chances of you developing pimples on your skin.

The ingredient also exfoliates any dead skin cells on your skin and removes and regulates the sebum production on your skin.

This not only helps to get rid of pimples but also helps to reduce the rate of whitehead and blackhead development as well.

This product not only gets rid of acne but also prevents acne from forming.

This face & body acne wash contains benzoyl peroxide, it is well-loved and widely used.

Saysilic acid:

This is a BHA (beta hydroxy acid). It is a chemical exfoliator.

This ingredient gets into your pores and exfoliates thus unclogging your pores and reducing your acne.

This acid is also anti-inflammatory so it will help to reduce the inflammation and pain on your pimple.

This exfoliator contains saysilic acid, it is well-loved and widely used.


Many clay masks and the other clay products are designed for oily and acne-prone skin.

This is because the clay absorbs the excess sebum on your skin which causes pimples in the first place.

It is also used as an acne treatment as it is anti-inflammatory

This clay mask it is well-loved and widely used.

Tea tree oil:

If you would like a treatment that is natural then you can use tea tree oil on your face to treat acne.

This natural oil is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. It will calm and soothe your acne allowing it to heal faster.

The oil is also antibacterial so it will kill off acne-causing bacteria on the skin. Remember to dilute the tea tree oil before use.

This tea tree oil is well-loved and widely used.


You can find over the counter or prescription retinoids depending on the strength of retinoid you get.

The over the counter retinoids are less strong but still work well to help deal with acne on the skin.

The prescription retinoids are stronger and need to be used under supervision to avoid you damaging your skin.

Retinoids work by speeding up cell turnover. They unclog the pores by exfoliating the skin rapidly.

This retinol it is well-loved and widely used.


In some cases, you may be prescribed some antibiotics to treat your acne.

These prescription antibiotics work to kill off the acne-causing bacteria on the skin that cause breakouts in the first place.

These antibiotics can be taken orally and other types can be used topically.

Birth control pills:

This serves the purpose of helping to improve your skin as well as preventing pregnancy. These pills contain hormones.

The hormones in birth control pills include progestin and oestrogen and these not only regulate any mood swings you may have but they can also reduce excess oil on your skin.

This reduction of oil on the skin will maintain a healthy oil balance on your skin and this prevents pimples.

What does milk do for your face?

Milk is well-loved as a skin treatment because it can nourish your skin giving you a moisturised and glowing appearance:

Cleansing: Milk contains the chemical exfoliant lactic acid. This is an alpha hydroxy acid. It helps in getting rid of dead skin cells on your face and can also help to stimulate the growth of new cells.

The amount of lactic acid present in milk is not enough to cleanse your face on its own not it can play a small part in cleansing.

Moisturisation: The high-fat content in milk helps to moisturise your skin to some degree.

It shouldn’t be used as your sole moisturiser but if used in your skincare routine in a mask or in other DIY product it can moisturise the skin.

Using it is better than not applying anything.

Using milk on your face for acne

Is milk good for an oily face?

Milk is not good to use if you have an oily face.

If your skin is already oily and you apply milk on it the added fat content of the milk can cause you to develop acne.

If you want the nutritional benefits of milk you can use powdered milk as a skin treatment.

Powdered milk is evaporated milk and contains the nutrients and minerals that regular milk has.

There are various types of powdered milk that can be used on oily skin depending on your needs. Read more about powdered milk for skincare here

Does curd cause acne?

When applied on the skin:

Curd is processed milk, it is made by curdling milk with either vinegar or lemon juice. It still has the ability to cause acne on the skin just as milk can. 

The curd has a high-fat content. This high level of fat can clog your pores and cause acne.

It does contain lactic acid which can break up clogs in your pores but this lactic acid is not enough to really make a difference if you have acne.

So yes when applied on the skin curd can cause acne.

When ingested:

Curd contains a lot of milk, and drinking milk has been linked to developing acne. Cows milk can cause your skin to develop inflammation and can trigger your hormones to increase the sebum production on your skin.

This excess sebum will mix in with the dead skin cells on your skin as well as with the acne-causing bacteria on the skin and result in more acne.

So yes ingesting curd can cause acne as well

Why did I get acne overnight?

Product ingredients: Products are designed with a certain skin type in mind.

Some skin types can use comedogenic ingredients and not be affected by them.

Comedogenic ingredients are ingredients that can cause breakouts in some skin types, comedogenic ingredients include coconut oil.

If you have oily skin or combination skin and use a product that contains a comedogenic ingredient like coconut oil this can result in you developing acne overnight.

If a person with dry or normal skin uses this ingredient they may not develop acne.

Stresses: If you are stressed over an exam, an interview, a date or anything you find important then your skin will react.

Stress realises stress hormones and these hormones trigger the sebaceous glands to release sebum, the sebaceous glands may even overproduce sebum.

This sebum will then mix in with your dead skin cells and cause pimples.

Medications: Medications such as hormonal pills or steroids can result in you developing acne, sometimes overnight.

These medications affect your body’s hormone levels. Topical corticosteroids result in more yeast in the pores which can result in more acne.

Birth control medication: This is another medication that can give you acne. Hormonal birth controls affect your skin and can cause acne.

Does toothpaste work on pimples?

No toothpaste does not work on pimples, this is a myth that is doing more harm than good.

The toothpaste will only temporarily reduce the size of the pimple. It can over-dry the skin which is not helpful and is not worth the risk.

There are some benefits to using toothpaste on acne but the cons outweigh the pros. Toothpaste contains chemicals which can kill off acne-causing bacteria on the skin.

Toothpaste is drying, it can help make the pimple smaller, it can even reduce pain and welling but in the end, it won’t remove your pimple it can make it worse.

The ingredients used in toothpaste can irritate the skin. The skin is quite fragile, the acid ph of the toothpaste won’t work well with the neutral ph of your skin. The combination will result in irritation, rashes and even burring.

The toothpaste can also over-dry the pimple. The skin needs to stay moisturised but not greasy for the pimple to heal properly.

In addition, if you dry the skin too much the skin may produce more sebum in an effort to moisturise itself. The skin can produce sebum in excess and this can result in more pimples.

Rather use products specially designed to treat acne.

Does sleep affect acne?

Yes, sleep does affect acne. If you take care of your body your body will take care of you, taking care of your body includes sleeping well. A lack of sleep triggers stress in the body.

This releases stress hormones and these stress hormones cause your sebaceous glands to go into overdrive.

This results in more sebum being produced and thus more acne developing.

Read more about the link between sleep and skin health here.

How long does acne last?

Acne generally lasts about 4-5 years. After this time it will settle on its own. you can manage the acne during the 4-5 years until it goes away on its own.

Acne usually starts to develop when a person is around 12 years old. In some cases, acne can keep developing into your 20s and can even develop into adult acne.

That’s it on my article looking at using milk on your face for acne. If you enjoyed this article lease share it.

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