New Research Suggests Acne Might Be “Good for Your Skin”

Anti-Aging & Beauty

While most teenagers bemoan the appearance of the red spots on their faces, a new study has emerged suggesting that these unsightly skin legions might actually be good for you.

Kings College London conducted research revealing that teens who are prone to acne actually have younger looking skin as they age, as compared to their peers with perfect complexions. Those with acne will delay the onset of wrinkles as well as thinning skin, which causes the appearance of aging.

Dr. Simone Ribero, a dermatologist from the Department of Twin Research and Genetic Epidemiology at King’s College, stated:

“For many years dermatologists have identified that the skin of acne sufferers appears to age more slowly than in those who have not experienced any acne in their lifetime. Whilst this has been observed in clinical settings, the cause of this was previously unclear.” [1]

The researchers discovered that those who have previously had acne have longer telomeres compared to those with nicer skin. Telomeres keep chromosomes from aging, thus minimizing the appearance of wrinkles and other age markers in former acne sufferers.

Researchers examined the telomeres in twins from the TwinsUK cohort, where one quarter of the participants said they had suffered from acne in the past. [2]

It had previously been theorized that those with acne-prone skin produce more oil, which, in turn, leads to a delay of wrinkle development. Now, new research shows that it all actually does come down to genetics. Although, scientists are not discounting that the oil produced in their skin might actually also create an anti-aging effect.

Read: Home Remedies for Acne

Lead researcher Dr. Simone Ribero from King’s College London said of the study:

“Our findings suggest the cause could be linked to the length of telomeres which appears to be different in acne sufferers and means their cells may be protected against aging.” [3]

While the discovery of the longer telomeres is definitely exciting, it doesn’t mean that this is the real reason acne sufferers stay more youthful-looking for a longer period of time. The end-message here is that those who have had acne may not wrinkle as quickly as others – not that acne causes skin to age more slowly. What’s more, the study didn’t lend focus to acne severity or age of onset, which are important factors for skin appearance (think scars).

Scientists conclude that more research will need to be done in order to come to a more solid conclusion.


[1] Huffington Post

[2] New York Daily News

[3] BBC