4 Types of Acne & The Best Ingredients to Deal with Them

Not all types of acne are the same. It should come as no surprise considering the variety of factors, such as hygiene, genetics, and hormones that can lead to acne and exacerbate it in the first place. Luckily, gaining some basic knowledge about different types of acne and the effective ways to treat them can go a long way in combating your acne issues successfully. 

Once you know about the exact type of acne you’re experiencing, you can treat it easily, effectively, and quickly. This will also help you determine the kind of products and ingredients that will work most effectively for your particular type of acne.

Let’s find out how to recognize and treat different types of acne, including whiteheads, pimples, cystic zits, and blackheads — because there’s no one-size-fits-all acne ingredient that will cure all types of acne.

1. Hormonal Acne

How to identify it?

These usually occur in the form of zits around the jawline and chin. 

Why Does It Happen?

If you’re getting zits and pimples around the same time each month, your acne may be caused by fluctuating hormone levels. These are quite common in women and occur around their periods. Hormones can speed up oil production in the skin that can clog up the pores with dirt and bacteria, leading to acne breakouts. 

How to Treat It? 

The safest way to handle hormonal acne is to get some proven acne-fighting ingredients in your arsenal. Proven effective AHAs like glycolic acid and BHAs like salicylic acid and chemical ingredients like benzoyl peroxide along with powerful plant-based ingredients like Kalanchoe extract can help prevent and treat hormonal acne.

2. Whiteheads


In general, these are small zits with a white dot in their center. 

Underlying Cause

This acne generally happens due to clogged pores. Dead Skin cells can build up inside the pores and block them as a result. Excess oil trapped inside the clogged pores can combine with bacteria and dirt, leading to inflammation that will eventually turn into whiteheads or pimples. 

How to Treat It? 

The best way to get rid of your whiteheads and to prevent them from occurring again in the future is to use a salicylic acid-based cleanser and toner every day. Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that helps exfoliate the skin by sloughing off dead skin cells from the surface. This can help keep your pores clean and clear at all times. Try Zali’s Daily Deep Facial Cleanser that contains both salicylic acid and Kalanchoe extract – a plant-based ingredient renowned for its skin healing and soothing properties – to prevent skin from getting excessively dry due to AHAs and BHAs. 

3. Cystic Acne

How to Identify It?

If your pimples are red, big, and painful to touch, chances are you’re suffering from cystic acne. 

Why Does It Happen?

The underlying causes of cystic pimples may be hormonal stimulation (increased activity of oil glands) and sometimes genetics. These pimples are not only big and painful, they are also quite difficult to treat. Their chances of occurring at the same place again are quite high because the same pores tend to fill up with oil and bacteria over and over again. 

How to Treat It? 

Though usual acne-fighting ingredients such as salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and benzoyl peroxide can help you minimize your cystic acne, if your acne is still getting out of hand, you need to see your dermatologist. 

4. Blackheads

How to Identify It?

Tiny, dark dots on top of your pores

Why Does It Happen?

These are very common and usually occur during the teenage years. Like whiteheads, blackheads also occur due to blocked pores. What differentiates them from whiteheads is that they are darker and have a larger opening. The large opening on their surface allows air to enter inside the pores and oxidize the accumulated oil. This oxidation turns them darker. 

How to Treat It? 

The key to getting rid of your blackheads and prevent them from recurring is regular exfoliation. Our experts recommend pairing effective and proven exfoliating ingredients like salicylic acid and glycolic acid with natural soothing ingredients like Kalanchoe extract. Zali’s range of Daily Facial Cleansers and toners is tried and tested.

We hope that this brief guide will help you choose the best acne-fighting products for your needs. Be sure to check our range of skincare products here

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