Are Your Sunglasses Giving You Zits? 


Do you develop pimples on your cheeks and between your eyebrows? Your specs could be the culprit behind these breakouts! Even if you don't rock the four-eyes effect daily, sunglasses are an essential accessory when the sun is shining. Before the warm weather hits, we chatted with Los Angeles-based dermatologist Jessica Wu M.D., to discover how frames can irritate your skin—and how to avoid those pesky flare ups!

How Glasses Cause Breakouts

Zits appear when sweat and oil get trapped in your pores. "When you wear glasses, the pressure can irritate the opening of the pores and cause clogging—which leads to blackheads and pimples," says Dr. Wu. "In addition, if you wear moisturizer, sunscreen, or makeup, the product can get pushed into your pores, clogging them further.” Most blemishes caused by specs will appear where the frames rest, the dreaded T-zone: in between your eyebrows and on the brim of your nose. Thicker frames —which are especially popular with various sunglasses styles—will touch more surface area, including your cheeks. Another reason lenses result in an unhealthy build up? Though it may be subconscious, constantly touching your face to adjust your glasses will also bring more oil and bacteria to the skin.

Simple Solutions

So how can you avoid these annoying breakouts? Dr. Wu recommends regularly cleaning your frames with antibacterial or makeup wipes, which can remove the dirt, oil, and makeup that get stuck on your specs. When you’re adjusting the glasses placement, be sure to only touch where the frame doesn't rest on your skin. For on-the-go fixes, stash blotting papers in your purse for a quick swipe down your nose.

Dr. Jessica Wu is a board-certified dermatologist practicing in Los Angles, California. In addition to developing her own skin care line, Dr. Jessica Wu Cosmeceuticals,  she is also the author of Feed Your Face: Younger, Smoother Skin and a Beautiful Body in 28 Delicious Days. Dr. Whu has appeared on Good Morning America and Entertainment Tonight and has been featured in Elle, Allure, Women's Wear Daily, and numerous other publications.