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Can Old Pillows Cause Acne?

Can Old Pillows Cause Acne?

All of us have their favorite pillow, and no matter how old it is, we still want to cuddle it each night.

However, we might not know that our favorite pillow is stabbing us at the back; it may trigger certain types of allergens that can affect our skin, and most especially our sleep.

So, here is a direct and brief answer for some sleepers who ask if old pillows can cause acne.

Unfortunately, your old favorite pillow can cause acne and trigger certain allergies, according to some sleep experts. This is because old pillows are prone to building-up dirt, dead skin cells, dust mites, oil, and other contaminants that can cause your skin to breakout and for some sleepers that can exacerbate their asthma.

Aside from your old pillow, several factors can contribute to the reasons why your skin loves to break out. Hence, hormonal imbalances, genetics, and even stress can cause to your skin blemishes.

That is why, if you are already prone to one of these kinds of delicate situations, you must be very cautious when it comes to taking care of your skin so that it will not cause any further irritation.

Therefore, here are some preventive steps you can do to lessen the incidence of skin breakouts from personal hygiene up to considering your bedding linens as these can contribute to the causes of skin acne.

Personal Hygiene Tips

For people experiencing acne, proper personal hygiene is the key to prevent breakouts from popping out of nowhere. Hence, you can follow these simple tips so that you can help with reducing the contributing factors to your facial acne.

Tip 1: Wash your face properly every night

This seems pretty obvious because who does not wash his/her face every night?

I think with the trend of Korean products all over the world to achieve that dewy and rosy cheeks, most of us have a nighttime routine we strictly follow. To wash your face, here are some helpful tips you must know.

  • Wash your face with warm water (as this can help to open the pores clogged with dirt, makeup, and oil)
  • Use a mild cleanser, preferably an alcohol-free based cleanser and apply it gently on a circular and upward motion
  • Rinse off your face thoroughly and pat to dry

Tip 2: Consult your dermatologist

This is to assess what type of skin you have since no matter what skin type you have, anyone can experience breakouts; however, people with oily skin type are the most prone to having pimples.

Aside from having oily skin, combination skin is another skin type that can cause pimples. With this type of skin, you both have dry and oily areas such as your forehead, down to your nose, and chin, or the so-called T-zone.

Knowing your skin type will help your dermatologist to prescribe the right skin products for your needs.

  • Oily skin type: noncomedogenic products
  • Dry skin: moisturizer

Tip 3: Keep hydrated

I think you have always heard it everywhere that the road to clear skin is to stay hydrated, but people complain that all they do is to pee all they long.

How true is this tip? Well, according to some experts, if your body does not replenish enough fluids, it will be dehydrated, and if you are dehydrated, your body will send a signal to your skin to produce more oil.

In addition to this, dehydration can make your skin dull and can cause inflammation and redness. That is why it is recommended to have at least eight glasses of water each day to keep your body hydrated.

Aside from proper personal hygiene, consider also changing your bedding, especially your old pillow, since you lay your head on it each night.

This is most crucial if you are a side sleeper since your side cheek will have direct contact on your pillow; hence, you must need to do something about this.

Here are some helpful tips that will come handy to prevent further breakouts and keep your skin free from blemishes.

Consider Changing Your Beddings

Okay, you need to calm down, if you have done your part on doing proper personal hygiene, yet you are still experiencing breakouts.

Well, I think it's time to look around and search for the main culprit that is causing your acne since laying your head and rubbing your face against it can spark some blemishes.

Moreover, if you think carefully, you will observe that your pillow can also cause facial acne, but if you look deeper into it, pillowcases must also be considered in this situation.

Therefore, this duo (pillow-pillowcases) must be checked and replace if they are causing too much struggle and stress on your face. As you can read below are some helpful tips you must consider to prevent entirely or lessen the incidence of having breakouts:

Tip 1: Shift to breathable pillows

Yes, as experts say that old pillows can cause acne; therefore, if you will be buying a new pillow, you must look for pillows that are cool, breathable, and easy to clean so that you will not do not have a hard time to clean and get that dirt, dust mites, and other types of allergens away from your pillow.

That is why memory foam pillows are the top picks for this kind of situation due to their hypoallergenic feature that can inhibit bacterial growth of dust mites, bacteria, and molds, which can cause skin irritation and other skin problems for people with sensitive skin.

Hence, here are some of my recommended pillows, which can be easily cleaned and washed.

To clean these pillows, you can check for their care label instructions indicated by the manufacturer, or you can check this site for you to look on. Otherwise, you will end up ruining your pillow, so be careful.

Tip 2: Look for the best pillowcases

Since before your face touches your pillow, I think pillowcases must come in contact first, right?

Therefore, you need to look for pillowcases that are less likely can harm your skin by considering the types of materials used in making pillowcases.

According to some experts, avoid pillowcases made from fabrics such as bamboo, cotton, microfiber, and hemp since they can trigger acne breakouts by absorbing dirt and oil on your skin. Therefore, a hint here is to look for pillowcases that are not absorbable.

Silk pillowcases have always been recommended for people with normal to sensitive skin since it can reduce friction between your skin, causing less skin irritation. You can check here for other benefits of silk pillowcases.

Sleeping on pillowcases made from natural fabrics are more breathable and can lessen the transfer of sebum from your face to the pillow.

Hence, here are the best pillowcases recommended for people with acne-prone skin.

Tip 3: Replace your pillowcases once a week

Washing and replacing your bedding linens at least once a week can help reduce your acne breakouts. This is because it can lessen the pore-clogging dirt and oil that can come in contact with your skin found on your pillowcases.

Another helpful tip for people with acne-prone skin is to avoid using a fabric conditioner when washing your pillowcases since this can leave a waxy coating that is highly risky for pore-clogging.

Instead, you can try this Diva Stuff Anti-Bacterial Pillow Mist that has a natural and calming fragrance of lavender, which is also good in fighting off bacteria that causes acne.

Tip 4: Iron your pillowcases and sheets

Not only to make your bedroom fancy and cozy, ironing your pillowcases can help in reducing acne breakout. D

o you want to know how?

Well, thanks to the iron heat that can kill enough bacteria, dust mites, and molds that can cause allergies for sleepers.

It may seem like a hassle, but your time and effort in ironing your bedding linens will not turn into waste since you will likely achieve clean and wrinkle-free pillowcases, which is good for your acne-prone skin.


  • As a rule of thumb, pillows should be replaced every 1 to 2 years
  • If your pillows are washable, you must wash them at least twice a year
  • Make spot cleaning for your pillows a habit
  • Change bedding linens and pillowcases every week
  • Replace your pillow with a new one when your pillow has any of these following signs.

Image by Kjerstin Michaela Haraldsen from Pixabay