Eyebrow Pimples: Treatments and Causes


Eyebrow Pimples: Treatments and Causes

Eyebrow pimples can be different from ones occurring on other parts of the face. The good news is that they’re pretty easy to clear up.

According to Dr. Sandra Lee, a board-certified dermatologist at Union Square Laser Dermatology in New York, we break out there because the eyebrows are, “the glabellar area (the medical term for the region between the eyebrows) and its part of your T-zone.” The T-zone starts at your forehead and follows down the length of your nose. It ends at your chin, which is one of the oiliest areas of your face. Because it has the highest concentration of sebaceous glands, that means the area create more sebum. In return, more sebum equals more pimples.

What Causes Eyebrow Pimples?

Did you know that eyebrow pimples can be caused by different things? Consider that  hair products, your  hair, make-up, hormones, and tweezing or waxing can all lead to the issue of breakouts.

Hair Products

Hair products like spray, gel, and conditioners can find their way down from the scalp. In doing so, they can clog the pores of the eyebrows. These clogged pores are more susceptible to forming acne, because you aren’t as likely to cleanse your eyebrows as well as the rest of your face. 


How can your own hair cause eyebrow pimples? Its not what you think. Sure hair that grows into the brow can clog the pore, but more often it’s your bangs and the excess oil and bacteria from it brushing against your face that causes problems. Wait! I wouldn’t cut your hair just yet. Just make sure to pay attention to the eyebrow area of your face when you lather up, and you’ll be golden. Remember, twice a day with a good cleanser can make a difference. 


Make-up clogging pores can be a problem, too. But, even worse than the actual make-up is the bacteria that lives on the your pencils, powders, and wands. Be sure to clean them thoroughly with alcohol. Any brushes that you put near your eye should be cleaned as well.

Just like the rest of your face, hormones can mess with your skin. You can have the best cleansing regimen, eat a healthy diet, and get plenty of rest but still your body has its own agenda. How frustrating, right? Thanks, hormones and puberty. In this case, the most effective thing you can do is to keep up with your cleansing regimen even during breakouts.

Hair Removal

Tweezing, waxing, threading or whatever you do to keep your brows shapely seems harmless. It is for the most part. But when you remove the hair, you pull it out at the root. When the new hair grows back, it grows from beneath the skin before it’s visible. The problem is, it can get trapped before it pokes through. This causes a little bump. Eyebrow pimples! Ugh.

How to Get Rid of Eyebrow Pimples From the Outside

One way to get rid of eyebrow pimples and prevent them from happening is to have a good cleanser handy. A good cleanser doesn’t need to be expensive. A “good” cleanser is going to be one that’s good for your skin type.

Obviously, you’re having an oil problem. The pimple tells you that, but overall your skin may be dry. Choose a cleanser accordingly. Also, when choosing a cleanser, look for labels like “noncomedogenic”, which means the product is perfect for those with oily or acne-prone skin and is less likely to cause further outbreaks. 

If the pimple looks more like a blackhead, you’re going to want a different type of product. Look for something with more of an exfoliating profile. In this case look for ingredients like salicylic and glycol acids. “These ingredients dissolve the clog inside the pimples and gently exfoliate skin to decrease acne,” explains Rachel Nazarian, MD, a New York-based dermatologist and fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology. 

Spot Treatments

A spot treatment is useful with eyebrow acne if it’s contained to a small area. A spot treatment will be dabbed or gently rubbed into the eyebrow area. Some spot treatments are left on overnight, while others dry clear so you can wear them during the day.

A spot treatment is effective because the active ingredients help reduce redness and swelling. Like other treatments, it helps loosen or dissolve the blockage within the pore. This tackles the problem at the source.

A spot treatment is best for a minor, surface pimple like a pustule.  A spot treatment isn’t a good choice for a deeper blemish like an acne nodule or cyst. For these types of eyebrow pimples, consult your dermatologist.

How To Get Rid of Eyebrow Pimples From the Inside

A healthy diet helps keep your skin balanced and prevent a build-up of oil in the T-zone. Balanced skin helps prevent breakouts from happening in and around the eyebrows.

Studies are finding that diets with the recommended daily amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, fewer dairy products, and fewer foods with a high glycemic index, are healthy for many reasons including acne free skin. 

As we’ve discussed, acne develops when pores in the skin become clogged. This clogging occurs when the body produces too much sebum. You need to remove the excess sebum  through twice daily cleansing.

Some studies suggest that IGF-1 may increase the production of sebum and worsen symptoms of acne. Certain foods can also raise IGF-1 levels. So, avoid these foods to help prevent breakouts. 

Interestingly, these same studies looked at greasy foods as a cause of acne, and found no correlation. It is the overactive sebaceous glands causing oily skin, not the fat and oil in food. 

Eat healthy, cleanse your face, and if eyebrow pimples persist see your dermatologist!

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