Pimples on chin: a detailed guide to causes and treatment options

Pimples on chin: a detailed guide to causes and treatment options
May 25, 2016 10:26 PM

Pimples (sometimes also called zits or bumps) appear when dirt, sebum, excess oil, and dead skin cells mingle and block the openings of your pores. This provides the bacteria living on your skin a favorable environment to multiply and cause pimples or acne breakouts. This post takes a detailed look at causes and both medical (traditional) and home remedies for bumps on chin.


  1. What causes pimples on chin and around mouth?
    1. Poor diet
    2. Hormonal imbalance
    3. Polycystic ovarian syndrome
    4. Poor lymphatic drainage
    5. Stress acne chin
    6. Makeup
    7. Poor personal hygiene
    8. Miscellaneous
  2. Treatment options for pimples on chin
    1. Treatment of underlying diseases causing zits on chin
    2. Hormone therapy
    3. PCOS treatment
    4. Use of antibiotics
    5. Clinical creams, lotions, ointments
    6. Anti-acne medications
    7. Healthy diet
    8. Relax
    9. Adequate rest and exercise
    10. Maintain personal hygiene
    11. Home remedies for pimples on chin (with instructions)
    12. Ice
    13. Lemon
    14. Tea tree oil
    15. Toothpaste
    16. Steam
    17. Garlic
    18. Apply some apple cider vinegar
    19. Make a cinnamon and honey mask
    20. Whip up some whites
    21. Papaya for the pimple prone
    22. Make an orange peel paste
    23. Mix strawberries and honey
    24. Sugar scrub
    25. Avocado & honey mask
    26. Freshen up with mint
  3. Precautions for treatment of bumps on chin
  4. FAQs
  5. Things to remember

What causes pimples on chin and around mouth?

Zits and bumps on chin (as well as in other areas of the body, such as nose or roof of the mouth) may be caused by various factors. The most common ones are described below.

Poor diet

First of all, acne on chin might mean that you either have a poor diet or food allergies. Individuals who have food allergies and do not have a balanced diet have been observed to suffer from spots on their chin. This happens because pimples on the chin have been linked with disturbances of small intestine, especially those caused by food allergies or unhealthy diet (1).

Hormonal imbalance

Secondly, hormonal disturbance could be the culprit if you pimples appear around or during the time of your menstrual cycle, pregnancy or menopause or puberty (2). For example, you might be prone to break outs on your chin just a few days before your period and they will start disappearing after your menstrual flow is over.

Polycystic ovarian syndrome

In this condition, levels of sex hormones become imbalanced. Usually, the ovaries produce a minute amount of male sex hormones (androgens). In polycystic ovarian syndrome, androgen levels are slightly raised. This may cause ovulation to stop, appearance of pimples and growth of extra hair on face and body (3, 4).

Poor lymphatic drainage

Another condition behind pimples on chin might be poor lymphatic drainage. In this condition the body cannot get rid of toxic substances. Collection of these toxins can lead to appearance of pimples on chin.

Stress acne chin

You must have noticed that your pimples worsen with anxiety and stress. The exact reason is not yet known but as sebum producing cells have stress receptors, some sort of connection exists between stress and pimples. Due to the fact that oil, dirt, sebum, dead skin cells and bacteria are what actually cause zits or acne, it is assumed that anxiety and acne breakouts are linked (5).

If you lead a stressful lifestyle you become prone to appearance of pimples on chin. They may range from mild to very severe depending on your anxiety level. Stress caused by family problems, social or professional life is enough to cause breakouts on chin.


Oily lipsticks, lip balms and glosses sometimes contain ingredients that promote acne on chin.

Poor personal hygiene

Not paying attention to personal hygiene can cause pimples to appear or worsen existing acne (6). Some of the common things that may cause pimples on chin include:

  • Letting dirty mobile phones touch skin of your chin and neck, particularly if you are in a habit of holding your mobile phone with your chin and neck while multi tasking. Skin oils, as well as acne causing germs present on your phone trigger acne.
  • Likewise, dirty musical instruments such as flute, tuba or mouth organs can cause acne if they come in contact with your chin.
  • Do not touch your face or chin with dirty hands because acne causing bacteria might be transferred.
  • Use of substandard or oily make up products can lead to acne on chin.


Other causes of pimples on chin include:

  • When if you suddenly stop using birth control pills, hormonal changes might cause spots on chin to appear.
  • Excessive sweating can cause clogged pores and promote acne on chin.
  • A poor diet consisting of foods with low glycemic index or foods that cause inflammation may lead to acne.
  • Smokers are more vulnerable to breakouts of acne on chin.
  • Very rarely, infections such as rosacea, discoid lupus erythematous, wart, facial ringworms, abscess, insect bites, cold sores, boils, moles, melanoma, actinic keratosis, perioral dermatitis, and several other conditions can also affect your chin causing spots and pimples. Make sure that you visit a dermatologist if you suspect that there is a serious underlying cause. 

Treatment options for pimples on chin

Various cures are available for pimples on chin. The rule of thumb is to treat the underlying disease (e.g. what causes the zits). Here are some of the most common treatment options:

Treatment of underlying diseases causing zits on chin

Hormone therapy

Some birth control medicines can help you in dealing with hormone imbalance and regulating levels of sex hormones (7, 2). Opt for birth control medications with estrogen and progesterone  such as Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Yaz and Estrostep which have all been approved by FDA. They have proven helpful for females who produce too much of the male hormones. Furthermore, to get rid of stubborn hormonal chin pimples, try hormone replacement therapy but only after consultation with your doctor.

PCOS treatment

A good diet, regular exercise and weight control, quitting smoking are all vital steps for treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). You may also take birth control pills to balance your hormones.

The treatment route you opt for depends on your symptoms, their severity and whether you are planning to have a baby.

If you are obese, weight loss may be the solution you need. A small amount of weight loss goes a long way in balancing your hormone levels and starting  up ovulation and your menstrual cycle.

Include lots of fruits, whole grains, leafy greens and low-fat dairy products in your meals.

Get regular exercise to help control or reduce your weight and it will also improve your overall health.

If you smoke, seriously consider quitting. Female smokers have higher levels of androgens than women who don't smoke.

Hormone therapy can help with excessive hair growth and pimples. Vaginal rings, patches and birth control pills are prescribed for hormone therapy. Androgen-lowering spironolactone (Aldactone) is usually prescribed with combined hormonal birth control. This helps in dealing with acne, hair loss and male-pattern hair growth on body and face (hirsutism).

Use of antibiotics

Try oral antibiotics if you are suffering from itchy, painful pimples on chin (8, 9).

Pills of different color

They will help decrease inflammation as well as abolish acne causing bacteria. However, ascertain you first get a prescription prior to purchasing any oral antibiotics.

Clinical creams, lotions, ointments

Some of the non-prescribed and prescribe medicated lotions, gels and creams can be excellent for treating pimples on chin. Generally, products having retinoid (a form of vitamin A) are used since they can open up your pores and make sure that any antibiotics you are using will work effectively.

Differin, Tazorac or Retin-A are a few good brands in this regard (10, 11).

As far as non-prescribed products are concerned, opt for products that have “sulfur and sodium sulfacetamide; and creams that contain combination of antimicrobial medications such as clindamycin with benzoyl peroxide.

Aczone is also a useful anti inflammatory product. It is an anti-acne, anti-inflammatory gel that’s a brilliant choice for those with sensitive or aging skin. Also it is helpful to use a product having the plant extract willow bark (a derivative of salicylic acid) and antioxidants such as vitamin C twice a day to reduce scars, marks and boost cell turnover.

These products not only treat zits on chin but also help prevent them. In this regard, facial care products with salicylic acid as well as benzoyl peroxide have proven helpful.

Do not use anti-acne face wash, lotion and anti-aging creams concurrently with these products as they might dry your skin.  It is advisable to consult your dermatologist first. Some constituents in face care products such as cocoa butter, petroleum, or shea butter trigger acne breakouts since they obstruct pores and they should be given a wide berth if you are suffering from pimples on chin.

Anti-acne medications

There are various drugs which work efficiently in dealing with pimples on chin as a whole. Medications like Isotretinoin should be taken twice daily to reduce zit on chin (12). Results will appear after about five months use. It can also clear the pimples permanently. However, if it appears again, you can start using this medication again.

Healthy diet

A healthy diet is integral in treating chin acne. Make sure that your diet is balanced and that it has a lot of fiber especially fruits and leafy greens (13). Avoid high glycemic diets with high sugar content and ensure you drink a lot of water to stay hydrated. You are advised to reduce consumption of acidic foods, stop smoking and decrease alcohol intake.

As mentioned before, low glycemic foods should be avoided because high glycemic index foods such as white bread and cakes raise blood sugar level and promote breakouts therefore stay away from sugar, dairy products, bakery products as well as fermented foods, wines, yeast, etc. Instead, go for whole grain foods.

Chocolate also plays a role in triggering chin pimples in some people according to University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. Their research showed that individuals who consumed six ounces of 100 percent pure cocoa daily got pimples in a week.

dark chocolate and cocoa

Detoxify if you have any digestive disorders or your pimples are caused by food and diet. Drink herbal teas (such as Chamomile tea) since they help in digestion.


Try managing your stress, anxiety and relax. Various stress management methods such as massages can be helpful while trying to get rid of pimples on chin. Furthermore, meditation, yoga, music, writing and seeking professional help is important.

Adequate rest and exercise

Adequate exercise and rest are two vital healthy living routines you should adopt if you wish to get rid of pimples on chin. Exercising regularly will reduce cortisol levels while your body will produce endorphins that will calm your mind.

Maintain personal hygiene

Make sure that you always clean your skin well to decrease the accumulation of sebum, oil and dead skin cells that might block your skin pores. Sebum build up tends to trap bacteria and facilitates zit breakouts on chin. Also, ensure that you regularly exfoliate your skin to get rid of any dead skin cells whose accumulation can cause pimples when combines with other factors. Other routine personal hygiene habits you should adopt include:

  • Wash your face only two times a day (after waking up and before going to bed) with an alcohol free soap or face wash. Only wash your face more times when it is covered with some sort of dirt.
  • Frequently wipe your mobile phone with cleansers you use for cleaning screens and computers or use a hands free device.
  • If you have a partner with oily skin, don’t share pillows and ask them to use oil-free make up or hair products and non-comedogenic skin products to stop pimple causing agents from reaching your skin.
  • Use soft water since hard water tends to block pores. You can soften your water at home by purchasing a suitable water purification and softening system, which will help you filter your water and balance its pH.
  • Don’t touch your chin with dirty hands since it will spread the oil, dirt and bacteria.
  • Do not pop your zit: do not pop, pick or squeeze your zit on chin. If you have pimples on your chin, it is very important that you do not fiddle with them since this will worsen the breakout, cause scar formation and may even lead to an infection.

Home remedies for pimples on chin (with instructions)


Ice can be used to rapidly relieve the swelling, redness and inflammation of pimples. It boosts blood flow to the affected area, tightens the skin pores and removes oil and dirt congealed on the skin. You can use ice in crushed form, in cubes or an ice pack - whichever is convenient.

Ice cube

Wrap the block of ice in a piece of cloth and place it on the chin for a few seconds.

Wait a few minutes and then repeat the process.


Another easy way to get rid of spots is the use of lemon juice, which is rich in vitamin C. Lemon juice helps pimples dry up quickly. Use fresh lemon juice and not bottled juice, which has preservatives. There are two ways to apply this remedy.

Dip a clean cotton swab in fresh lemon juice and dab it on the pimples before going to sleep at night.

Another way is to mix one tablespoon of lemon juice with one teaspoon of cinnamon powder and apply it on the pimples overnight. In the morning, wash your chin properly with lukewarm, soft water. However, this remedy is not advised for those with sensitive skin.

Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil is excellent for treating acne and pimples (14). It is an antibacterial agent that helps eliminate the bacteria that cause these pimples on chin. Furthermore, its soothing properties help alleviate the redness and inflammation of pimples. It also helps dry out acne.

For treatment of pimples on chin, just dip a cotton ball in tea tree essential oil and apply it on the pimples. Rinse your face after 15 to 20 minutes.

Another method is to mix a few drops of tea tree oil in one spoon of aloe vera gel. Gently dab it on your pimples and spots, leave it on for 20 minutes and then wash it off.

Note: Don’t use tea tree oil if you have sensitive skin.


The toothpaste that you use to clean your teeth before bed and every morning can also be used as a remedy for pimples on chin. Its effect is most pronounced if used immediately after applying ice on pimples (15). White toothpaste should be used, not gel toothpaste.

Apply some white toothpaste over pimples on chin before going to sleep. In the morning, rinse your face with water and you will see a significant improvement in the inflammation and swelling.

If needed, you can carry out the process in the daytime also. Just ensure that the toothpaste remains on the pimples for at least thirty minutes.


Steaming is beneficial for your skin at any time, but is especially useful when you have pimples. The steam will unclog your pores and allow your skin to breathe. This helps get rid of sebum, oils, dead cells, dirt and bacteria trapped in the pores that can cause pimples or inflammation.

Fill a large open pot with hot water and allow the steam to come in contact with your face for a few minutes. Wash your face with lukewarm water and, after drying, put on an oil-free moisturizer.


Garlic is an antifungal, antiviral and antiseptic that can help in the rapid treatment of pimples.


The sulfur in garlic also promotes fast healing of pimples.


Cut a fresh garlic clove into two halves.

Apply the garlic on the pimples, rub it over affected area and leave it for five minutes before washing face with lukewarm water.

Repeat the treatment multiple times a day. Eating one raw garlic everyday can also help purify your blood. But do not to eat too much raw garlic as it can cause digestive problems.

Apply some apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a wonder when it comes to acting as a pimple remedy. This is because it eliminates the bacteria that cause the entire nuisance in the first place. It becomes alkaline, and balances the pH of your skin, which makes it difficult for bacteria to thrive. Like lemon juice, it’s an astringent and will help dry up excess oil. But don’t overdo or else it’ll dry out your skin too much. This could cause the sebaceous glands to secrete excess oil to compensate, therefore leading to an outbreak.

You will need

  • Pure unfiltered apple cider vinegar and fresh water.


Wash your face properly with water and pat it dry. Keeping a proportion of 1 part vinegar to 3 parts water, dip cotton ball into apple cider vinegar and dab it directly onto the pimples. Leave on for at least 15 minutes, or overnight. Repeat this process several times a day, washing face thoroughly after each time. Use a moisturizer afterwards as well if you feel like your skin is getting too dry.

Make a cinnamon and honey mask

While it may sound odd, honey and cinnamon make a potent combo when it comes to curing acne.

Cinnamon on the table

Cinnamon has antimicrobial traits, so it can help fight acne causing bacteria. Honey is also a natural anti-biotic, and readily wipes out stubborn pimples.

You will require

  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • Two tablespoons of honey
  • Paper towels


Wash your face with water and pat dry. Mix two tablespoons of honey and a teaspoon of cinnamon together until they form a paste. Apply this paste to your whole face as a mask or only dab it onto pimples and leave on for at least ten or fifteen minutes. Wash off completely, and dry your face. This is a sticky mixture, so always have some paper towels at hand nearby.

Whip up some whites

Egg whites are an economical and easy way to help prevent and treat pimples on chin. They are chock full of proteins and vitamins that both fight pimples, and help to rejuvenate your skin cells. They also dry up excess oil, which means excess sebum, opening pores and making your skin environment less favorable for acne causing bacteria.  Make sure to use a good oil free moisturizer afterwards, as they can dry your skin out a bit.

You will need

  • Two to three egg whites, separated from yolks
  • A bowl
  • A washcloth


Wash your face with water and pat dry. Separate the yolks and whites from eggs. You can use as many as you like but usually two to three are enough. Whisk the whites until they become frothy, and allow them to sit for a few minutes. Cover your face with this egg whites mixture (applying it with fingertips is easy) or dab it only onto pimples. Three to four layers are usually enough, but make sure that the first layer has dried completely before applying more. Let the mask to sit and dry for about twenty minutes before washing off completely with warm water and patting it dry with a washcloth. Apply moisturizer to prevent your skin from becoming too dry.

Papaya for the pimple prone

Papaya is a vital ingredient in a lot of beauty products available in the market today, but its benefits can also be gained at home. Plain raw papaya is a safe, all-natural pimple remedy that removes dead skin cells and excess oil from the surface of the skin, leaving it clear and smooth. Papaya also has an enzyme called papain, which decreases inflammation, redness and helps prevent the pus from building up.

You will require

  • One fresh papaya


Rinse your face with water and dry it. Mash up the flesh of the papaya properly, until it is of a consistency like a paste that can be easily applied to your skin. Leave it on for at least fifteen or twenty minutes, and then wash off completely with warm water. If your skin tends to dry after you cleanse it, use an oil free moisturizer suitable for your skin type afterwards.

Make an orange peel paste

Oranges not only taste rejuvenating and refreshing, but our skin finds them just as appealing as our taste buds do. Pimples that are caused by bacteria and excessive oil or dead skin cells blocking up pores can be cured with the use of an orange peel face mask of sorts, owing to the vitamin C, citric acid present in it and its astringent properties. The vitamin C is especially useful because it improves the growth of new healthy cells, improving overall health of your skin.

You will need

  • Two orange peels
  • Fresh and clean water


Wash your face with water and pat dry. Grind up the orange peels (use a blender, mortar and pestle, whatever is available) and mix a little water to create a paste. Add only a little at a time, as too much will make it excessively thin and runny. Once it has the right consistency, dab it on your face and pimples on chin. Leave it on for twenty minutes. Ideally, the mask should be firm, but it still works if it isnt.  Wash it off completely with water, pat your face dry, and put on a good, oil free moisturizer.

Mix strawberries and honey

Strawberries have high content of salicylic acid. Salicylic acid is a primary ingredient in many commercial pimple treatments as it encourages skin to shed its dead cells more readily, opening up blocked pores, and killing bacteria. It also tightens up the pores a little bit, which prevents them from clogging up as much in the future, and boosts new cell growth. Honey also fights against bacteria that may be behind your pimples, and is an anti-inflammatory agent.

You will require

  • Three fresh, washed strawberries.
  • Two teaspoons of honey.


Rinse your face with water and pat dry. Wash three fresh strawberries and mash them up well, taking care that they don’t get runny. Add this paste to two teaspoons of honey, and completely blend them together. Apply this mask to your chin and let the mixture sit for 20 minutes. Rinse off properly with warm water, pat dry, and moisturize if your skin has a tendency to dry out. Use two times every week for at least a month.

Sugar scrub

Sugar, whether brown or white, helps dispose off the excess dead skin cells obstructing your pores by acting as a gentle exfoliator. Mix it up with olive oil, honey or just plain water and you have a sweet scrub to help you get rid of troublesome spots.

You will require

  • One cup of brown sugar, light or dark
  • One cup of white sugar, light or dark
  • Two tablespoons of coarse sea salt
  • About half cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • Ten tablespoons of pure vanilla extract
  • One whole vanilla bean


Mix the brown sugar and white sugar, adding in a few tablespoons of coarse sea salt for extra exfoliation, and stir. If you’re using a vanilla bean, scrape out the caviar and mix it in as well. Put about two cups of this mixture into a liquid measuring cup and pack it down properly. Pour half cup of extra virgin olive oil over the top, and let it seep through half the mixture, leaving a little layer on top. Mix this up in the measuring cup, and then add it to the rest of the mixture. Add four tablespoons of pure vanilla extract and mix it in.

Avocado & honey mask

Avocado is chock full of good vitamins and nutrients and really help tone down your pimples on chin. It is quite mild so it can be used by people with sensitive skin too.

You will need

  • One avocado
  • Honey


Rinse your face gently with clean water and pat it dry. Scrap out the flesh of the avocado and mash it up, then mix in the honey. Continuing mashing and stirring until it turns into a paste. Apply this paste to your skin and leave it on for 10-20 minutes. Then wash off the mixture with lukewarm water and pat your face dry. Apply an oil fee moisturizer afterwards.

Freshen up with mint

Menthol is present in mint, which works as a natural analgesic and anti inflammatory agent. It is highly useful in relieving pain, discomfort and redness caused by pimples on chin.

You will require

  • A fistful of fresh mint leaves.


Rinse your face gently with clean, soft water and pat it dry. Crush up the mint leaves properly, you can use a blender but a mortar and pestle works better if you happen to have one available. Rub the crushed leaves and juice on your face and leave for 5-10 minutes before washing off thoroughly with cold water.

Precautions for treatment of bumps on chin

Hormone regulating medication and birth control pills should only be used after consulting with a doctor or you may experience very unpleasant adverse effects.

Individuals with sensitive skin should avoid remedies such as lemon and tea tree oil.

Do not wash your face too often or scrub it too hard as it may worsen your pimples.

If your skin has a tendency to become over dry, use a moisturizer after cleansing it.


Should I stop wearing makeup if I have pimples?

You don’t have to stop wearing makeup altogether, but try changing brands and going with a different type. Opt for cosmetics and products with the label “noncomedogenic,” as they don’t clog pores.

Do pimples on chin mean I’m not keeping my face clean enough?

This may not be necessarily the case. In fact, scrubbing your face too hard may aggravate your pimples, and using alcohol-based soaps and cleansing agents can dry out the skin. Spots are triggered by hormones, and while regular cleansing with soap and warm water can sometimes help reduce mild breakouts, more stubborn pimples require more than just good hygiene.

When should I see a dermatologist for acne treatment?

If OTC products, like gels, creams, lotions containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, along with gentle cleansing, are not working for you (be patient - it can take 4-12 weeks to clear up acne), consult your dermatologist. Severe and persistent acne needs aggressive treatment to avoid scarring.

Things to remember

To deal with pimples on chin, make sure that you have a good diet including lots of fruits, fiber and vegetables. After your evening meal don’t go to bed immediately, have sufficient sleep (at least 8 hours), maintain good hygiene, check your skin care and mouth care products, decrease stress levels, try massaging and go for a medical checkup.

Facial massage

Don’t wash your face repeatedly and avoid alcohol based products. If you suspect that there is some serious underlying cause, visit your doctor or dermatologist. Good personal hygiene practices, adequate rest and exercise, healthy diet and mental relaxation will help you get rid of this problem quickly. 

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Written by: Michal Vilímovský (EN)
Education: Medical student, 3rd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
Article resources:

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Image resources:

Adobe Stock and Pixabay.com

Published: May 25, 2016 10:26 PM
Next scheduled update: May 25, 2018 10:26 PM
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