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Does Vaping Cause Acne

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Estimated 3 min read

Does vaping cause acne? There seems to be no clear answer anywhere as to whether or not vaping can cause acne. It’s a very commonly asked question as smoking traditional cigarettes has been linked to increased or worsened acne breakouts.

Does vaping cause acne? Some evidence suggests ‘yes’.

As I said before, there is no clear, established link between vaping and acne, the only evidence to go off is reports from vapers. While many say they notice no real difference in acne at all, it has been reported by some that their acne worsened either all over, or they experienced more break-outs around their mouth or chin after starting vaping.

Some of the affected users found that their acne flared up shortly after quitting smoking (and starting vaping) but reduced back to the norm within a week or two of quitting. This phenomenon is known as “Quitzits“:

“As we’ve all learned, the act of smoking introduces all kinds of nasty pollutants into our bodies. Being the miracles of nature that they are, our bodies adjust as best they can and do whatever they can to shed the nasty chemical toxins we pour into them with every puff we take on a cigarette. Unfortunately, each cigarette we smoke retards the detoxification process that our bodies are trying to engage in. The net effect is an accumulation of toxins inside our bodies along with a shift in the chemical balance inside us (including our hormones.)”

“One day, we quit smoking. This is a Good Thing but, as we have also learned, it throws our bodies into an upheaval. Suddenly the chemical balance is thrown out of whack again while, at the same time, our bodies start the detoxification process. You’ve heard people tell new Quitsters to “drink lots of water to help flush out all the toxins”. This is good advice and it helps a great deal. However, it’s just not fast enough for you body when begins to excrete the toxins in any way it can.”

Another reason smokers experience more acne than non smokers is that nicotine is known to stimulate the cells which produce collagen. This makes your skin tighten, potentially trapping more dirt and grease which can become acne.

Does vaping cause acne? Yes, no, and maybe.

Does vaping cause acne? Some evidence suggests ‘no’.

While there are many reports of worsening acne, or temporary “quitzits” due to taking up vaping, there are also many reports from new vapers stating they saw an improvement in acne following taking up the habit. Some vapers say they did not experience any flare-ups following taking up vaping, instead their skin completely cleared up within a few weeks.

It’s quit common for those quitting smoking to find their acne improves as their body slowly repairs itself from tobacco smoking. It has not however been shown that vaping would have the same effect. Given that vaping is still in it’s infancy and more and more research is being done all the time, I’m sure a more detailed answer will be found one day. For now, the only information to go off here is speculation and personal testimony from vapers.

At the end of the day, if you’re a smoker wanting to try quitting through vaping and the possibility of getting a few zits is holding you back – then I recommend you reconsider you reasons for wanting to quit. Vaping is widely held to be at least 95% less harmful than traditional cigarettes, so even if it doesn’t help clear up your skin (which it might) it’s probably worth risking a few zits to avoid the far worse option of continuing smoking.

The Royal College of Physicians (London) assessed the toxicology evidence in its 2016 report Nicotine without smoke: tobacco harm reduction and concluded:

“Although it is not possible to precisely quantify the long-term health risks associated with e-cigarettes, the available data suggest that they are unlikely to exceed 5% of those associated with smoked tobacco products, and may well be substantially lower than this figure”

Currently located in Sydney, Australia, I have been vaping since 2009 and became active in the e-cigarette industry in late 2015. Since then I’ve had the pleasure of visiting over 700 shops in 6 countries.

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