If you've been plagued with a long-lasting pimple, you may have come upon the term "fungal acne" while searching for answers on the Internet.

But what is fungal acne? The phrase has been widely used on social media platforms such as YouTube, Reddit, and blogs for the past several years. Despite the fact that it goes by the label "acne," fungal acne isn't the type of acne you're probably thinking of when you hear the word "acne." In this article, we have answered all the questions that concern fungal acne. So let's start reading about it.

Fungal Acne
Fungal Acne

What is Fungal Acne?

An infection that lives in your skin's hair follicles is called fungal acne. Small, uniform pimples that itch are the most common symptom of fungal acne. As a result, the disease's scientific term is referred to as Malassezia folliculitis or Pityrosporum folliculitis. Although biotin is often cited as a possible cause, fungal acne is actually the result of the fungus on the skin.

Causes of Fungal Acne

Fungal acne, unlike normal acne, is caused by yeast or fungus on your face rather than bacteria. Fungi and bacteria are normally well-balanced on the skin of most people; however, you can not say this for everyone. If the balance of fungi and bacteria is disrupted, you may get a fungal acne eruption. The major causes of fungal acne, as per the researchers, are:

1. Trapped Moisture

You've just finished a workout, but you're still wearing your damp clothes? Or did you take them off and put them back on a day or two later? Fungi that have been growing in your clothes for 24 hours might thrive in the added moisture. People who live in humid climates like Singapore and the Philippines are more likely to suffer from fungal acne than those who live in dry regions.

Also read: Hacks to Prevent Your Acne

2. Tight Clothes

Tight clothes disturb the proper circulation of the body. A lack of circulation can lead to an overproduction of sweat and moisture, which is ideal for the growth of yeast. This is one of the major causes of fungal acne. 

3. Diet

The fungus can grow stronger if you eat meals that are high in carbohydrates or sugar, such as bread, spaghetti, and excessive dairy products. This is among the top reasons for fungal acne other than sweat and moisture.

Symptoms of Fungal Acne

Hair follicles are the usual site of fungal acne. If you have a lot of these, they will seem like little pimples. They can cause skin irritation and whiteheads and are highly uncomfortable. However, without a doctor's examination, it may be impossible to determine with certainty whether the fungus is the main cause of acne or not. There are some differences between fungal and bacterial forms of acne, but the two are often the same in terms of size and itchiness. Here are some of the major symptoms of fungal acne.

Also read: Tips to Stay Away from Back Acne

1. Location of Fungal Acne

Fungal acne can often show up on or near your back, chest, arms, and scalp. Bacterial acne may not show up as often. However, it can also show up around your T-zone on your face and around your mouth.

2. Itchiness

The biggest difference between bacterial and fungal acne is that fungal acne tends to be a lot itchier than bacterial acne. It can be hard not to scratch at it, which makes treatment more important.

3. Clusters

Fungal acne is also more likely to appear in groups or clusters rather than as a single pimple or two. If the breakout is very distracting, you may wish to cover it up using cosmetics.

Treatment for Fungal Acne

Misdiagnosing fungal acne and treating it incorrectly with antibacterials or therapies for acne vulgaris can lead to worsening of the condition. Additionally, you should follow these guidelines to minimize your outbreak.

Also read: Tips to Get Rid of Fungal Acne

1. Wear loose clothes

As a rule of thumb, avoid clothes that restrict your circulation. Excessive sweat can lead to fungal development; thus, this will assist you in obtaining greater air circulation, which is one of the effective ways to prevent fungal acne.

2. Bath regularly

Don't forget to take a shower daily. Taking a daily shower can help remove any extra yeast from your body, minimizing the risk of developing fungus.

3. Use anti-dandruff shampoo

Antimicrobial compounds such as zinc pyrithione, which are included in anti-dandruff shampoo, may help calm skin when used as body washes during an outbreak of acne.

4. Home remedies

An acid produced by lactobacillus can be used to limit the growth of yeast. So, eat more yoghurt and take lactobacillus supplements as it will aid in treating fungal acne.

Antimicrobial properties can be found in honey. So, apply it to the affected area and leave it on for as long as you can, as it will heal your skin and give it a glowing effect.

You can also use tea tree oil for treating fungal acne. Apply it solely to the affected area, as it can irritate the skin if applied to the rest of the body.

Also read: Tips to Prevent Humidity Acne

Do's and Don'ts to Treat Fungal Acne

You can not really stop fungal acne, but taking precautionary steps can help keep it at bay.


  1. During and after an exercise, make sure your skin is dry and clean.
  2. Use an anti-fungal body wash on a weekly basis.
  3. Use petrolatum, salicylic, or glycolic acid-containing products.
  4. Use an anti-fungal shampoo on a regular basis.
  5. On hot and humid days, take a shower twice or three times a day.


  1. Stay away from garments made of synthetic fibres that trap sweat and prevent your skin from breathing, especially if you are exercising.
  2. Avoid re-wearing sweaty clothing until they have been washed thoroughly.
  3. Avoid body products with benzoyl peroxide, fatty acids such as lauric acid, linoleic acid, and any substance that makes your skin dry.


So this is all about fungal acne that you need to know about. Fungal acne, if not diagnosed properly, can cause serious problems. If you see any of the symptoms, then you must visit your dermatologist at the very moment to prevent any future problems. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What kills fungal acne?

A. Ketoconazole 2% is one of the best anti-fungal agents to treat fungal acne. It acts as the first-line defence for treating fungal acne.

Q. Can you pop fungal acne?

A. No, it is recommended not to pop fungal acne as it can spread fast and lead to severe problems.