How do you get rid of underskin spots?

Have sore spots under your skin that you can't squeeze? Here's what they are and how to get rid of them.

One of the most popular threads in our forum is ‘How do you get rid of sore underskin spots?’, a question asked by a bride in her 30s.


Getting a breakout on your wedding day is a huge wedding worry for most brides-to-be, and there’s nothing worse than a sore, under the skin spot that threatens to erupt at any moment. We look at the best ways to get rid of under the skin spots to help you keep your skin clear and fresh for w-day.

Read more: Should you have an acid peel for your wedding?

Photo | Getty

Don’t squeeze it

First things first – resist temptation to squeeze underskin spots. You should never squeeze spots anyway, but particularly under the skin spots with no heads. If you squeeze it you’re going to expose it to air, it will probably bleed and you will be more prone to infection and scarring.

Keep it clean

It’s common sense but hey. Keep the area surrounding the spot (and the rest of your face) clean. Don’t go crazy with the scrubbing – it won’t help. Wash it gently with unscented soap or cleanser and avoid oily products as you don’t want to aggravate or clog your skin up any more.

Read more: Best skincare products for oily skin

Don’t go overboard on the make-up

We know, your first instinct when you have any redness or swelling is to pile on the concealer and foundation, but try to resist the urge. Heaping on makeup will only clog up your pores more and aggravate the area around the spot. If you can’t go without makeup, make sure you’re applying mineral-based products. Also – do not sleep in your makeup. Golden rule of avoiding spots.

Keep your hair out of the way

If you’re prone to spots on your forehead, it’s probably time to get rid of the fringe. Hair constantly touching your face can aggravate your skin and add to your spot issues.

Read more: The skincare products makeup artists swear by

Ditch the sweatbands

We’re not saying that you can skip the gym (but go on if you want to, we won’t judge) but avoid getting fabric on the area – no hats, no sweatbands brushing on it. Avoid aggravating your under skin spot.

Icing your spots

Applying ice to the swollen area around your under the skin spot will reduce the swelling and will help to shrink it.

Use tea tree oil

Head to your local pharmacy and invest in some tea tree oil – make sure you dilute it if you’re using the pure oil – and apply it to your skin. It is antibacterial so it will help to reduce the spot causing bacteria on your skin.

Read more: Which supplements will improve your skin?

Avoid exfoliation

You might be reaching for your facial scrub to really try and clear out your pores. Don’t do it! It will just aggravate your skin and make that stubborn spot worse.

We asked internationally renowned consultant dermatologist Dr Nick Lowe to explain what underskin spots are and why they crop up..

What are sore underskin spots?

They’re what we call late onset acne, which appears particularly in women. In their mid-late twenties onward, they tend to have fewer blackheads and whiteheads, but more sore spots under the skin.

Why do underskin spots occur?

We don’t know for sure, but one of the things we are looking at is that some women, who’ve been on a contraceptive pill since they were a teenager, don’t get acne until they come off that pill. It appears the acne is getting delayed by the hormones in the pill.

How do you get rid of underskin spots?

It depends how severe the acne is. Firstly, never squeeze them. It releases the inflammation, makes it worse, increases redness and can cause scarring. Use a spot gel and dab it on 2-3 times a day, even through make-up, to save you from squeezing it.


Why not find out what your spots actually mean – you can tell a lot by where they’re located on your face!