What are the Types of Acne?

The simple truth is that acne can happen to anyone.

Acne is a type of skin condition that occurs on many people – women and men, especially those with oily skin. It can negatively affect the outlook of a person if it appears on the face and/or neck. In 2015, acne was estimated to have affected 633 million people globally regardless of several factors such as age, race or skin type, making it the 8th most common disease in the world.  In the US as of June 2018, around 50 million people in the USA have acne, where 15% of these have a kind of acne bad enough that it resulted to acne scarring. In order to understand acne, acne types, symptoms and treatment, you first need to understand how acne is formed. This Acne 101 guideline will give you all the information you need to have a better understanding of it in general!

Acne Vulgaris

This type of acne is the most common and can be mild (non-inflammatory), moderate or severe (inflammatory). Mild acne vulgaris is characterized by blackheads, whiteheads, papules, and pustules. Mild acne vulgaris can easily be treated with natural home remedies such as oatmeal masks, or with over-the-counter (OTC) treatments. Also, moderate to severe acne vulgaris is characterized by the presence of very painful nodules and cysts.


Blackheads get their name from their distinct appearance where the surface of your blemish appears dark or black. They appear on your skin due to clogged hair follicles. Blackheads are small bumps that appear on your skin due to clogged hair follicles. Skin, dirt and oil backup in your pores causing a blackhead. This is considered a mild form of acne and it can appear anywhere on your body.  Truly Clear works to both combat blackheads and balance your skin to combat dry skin and inflammation preventing further outbreaks.


Whiteheads are a type of acne vulgaris that form when bacteria, oils, dead skin and dirt become trapped in one of the hair follicles your skin.  Whiteheads can be caused by a variety of things including hormonal changes which often increase oil production. Truly Clear helps combat whiteheads by fighting bacteria on your skin's surface and clearing away dirt.


To put it plainly, a papule is a pimple or a zit as they're often referred.  A papule is inflammation that causes a blemish or a red (depending on your skin tone) bump on the surface of your skin.  When there is a break in your follicle wall, zits develop. Treating acne papules with Truly Clear can help prevent them from developing into pustules which develops when the infection of a papule becomes more severe and produces a head.


Pustules develop when the acne on your skin becomes infected from overgrowth of bad bacteria (yes, there's good bacteria on your skin) within your pores.  Pustules are filled with, well, exactly what it sounds like; pus. The salcylic acid in Truly Clear helps fight this bacteria build up while working in tandem with our other FDA approved acne ingredients to stop them from coming back.

Nodular acne can be mild.

But it can also be severe.

Nodular Acne

Nodular acne is a more severe form of acne that can be very painful, cause permanent scarring and can be stubborn to treat.  The main difference between acne vulgaris and nodular acne is that nodular acne form deep under the skin and can take a very long time to heal.  Acne nodules under the skin can feel like firm bumps or knots and can present with or without pain.  Not all nodular acne blemishes form a head or can be "popped" and many acne scars are caused by attempting to pop nodular acne.   This type of acne is also referred to as nodulocystic acne or cystic acne to everyone but trained dermatologists.  When reading online, these terms are often used interchangeably.

Acne Conglobata is severe

and often results in scarring

Acne Conglobata

This type of acne is arguably the most severe form of acne and usually affects males. It comes with widespread blackheads and larger interconnected lesions. It is best treated by isotretinoin, although there is still the possibility of severe scarring even after treatment. Acne conglobata is a highly inflammatory disease presenting with comedones, nodules, abscesses, and draining sinus tracts.  It can be difficult to treat because it spreads below the skin's surface and through the sinus cavities.  Acne conglobata begins as nodular acne but they are not the same condition.

Acne Fulminans

The severity of this type of acne problem is similar to that of acne conglobate, except that acne fulminans usually occurs abruptly on younger males. This type of acne comes with recurring fever and aching joints. The good news is that a strong treatment of isotretinoin works well to eliminate it.

Gram-negative Folliculitis

This is a rare kind of acne. It is a cystic acne and comes with pustules and cysts. Gram-negative folliculitis usually occurs as a result of the long term antibiotic treatment of acne vulgaris. Isotretinoin is effective enough to get rid of it.

Pyoderma Faciale

This type of acne usually occurs among women between 20 and 40 years old. It comes with painful nodules, sores and pustules. It does not usually last longer than a year, and can also be treated with isotretinoin.

Acne Rosacea

The acne rosacea commonly manifests in the form of a red rash on the face – forehead, nose, cheeks; neck and skin. The red rashes come with spots like those with acne vulgaris, except that it is in dark spots like a form of blackheads. Women above 30 years mainly suffer from this type of acne, and can usually be treated with acne medication products that contain benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.

Atrophoderma vermiculata

Atrophoderma vermiculata is not acne but actually a type of keratosis pilaris.  The leisons from this disease can appear to be childhood acne at first.  This condition should be treated by a dermatologist. Atrophoderma vermiculata, a form of keratosis pilaris atrophicans, typically presents in childhood with erythema and follicular keratotic papules that slowly progress to characteristic atrophy, which has been described as worm-eaten, reticular, or honeycomb, and occurs on the cheeks, preauricular area, and forehead. More rarely, the atrophy may extend to the upper lip, helices, ear lobes, and, in some cases, the limbs.



What is the difference between a whitehead and a pustule? A whitehead and a pustule may look like the same thing but a pustule is a pimple or zit caused by a blocked and infected pore while a whitehead is actually just a clogged hair follicle.  Often the resulting blemish can appear the same if your acne pustules are not severe. What is the difference between a hair follicle and a pore? Your skin is covered in pores that create outlets for exocrine glands. Exocrine glands are glands that carry substances (sweat, oil) out of your skin by way of duct.  Examples of exocrine glands include sweat, salivary, mammary, ceruminous, lacrimal, sebaceous, and mucous. Every hair follicle on the human skin emerges from a pore. But not every pore contains a hair follicle.  Wherever there is a strand of hair there is a pore.  But some pores are just outlets for glads such as sebaceous follicles that lead sebum out of the body or eccrine glands that lead sweat out of the body on your palms, feet and forehead.