When you were young, you may have gotten some bad advice about acne. Someone may have told you to sit in the sun, and it will dry out your spots. Not only is that advice hazardous, but it is also very incorrect.

The sun does not dry out acne. The reason many people think that is because the sun alters the pigments of your skin. If you get a tan or sunburn, the redness and irritation of your breakouts will look mild compared to sun damage.

So, really all the sun is doing for your breakouts is damaging your skin even further and worsening your acne.

But, why?

The first reason is the heat. In the summer, it gets hot, sometimes insanely hot. And naturally, that makes you sweat. Yes, sweating when you exercise can be good for your skin, but sweating when you are just sitting around – not so great.

Instead of an after-workout shower that sweat hangs around. It sits on your face mixing with pollution, sunscreen, and any other junk on your face. All that moisture is the perfect place for acne-causing bacteria to thrive.

On top of that, when you are sweaty, you touch your face more. You dab at it with tissues, towels, or even t-shirts. You touch it to see how much shine is coming off. You know, touching your face is a no-no, but when it is already crawling with oils, it only gets worse, and by doing that, you are introducing even more bacteria into your skin.

And rubbing your skin with something like a towel damages your skin’s sensitive barrier. Doing that also aggravates the skin, leading to, you guessed it, acne.

Next, you won’t like this one, but air conditioning. The thing that makes summer bearable could be causing your breakouts. Sitting in the car, the office, or even at home with the AC on feels fantastic because it cuts down on the humidity. The humidity is bad itself, but the AC removes all of it and dries out your skin. That seems like a good thing when you’re oily, but it can actually overdry you, causing your skin to overproduce oils, once again making you breakout.

It seems like there is no winning. What you can do is stop touching your face. Use oil-blotting papers if necessary. And when indoors, try not to let the AC blow right at you. You can also grab a mini humidifier to sit at your work desk or nightstand to reintroduce a bit of moisture back into the air and your skin.

Lastly, you are overdoing it. When you start breaking out due to environmental factors like the weather or AC, you start treating your skin. That is great and all, but you could be overdoing that too. Use a simple spot treatment or a pimple patch at night to calm your zits. Do not pop or pick. Don’t use three different acne-fighting products either. All that will do is irritate your skin, which you don’t want.

To clear your summer breakouts, you need to readjust for the season. Unfortunately, by the time you get the hang of it, the weather will be cooling down, and you’ll have to do it all over again.