Can Pre-Workout Cause Acne? Strong Possibility!

Can Pre Workout Cause Acne? Strong Possibility!

To take care of yourself, you work very hard. You place a high priority on your health and make exercise a regular part of your daily routine. But could your efforts to maintain your fitness be aggravating your acne problems? Does the pre-workout supplement you use simultaneously improve your acne and your muscles?

Pre-workouts are formulated with ingredients that will increase your energy and help your body recover from strenuous exercise. And even though they might be a useful addition to your exercise regimen, the energizing ingredients might irritate your skin.

Does pre-workout cause acne? This problem will be discussed in this post.

What is Pre-Workout?

Pre-workout is the umbrella term used to describe a variety of dietary supplements that are used to improve physical performance during exercise.

Does Pre Workout Cause Acne?

Unfortunately, I have bad news. While we might believe that anything related to fitness must also be great for our skin. Pre-workout supplements can be a nightmare for people with acne-prone skin because many of them are loaded with caffeine, artificial sweeteners, and sugars.

Artificial Sweeteners

Many pre-workout products contain a lot of artificial sweeteners; it is these artificial sweeteners that give pre-workout its sweet strawberry or vanilla flavor. Sadly, artificial sweeteners are not our friends if you suffer from acne because they raise insulin levels in the body, which can cause the skin to produce too much sebum. Additionally, insulin has the ability to increase androgen production, which in turn increases sebum oil production.


One more common pre-workout ingredient, caffeine, is known to aggravate acne. Caffeine overuse not only dries out the skin, which interferes with the skin’s ability to produce oil but also contributes to overall stress and anxiety, both of which affect our skin. Acne and dry skin do not mix well because dry skin overproduces sebum to compensate for its lack of moisture, which can result in clogged pores, oily skin, and the dreaded skin pimples.

Some pre-workout supplements may contain as much as 400 mg of caffeine. Pre-workout ingredients could be disastrous for managing your acne-prone skin because studies typically advise adults to consume no more than 400mg of coffee daily. Therefore, pre-workout should probably be completely avoided if you want to keep your skin as free of acne-causing factors as possible.

So, Does Pre-Workout Cause Acne?

Unfortunately, it’s a possibility. If you have acne-prone skin, pre-workout sweeteners and caffeine will simultaneously dry out your skin and cause an insulin spike, which will cause breakouts in those of us with acne-prone skin. There are other powdered pre-workout supplements available, but are they equally bad?

Can Pre Workout Cause Acne? Strong Possibility!

How to Reduce Acne

There are actions you can take to make blemishes less noticeable if you already have acne and don’t want to risk losing your gains.

Use a Milk Thistle Supplement

The liver benefits of milk thistle supplements are excellent. Due to the antibiotics they contain, they also have a wonderful effect on your skin.

Take Cold Showers

Unlike hot showers, which increase oiliness, cold showers reduce it. Your body works overtime in an effort to make up for the oil that the warmth removes from your skin. Cold showers reduce oiliness without overly drying out the skin.

Cold showers also increase your white blood cell count, which strengthens your immune system. Your body can more effectively combat harmful bacteria, such as those that cause acne, if it has more white blood cells.

Take a Fish Oil Supplement

Supplements with fish oil have a lot of omega-3 acids. These are the best ingredients for reducing inflammation, which can result in zits.

Wear Sunscreen When Going Outside

Acne that already exists may become worse in the sunlight. Even if you’ll only be outside for a short while, wear sunscreen.

Avoid Stress

When under stress, wounds take longer to heal. The same goes for acne, so if you already have breakouts, try to find ways to reduce your stress.

Natural Pre-Workout Alternatives for Acne-Prone Skin

You can still get an energy boost before exercising even if you decide against taking a pre-workout. My list of all-natural, healthy pre-workout substitutes is provided below.


Snacking on fresh fruit before your workout is a healthier way to top off your energy for optimum gym performance because fruit contains natural sugar and is a natural carbohydrate. Low-fructose fruits are the most effective when it comes to treating acne, as I discuss in my ebook, Unmasking Acne. Included in this group are strawberries, cranberries, pineapples, and raspberries.

Coffee and An (acne-friendly) Coffee Creamer

Even though I don’t exactly recommend coffee as the best acne treatment, you don’t have to stop drinking it every morning. Coffee can be used to energize the body while exercising and provide the quick energy boost required for your cardio routine or your lifting. A small cup of coffee would be preferable to a pre-workout drink if you really need caffeine to power through your workout. Avoid milk and overly sweet dairy substitutes, and instead, brew your coffee with a creamer that is good for acne. It’s important to remember, though, that excessive caffeine intake can result in acne outbreaks.

Sweet Potato

One of the best foods for clear skin is sweet potato, a superfood that is loaded with antioxidants and vitamins C and E that can help keep your skin and pores clear. As opposed to a sugar-filled fitness drink, use sweet potatoes as the foundation of your pre-workout snack.

Conclusion: Strong Possibility!

Does pre-workout cause acne? There is a strong possibility that the two are related. My honest opinion on pre-workout is that if you have acne-prone skin, you should avoid it. Pre-workout supplements can be replaced with a variety of natural energy boosters, the majority of which are also much more nourishing for the body. Natural alternatives are always preferable to consuming excessive amounts of synthetic chemicals for our skin. The best way to achieve and keep clear skin is to eat a healthy, balanced, and anti-inflammatory diet; this means avoiding pre-workout caffeine and sugar.

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