Does Creatine Cause Acne & Stretch Marks? [Explained]

does creatine cause acne

Whether athletes or gym fanatics, everyone is so familiar with the term creatine monohydrate or its uses these days. In their pursuance of running faster and farther or achieving ultimate muscle mass, athletes employ different supplements. And the most popular of these supplements is creatine. While over a thousand studies have confirmed its efficacy and safety, a few anecdotal pieces of evidence suggest that creatine stirs up trivial complications like acne and hair loss.

When people ask whether creatine causes acne, it all depends on how your body responds to the supplements. So far, studies have not proved any direct link between creatine and acne. However, there can be cases where you can get acne while using creatine.

At SkinVeteran, our team of experts ensures that you maintain healthy skin. This article will examine whether creatine is causing your acne or something else you might be overlooking.

Can Creatine Cause Acne?

Since the 1970s, people have been using creatine to enhance their physical performance and stamina. Therefore, scientists tried looking at every aspect of creatine supplements regarding their safety and benefits. Our team looked into every rabbit hole to find studies that address creatine and acne. 

According to a few studies, creatine does not cause acne; instead, it promotes skin health. However, more research is needed to look into this matter deeply. Why? It is because several creatine users complain of acne breakouts. 

After talking to our experts, we can spell out some cases where creatine monohydrate may provoke acne. So, read on to find out how it may be causing your acne.

Does Creatine Cause Stretch Marks?

Creatine contributes to the rapid growth of muscles, especially when you’re hitting the gym. This muscle upswing overly stretches the skin tissues and can cause stretch marks.

However, if you are not trying to develop the buff quickly and allow your skin to adapt with muscle growth, stretch marks are less likely to appear.

Connection Between Creatine, Testosterone, and Acne

Testosterone also called the male hormone, is responsible for masculine characteristics like body hair, stronger muscles, and deep voice. Women also possess a minute quantity of it that helps produce a female hormone (estrogen).

Studies have shown that regularly taking creatine boosts testosterone levels. When you use creatine to increase your performance, it is obvious that your testosterone levels will rise because this hormone is responsible for strength and stamina in men.

Do you know high testosterone levels in your body can induce acne? How?

While it is crucial for good health, higher testosterone concentrations might contribute to acne breakouts in some people.

Research has found that testosterone activates your sebaceous glands to produce sebum (oil on your skin). Your face has the most of these oil-secreting glands. When your testosterone levels increase because of taking creatine, your sebaceous glands produce more oil.

You may already know that your skin has a lot of pores and hair follicles. So, when there is excessive sebum production, some of it clogs your pores. And bacteria attack these clogged pores causing inflammation and acne.

Do you know why acne is common among young people? During puberty, testosterone levels repeatedly fluctuate, resulting in excess sebum that ultimately causes acne.

Creatine Powders and Acne Breakouts

There are a lot of popular creatine powder supplements on the market. These products usually contain milk byproducts. Researchers suggest that cow milk or its byproducts contain the IGF-1 hormone. This hormone is known to trigger acne cases.

Post Workout Acne (Taken as Creatine Acne)

Most gym enthusiasts use creatine for gaining muscle mass and boosting energy. When some of them encounter acne, they think of creatine causing it. But it is not always the case (though it sometimes can be true when your testosterone fluctuates due to creatine). 

Post-workout acne is real! Exercise benefits your skin in multiple ways, like increasing blood flow and reducing stress. However, sweating during exercise allows bacteria to thrive.

Sweating also opens your skin pores and builds up oil and dirt on your face making it easy for bacteria to attack. Therefore, if you don’t take care of your skin properly after exercise, you can get acne.

The following are some tips for you to look after your skin during gym or exercise.

  • Do not touch your face. 
  • Remove every type of makeup.
  • Change out sweaty clothes after exercise.
  • Wash your face with good cleansing and antibacterial soap.

How You Should Take Creatine To Avoid Acne?

If you are in your teens, we suggest you should not take creatine supplementation (when you fear acne breakouts) because you already have high testosterone in your body. Chances are you may have been encountering minor acne cases, and creatine will exacerbate them.

According to our expert nutritionist, Ifza Rana, you should employ less if you still want to take creatine before twenty. It will be effective in preventing acne if you take only 2 to 5 grams of creatine daily. Moreover, if you use 2 to 10 grams of it on alternate days, you will rarely encounter acne.

In the late 20s or after 30s, it is rare for men to experience acne because testosterone levels become stable and decrease by 1 % every year. So, at that age, taking creatine will not stir up any acne.

How To Manage Your Acne?

We are well aware of your emotions and stress about acne breakouts. We know it’s so annoying for adults usually. There are several medications out there. But we sincerely recommend you to go and consult with your doctor or physician before taking any medication. The Following are some prescribed medications for acne.

  • Retinoid and retinoid-like Agents: They reduce the sebum production and prevent clogged pores.
  • Benzyle Peroxide: It is a good cleansing agent that travels down to your skin pores, reducing inflammation and excessive oil.
  • Visit your physician: It is a best practice and recommended one.

Bottom Line

Creatine monohydrate is a safe and effective supplement for boosting your energy levels. Studies have not yet established a direct link between acne and creatine. However, in some instances, like increasing testosterone levels, creatine may contribute to acne breakouts.