Does Milk Cause Acne??

Milk AcneI have recently had the worst (and I mean THE WORST) breakout! To be clear, I am no stranger to acne, I have been struggling with mild breakouts during that time of the month for ages now and these I know how to control. I will usually get a few hormonal spots around my jawline and chin, worst case scenario I will have a painful spot on my cheek. What happened to me a few weeks ago was much worse: my face was covered with painful spots all over: cheeks, chin, forehead, temples - everywhere! This definitely wasn't normal behaviour for my skin so I started racking my brains for changes in my skincare routine, makeup, anything really, with the annoying conclusion that everything was just the same as usual. The only thing that had changed was that my microwave broke and instead of my beloved porridge with almond milk I was now eating cereal with the more traditional cow juice.

I have heard before that some people have made the connection between dairy products and acne but I have never thought about it much. I don't normally drink milk, in fact, I feel quite sick and get a stomach ache after drinking a glass of milk and I don't particularly enjoy the taste. The cereal was really just the lazy option as I couldn't be bothered to cook my porridge on the stove every morning (I know, I know, terribly lazy!).

I started reading up about the connection between diet and acne, and dairy products in particular. I have spotted that this topic has appeared on a few blogs I read (Ruth Crilly from and Caroline Hirons have written about it) and I was surprised at the huge amount of comments from readers on the milk / acne issue. I also found a few articles about research carried out on this subject and there definitely is a notion that milk, or specifically the hormones it contains, can aggravate or be the cause of acne.

I am not a big fan of cutting out certain foods completely (everything in moderation is my motto!) but I have gone back to not having cereal with milk in the morning. I do still have cheese, but I have always eaten cheese and it has never really done me any harm. I also can't stomach the thought of having tea with almond milk, it's just wrong. For the moment I have given up milk completely and have tea with lemon and honey or green tea instead and I have noticed that my skin has cleared up a lot! I do realize that it could have been anything else, from my hormones going crazy to my skin suddenly reacting to a product I use to just a freak coincidence. But this whole time the only thing that has changed in my life was the cereal and milk in the morning.

I am in now way saying that milk is the devil and everyone should stop drinking it, I just think it could be a trigger for me - it has never agreed with me anyway, so maybe it's my body's way of telling me not to have too much of it. I will go back to having tea with the tiniest bit of milk eventually, as I am already missing it, but I will definitely be avoiding any other forms in future.

Have you ever had any dairy related skin problems? If not, what are your thoughts on the subject?

A. xx