Ruby Rose explains that she has acne on one side of her face from using her phone

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I’m really lucky that I don’t have adult acne and that I only dealt with it as a teen. I’m pretty meticulous in my skincare but I think it’s also largely due to genes and hormones. My son is at that age and I’ve helped him get into the habit of washing his face at night, I think that helps, and using extraction tools judiciously. (I credit Dr. Pimple Popper for teaching me about those, I know some people think she’s gross but I’ve learned a lot about skin care from her. Incidentally you can get those tools much cheaper from Amazon. Ooh and I recently got this Retinol moisturizer in a lightning deal and I swear it is working, my skin is so nice now.)

That’s all lead up to this story about Orange is The New Black’s Ruby Rose revealing that she has acne just on one side of her face, from holding her phone up to her ear for hours at a time. That’s awful and I feel bad for her, although I’m sure she doesn’t mind the headlines. She apparently got flack from The Daily Mail and on social media after she stepped out at the Pitch Perfect 3 premiere in Australia. This all played out on Instagram stories and she’s responding to criticism of her skin and her body, which The Daily Mail has reported. (I’m only going so far down the rabbit hole here, just FYI.) There are some of her posts about it below along with a recap, thanks to People!:


After receiving hateful comments about her skin at the Pitch Perfect 3 premiere in Australia, the star posted a series of of photos on Instagram stories Monday, sharing the reason behind her breakouts. “Yeah it sucks.. for me, i don’t see how it’s bothering so many others? but I’m a human. It happens.. one side of my face is clear and the other is a mess,” Rose wrote.

But she already seems to know the reason behind the issue. “Dermatologist says it’s from the bacteria from all the phone interviews I did for PP3 and a reaction to hotel pillow cases (which I already know),” she wrote on the photo.

And according to NYC-based celebrity dermatologist Dr. Whitney Bowe, these two factors have easy fixes. “Acne is caused by bacteria but also by friction,” Bowe explains. “Rubbing anything against your skin such as your phone or a cotton pillow case can clog those pores and trigger a special form of acne called acne mechanica. A great way to avoid that is to go hands-free (Bluetooth or earbud) and to switch to copper or silk pillowcases. Copper is antimicrobial and skin slides better against silk. I suggest keeping one with you when you travel – Iluminage makes a travel pillow case. ”

Rose went on to address her haters in another post that pointed out her breakouts. “This acne belongs to me, not them, and you are welcome to it,” she wrote, adding that she was distraught after the Pitch Perfect 3 premiere in Australia. “I never thought I’d see the day I’d leave my beautiful country balling my eyes out … when I was so excited to come home.”

[From People]

One of my friends has acne and he touches his face constantly, which I assume makes it worse. I would feel like a jerk saying anything to him about it because he knows already and it’s just a habit he’s had forever. Plus everyone is different and a product or skincare routine that works for one person might not work for another. It’s the same with things that irritate skin, some people have reactions to detergent or fabric softener used on pillows. You just have to experiment until you hopefully find something that works to treat and prevent it.

Ruby also got into it online about her body, after outlets (The DM) called her too thin and accused her of having an eating disorder. She’s had this argument before and you can read about it on E!.


Look at the way her girlfriend, Jess Origliasso, looks at her!
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42 Responses to “Ruby Rose explains that she has acne on one side of her face from using her phone”

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  1. SKF says:

    They are awful. People are so self conscious about bad skin. No one needs this bullshit! She is STUNNING.

    • Marley31 says:

      Ruby Rose is my girl crush. She is beautiful with or without acne and we all have bad skin days bad hair days and he’ll some even had bad attitude days but I don’t think her skin problem should be the topic of a red carpet or movie premiere interview.

  2. Julaho says:

    I’ve been battling adult acne for years and years and nothing really works in the long term. I feel sorry for her, and if someone (let alone the media) brought it up I’d be crying my eyes out too.

    • Erinn says:

      Yeah, I’m 27 and just kept hoping for it to end after the teen years. Nope. It’s awful, but I’ve found some things that definitely seem to help me a bit. I’ve been using Pixi Glow Tonic pretty much every night, which I find helps balance out the oil, exfoliate and make everything just kind of more smooth and less clogged feeling. Other than that, I kind of randomly grab either a clinique foaming wash, or a glam glow mud/oil combo thing. I’m just kind of over the whole thing, so washes I only use every other day or so because my skin is a combination of oily and dry.

      I think the thing that made the biggest noticeable difference for me is doing a weekly mud mask. I’m just using a cheapo from Shoppers Drug Mart and it’s definitely reduced the size of any breakouts, and cleared my pores better. And leaves my skin soft.

      But all things considered – I still have bad skin. It kind of bites, but I’m much less bothered than I used to be by it.

      • MrsBump says:

        Have you tried differin? That at night and benzoyl peroxide in the morning works pretty well for my stubborn adult acne.
        Check out Dr Sam Bunting on youtube.

      • Erinn says:

        MrsBump – I tried some sort of prescription strength cream for a while – Benzo Cream maybe – not sure atm because it was a generic version of whatever I’d been prescribed. It worked well pre-wedding, and I got it refilled about a year later and it made my face feel burny. Not sure what changed, but I’ve always had varying levels of skin sensitivity.

      • MrsBump says:

        @erinn – ah yes, if you stop and start again your skin is no longer accustomed and it does become inflamed. The best way to restart is to do it at a lower dose, once every few days until your skin builds up tolerance.
        The trick is not to stop as soon as your skin clears up but to keep on doing it.
        Do try differin but check out the instructions first so you know what to expect. dr bunting gives excellent advice.
        Sorry to be preaching about it, but ive suffered so long that i keep giving advice to anyone willing to listen!
        Take care !

      • Dee says:

        Erin – I’m 27 too and suffer from awful hormonal acne. I was on a wait list to see a top NYC derm and finally got in and in one week I’m transforming. I’m going to share with you my secret (ha) in hopes that maybe it will help you too (and anyone else reading because it SUCKS). Everyone in my family has good genes and great skin so I think I just got beat with the acne stick. My regimine is:
        Wash in the AM with Cetaphil Acne Prone face wash
        Tone with witch hazel
        Apply pea size of Onexton (not covered by my insurance but is just a combo of Clindamycin 1% and Benzoyl Peroxide 10%)
        Let it dry and slather on Cetaphile Acne Prone Moisturizer with SPF 30.

        DO NOT TOUCH YOUR FACE (still working on that myself)

        Wash in PM with 10% Benzoyl Peroxide wash
        Tone with witch hazel
        Apply pea size of Epiduo Forte (not covered either but well worth the $75 because in one week omg)
        Let it dry then slather on a hydrating cream – I alternte between Night of Olay and Neutrogena Hydro Boost.

        I also take 200mg Spirnolactone and 200 mg of Doxycycline.

        I also just purchased a 20% Silacylic Acid Peel to help with pores and dark spots.

    • AnnaKist says:

      I am lucky to have inherited really good skin. As a teenager, I had very few pimples. In my late thirties I started getting acne frequently, so tried all the cleansing stuff, silk pillowcase (hated that!) and old wives’ tales, with no success. I finally went to my doctor, who prescribed a course of very low-dose antibiotic for 6 months. That did the trick. No more acne. A couple of years ago, I was diagnosed with an auto-immune condtition. The medications I’m on play havoc with my skin in the oddest places – dry, scaly patches on my feet, forearms, legs, and I’m a lot older now, but even today my friend told me what beautiful skin I still have. I think genes are the major factor, as I do very little to my face. I use a flannel and water only to wash my face, and apply a supermarket moisturiser. Thats it. Speak with your doctor, Julaho, and good luck.

      • Julaho says:

        Thanks y’all! I really have tried everything, from home remedies to retain-a and antibiotics to even some medicine that adds estrogen, I think. It’s just hormones and bad genes! I’m hoping menopause clears it up!

    • LadyMTL says:

      I’m in my 40’s and still get acne, and I’ve tried so many different things to help fight it. So far, this is what has helped me the most:

      – I cut back on dairy, dramatically. No more cow’s milk, no more yogurt, very little cheese, etc. I used to get horrible cystic pimples and they’ve almost entirely vanished since I cut down.

      – Two – three times a week I used a retinol serum at night, I’ve been using it for years. I like Peter Thomas Roth’s products but they aren’t cheap, and you have to be careful with it because if you overdo it you can harm your skin. I’ve also heard good things about azelaic acid, but I haven’t yet tried it myself.

      – I use a Clarisonic brush to wash my face, along with a salicylic acid cleanser (obviously I don’t follow this up with any retinoids, lol). Then moisturize with a good non-comedogenic cream, whichever one you prefer.

      And it goes without saying but keep dirty stuff away from your face…be it fingers, hair, a phone, they all harbor bacteria and can clog pores. Heck, I clean my phone now and then with a non-alcohol wipe, just to make sure it’s not all nasty.

      Anyway! I hope this is helpful! 🙂

  3. Anastasia says:

    It’s called speakerphone. Or bluetooth headphones.

    • Anastasia says:

      By the way, I’m not criticizing her, just wondering why people don’t use other options instead of putting the phone to their face.

      • Shijel says:

        Speakerphone is the quickest way to get death glares from people around you. Constant wearing of earpieces, headphones and earphones will absolutely mess up the natural wax production. Wearing earpieces for a long time can hurt. And honestly, in-ear pimples are just painful as hell. Source – I wear ear pieces constantly because of necessity and constant, long-term use is not nice for your ears.

  4. NotSoSocialButterfly says:

    Clorox wipe that phone, people. Regularly.

  5. OriginalLala says:

    ugh – why are people such assholes? She is humans, humans get breakouts, and wrinkles, sometimes they have some extra weight, sometimes they look tired, or have un-shaved pits. Its ridiculous what people expect others to look like!

  6. MellyMel says:

    I clean my phone with a disinfectant wipe a few times a week and had to switch my detergent to one for sensitive skin. And yes, don’t touch your face! I still get hormonal acne once a month but there are small things you can do to help.

    • Erinn says:

      I had to switch to the Tide Free and Clear or whatever it’s called. I’ve always had sensitive skin, but a lot of detergents really aggravate it.

      My husband is a plumber – he sanitizes his phone CONSTANTLY. And keeps his work cell in a sandwich baggie as well. He’s great at being an obsessive with disinfecting things.

  7. Anilehcim says:

    It wasn’t just her acne that got attention, it was the fact that she’s skeletal now. She doesn’t look healthy.

    • AG-UK says:

      Yes exactly she is beautiful but lord sooo painfully thin. She was petite to begin with but she said its do to vegan diet. It ages her though.

      • dota says:

        Around here when people start getting bad facial skin and super skinny it is meth doing it to them.

      • milla says:

        She does look unhealthy. It could be for different reasons, but i hope it is not sth serious. She is pretty, but that fragile frame looks sad.

    • TrixC says:

      I don’t usually like to comment on people’s weight loss, but those photos shocked me. She clearly has an eating disorder and I hope she gets help.

  8. reverie says:

    I found that when I stopped touching my face, I stopped breaking out. I wasn’t aware just how much I rested my head on my hands until I made a conscious effort to stop. I’m not sure if this applies to people who don’t wear makeup… but if you do… just don’t touch your face. At all. Ever. And wash it off every night. And if a product you use isn’t giving you good skin, throw it out. We always think we “need to put something on to treat the redness” but nah, your cleanser isn’t compatible or your moisturizer etc. It took me YEARS and YEARS to find what works for me. One product after the other.

    • Domino says:

      I think acne is technically an immunological problem? You can have 100 people, and have all touch their face/wear hats/hold their cell phone to it, but only some will get acne from those activities, and it is because their skin barrier, hormones, and immune system are different. The phone, face touching, cell phone use, etc *can be* triggers for some -but not all – – but triggering is not the same as causing. I think the real cause is the skin barrier layer/immune system malfunctioning, which is related to genetics and stress and all those nature vs nurture things.

      I am mostly agreeing with you! but also trying to gently dissuade people from thinking acne comes from touching when it can be much deeper than that, and often having good skin is way out of anyone’s control.

      I find acne tends to be a pretty complex condition in General.

      – Signed, An aesthetician who wishes she could be a dermatologist 🙂

    • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

      I have never had acne but I have a tip; I make sure that I wash my hands thoroughly before put my fingers in the moisturizer pot to avoid transferring bacteria into the pot or on my face.

  9. MandyMc says:

    Adult acne can also be a sign of PCOS. Shortly after stopping birth control a few years ago I started getting horrible acne on my chin. Along with some other super-fun symptoms it turns out I have PCOS. Once I started treating it, the acne went away.

    • brooksie says:

      Same with me! My skin was always great as a teen, but then I was diagnosed with PCOS a few months before my wedding (this past May)…that combined with the stress of planning made my skin horrible… even being on birth control. I went to a dermatologist who prescribed me with Spironolactone and suggested Skinceuticals products, and it made a drastic difference within a month or so. The other PCOS symptoms, however, still suck.

  10. KiddVicious says:

    She is so gorgeous. I love her bone structure.

    I never had a big problem with acne as a teen, but when I did get a pimple is was always the under the skin cyst kind. Very painful and I do have scars from them. Every once in a while I’ll still get a pimple on my chin but a dab of Retin-A before bed and it’s gone by morning.

  11. Sharon katz says:

    For stubborn adult acne use accutane.
    It is a total miracle drug. Clears up the worst cystic acne. You will be under the care of a
    Dermatologist for 6 months.
    Amazing results !!!

    • NicoleinSavannah,GA says:

      A miracle drug for you maybe. Many women have to go through multiple cycles and the GI tract issues are quite harmful. YMMV!

  12. Branvoyage says:

    I used to suffer too. BADLY. Tried everything. What finally worked for me is 3 capsules of ultra omega 3 per day. Now brand.
    And 2-3 times a week after washing but before moisture I put on 2.5% benzoyl peroxide. Been clear for 2 years.

  13. Reece says:

    Clean your phone! It’s one of the most bacteria laden things there are.

  14. Samab says:

    Clear your phone.
    I’ve been suffering adult acne due to hormonal disbalance, and made worst by touching It a lot.
    Tried lots of things,first of all quitting dairy helped, and then I’ve found alpha h liquid gold doing miracles for my skin.Im really thankful for this product because being able to go out makeup free again is a big relief.After six months of regular use I can finally Say my face is clean

  15. NicoleinSavannah,GA says:

    I have a huge cyst right now. It is a bummer, I also have PCOS and Endo. The skin is a great indicator of what is going on inside your body. Unfortunately, I don’t think she is in a good place physically and it is showing.

  16. Myhairisfullofsecrets says:

    I call bs on her excuse. This is not as simple as adult acne. Compare a full body picture of her now to one from a year ago. Even one from six months ago. There’s a lot more going on with her than just a dirty phone.

  17. GossipGal says:

    The media is dragging her for having a bit of acne? FFS, it’s not like she’s out mugging little old ladies of their pension cheques, or putting babies on the BBQ. It’s a skin condition, one that 99% of the population have dealt with at one time or another, not a f*cking personality flaw.

  18. Snowpea says:

    Someone above said this but go dairy-free. Im 43 years old and have had acne since I was 13. I have tried EVERYTHING! You name it, Ive given it a crack and all to no avail.

    Then about six months ago I happened to randomly read about how Natalie Portman (of all people) had given up eggs and dairy as they are the root cause of adult acne (and Medical Medium says the same). Well that was it for me…the very next day I started my egg and dairy free diet and my skin has cleared up by about 90 %. No a word of a lie. So to anyone else suffering give it a go 🙂

    • Becks says:

      I’m also 43. I got off dairy 3 years ago and it helped clear up my skin. I also swear by Retin A, Korean skincare and most importantly sunscreen! I always get compliments on my skin ☺️

    • anoy says:

      I can attest to this. I’m 37 and I still get acne. I gave up dairy about a year ago and my acne has improved tremendously but then again I’m also following tips I acquired over the years. I get flare ups more related to trying out new sunscreen/makeup. You have to google the ingredients to find out if their comedeginc. I’ve learned the hard way. Like Snowpea mentioned eliminate dairy, don’t touch face or put phone to face, wash pillows and sheets frequently, use paper towels to pat face after cleansing, lukewarm water vs hot water, clay mask at least once a week, ph face cleanser, moisturize even if you are oily, use a retinol or retinoid at nights, don’t use harsh acne treatments during the day but low % benzoyl should work. Avoid silicone type ingredients in skincare or makeup. Blocks pores thereby blocking bacteria in the pores. Back or chest acne is also usually related to products shower or hair care products. Okay, off my soap box now. Cheers!

  19. Amelie says:

    I started getting acne at 18 and took long term antibiotics which did clear it up initially but it just started coming back once I went off it. I broke out again during grad school no doubt triggered by stress and the antibiotics weren’t cutting it this time around. After 7 years of trying different treatments I finally bit the bullet and went on Accutane at my dermatologist’s suggestion. It wasn’t fun with the monthly blood draws, check ups, prescription refill screw ups at CVS, the inane questions you had to answer in Ipledge every month, and the dryness. I couldn’t wear contacts because my eyes were so dry, I couldn’t blow my nose without it bleeding, and my lips were the worst. So cracked and chapped I was constantly slathering Aquaphor on them. It was a pain but after 5 months on Accutane, my skin showed remarkable improvement and while it took a long time for the acne pimples to fade I haven’t had a major outbreak in the nearly 4 years since Accutane. I still have scarring (by the way pimple popping leads to scarring and spreads bacteria not sure why so many people do this) and not sure I can do anything for it but my face is clear and I no longer feel the need to hide.

  20. Fanny says:

    It’s bawling, not balling. The misspelling of that word drives me crazy because it seems to have originated on social media and been perpetuated on social media by people who likely read little else.