How to Know If You Have Fungal Acne (Versus the Regular Kind)

What looks like acne, feels like acne, but isn’t actually acne at all? That would be pityrosporum folliculitis—or fungal "acne," as it’s more commonly called (which, btw, only adds to the confusion).

Whereas traditional pimples are caused by bacteria, "fungal acne is caused by a proliferation of yeast that is a normal inhabitant of the skin," says Dr. Tony Nakhla, a board-certified dermatologist and founder of Eighth Day. 

How can I spot the difference? The regular, run-of-the-mill kind "tends to occur in the T-zone of the face, as well as the cheeks and jawline," says Nakhla. The fungal variety "usually appears on the upper chest and upper back and sometimes along the hairline." Another clue? If the bumps are fairly uniform in size and itch, it’s most likely fungal....