From structural dorsal humps to whiteheads and acne, bumps on the nose can occur for a variety of reasons. And there are just as many treatment options.
Published: January 27, 2021
Last updated: March 25, 2021
Bumps on the surface of the nose or humps in the nasal structure can appear for any number of reasons, therefore it is important to first seek medical advice to determine the source of the issue. If you experience small and soft bumps on your nose, they may simply represent acne bumps that have arisen due to clogged pores, hormone fluctuations, or bacterial infection. In that instance, a dermatologist can help guide your acne treatment plan, which could include prescription medications or the use of over-the-counter solutions containing benzoyl peroxide or alpha hydroxy acids such as glycolic acid as a part of your skincare routine.
Seeking a board-certified healthcare expert to definitively address any nose bumps is important in determining your best treatment options, specifically a doctor who can examine your skin type and rule out more serious concerns such as skin cancer, which may cause abnormalities on the nose.
Nose Bumps & Acne
Before you assume that any large or small bumps on your nose are just a case of acne vulgaris that can be treated with standard OTC or home remedies, have a doctor look deeper into the skin condition you're experiencing. Indeed, the pimple-like bumps may be a case of prickly heat from too much sun exposure - or pus-filled bumps stemming from ingrown hairs, which can appear in the nasal region and may get better through treatment plans.
Additionally, the bumps could be due to hair follicles in nose pores clogging the skin, with the corresponding sebaceous glands producing excess oils and causing dead skin cells to get trapped. Products containing salicylic acid can help unclog pores when used as a part of your daily skincare routine.
Milia on the Nose
The Mayo Clinic calls tiny white bumps that sometimes appear on the noses of babies "milia" - a skin condition that cannot be prevented. Instead of developing a treatment plan for these types of bumps that can show up on the nose, cheeks, or chin, parents are advised to wait until the bumps go away on their own. Milia at times may appear in conjunction with baby acne, which usually shows up as red bumps when small dead skin cell flakes get trapped in the baby's delicate skin.
Acne Pimples or Something Else?
Keratosis pilaris, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, is a skin condition that can show up as small bumps on the nose or elsewhere, and are often mistaken for pimples. However, they represent plugs of dead skin cells that aren't dangerous but can be treated.
Not all bumps that appear in the nasal region on the tip, bridge, or elsewhere on the nose are the result of acne conditions. At times, injuries, birth defects, or genetic reasons can be the sources of nose bumps and humps.
Bumps From a Broken Nose
According to the Mayo Clinic, the exact cause of a broken nose can stem from many different types of injuries, such as during exercise mishaps, physical fights, or through contact sports. However the nasal fracture occurred, what can result is a nose that has lumps and bumps in the nasal bridge. Since the nose contains a prominent bone that sticks out and can get injured during physical activities, the trauma may cause the bone to heal in a crooked and bumpy manner that also causes breathing problems.
How Do You Know if Your Nose is Broken?
First off, it helps to realize if you're experiencing a broken nose - to seek medical treatment early and to prevent bumps from forming, if possible. Not every broken nose requires surgical intervention to realign the damaged nasal region, but visit a doctor to learn the best treatment options if you're experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- A nose that appears crooked, with bumps or humps
- A swollen nose that has bruises on it or near the eyes
- You feel pain in your nasal region, especially when applying any pressure or touching the area
- A nose that begins to bleed or dispel mucus abnormally
- You develop a hard time breathing through your nose after the injury
- When attempting to breathe, it feels as though there is a blockage in your nasal path
Nose Humps and Ethnicity
Certain nose shapes contain features that are the result of ethnicity, such as a dorsal hump. The hump is comprised of bone when it resides in the upper region of the nasal bridge, but likely is a mixture of extra bone and cartilage - or merely cartilage - when the bump is found lower on the nose.
The nasal hump appears on the bridge of the nose, in a fashion curving outward, like a small hill. Such a nasal feature is often genetically influenced. Therefore, family traits that are commonly inherited and passed from parents to children can be the source of a large nasal hump - without ever experiencing any nose injuries.
No matter the source of a misshapen nose, the solution can be the same. An injured or inherited nose can make a big impact on an individual's facial aesthetics. The desired changes can be performed by a board-certified rhinoplasty surgeon who has extensive experience with creating the nasal results desired. It is also crucial to utilize a physician who has experience in performing ethnic rhinoplasty surgeries. However, a quality surgeon will assure the patient to focus on their wishes combined with the physician's knowledge to gain the best results.
Individualized Nose Aesthetics
One of the biggest advancements in modern-day nose jobs is the realization that not everyone desires a slender and super-straight nose that was popular in decades past, because it may not represent an ideal fit for all faces. According to the 2017 Plastic Surgery Statistics Report from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, there were more than 218,000 rhinoplasty surgeries performed that year, making it the third most popular invasive surgery performed. With so many nose reshaping surgeries being undergone, patients are expressing the desire to garner nasal shapes that compliment the aesthetics of their faces.
An expert rhinoplasty surgeon will take into account the patient's ethnic heritage and their previously expressed desired goals when altering the nose during surgery. That includes pre-operative in-depth consultations that feature the individual telling their surgeon beforehand how they would like their nasal profile to appear from the side, as well as the face-forward view.
Removing Nasal Bumps: Surgical and Liquid Rhinoplasty Procedures
- Rhinoplasty: The main goal of a "nose job" or rhinoplasty surgery is to enhance the nasal area for better aesthetics. However, patients that undergo rhinoplasty and septoplasty also often experience additional benefits, such as improved breathing, and the psychological advantages that can accompany such a change. Whether they become more outgoing, experience better sleep, less anxiety, and other benefits, patients tend not to regret well-done cosmetic surgeries that rid them of the nasal bumps they loathe.
- Liquid Rhinoplasty: Not every patient is ready to undergo nasal surgery that requires downtime and periods of rest and recovery to do away with their nasal bump or dorsal hump. As such, a "liquid nose job" is an option, whereby the appearance of the nose is updated by using dermal fillers injected into the bridge or other areas on the nose to lessen the appearance of the nose bump. Such a non-surgical treatment can positively alter the aesthetics of the nose without the need for sutures and incisions.
To learn more about the treatment options listed above, check our our guide to Nose Bump Solutions.
Conclusion: Selecting the Best Nasal Surgeon
In the end, the shape of a person's nose might be marred due to bumps and humps brought on from accidental injuries or via hereditary means. After ensuring that the nose has finished developing past the age of maturity, a qualified rhinoplasty surgeon can provide the ideal nose shape by approaching the surgery with medical knowledge in mind, combined with the patient's previously determined desires for the new appearance of their updated nose.
The ideal changes for a nose that suffers from bumps or humps can result in an enhanced nasal region that causes an individual not to appear like a different person, but to look like the best and most satisfied version of themselves overall.
AEDIT uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
- Weiner, JS. “Nose Shape and Climate.” American Journal of Physical Anthropology, vol. 12, no. 4.; 1954-12-01
- Stewart, MG, et al. “Development and Validation of the Nasal Obstruction Symptom Evaluation (NOSE) Scale.” Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg, vol. 130, no. 2.; 2004-02-01
- Andreas Zanki Growth Charts for Nose Length, Nasal Protrusion, and Philtrum Length from Birth to 97 Years onlinelibrary.wiley.com
- Jack R Harkema The Nose Revisited: A Brief Review of the Comparative Structure, Function, and Toxicologic Pathology of the Nasal Epithelium pubmed.gov