Herpes tends to be vesicular meaning that it is a small blister and they frequently appear in clusters. There can be asymptomatic lesions that are very small and can stay that way for a long time. Sometimes months, or years. The treatment/control because there is no cure at the present time is antiviral medication like Valtrex.
Acne type lesions on the other hand, tend to be red and have a white head.
A pimple will resolve fairly quickly, while a herpes lesion can last for some time.
Other symptoms to look out for that are more specific to a herpes breakout:
Tingling, burning and/or itching in the area, fever, swollen lymph glands, vaginal or penile discharge.
If you ar unsure of what you have, it is recommended you get a culture of the lesion to make sure of the diagnosis or have a dermatologist look at the skin lesions.
Do not have unprotected sex until the lesion have been diagnosed or you risk the possibility of infecting your partner with a life long disease. Depending on where the lesion(s) are located, abstaining from sex, including oral sex, may be the best approach.
Both Acne type lesions and Herpes will resolve on there own but herpes takes longer to resolve than does a white head or pimple. Can herpes look like a pimple? Well, yes, and that is why getting a proper diagnosis is a must.