The arrival of warmer weather means it’s time to put away the coats and sweaters in favor of tank tops, bathing suits and sundresses. Have you resigned yourself to remaining covered up due to acne breakouts on your back or chest?
The good news is that back and chest acne can be successfully treated. Do you simply use the same methods that you apply to facial acne?
Is There A Difference Between Facial and Body Acne?
Looking at the composition of the actual breakouts themselves, facial and body acne are materially the same. Both are a result of hair follicles clogging your pores with oil and dead skin cells. It’s not uncommon for individuals with facial acne to have body acne as well, but they’re less likely to bring it up with a dermatologist.
The difference between the two types of acne is really about the composition and location of the skin. Back and chest skin is thicker than facial skin, which makes breakouts more stubborn.
In addition, the pores on your body are larger, making those areas more susceptible to inflammatory acne caused by irritations to the skin.
Challenges of Body Acne
Cleanliness is just as important for treating body acne as it is for treating facial acne. However, it’s complicated by the fact that your chest and back are usually covered with clothing. This means that oil is trapped, with friction from the clothes continually rubbing it back into your skin. For back acne, the situation is compounded by the difficulty of reaching the area.
Treating Facial Acne
- Understanding the differences between body and facial acne, what does this mean in terms of treatment methods for facial, chest and back acne? Keep these guidelines in mind as you develop a skin care plan.
- Shower daily using a medicated body wash. Look for one that contains salicylic acid, which has anti-inflammatory properties. It also allows the top layer of skin to shed more easily, opening up the pores. Use a soft sponge or cloth to avoid further irritation.
- Try to avoid over-the-counter acne products that can create extreme dryness, stinging and redness/irritation. Benzoyl peroxide, alcohol and retinoids are so harsh on your skin that the side effects look almost as bad as the acne. Clarity MD’s acne treatment products contain powerful antimicrobials that get rid of your acne quickly without the side effects of other prescription or over-the-counter acne products.
- Don’t forget to moisturize. It may seem counterintuitive, but body skin tends to be more dry than facial skin. Use a product with alpha hydroxy acid, which exfoliates as it moisturizes.
- Leave the sensitive skin products for your face. Since body skin is thicker, it’s harder for acne treatments to penetrate deeply enough to clear out your pores. Treating back and chest acne calls for stronger preparations.
- Adjust bra straps, backpacks and other items that can cause irritation to make them looser. This is particularly important if you have body acne but not facial acne, which indicates that the breakouts are more likely inflammatory in nature.
Don’t become discouraged by body acne. All of your skin is NOT created equal though. Careful treatment with the right type of acne system to each of the effected areas can reduce or eliminate embarrassing and painful breakouts.