What is backne?
Back acne has the same characteristics of facial acne, including the appearance of pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, red spots and even scarring. Severity can vary and is common among adolescents. Backne can also affect some adults.
Causes for back acne
Build-up of dead skin cells, dirt and oil blocking the hair follicle, trapping bacteria and causing inflammation. Backne can also occur when sweat is left on the body for too long. Hormonal fluctuations can also cause backne in females.
How to prevent back acne
Regular showers, body exfoliating and avoid occlusive clothing (especially gym wear) which can cause excessive sweating and irritate the hair follicle. We do recommend showering immediately after a work out if you are consistently suffering from backne.
Body washes containing Salicylic Acid and AHAs such as Glycolic Acid and Lactic Acid is useful for preventing clogged hair follicles. Sulfur and Benzyl Peroxide are also very useful ingredients as they have mild anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
How to treat back acne
The first-line treatment is to start with a suitable body wash with Salicylic Acid, AHA or Benzyl Peroxide and changes to your lifestyle e.g. avoid occlusive clothing and shower immediately after a workout. If symptoms persist, oral antibiotics, oral retinoids or hormonal medication maybe required and prescribed by your doctor.
Cerave Salicylic Acid Body Wash for Rough Bumpy Skin
Author: Helen Lam (B.Pharm) MPS
Pharmacist and cosmetic formulator