Submit your skincare questions to Dr. Agnes, CEO of Herborium and natural medicine expert
The truth about acne is that it can develop anywhere on the body where there are
sebaceous glands. While the most common (and visible!) area affected by acne is
the face, some of us know by personal experience where else acne can erupt—like
the shoulders, back, chest, and even on your backside. Yes, for real—that’s not
a joke! Back acne is so common it even has its own terminology, bacne.
That aside, we all know the feeling of wanting
to hide parts of our body because of body acne—but that’s sometimes better said
than done, especially in the hotter months. So what can you do when you don’t
want to be embarrassed by how your back, chest, or shoulders look?
The thing is, getting rid of body acne no
matter where it is can be far more difficult to banish than face acne. Body
acne tends to be deeper set, more inflamed, and more prone to leaving behind
pigmentation and scarring, so any treatment plan needs to be long-term. It can
take up to 12 weeks! However, that doesn't mean it's untreatable. Here are five
good habits to minimize body acne—and some other tips to get rid of it for good
There’s almost nothing that beats that
post-workout feeling—whether it’s a runner’s high or a feeling of
accomplishment just for getting through it, working out is just plain good for
But is it good for your skin?
Here’s the deal—if you’re not taking care of
your skin properly afterwards, working out could be doing your skin some harm.
Not showering after exercising potentially contributes to your body acne by
allowing the skin, sweat, and sebum to settle into and clog pores. Not to
mention that if you’re using shared machines at the gym, it might not just be
your own sweat that’s causing the acne. Ew!
Sometimes, good old fashioned exfoliation is
just what skin needs. Exfoliation helps to remove excess skin cells that might
be contributing to clogged pores, resulting in deep blackheads and inflammatory
acne. There are two different ways to exfoliate the body—with chemical exfoliation
and physical exfoliation.
Chemical exfoliation refers to using products
that contain salicylic or glycolic acid to dissolve the dead skin cells—these
can appear as dedicated body washes or lotions that are applied to affected
Physical exfoliation refers to using an
exfoliating towel, body brush, body scrub, or exfoliating gloves to literally
remove the dead skin cells from the body in the shower, for baby-soft skin. The
skin on the body can typically handle a little more strength than on the face,
so physical exfoliation is well-tolerated by most.
There are medicated body washes, sprays, and
lotions on the market that all claim to target body acne. Sometimes they’re
chemical exfoliation products like the ones mentioned above, or they’re
formulated with ingredients such as Benzoyl Peroxide to kill the acne-causing
bacteria. The sprays are especially designed to be able to treat hard to reach
areas to ensure that every part of your back is covered with acne-treating ingredients.
There’s a catch, though—Benzoyl Peroxide
infamously bleaches clothes, towels, and bedsheets, so even if it is good at
eliminating acne, is it worth the stains? While a treatment like this works in
a pinch, it’s not necessarily a long-term solution.
So, there’s actually a specific type of acne
called acne mechanica, which is
basically the result of the constant rubbing of sweaty clothes on skin. Ew,
For the everyday person, it’s usually caused
by backpacks trapping sweat in between your shirt and back, plus the constant
rubbing really drives down the sweat,
grime and irritation into your pores—the perfect recipe for back and shoulder
FYI, Backpacks aren’t the only contributor to
this. Sports bras and other types of athletic equipment and straps are culprits
for causing this too. Basically, anywhere you might have constant pressure from
a strap or clothing that’s too tight could contribute to acne—so avoid super
tight clothes and give your backpack a break. This kind of body acne commonly
affects athletes and spikes in the summertime thanks to the heat.
This issue is more common for the ladies than
for men, especially if you have long hair. Ask yourself this—in the shower when
conditioning hair, do you just let your hair rest on your back, while it’s full
If you do, this could be contributing to your
body acne. After all, conditioners are supposed to moisturize your hair—but
leaving the residue from these rich, moisturizing components could be
exacerbating any skin issues you already have. Gross, right?
The solution? After applying conditioner to
your hair, use an alligator clip to keep it off your back, and ensure all
conditioner residue is rinsed away to avoid leaving pore-clogging ingredients
on your skin.
While all these are great tips to help
minimize body acne—they wouldn’t be recommended if they weren’t—I know what
The truth is that these are all band-aid
solutions that only affect the physical appearance of acne—not the true,
internal cause of it.
Factors such as diet, hormones, and
medications can cause acne—no matter what topical ‘remedies’ are used. AcnEase
is the only product that naturally treats the cause of acne from within,
without causing skin sensitivity or harmful side effects over time.
Because body acne can be more stubborn to get
rid of than facial acne—the inflammation is deeper and it tends to cover a
larger part of the body—treatment can take longer than it would for facial
acne. That’s why it can take up to 12 weeks to completely clear body acne with AcnEase’s proven herbal supplement.
Patience is key to having a completely clear chest, shoulders, and back, but
the wait is worth it for flawless, acne-free skin.