Written by Lisa Allen, MD
Back acne, also known as bacne, is a stubborn form of body acne that far too many people are struggling with. During the summer, when people want to take their shirts off to avoid the heat or go swimming, it can be especially troublesome and embarrassing for some people. It’s unfortunate, since back acne is definitely a very treatable condition.
However, it is often said that prevention is the best medicine and this is also true when it comes to acne. Preventing back acne from forming in the first place can be much easier than trying to treat it once it’s already appeared. That’s why we’ve put together this list of 3 tips to help you prevent back acne. Let’s get started with the first back acne prevention tip!
A lot of people are far too tough on their skin, and this irritation can be the cause of acne.The first thing to take note of is what you’re washing your skin with. Are you using a soap that is harsh or drying, or that will leave behind a soapy residue on your skin? You might want to consider washing your back with a gentle cleanser, rather than soap or a body scrub.
Also, keep in mind how you are actually washing. Using washcloths or back scrubbers is fine for some people, but for others it’s just too irritating to the skin. In order to prevent acne, you do not need to “scrub away” dirt and oil. It simply does not work that way. Instead, your cleanser will do the work by itself if you merely spread it over your skin with your fingertips.
After your shower, you should use a towel and gently pat the skin dry, rather than rubbing it dry. Once again, rubbing the towel over your skin causes a lot of irritation that can lead to acne breakouts.
Just like with washing, the goal here is to avoid irritation. If your shirts are too tight against your skin, it can rub and cause irritation. This can lead to acne breakouts, or make existing acne worse. Acne caused specifically by irritation from rubbing is actually called acne mechanica.
Instead, try wearing some looser fitting cotton shirts that will allow your skin to breathe. Looser fitting shirts won’t rub against the skin as much, and also won’t trap as much sweat against the skin.
Avoiding irritation caused by clothing can go a long way in the fight against back acne. This is something that a lot of people never consider. Did you know that certain laundry detergents can irritate skin?
It would be impossible for me to list the ones that are irritating, since it’s completely dependent upon you and your skin type, however it’s worth considering changing your detergent or fabric softener, to see if it has any impact on the amount of back and chest acne that you are getting.