Strappy sundresses, tank tops, and bathing suits are all a big part of summer. Is your skin ready for the clothes you want to wear, or will you have to keep it hidden, under wraps?
First off, you are not alone! A lot of people have acne on their back and chest–you just don’t see it because they cover it up with clothes.
Most of my chest acne clients have a cousin of acne called folliculitis that goes away quickly with Mandelic Serum. Folliculitis is caused by a different germ than the more common form of acne we see on the face, which means we need a radically different treatment in order to get rid of it. Folliculitis is caused by a yeast called pityrosporum. To treat it, you need to use products that gets rid of this yeast. The problem? Most regular acne treatments don’t. The good news?
Give the skin on your back and chest a tune-up with these simple tweaks to your routine:
Here’s a four-step plan to clean up your back and chest acne, fast:
1. Use an acne line with medicated products that unclog pores.
The POREspective Blackheads Kit-to-Clear makes this easy. The kit contains a medicated scrub for exfoliation, an alpha hydroxy toner to treat the folliculitis, a beta hydroxy leave-on serum to work on sebum products, a 10% leave-on benzoyl peroxide to travel down the pore and kill the bacteria deep inside, a hydrator, a moisturizer, an overnight spot treatment, and step-by-step instructions on how to use your new products.
2. Keep your back and chest skin as clean as possible, because the yeast germ that causes this type of acne feeds on oil and sweat.
Showering at least once a day with a medicated cleanser is important, but so is showering as soon as possible after workouts or any other sweaty activities. If it’s not possible to shower immediately after sweating, I recommend at least “de-greasing” the skin with the swipe of a toner and changing into a clean, dry shirt.
3. See an acne expert for chest and back acne treatments.
Acne experts are hard to find–even estheticians at a dermatology office aren’t necessarily specialists in the nuances of the pore-clogging products and lifestyle issues that may be causing your acne. I usually recommend an acne treatment at a rate of every two weeks until the skin clears up, which usually takes only three months.
4. Keep in mind that your diet may be contributing to your back and chest acne.
The yeast in folliculitis thrives on sugar-rich, oily skin, but eating low-carb foods puts the yeast on a starvation diet. For severe back and chest acne, I recommend a low-glycemic, Paleo diet which avoids peanuts, sushi, cow’s milk, and yeast while encouraging nutritionally-rich fruits, vegetables, and protein sources.