Bacne, boob and bum breakouts: How to deal with spots in tricky places

Marie Claire Dorking
[Photo: Getty]
[Photo: Getty]

Grrrr spots. As if getting a breakout on your face wasn’t annoying enough, many of us have to deal with acne on our boobs, back and bum too. Pleasant.

But why?

“Pesky pimples can occur in some awkward places and whilst the face gets the most attention, other areas can be affected too including under the breasts, the back and the bottom,” says Paul Banwell, Consultant Cosmetic Surgeon and Skin Specialist, from the Banwell Clinic.

According to Banwell these areas are prone to increased sebum production, (in other words sweat) and in turn this can lead to clogged pores and dreaded breakouts.

“Acne on various parts of the body occurs for the same reasons as facial acne, an initial blockage of the pore caused by cells, skin debris and sebum blocking the entrance to the pore. Some of these blockages progress, due to inflammation and bacteria, into various forms of the acne spot,” adds Dr Mervyn Patterson, Founder, Woodford Medical.

Stress can also play a part as it triggers your body to produce cortisol, which then stimulates your oil glands to create acne-causing testosterone.

So what can we do about it?

Switch up your workout gear

Choose lightweight, loose-fitting clothing made of cotton or other natural fabrics which allow your skin to breathe while you’re burpee-ing, and are less likely to cause friction, another factor which causes breakouts.

“If you are getting acne on your bottom, perhaps check the underwear your using and opt for a lighter, more breathable material,” adds Dr Patterson.

Shower straight after exercise

Sounds obvious right? “Dried sweat that is not washed away encourages and harbours bacterial growth which can predispose to breakouts,” explains Paul Banwell.

Change your shower routine

Shampoo and conditioner lingering on your skin could be irritating the pores on your back. When the oils from conditioner are allowed to sit on the skin, they can easily clog up those open pores leading to breakouts. So after washing your hair make sure you also rinse your back and boobs properly.

Bum acne be gone! [Photo: Getty]
Bum acne be gone! [Photo: Getty]

Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse

Dr Patterson recommends cleansing the skin with a salicylic wash. “My personal recommendation is Epionce Lytic Gel Cleanser, an effective concentration of salicylic combined with ingredients that help repair the skin barrier,” he says.

Paul Banwell suggests topical treatments with Dermalux LED light, microdermabrasion, hydroxacid washes and enzymes reactivators (peels) could also be effective.

Up your water intake

“Drinking plenty of water is necessary because hydration is essential for optimum physiological functioning of the skin and to optimise all biological processes and immune protection,” says Banwell.

Swap your sun screen

It always worth looking at direct local causes when one gets body acne,” suggests Dr Patterson. “If it is occurring on the body, particularly when on or after a sunny holiday, it may well be a combination of additional sweating and sun screen.

He suggests looking for a high quality UV protection such as Epionce Daily Shield SPF 50 which has a low incidence of causing problems on your acne prone areas.

“And be sure to shower as soon as you get in out of the sun,” he adds.

Don’t scrub too hard

Though it is tempting to scrub and exfoliate, Dr Patterson warns that this could make things worse. “Resist the temptation though to over cleanse or exfoliate as this can simply strip away important lipids and dry the skin,” he explains. “Disrupting the skin barrier in this way sets off further problems of oiliness, and inflammation risking further outbreaks.”

Drink your way to clearer skin

Skin expert Paul Banwell recommends Skinade, the UK’s leading liquid collagen drink. “This pocket rocket treatment has a high tech formulation packed with goodies. It helps soothe the skin with anti-inflammatories, reduce breakouts and fortifies the skin barrier with immune protectants,” he explains.

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