The Secrets of Back Acne


Your face isn’t the only place where acne can appear, back acne, also known as bacne is quite common and can be a nightmare, you may avoid wearing swimwear or a tank top because you feel embarrassed of showing your pimples. Your back, like other parts of your body like your chest or shoulders, has numerous sebaceous glands and hair follicles that could build up dirt, oil, and dead skin cells, in combination with bacteria to form pimples.

What Causes Back Acne?

When the sebaceous glands of your back produce too much sebum and your pores get clogged with dead skin cells, bacne starts to appear. Athletes and people who frequently work out and sweat are more prone to suffer them. Here are some other causes:

  • Genetics: If you have acne-prone or oily skin on your face you will most likely also have it on your back. You may also have a reaction to specific foods such as cheese and chocolate.
  • Hormones: If you are suffering hormonal changes due to puberty, pregnancy, and menstruation you are more prone to suffering back acne.
  • Poor hygiene: Sweating a lot with a tight t-shirt on for long hours can increase your risk of suffering back acne. You should shower daily and wear clean t-shirts every day. Wash your bed sheets and pillowcase at least once a week.
  • Hair Products: If you have dry hair and use oils or other types of moisturizing creams in your hair that could cause back acne.
  • Medications: Taking steroids, hormonal enhancements, and some antidepressants will make you suffer from bacne more often.

How Can You Treat Back Acne?

You can’t control the hormonal changes and genetic predisposition that causes acne but you can certainly do some things to improve it.

Take a Shower After Working Out

Get rid of that sweat and dirt after working out by taking a shower. Also, avoid wearing tight clothing to the gym as much as possible, which can push sweat, oil, and bacteria deeper into your pores. Wear loose clothing made with breathable materials like sweat-wicking fabrics and never wear sweaty clothing to a workout.

Wash your Back After Washing your Hair

If you are using hair products that contain oils or emollients you may suffer an increased risk of developing bacne. Having dirty hair can also transfer oil and dirt to the skin in your back so wash it regularly but make sure to flip your hair to the front to avoid leaving any residue of shampoo or conditioner in your back. As a final step, wash your back thoroughly.

Don’t Squeeze your Pimples

You may feel tempted to pop them and say goodbye to back acne but things don’t work out that way. Trying to squeeze the lesions will only lead to scarring and dark spots.

Pay Attention to your Back

Your back is a zone hard to reach and see so it can be easy to neglect it when you are taking a shower or doing your skincare routine. Since your back is one of the body parts that produce more oil so make sure to wash it properly when you are taking a shower and exfoliate it at least once a week to remove the dead skin cells and dirt. Use a gentle exfoliating scrub that contains ingredients such as salicylic acid or glycolic acid.

Clean your Towels and Bedsheets Often

Change or wash your sheets at least once a week, especially if you sleep on your back. Wash your towels once a week as well, drying off with a dirty towel will only transfer dirt and oil to your clean back. Damp towels usually can accumulate bacteria so always put them to dry after using them.

Visit a Dermatologist

In some cases, your back acne may be so severe that lifestyle changes and OTC treatments are enough to improve. If that is your case it is time that you visit a dermatologist to go over the causes of your acne, potential triggers, hormonal changes, and the right treatment choice.

Final Thoughts

Back acne is a common condition that can affect your self-esteem and lead to isolation when it isn’t treated. Fortunately, it can get better, and in most cases just following our tips will be more than enough to learn to love your back again and have clearer skin.

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