Updated September 18, 2014.
Body and back acne is triggered by the same factors as facial acne. However, there are some differences in treatment, especially when it comes to skin care. Knowing how to effectively care for body acne can help prevent breakouts and speed healing.
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Choose a gentle cleanser. Traditional bar soaps may not be the best choice, as they can dry the skin and further irritate breakouts. Instead, use a mild, fragrance-free cleansing bar, such as Ivory or Dove. You may also get good results with an over-the-counter body wash made specifically for body acne.
Toss out your loofahs, body brushes, and body scrubs. Body acne can’t be scrubbed away. In fact, you may be doing more harm than good. Vigorous scrubbing of the skin exacerbates inflammation of the follicles and can worsen breakouts. Your best choice is to carefully wash affected areas with a soft cloth, or with your hands.
Try baths instead of showers. Soaking in a warm bath loosens dead skin cells. The sloughing away of cellular debris helps keep the pores open and clear, reducing the chance of comedones. Some estheticians recommend putting a cup of Epsom or Dead Sea salt into the bath water to help heal inflamed lesions. Make sure the acne-effected areas remain submerged under the water for at least twenty minutes.
Apply acne creams or topical medications. Topical creams can help speed exfoliation and reduce the number of P. acnes, the bacteria responsible for acne breakouts. If your body acne is mild, you can purchase benzoyl peroxide lotions over the counter. Apply to dry skin twice daily. If your body acne is more advanced, talk to your doctor. He can decide help decide which topical medications will work best for you.
Wear loose, natural fiber clothing. Natural fibers, such as cotton, allow your skin to breathe. Avoid tight, constricting clothing and clothing that rubs against the skin. Stay away from scratchy materials, such as wool, as well. These materials may further irritate the skin.