Acne is just for the face, right? Wrong. Acne can occur virtually anywhere on your body including your chest. According to Dr. Sarah Campbell, board-certified dermatologist with Forefront Dermatology, “Pimples on the chest, also referred to as chest acne, can be caused by the same factors the rest of our body faces. Pores clogging from sweat, friction from your clothing, increased bacteria on your skin, and lack of skincare can all lead to unwanted breakouts. The most common cause though of chest acne, like acne in general, is hormones.”
Chest acne is very common, as well as acne on the back and shoulders. It is very easy for glands in these regions to become clogged with oil and bacteria leading to inflammation and acne. Chest acne can appear as different forms of acne including:
• Blackheads are uninfected, clogged follicles that appear as a dark bump on the skin. Whiteheads are clogged follicles covered by a thin layer of skin that appear as white bumps or spots.
• Papules are inflamed lesions that may appear red, and can be sensitive and painful.
• Pustules are inflamed lesions that are generally pus-filled. They may appear white or yellow, and popping pustules can lead to acne scarring.
• Nodules are a severe form of acne lesion that develops under the skin; they don’t generally contain pus but are hard to the touch.
• Cysts are a severe form of acne lesion that is inflamed and filled with pus. They are generally painful and require professional medical treatment.
Ways to Prevent Chest Acne
“If you suffer from chest acne, or acne on your back and shoulders, you need to treat this area of your skin no differently that if you were suffering from acne on your face, with some additional tactics,” added Dr. Campbell. “Unlike your face, this area of your body is covered by clothing which can trap sweat and bacteria. Avoid fitted clothing, switch to breathable fabrics and immediately change once you become sweaty.”
Exfoliating off dead skin is just as important for the body as it is for the face. Exfoliating one to two times a week will buff away dead skin cells that can clog pores and form pimples. The easiest way to exfoliate your chest is with a body scrub that is labeled an exfoliating scrub. When not using your exfoliating scrub, wash this area with a salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide cleanser. These powerful cleansers penetrates deep into pores and eliminate blackheads and pimple-causing bacteria.
Struggling with Acne?
The board-certified dermatologists at Forefront Dermatology are specialists in acne, acne treatment and acne scar treatment. Find a dermatologist near you and schedule your consultation today.