Back Acne

‘Bacne’ is another term for back acne or body acne. It tends to form on the back, upper arms and the buttocks and can take several forms: pimples, blackheads, pustules and cysts, which are painful and form deep under the skin's surface.

What Causes Bacne?
There is no scientific explanation for what causes back acne.
According to this article on the Acne Resource Center, back acne tends to occur around puberty when the sebaceous glands, which produce sebum, start functioning. When too much sebum is produced, pores and hair follicles can become clogged, attracting bacteria. This can lead to acne.

Stress, oily or fatty foods, excessive sweating and even genes do not seem to play a role in the causes of back acne, according to the Acne Resource Center. There is also no proof back acne is developed from tight clothing, excessive sweating and heavy backpacks (although it is possible 'bacne' is exacerbated by this).

How to Treat Back Acne?
For milder versions of back or body acne a topical 10 percent benzoyl peroxide cream or gel may suffice. Severe acne, including cysts, should be treated by a dermatologist.

To treat mild back acne:

Step 1 Wash the back with an anti-bacterial cleanser formulated for the face, such as Cetaphil. Stay away from regular soap. Let skin dry.

Step 2 Follow with a 10 percent benzoyl peroxide gel or cream. These are available over-the-counter or via prescription. Check out these options here. Let dry.

Step 3 (optional) Some experts suggest using the benzoyl peroxide in tandem with an alpha hydroxy treatment such as Alpha Hydrox Enhanced Lotion is optimal. Check out other options.

For severe back acne, consult a dermatologist for prescription treatment. Cysts can be treated in the office.

How to Prevent Back Acne
Exfoliation is a great way to get rid of dead skin cells that tend to build up on the back, buttocks and back of the arms। Use a sugar scrub (milder than salt scrubs) in the shower on a weekly basis.

What is body acne?

green bean Body acne, just like facial acne, is a genetic disease. If your mother or father had body acne, chances are you're likely to struggle with it yourself. Studies show us that most people with facial acne have some amount of body acne as well. Body acne develops in a similar way to facial acne. However, the skin on the body can be thicker than that on the face and often has larger pores, making for more severe acne lesions at times.

Acne can develop anywhere on the body except for the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. That is because these are the only two areas which do not have sebaceous follicles where acne is formed. So, if you're wondering if the pus filled red marks on your arms, legs, buttocks, or elsewhere are acne, chances are they just might be. If you are unsure, see a dermatologist for a diagnosis.
Causes of body acne

As with any type of acne, the exact cause of body acne remains unknown. However, we do know that irritation can make it worse. Anything that rubs against your skin can cause irritation. Damp, sweaty clothing combined with irritation tends to aggravate acne even further.

Avoiding irritation

* Wear breathable cotton clothing when possible. If you get sweaty, try to change your clothing when you can.
* Time your workouts so that you can shower and treat your skin using the Body Regimen afterward.
* Generally try to be aware of what might be irritating your skin in areas where you break out regularly and make changes where you can.

Note: Our bodies are constantly in contact with things and it is impossible to avoid irritation altogether. There is no need to obsess about avoiding irritation on the body. Rather, simply be aware of small changes you might be able to make and leave it at that. The Body Regimen should clear you up nicely and does not require you to avoid irritation altogether.

Luckily there exist highly effective treatments for body acne. Treatment can be split into two categories: 1) treatment for light to moderate body acne, and 2) moderate to severe body acne.

1. Light to moderate cases

For lighter cases of body acne such as my own, gently cleansing the skin, allowing it to completely dry, and applying 10% alpha hydroxy acid works to keep me clear. Read the entire light to moderate Body Regimen here.

2. Moderate to severe cases

For more severe cases of body acne, a regimen consisting of gently cleansing the skin, applying 2.5% benzoyl peroxide, and then applying 10% alpha hydroxy acid provides great results. Most cases of moderate to severe body acne can be brought under complete control this way. Read the entire moderate to severe Body Regimen here.

For very severe, widespread, and scarring cases of body acne, Accutane may be required.