Bacne, also known as back acne, is difficult to avoid especially in hot and humid weather where it’s easy to break a sweat once you step out of your house.
Yes, sweating, albeit beneficial for your body and regulating its temperature, can be bad for your skin when the sweat gets trapped in your skin’s pores along with oil, bacteria, and dead skin cells.
If you don’t have the habit of checking your back in the mirror, it’s high time to start lest your bacne problems have been growing unknowingly.
Other than having a harrowing effect on your confidence, as it’s a bit harder to be comfortable in your own skin with bacne issues, you might find yourself avoiding wearing or purchasing backless tops and dresses to hide those unsightly pimples.
Beauty and lifestyle habits that cause bacne
@Jessica | esthetician @Jessica | esthetician How to clear up your back acne. These are some things that could be causing her back acne and solutions! #backacne #bodyacnetreatment #acnetreatment #acneskin #clinicalestician #greenscreen
Sometimes, even when you think you’re taking good care of your body and back to prevent bacne, there are several daily lifestyle habits that are causing back pimples without you realising.
Letting hair conditioner touch your back
If you have long hair cascading down your back, be extra careful when you use conditioner or hair masks. These products are usually creamy and can leave a film on your skin which clogs the pores and lead to bacne.
Instead, try putting your conditioned hair up into a shower cap while you wait for the products to nourish your hair. This will keep the products on just your hair and prevent them from touching your back and shoulders.
When washing your hair, try bending your head towards the side or bending forward with your hair in the front so that any water and product don’t come into contact with your body either.
Be mindful that any hair oils or serums you’re using, as those products can clog your pores throughout the day too if your hair’s down and resting on your exposed back.
Not exfoliating when showering
Just like how you would exfoliate your face to rid of dead skin cells and improve the appearance of the skin, the same concept applies to your body and back too!
Invest in a good loofah or body brush and add that to your shower routine. Be careful to not over-exfoliate — just two to three times a week will do the trick.
For those with shorter arms or who have difficulty reaching certain areas of their body, opt for a long-handled loofah or bath sponge.
Using the same towel for your face and body
Although we’re clean and fresh after a shower, there are possible leftover oil and bacteria that can be transferred from one area of your body to another.
Acne and facial sebum can spread to your body and vice versa if you’re not careful enough. So take the safe route and use separate towels for your face and body, especially if your face is prone to acne.
In going the extra mile, you may also want to use a third towel for your hair.
Wearing tight gym clothes or athleisure wear
Some clothing for exercise is typically skin tight and with synthetic fabric, which traps moisture and leads to a build-up of grime and clogged pores.
From sports bras to tights and biker shorts, go for looser and lighter fabrics with moisture-wicking properties or provides ventilation.
That will make sure your skin can breathe and isn’t compressed while you’re sweating it out.
Skipping the shower after exercising
Not only does the accumulation of sweat on damp clothes cause bacne and irritation, it can also lead to fungal infections.
Refrain from sitting around in your dirty gym clothes and shower immediately after a workout!
However, if you’re unable to shower right away, make sure to wipe yourself off with a clean towel or unscented body wipes before changing into new, dry clothes.
Sitting on chairs or leaning against walls in public spaces
Whether you’re on your way home from work on public transport or enjoying a movie in the cinema, public areas are shared and can have dirt or bacteria around.
Just think about the bacne you can avoid by being more aware of your surroundings, especially if you’re donning clothes where your back and shoulders are exposed.
Not washing your sheets regularly
Make it a habit to wash your bedsheets and pillowcases once every two weeks to prevent from lying in your dead skin cells.
Just like how a dirty pillowcase can cause acne breakouts on your face, stale, unchanged sheets can also do the same to your back and body.
You can also look into investing in cooling and sweat-wicking sleepwear and sheets so you’ll head to bed comfortably and assured knowing that you’re not giving any chances to bacne.
Re-wearing your clothes
You may be saving water by not doing your laundry as often when you re-wear clothes, but you won’t be doing your skin any favours!
Even if you’ve been cooped up in an air-conditioned room all day or staying at home, your clothes still collect sweat, germs, and dead skin cells.
By wearing clean clothes each time after you shower, you’ll ensure that none of that nasty dirt is transferred onto your clean skin. Hence, fending off possible bacne from forming.
How to clear your bacne with beauty products
Use an acne cleanser
Don’t underestimate the power of a good acne cleanser!
A regular shower gel can help clean your body, but it may not be suitable for banishing bacne. After all, there is the right, specific solutions to tackle specific problems.
Cleansers for acne-prone skin have formulas for regulating sebum production and shed impurities. When looking for an acne body wash, reach for those with salicylic acid that is oil-soluble and great for unclogging pores.
Replying to @llammarali a bacne update!! This is something I’ve struggled with for so long but it’s looking a lot better now 😊 #cosmeticchemist #bacnejourney
Other ingredients to look out for are 10% benzoyl peroxide which is ideal for opening up pimples and lowering levels of acne-causing bacteria to reduce inflammation; and tea tree oil to target redness, swelling, and inflammation.
A choice cleanser with salicylic acid is the Murad Acne Body Wash which features a refreshing formula to treat and prevent body acne without over-drying the skin. It also has glycolic acid and date seed powder for clearer, smoother skin.
Murad Acne Body Wash retails for RM320 on Shopee.
Start having a skincare routine for your back
Using just an acne cleanser for your bacne might not be enough to make it go away.
Other than exfoliating with a loofah as mentioned above or using an exfoliating product, you can treat your pimple-ridden back with other topical products like toners, similar to caring for your face.
Applying toners to your bacne helps refresh and hydrate the inflamed skin while balancing its pH and oil production levels. You can end off your bacne regime by using pimple creams on the affected areas if you wish to.
For a good toner, try Aprilskin’s Real Carrotene Blemish Clear Vita Pad which is a dual-textured toner pad packed with plant-derived salicylic acid and gentle exfoliating PHA. It can remove all the unwanted debris and dead skin that causes acne while revitalising your skin with vitamins.
Aprilskin Real Carrotene Blemish Clear Vita Pad retails for RM80 instead of RM115 on Aprilskin.
Stay away from overly thick and fragranced body creams
We know that body creams and butters can be irresistible, smell heavenly, and be beneficial in moisturising your skin, but be meticulous about which ones you pick!
You can choose to stick to aromatic body creams and avoid applying them on your back. This will prevent any clogging of pores on your back and ensure your bacne isn’t aggravated.
Bacne treatments and solutions to explore
RJ Clinic Acne Treatment
View this post on Instagram
This multi-award-winning clinic offers a range of bacne treatments from oral and topical to peels and laser treatments.
Each treatment is personalised and tailored to your skin type and the severity of the acne and acne scars. The clinic also promises improvements in the skin condition and scarring within two to four weeks.
Here’s what a customer, Julienne, had to say about her experience at RJ Clinic:
“I would recommend you to come here as it provides the best and most friendly services as well as has successfully helped to solve my acne problems which I’ve been worrying about for so long. Those who have acne issues can come to RJ Clinic. Here they’ll give you a consultation first before starting. As a matter of fact, Dr Shuyan and Wynn are really friendly and helpful.”
Book a consult for a back acne treatment here now.
See here for the full list of outlets in Kuala Lumpur and the respective contact numbers.
Opening hours: 10am – 2pm (Mon) | 10am – 7pm (Tue to Sat) | Closed on Sun and selected PH
Website | Facebook | Instagram
Premier Clinic Active Acne & Acne Scar Treatment
Another award-winning clinic, Premier Clinic offers three different types of acne treatments.
- Acne Clear Laser Treatment: A laser therapy that manages inflammatory skin conditions without any discomfort, downtime, or residual cell necrosis. See results within two to four weeks that last up to a year.
- Chemical Peel: A non-invasive procedure that strips away the skin’s damaged layer using salicylic acid to improve your overall complexion and reveal a clear, smooth back.
- Microdermabrasion: This treatment removes dead skin cells that clog pores, reduces excess sebum production, and infuses serums based on your bacne condition into the skin.
See here for the full list of outlets in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor, opening hours, and the respective contact numbers.
Website | Instagram
Feature image credit: @janethechemist/TikTok, @amberbeilasg/TikTok