Shoulder Acne

Dealing With Shoulder Acne

Many people who have to deal with facial acne think that shoulder acne is not so big of a problem. The truth is, however, for people who have this acne on their backs and shoulders, it can be quite bothersome and embarrassing.

While it is true that facial acne is much more difficult to hide, there are plenty of situations in which shoulder acne creates similar problems. A couple of examples would include when wearing a bathing suit or a strapless dress.

First, let’s take a look at what causes shoulder acne.  In addition to the normal causes of acne, such as overactive glands, pore blockage and bacteria, shoulder acne gets another boost. This comes in the form of friction. When something is rubbing against a certain body part on a regular basis, that will increase your chances of getting acne in that spot.

That explains why athletes, whose uniforms and protective gear rub against the shoulders, often find themselves with shoulder acne. While there are treatment options available for this type of acne, you probably already know how difficult it can be to get rid of the problem.

While some treatments are effective, there are none that are guaranteed to work for everyone. That is why it is better to work to prevent the acne in the first place rather than have to seek for a cure.

One way that you can do that is by working to reduce the friction. Obviously, you still have to wear clothing and many will still need to put on their uniform, but here are a couple of tips to cut down on the amount of friction in the shoulder area.

Let it Breathe

Sleep shirtless. This will allow the skin in the area on your back and shoulders to have time to breathe. It will not necessarily “undo” the friction that was done during the day, but it will allow your skin a recovery period. While this alone may not prevent acne, it is one step that might help to reduce the frequency and intensity of the breakouts.

Keep it Clean

When showering, pay special attention to thoroughly clean the areas that are giving you problems. When you are in a hurry, it is easy to quickly wipe the washcloth over your shoulders, and many people skip washing the back altogether.

Remember, one of the causes of acne is blocked pores. Wash thoroughly to help reduce breakouts.

Provide a Buffer

Wear natural fibers rather than manmade materials. Natural fibers, such as cotton or silk, allow your skin to breathe while manmade fabrics, such as polyester, do not.  When choosing a shirt, stick with natural fabrics.

Of course, if you wear a uniform, you cannot choose the fabric. What you can do is wear a cotton t-shirt under the uniform to allow your skin a buffer and allow it to breathe.

If you already have shoulder acne, try applying an over the counter cream that contains benzoyle peroxide. If that does not provide the results that you want, you may have to see a dermatologist for a prescription treatment.

Shoulder acne is annoying, but there are ways to both prevent it and treat it so that you can get on with your life.