It’s okay to chuckle – I must admit I did too. The mere combination of the words butt and acne triggers the neurons in my brain responsible for finding stuff hilarious. But, butt acne is apparently a thing. It’s always been around, but this time we have decided to get serious and do something about it.
See, butt acne is not actual acne, but it looks similar.
Here’s what it actually is. According to dermatologist Jamie MacKelfresh, MD, “Acne on the buttocks is not true acne you get on your face, chest, or back. Acne-like bumps on the buttocks are caused by inflammation of hair follicles, which is called folliculitis.”
And if two or more strands of hair get inflamed, you get what is called a carbuncle, or in short: a little cluster of inflamed hairs, called boils. Needless to say, this is painful, as you’ve no doubt already experienced that odd, little, painful bump on your butt. As reported by Daili Dispatch, though, the reasons for it – and the ways to prevent butt acne – are as follows:
1. Having overly dry butt skin
Our butts are wrapped in clothing 24/7. What can you expect? The poor place is chafed and dehydrated. Plus, the constant friction with the clothes compresses hairs back into the skin, where they can get inflamed.
2. Tight underwear, tight pants, tight tight tight…
Besides compressing hair follicles, tight clothes also trap extra bacteria and sweat against the skin. Not a good thing.
This is sort of self-explanatory, but alright. The longer your skin is in contact with sweaty, smelly, warm clothes, the higher the risk of butt acne (folliculitis). Try to change clothes more often if you end up sweating more than usual.
4. General health problems
Pimples on the butt can also be indicative of another health condition, like a hormonal imbalance or digestive issues. Inactivity is also a factor – because you know, sitting too much. On your butt. So it gets angry and gets butt acne.
Okay, so those are the known causes. But what about solutions? Prevention? Read on.
1. The way you shower plays a role
Or more precisely, the ORDER in which you treat your body parts plays a role. For example, hair conditioners and some shampoos clog the skin pores, so make sure you don’t wash your hair at the end – because all the shampoo and conditioner will get smeared over your butt, and if not rinsed thoroughly can contribute to folliculitis. The solution? Wash your hair at the beginning, and your butt last. Also, exfoliating the skin on your behind with a washcloth will help.
2. Moisturizing helps
We’re so obsessed with our legs, hands and face, that we forget all about our beautiful booties. But make sure you avoid those heavy lotions, as they can contribute to pore clogging. Tea-tree lotions and non-comedogenic ones are your best bet.
3. Don’t try to pop your butt acne. Please.
It will only make things worse. Rather than having to clean and disinfect your butt afterward (and suffer painful stings every time you sit), visit your doctor if the pimple is too big or too painful.
4. Keep hydrated / drink more water
Moisturizing won’t help much if you don’t keep yourself hydrated by drinking enough water. Eight cups a day is what the doctor ordered.
5. Try standing more
Sweat and bacteria just LOVE you sitting all the time. That way, they can take their sweet time to clog your pores. But keep in mind that being more active isn’t a guarantee the problem will go away. It’s just another method of prevention.
But what about treatment, you ask?
Most of the time, folliculities goes away on its own, gradually disappearing and fading away from your behind. But this only happens if you actually leave it alone. Trying to pop those weird butt pimples can leave you with long-term scars and ugly pigmentation.
But for those rare occasions when the butt acne doesn’t go away on its own, you should visit a dermatologist or your doctor. They’re the experts, after all, and they will probably be able to recommend a treatment for the problem.
“Often, ‘butt acne’ can be treated with a topical antibiotic cream or an antibacterial wash such as one that contains benzoyl peroxide,” says MacKelfresh, a dermatologist. “You can prevent ‘butt acne’ by staying in good health overall.”
Well, good luck to all of us, I guess.