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Don’t Cover Up Because of Chest and Back Acne

Pretty young woman in an off-shoulder top in the park

Women know that accessories can cover a multitude of imperfections. A strategically placed belt or necklace can distract, cinch, and cover everything from a blemish to a bloat. However, when it comes time to bare all, accessories may not be a feasible option. If you suffer from chest or back acne, all may be well and fine until it’s time to hit the beach.  But worry not, we’ve got you covered even when you’re uncovered. Here are some tips for dealing with chest and back acne.

Why You Get Body Acne In The Summer

In the summer, you sweat more, and your body produces more oil, and unfortunately, “oil” plus “sweat” tends to equal to “acne”. Factor in sunscreen, and you’ve got a recipe for chest and back breakouts.

The Difference Between Facial Acne and Body acne

Even though they tend to look the same, and generally respond to the same treatment, there is some difference between facial acne and the acne on the chest and back. The breakouts below the neck are technically referred to as folliculitis, which occurs when the hair follicle becomes infected.

Treating Chest and Back Acne

If you’re facing breakouts on the chest and back, hit the showers ASAP after getting back from the beach or gym to prevent the sweat oil and sunscreen from building up around the hair follicles. Use a gentle body wash with salicylic acid consistently. Everyday usage of an acne-controlling body cleanser will help keep pores open and reduce inflammation.

Will a Face Wash Help?

Face washes can be useful, but only if they contain salicylic acid rather than benzoyl peroxide.  While benzoyl peroxide can be effective for treating facial outbreaks, you may not want to put it on your body because it tends to bleach fabrics and, while polka-dotted bikinis are very fashionable, they may not have the intended effect. Spot treatments and gels can work as well, and are less likely to damage to clothing. However, if none of the above work, a visit to the dermatologist may be in order.  Doctors can prescribe any array of wipes and medications to help treat serious cases of acne on the body.

What About Scrubs?

Scrubs may not be the best idea for helping with body acne because scrubbing too vigorously can over dry skin, triggering more oil production, and resulting in more breakouts. Also, the delicate skin on your chest can scar easily, if it is accidentally removed. A better option would be to use a shower puff soaked in salicylic acid wash and moved in a scrubbing motion on the chest and back. Just be sure to wash the puff as soon as you get out of the shower to avoid bacteria growth.

Are you dealing with chest and back acne? What are your recommendations for treatment? Let us know! We love to hear your comments and suggestions.

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Taking Better Care of the Skin on Your Neck

Young woman touching her neck in the bathroom mirror

Most of the time, we can tone loose body parts with exercise. Crunches firm flabby bellies, squats shape butts and thighs. Not so the neck. Our necks are incapable of lifting weights, or high impact cardio and, unfortunately, supporting our heads does not seem to burn many calories.  However, these facts do not stop the neck from sagging and loosening, much like the rest of our bodies, but this doesn’t mean that we are doomed to a neck which is less than firm.  Although the modern world has yet to see the invention of neck aerobics, there are some ways you can get your neck into tip top shape without breaking a sweat.

Collagen Supplements

UK-based doctor Sarah Tonks, recommends collagen supplements with hyaluronic acid, a compound which increases water absorption and makes skin appear plumper. In fact, according to a study conducted at the Collagen Research Institute in Germany, women who took 2.5-gram collagen supplements daily for 8 weeks experienced a 65% increase in collagen levels, which translates into tighter skin, an important component of a youthful neck.

Apply Vitamin C

Vitamin C can help inside and out.  Combining vitamin C with an SPF doubles the sunblock’s level of protection which promotes cell renewal.  Dermatologist Beatriz Molina suggests applying a serum with L-ascorbic acid to begin you neck firming regime.  This form of vitamin c is easily absorbed by skin and increases elasticity.

Eat Your Omegas Nightly

You may know that omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential for the production of collagen, but did you know that they are most effective when taken in the evening? Molina says, “While you catch up on sleep, your body is hard at work reconstructing cell membranes so your skin, including the always-exposed skin at your neck can recover from any chemical or physical damage.  If you eat your omegas after 6 pm, they’re unlikely to be broken down into fuel for other bodily functions by the time you go to bed, so your body can repair your skin.”  So eat those avocados at prime time!

Coarsen Up Your Cleanser

We all know the importance of great skin exfoliation.  Below the chin as well!  Tonks advises her patients to use gentle dermabrasion techniques to accelerate skin turnover.

Retinol

Perhaps the gold standard in skincare, retinol helps to boost collagen, unclog pores, speed up cell turnover and diminish signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles. However, since retinol is sensitive to sunlight, it can weaken the skin’s defense against damaging UVA and UVB rays and is, therefore, best when used in a night treatment.

Protect Skin From the Sun

It is no secret that UVA and UVB radiation is the biggest contributor to free radical damage. Protect yourself with a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 that includes titanium and zinc in the list of ingredients, as they form physical barriers to shield your skin from harmful rays.

How do you keep your neck tight and firm?  Let us know your secrets for a great neck!