Banish Your Back Breakouts

Let's face it-a sexy, back-baring dress or camisole is nothing without beautiful skin to go with it. You can self-tan, exfoliate and moisturize all you want, but if you're finding that blemishes are forming a colony on your back, keep them at bay with these expert tips

The upper back is full of oil glands, making it a prime spot for breakouts, says California-based dermatologist David Sire, M.D. Since perspiration is a main cause of clogged pores, it's not unusual to see more back acne during the hot summer months. Dr. Sire offers five steps to a better-looking back:

  1. Avoid polyester and tight clothing that holds skin-irritating heat and moisture close to your back.
  2. The friction from rubbing against vinyl materials can aggravate the problem. Try placing a cotton-covered cushion over your car seat and office chair.
  3. Before bed, apply a benzoyl peroxide product directly on the pimples to dry them out and kill bacteria. Try: Clean and Clear Persa-Gel 10.
  4. Avoid showering in very hot water, as it can irritate the skin.
  5. To keep pores clear, wash your back in the shower with a soap containing salicylic acid, like Neutrogena Acne Body Wash.
Other bacne-battling tips include using a noncomedogenic body lotion (try this one from Lubriderm), and wearing wear loose-fitting, breathable fabrics, like linen and cotton during the day. Long-haired girls should make sure that they rinse their backs clear of any shampoo and/or conditioner residue as the chemicals could irritate your skin.

If you don't see results after four weeks, ask a dermatologist about getting a prescription oral antibiotic or a topical cream to accelerate the clearing process.

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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.