person with acne on the back
31 May 2023

Top Tips For Combating ‘Backne’

Suffering from ‘Backne’? Here are 10 tips for rocking your backless dress!

  1. Avoid long term friction on your back such as backpacks, sportswear & tight clothing as increased sweating and friction can aggravate acne on your back.
  2. Wear clean clothes and clothes that breathe. Don’t walk too long in sweaty clothing after exercise. Allowing the sweat and dirt to build up on the skin will lead to an acne breakout.
  3. Going for a weekly massage? Avoid oil-based products as they can aggravate acne. You might want to skip your massage until your acne is better controlled as the friction from the massage can aggravate the inflammation.
  4. If your back feels dry, you can apply a non-comedogenic light moisturiser such as ‘CeraVe daily moisturising lotion’ (a lotion is lighter than a cream).
  5. Don’t squeeze or pick at the spots, they leave brown or red marks that can take months to fade and increase the risk of scarring.
  6. Avoid scrubbing your ‘backne’, this leads to an increase in inflammation and post-inflammatory discoloration.
  7. Get an over-the-counter acne cleanser such as benzoyl peroxide wash (careful it stains clothes!) or a salicylic acid-containing wash (eg CeraVe SA smoothing cleanser). Apply on damp skin in the shower, and leave on for 5-10 minutes before rinsing off.
  8. Wear sunscreen when the back is exposed to the sun. Sun exposure can make acne lesions darker and more noticeable. Opt for an oil-free sunscreen (eg. Heliocare oil-free gel).
  9. Pop on a pimple patch on the bigger zits or try cleansing pads (discs saturated with salicylic acid), but don’t overdo it in your quest to clear skin.
  10. If the above tips don’t succeed make an appointment with your Dermatologist to
    a) confirm it’s acne and not some acne-mimicking condition such as pityrosporum folliculitis
    b) discuss prescription treatments and other treatment options such as light and laser therapy.

Dr Amélie Seghers

Consultant Dermatologist

Treatments to Consider:

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