Acne on chest is a common issue in both men and women. Acne occurs where there are a high number of sebaceous glands; the chest is one such region especially in women. The breasts are made up of fat tissues, and the skin is thicker in the region.
There are a number of causes due to which acne on chest might occur specifically. That being said, they might be more in number for women particularly because of hormones, pregnancy, and periods (1). First, let’s talk about the causes that are common for both men and women, these include the following:
- Dehydration: This can be the cause for acne, wherever it might occur, whether that may be chest, back, etc. Drinking less water can dry out your skin, causing it to produce more oil to keep it moisturized; this would then lead to acne or zits on your chest.
- Sugary Foods: Binge eating foods that are rich in sugar content can shoot up your blood pressure, causing it to show out on your skin in the form of acne, or any other form of inflammation.
- Working out: As much as working out is a good practice for your health, if you don’t follow it up with the right care for your skin, it could lead up to causing acne on chest, or boils. Working out would result in sweat and as well as friction, with your clothes and in women between their breasts. This doesn’t mean you stop working out; a better alternative would be to have a good shower and maybe get gym clothes with a more suitable fabric.
- Perfumes: Detergents, perfumes, and makeup could have substances that irritate the skin and cause acne on chest areas specifically.
- Clothing: Wearing the right clothing especially during humid or hot weathers is extremely crucial in the occurrence of acne on chest. If you wear a lot of synthetic clothing especially in summers it could react with sweat, causing friction and acne on chest.
Now coming to the other causal factors seen in women, these are the main ones:
Hormones: Pregnancy is mostly when there’s a surge in hormones, causing what’s known as cystic acne. This kind of acne is mainly caused when there is a hormonal imbalance in your skin. When a woman is on her monthly cycle, it also causes the breasts to swell up and may cause friction, and due to sweat, this could again result in acne on chest.
Bras: Tight bras usually end up causing friction and even retains sweat. This is one of the main reasons why acne on chest occurs in women. Another reason would be using synthetic bras. When you pick your inner wear it’s important to choose comfortable material because it’s in contact with your skin throughout the day.
With women its specifically important to keep an eye out for lumps or acne on chest that might change form after a while, if you see anything like that make sure to get it checked.
How do you get rid of Chest Acne?
Cleanse with water: You have to make sure that you clean your body throughout, have good showers, especially when you work out a lot since you have been sweating throughout the day. And for men, switch to a body wash instead or a bar of soap; this might be more effective. A body wash can be more effective than a soap because soaps tend to dry out your skin, thus causing your skin to produce more oil and give rise to more pimples. A body wash will give a more delicate cleanse (2).
Ice: Ice can help in cooling the area that’s affected due to a lot of heat and sweat. Cooling it down could bring down the inflammation and reduce redness.
Aloe Vera: This is known for its anti-inflammatory purposes, and also for its cooling nature. And unlike most of the other remedies, this has no side effects.
Dilute benzoyl peroxide: Benzoyl Peroxide is known to remove and kill bacteria from clogged pores, reducing inflammation. So the best would be to add dilute benzoyl peroxide on your skin topically.
Good fabrics: Make sure you wear fabrics that don’t irritate your skin much, especially in summer you need to be careful about this.
Exfoliate: Make sure to scrub your body enough to get rid of any dirt that might have settled in your pores.
Avoid Comedogenic products: These are products that are oil based and could increase acne in case you have an oily skin, so make sure you use products that are oil-free; for example, products that contain cocoa butter is something you should stay away from (3).
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