Summer things that go hand in hand: sand and beach umbrellas, feet and flip-flops, and skin and SPF. But one not-so-fun hot-weather occurrence that's also on the list is body breakouts, which are most commonly referred to as "bacne" and "chestne."
"Heat, humidity, friction and perspiration provide the perfect condition for acne-causing bacteria to feed and breed," says Proactiv's resident dermatologist, Katie Rodan. Below, the California-based skin expert lists five quick tips to follow if you're prone to blemishes on your back, chest and the rest of your body.
1. Wear loose-fitting cotton clothing.
Choosing apparel made of this breathable fabric ensures that sweat is less likely to get trapped and cause problematic pimples. Rodan suggests sporting moisture-wicking clothing if you plan on being active on a sunny day to help the skin remain cool.
2. Use oil-free, noncomedogenic lotions.
"Heat and humidity increases oil production so avoiding heavier cream-based cleansers and/or moisturizers is a good idea," Rodan says. (Try Skinceuticals Sheer Physical UV Defense SPF 50, $32, skinceuticals.com)
3. Make benzoyl peroxide your weapon of choice.
A dab will do you, so long as it contains 2.5 percent of the treatment that acts as an antiseptic on bacteria-filled pimples. "If you get a zit, applying topical sulfur at night will help shrink it by the morning," she says. (Try Proactiv Refining Clay Mask, $20, proactiv.com)
4. Undergo gentle exfoliation daily.
Look for a formula with "tiny, uniform polyethylene beads" to help unclog pores and allow for better penetration of topical acne medication, advises Rodan. "Avoid cleansers with grains made from apricot pits or almond husks because they have sharp edges that tear and irritate the skin." (Try Olay Pore Minimizing Cleanser + Scrub, $7, walmart.com)
5. Shower immediately after exercising.
"Following activities like playing beach volleyball and mountain biking, you should shower and wash your skin with a medicated cleanser to avoid stewing in your own sweat," says Rodan. (Try Proactive Body Acne Wash, $17, proactiv.com) The same goes for sitting around in a wet bathing suit. Besides risking a yeast infection, the moisture will bring out body acne in not-so-pleasant areas.
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