Ever run your hand across your back side only to find that the skin is sporting some pimples? You’re so not alone. Debra Jaliman, a New York City-based dermatologist, explains exactly what these little bumps are: folliculitis. “The bumps are formed by dead skin cells and bacteria in the hair follicles.” Well, that’s gross. And unfortunately, women who work out are particularly prone to buttne (read on to find out why). There is some good news, though: Jaliman shared four ways that you can get rid of—and prevent—the dreaded pimples.
1. Use a Benzoyl Peroxide Body Wash
To eradicate bumps, Jaliman recommends using a body wash with benzoyl peroxide. While the ingredient is normally used as a spot treatment for zits, Jaliman says that it’s a must for getting rid of folliculitis since it dries up and sloughs off the dead skin clogging the follicle. Try PanOxyl Benzoyl Peroxide Acne Creamy Wash ($11.99, walgreens.com).
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2. Unclog Pores with Salicylic Acid Pads
Working toward a bump-free butt? Prevent future developments by unclogging pores a few times a week with a pad spiked with salicylic acid, says Jaliman. Again, what works on zits will work on these infected follicles—though they may not be painful the way zits are, they still require similar cleansing regimens. Try Neutrogena Rapid Clear Daily Treatment Pads ($6.99, drugstore.com).
3. Use a Lotion with Lactic Acid
While you may think that slathering on a moisturizing body lotion would be counterintuitive, it’s not. The lactic acid in certain lotions gently exfoliates off dead skin cells, which Jaliman says will help you get rid of those pesky bumps. Try AmLactin Moisturizing Body Lotion ($16.99, walgreens.com).
4. Always Shower After a Sweat Session
All right, ‘fess up—do you sometimes sit around in your workout clothes after you’ve been hitting it hard in the gym? Jaliman says this bad habit can lead to butt bumps. “It’s best to shower right after a workout so you don’t sit around in clothing you’ve been sweating in that’s filled with bacteria,” she says. She recommends using a loofah, puff, or sonic cleansing brush like the Clarisonic Plus Face & Body Sonic Cleansing Brush ($180, clarisonic.com) to remove any sweat, bacteria, or dead skin cells that may be sitting on the surface.
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