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The only thing worse than a honking zit on your face? One on your butt. No, seriously.
Still, at least you’re not alone: “Body acne is incredibly common,” says Deirdre O’Boyle Hooper, M.D., of Audubon Dermatology in New Orleans. The best defense: acne body wash.
If you’re dealing with bacne, take a close look and determine if you’re #blessed with blackheads or red pimples. Blackheads are best quashed with a pore-clearing salicylic acid acne wash, while angry red spots respond better to benzoyl peroxide, which kills bacteria and calms inflammation, says Hooper. Buttne is also best served by a benzoyl peroxide wash.
Pro tip from Hooper: don’t use a loofah (they’re expert bacteria breeders); use your hands to suds up instead. Give benzoyl peroxide about a month to work and salicylic three months. If breakouts haven’t diminished after that, see your derm.
Now that that’s out of the way, let’s go shopping. These are seven of the best body washes for acne:
You may think that this is only for your face, but it’s suited for your body, too. Hooper recommends starting off with a mid-level benzoyl peroxide wash to reduce the risk of irritation, and this one fits the bill with a 4 percent concentration.
This cleanser packs glycolic and salicylic acids to keep pores clean of clogging debris. It works best if you have blackhead-type acne on your back. Bonus: Apply an OTC retinoid like Differin on the area post-wash, says Hooper, for a one-two exfoliating punch.
Wait, this is a shampoo…? Hooper recommends alternating this dandruff shampoo with benzoyl peroxide wash for pimply breakouts on your chest and back. Dandruff shampoos contain anti-inflammatory ingredients that also help control yeast.
The classic anti-breakout body wash contains 2 percent salicylic acid to battle blackheads and glycerin to keep skin moisturized.
Another great salicylic acid-based wash, it’s also formulated with vitamin E, aloe, and chamomile to calm touchy skin.
Just because it says it’s for your face doesn’t mean it can’t go on your
back and butt. This cleanser contains 5 percent benzoyl peroxide to lessen inflammatory lesions.
It’s not a body wash per se. But! It’s designed with body breakouts in mind. The bar soap is 3 percent salicylic acid and 10 percent sulfur. While salicylic gets to work unclogging pores, the sulfur is a powerful anti-inflammatory