Awkward topic alert: Butt acne. You know, the little acne bumps that show up on your tush after a week's worth of hard workouts? While they might not be visible in your workout gear, you know they're there, which means you need to get as tough with your butt breakouts as you are with your exercise regimen. Don't let a few butt bumps ruin the awesome confidence you get from exercise.
There are a ton of reasons you might notice butt breakouts after spending some time at the gym. The first could cause you to squirm and break out the antibacterial gel -- germy gym equipment. When you're sitting on bacteria-infested bike or weight machine seats, that bacteria could transfer to your skin, particularly if you work out in your favorite short-shorts. Of course, tight clothes and undies could also be the problem, trapping sweat and bacteria right against your skin.
If you want to kick your backside acne's, er, butt, prevention tactics are the way to go. Start by becoming a gym germaphobe. Wipe down machines before and after you use them with antibacterial cleaner. Then, swap your current undies and workout gear for more breathable stuff -- clothes made with cotton and bamboo help keep sweat away from your bum. Finally, make sure to hit the showers -- with an exfoliating scrub and acne treatment, natch -- after every workout blitz.
How to Deal
No one wants to admit they have butt breakouts -- luckily, most minor cases can be taken care of sans medical help. Both an exfoliating scrub and an acne treatment can be deployed to help clear you up. First, scrub your tush in the shower with a store-bought scrub or a paste-making mixture of baking soda and water. Then, dab on an acne treatment containing either benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. If you're more of a natural girl, both tea tree oil and witch hazel can be dabbed on the bumps to help clear them up.
Telling your dermatologist about your butt bumps is embarrassing, but if your butt isn't clearing up, schedule an appointment and let her know you're dealing with body acne. You'll also need to detail your current workout schedule so your derm can decide if your workout is contributing to your breakouts. Your derm can prescribe topical and even oral solutions so your butt acne takes a back seat to your regular workouts and your killer confidence.
- American Academy of Dermatology: Acne
- Allure: What to Do if You Break Out When You Work Out
- Body Drama: Real Girls, Real Bodies, Real Issues, Real Answers; Nancy Amanda Redd
Kay Ireland specializes in health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a support worker in the neonatal intensive care and antepartum units of her local hospital and recently became a certified group fitness instructor.