Get rid of those small red bumps on your body! (keratosis pilaris)

keratosis pilaris

Do you have patches of small red bumps on your upper arms, back or thighs? Do they look and feel like goose bumps? Do you occasionally suffer from itching in these areas? Then your skin is probably prone to keratosis pilaris. Fortunately, there are various ways to treat them.

Clogged pores and lumpy skin

A skin that is prone to keratosis pilaris can present in a variety of ways: from small, reddish-pink or red bumps that do not itch to red, pimple-like bumps. In all cases, the pores have become clogged because the skin cells in the outer layers of the skin have developed into keratin. These “lumps” grow out of the pores, making the skin feel rough and bumpy.

The best way to get rid of these bumps

It is vital to use an exfoliating product that unclogs the pore and helps dead skin cells shed more easily. A BHA exfoliant with active salicylic acid removes dead skin cells, cleansing the inside of the pores. BHA also has anti-inflammatory properties and eliminates bacteria that might cause pimples. 2% BHA Body Spot Exfoliant is a product with a proven effect on skin that is prone to keratosis pilaris.

If your skin is prone to keratosis pilaris and does not respond well to salicylic acid, you can use an AHA exfoliant instead or combine or alternate AHA and BHA products. While AHA is great for removing dead skin cells, it cannot penetrate into the pore. To control skin with keratosis pilaris, you must continue to exfoliate. If you stop, the bumps will come back. Sometimes you will need to experiment for a while to find the right frequency of use and determine which exfoliant works best. Some people will need to use it twice a day, others once a day.

What else?

Never use bars of soap. This type of soap contains ingredients that may irritate your skin and can clog pores, making the problem worse.

Do not use scrubs. Scrubs can irritate the skin, causing inflammation. Scrubs only tackle the outer layer of the skin but that is not where the problem lies. It is buried much deeper in the skin, and scrubs, facecloths, loofahs and bath puffs cannot get to it.

Laser treatment for keratosis pilaris

If topical treatments do not help get rid of keratosis pilaris (bear in mind that you must use the products for several weeks before you see any results), it is worth consulting a dermatologist. There are laser treatments for keratosis pilaris that may be worth the money and the effort.


As with acne, 50 to 80 percent of all youngsters and about 40 percent of all adults suffers from keratosis pilaris. Nobody knows why exactly. People who are prone to eczema, asthma and allergies have a greater chance of having keratosis pilaris. This also applies to people with family members who already suffer from this condition, so it may be genetic.


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