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Tips on How to Get Rid of Back Acne Scars

We understand how aggravating back acne scars may be. You may not see them until you want to put on that attractive off-the-shoulder top.

Those blemishes are suddenly detracting from the overall look of your dress.

Acne on the back is common. The American Academy of Dermatology estimates that up to 50 million Americans suffer from acne at any given time.

Acne usually begins during adolescence, and the majority of people suffer from it until their teenage years.

However, for other people, it might last far into their late twenties and into their thirties.

Bag, bras, exercise equipment rub on and irritate our skin on a daily basis. These variables can cause back acne (also known as “bacne”) by disrupting our skin’s natural functions

However, there have been ways to lighten and treat back acne scars such that they are no longer visible. It only requires a few simple measures that you can work into your everyday routine.

What Is Back Acne?

man Back Acne

Acne is very frequent on the face. Back acne, or “bacne,” is acne vulgaris on the back, mainly the upper back. Depending on the severity of the lesions, you may want to avoid them.

Acne is a pore-clogging skin condition. A sebaceous gland (or oil gland) and hair follicle are located at the bottom of the pore, with an open-top.

The oil, known as sebum, travels up to the skin’s surface to keep it moisturized. It sweeps debris and dead skin cells out of the pore as it moves upward.

Acne develops when these particles along with secreted oil become caught in the pore, causing it to clog.

Inflammation can be caused by germs trapped in the plugged hole. The upper back has more sebum production than any other part of the body.

As a result, it’s a common site for acne to appear.

What Causes Back Acne?

Acne can occur for a variety of causes. The following are a few of the most common:

  • Genetics – Acne is a problem that might run in your blood.
  • Medications – Some drugs, such as antidepressants, might cause acne as a side effect.
  • Hormones – Hormonal changes in adolescence often cause acne. However, hormonal changes during ovulation and pregnancy can cause pimple eruptions in women past puberty.
  • Sweat – Sweat can aggravate acne, especially if it’s trapped under tight clothing.
  • Stress – Although stress isn’t a causative factor of acne, it can play a role.

According to some research, the foods you eat may be related to acne. Certain carbs (such as white bread and potato chips) that raise blood sugar levels may also lead to acne. Dairy products may also be a factor for certain people.

Types of Acne

Back acne arises in two types. Non-inflammatory acne is one and it is distinguished by the following:

  • Blackheads or “open comedones” are clogged pores on the skin’s surface that remain open.
  • Whiteheads or “closed comedones” are plugged pores that are sealed at the surface of the skin.

Inflammatory acne on the back can also be a problem. The following forms of blemishes are associated with this type of acne:

  • Pimples are sensitive pink or red pimples that are elevated. When they don’t have a white tip and pus, they’re called papules.
  • Pustules are pus-filled and have a white tip.
  • Large, firm, painful lumps deep beneath the skin are known as nodules.
  • Cysts are nodules filled with pus that aren’t solid or firm to the touch.

How to clear back acne scars

dermatologist checking back acne scars

Back acne scars are unique, much like pimples, therefore there is no one-size-fits-all technique to treating them. It may take a few tries to discover the best back acne scar remedies.

Check out some of the treatment options available here.


  • Over-the-counter medications. OTC medications for mild to moderate back acne may be beneficial in controlling outbreaks. A benzoyl peroxide foamy wash kills microorganisms and works best when used daily.
  • Vitamin C. Use vitamin C-based solutions to help brighten acne scars. Vitamin C is a vital antioxidant in one’s skincare routine because it prevents UV damage, boosts collagen synthesis, brightens the skin, and, most significantly, improves skin tone.
  • SPFs and acids. Chemical exfoliators, such as acids like glycolic, lactic, and azelaic acid, are recommended by dermatologists for reducing superficial acne scarring. With a simple swipe, these products are meant to gently exfoliate and decongest the skin.

Avoid direct sunlight

UV radiation from the sun can darken acne and cause scarring on your back. Apply sunscreen liberally and reapply as needed. Not only will this help with acne, but it will also safeguard your skin from UV exposure and skin cancer.

Home Remedies

Many people swear by natural methods to get rid of acne scars. However, the scientific basis behind them is murky. Some may irritate the skin or cause other issues, so individuals must use them cautiously.

People have traditionally utilized the following home scar treatments:

  • aloe vera gel
  • baking powder
  • virgin coconut oil
  • lemon juice
  • unprocessed honey
  • shea butter

In-office procedures

There are numerous cosmetic procedures from which to choose. Your dermatologist and you will talk about the best treatment choices for your bacne scars.

It is fairly uncommon for patients to require multiple procedures to regenerate their skin.

  • Chemical peels – This procedure removes the top layer of dead skin with the use of specific chemicals. Usually, when the topmost layer is peeled, the new skin is smoother and has less scarring.
  • Dermabrasion – This procedure removes the upper skin layers with a specific instrument that creates friction, similar to how a sander peels the top layers of a plank of wood.
  • Microdermabrasion – Microdermabrasion, like dermabrasion, removes the top layer of skin with a piece of specific equipment.
  • Laser resurfacing – a procedure in which a laser is used to heat-damage collagen beneath the skin. The body’s wound-healing response is used to generate new, healthy collagen. This laser treatment promotes the formation of new skin to replace the existing.

Ablative and non-ablative laser resurfacing are the two forms of laser resurfacing. Your dermatologist will assess which type is appropriate for you based on your skin type and acne scarring.

How to prevent back acne

Now that you understand the basic causes of body acne, the acne protection measures listed below should make a lot of sense.

  • Avoid wearing tight clothes. To avoid acne-causing friction, use loose clothing. If wearing tight clothing is inevitable, use breathable fabrics like cotton that drain sweat and bacteria away from the skin rather than trapping it.


  • Regularly exfoliate. Because dead skin cells prefer to capture acne-causing microorganisms on your skin, exfoliating them off on a regular basis is an excellent acne prevention approach.

Instead of using your loofah to scrub your skin, which might irritate it, use a cleanser that has a moderate chemical exfoliator. Salicylic acid is the best exfoliator since it softly exfoliates while also aggressively fighting microorganisms.

  • Cleanse at the right time. After doing anything that causes you to sweat, cleanse within one hour. If you wait any longer, it will be more difficult to get rid of the bacteria


  • Make sure you’re using the right cleaning solution. A good body acne treatment should be non-drying, fragrance-free, antimicrobial, and include an acne-fighting substance like salicylic acid.

back acne before and after - treatment and prevention

When should you see a doctor about acne?

You may not need to seek medical advice if you can manage your acne with gentle soap washing or over-the-counter creams or lotions.

Conversely, if you have acne, you should contact a doctor if:

  • Your acne worsens as a result of ineffective home treatment.
  • You don’t go out on parties or dates because you’re afraid of being judged.
  • Acne makes you feel humiliated or miserable.
  • Your pimples are huge, firm, and fluid-filled. This is referred to as cystic acne.
  • Either of your parents suffered severe acne and scars.

Consult your physician before beginning any home remedy, as you should with any other type of treatment. Our board-certified dermatologists at Team Dermatology can provide you with advice on which treatments you should try and which you should avoid.

What might a person with back acne scars expect as a result?

Acne scars can be reduced in size and severity with most treatments. Several of the treatable acne scars vanish over time, becoming almost unnoticeable.

The knowledge and ability of the individual administering the treatment are virtually entirely responsible for your results.

While doctors can treat acne scars in a safe and effective manner, prevention may be a preferable option.

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TEAM Dermatology advises you of the departure of Dr. Kuda Maloney from our Memorial and Sugar Land locations in November of  2023.  Dr. Maloney will be pursuing interests outside of private practice and we wish her the best in achievement of her future endeavors. Please contact our office to arrange for your care with another provider in our offices.