It's a pimple...no, it's a wart...nooooo, it's a mosquito bite (???). If you've ever looked at a bump on your skin and wondered "What the heck is that?" you'll want to read on. Gervaise Gerstner, M.D., L'Oreal Paris' consulting dermatologist, gave us the lowdown (what they look like and how to treat them) on some of the most popular little skin lumpies around.
The ick: Blackheads
Where they usually strike: T-zone, especially on the nose.
Why you get them: They are clogs caused by overactive sebaceous glands. The sebum that comes out of the glands gets "stuck" in the pores, says Dr. Gerstner.
What you can do: Prevention is the best medicine, but once you have them you can use a gentle exfoliant to slough off the top layer of dead skin that may be aiding and abetting pore clogging.
Products that’ll help: "I recommend in-office microdermabrasion to expedite the clearing process, but L’Oréal Paris also has a cleanser with salicylic acid—the Go 360 Clean Anti-Breakout Facial Cleanser—which is great for clogged pore prevention," says Dr. Gerstner. "Also, I recommend using a cream with retinol at night."
The ick: Whiteheads
Where they usually strike: Like blackheads, they can also be found on the T-zone.
Why you get them: According to Dr. Gerstner, whiteheads tend to be a result of using pore-clogging products.
What you can do: Check your products’ ingredients and make sure there isn’t too much oil in it. Can't tell how much oil is in the product? Look for the word "noncomedogenic" on the label, which means the product will not clog your pores.
Product that’ll help: Though also associated with acne, whiteheads are usually more superficial than blackheads. Try a glycolic peel, which will help eliminated the top layer of dead skin.
The ick: Milia
Where they usually strike: These whitehead look-alikes are usually found on the nose or around the eyes.
Why you get them: Too-thick eye creams could be to blame, says Dr. Gerstner.
What you can do: Use a light, gel-based eye cream that won't clog pores around the delicate eye area.
Products that’ll help: "Glycolic peels are a good treatment for getting rid of them," says Dr. Gerstner.
The ick: Keratosis pilaris (KP)
Where they usually strike: The bane of some brides who want to wear a strapless dress on their wedding day, KP almost always affects the back of the arms.
Why you get them: Another form of acne, these bumps are genetic. Thanks, mom!!
What you can do: Rub a lactic acid-based cream on the affected area daily to help retain moisture while exfoliating and softening skin.
Product that’ll help:Amlactin Moisturizing Body Lotion contains 12 percent lactic acid for smoothing out the bumps.
The ick: Follliculitis
Where they usually strike: This active acne shows up in hair-bearing areas like the groin, upper thigh and buttocks.
Why you get them: Popular amongst athletes, these bumps can be caused by shaving or wearing clothes that rub the skin and irritate hair follicles.
What you can do: It is best to remove sweaty clothes immediately after exercising, and use a body wash with breakout-banishing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, says Dr. Gerstner
Product that’ll help: Peter Thomas Roth’s Blemish Buffing Beads Body Wash is infused with one percent salicylic acid to help treat the acne-like bumps.
Have you experienced any of these skin conditions? What was your remedy?