Should You Put Lotion on Bacne?

Should You Put Lotion on Bacne featured photo

Acne affects millions around the world. It can develop anywhere in your body where you have overactive sebaceous glands, including your back. Those dealing with this issue may be wondering if they should still put lotion on their case of bacne.

No matter your skin type, your skin needs moisture. Keeping your acne-affected skin well-moisturized will help in your course of treatment. It can soothe inflammation and increase cell turnover. Additionally, your acne treatment can be drying so you would need to counter this side effect by applying a body lotion on the affected area.

It’s understandable that some are still hesitant to dive in and use lotion on their bacne. To put your mind at ease, visit your dermatologist for a professional consultation on the right skincare routine for you.

What is Back Acne?

Acne is the most common skin condition in the United States. In fact, it’s so common that it affects up to 50 million Americans every year, according to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD).

Though acne has traditionally been known to only affect people going through puberty, acne can develop at any point in life, no matter the person’s age. Many people who suffer from acne may continue to deal with it well into their adulthood.

While many of the cases of acne we see talk about are facial acne, acne can occur anywhere on the body – from the neck, chest, shoulder, back, and even buttocks.

Back acne, or “bacne”, is acne that forms on the back. Acne can form as blackheads, whiteheads, or painful pus-filled bumps also known as cysts.

Bacne is pretty much the same as the form of acne that forms on the face and other parts of the body. But because the back is typically a harder-to-reach area for most, not many who deal with bacne are able to treat and deal with them properly.

What Causes Back Acne?

Bacne is not a separate skin condition from acne that forms on the face or other parts of the body. This means the cause for it is pretty much the same as a typical acne condition.

Acne typically develops in parts of the face and body with overactive sebaceous glands. The sebaceous glands are what produce your skin’s natural moisturizing oils, which then form a protective barrier on the top of your skin, keeping it from drying. The sebaceous glands are also where the hair follicles are.

Although you need it, your skin’s natural oils can clog your pores, when there is excess production of it. When this excess sebum along with dead skin cells, dirt, and acne-causing bacteria clogs a pore, this leads to inflammation, causing acne.

In this sense, areas of your face and body that have more oily skin are also more likely to develop acne.

Other factors like hormones, stress, and genetics can also play a role.

Should You Put Lotion on Bacne?

So you’re dealing with back acne and are now wondering if you should be putting lotion or body moisturizer on it. When you first think about it, you might think it’s counterintuitive. Especially because we’ve just told you that acne develops due to overactive sebaceous glands and excess oil and sebum.

While this may be the general belief, it’s far from the truth.

Your skin, no matter the skin type or your case of mild or severe acne you’re dealing with, needs a moisturizer or lotion. Keeping the acne-affected area moisturized and your overall skin healthy should be at the top of your skincare priority.

Why should you use lotion if you have back acne?

If your skin feels oily and greasy while you’re dealing with acne, you might not want to add more oiliness and greasiness on top of it by slathering a layer of moisturizer.

But most acne treatments available over the counter or prescribed by your dermatologist can be very drying to the skin. This includes treatments like:

  • Salicylic acid
  • Benzoyl peroxide
  • Retinoids
  • Antibiotic
  • Some other stronger topical treatment

When applied to the back or taken orally, these can have the side effect of drying out acne-affected areas. The skin can feel tight and uncomfortably dry. When these happen, the skin will overcompensate by producing even more oil.

The extra sebum will increase the chances of clogged pores, leading to even more acne breakouts.

Moreover, the right acne-friendly moisturizer and lotion can help reduce and soothe inflammation and increase the skin’s cell turnover, aiding in acne healing.

Can Moisturizers and Body Lotions Cause Acne on Sensitive Skin?

Of course, it’s understandable that you might still be hesitant to add a body lotion to your routine, especially with the lingering thought that they may cause more body acne breakouts.

The truth is, the wrong moisturizer and lotion can. That’s why you should carefully read the labels to make an informed decision on what moisturizer will be good for your skin.

What to Look For in a Moisturizer if You Have Acne-Prone Skin

And speaking of the right moisturizing product for acne-prone skin, look for any of these terms on the bottle or packaging:

  • Non-comedogenic
  • Oil-free
  • Will not clog pores

Any of these descriptions would ensure that the moisturizer or any of its ingredients will not clog your pores and therefore unlikely to cause more acne breakouts.


Acne is a very common skin condition, affecting millions around the world. It can affect any part of the face and body, including the back. Many who deal with it are wondering if they should put lotion on their case of bacne.

This might seem like a counterproductive idea at first but you should definitely be applying a body moisturizer or lotion on your bacne, no matter your skin type. Keeping your skin moisturized is key to keeping acne under control. Additionally, some acne treatments you might be using can dry out your skin. In this case, you will need to replenish moisture with an appropriate body lotion.

If you’re still feeling hesitant, a visit to your dermatologist should put your mind at ease. They will give you a step-by-step routine for treating your case of acne.

Michelle Jackson
Michelle Jackson