Technically, fungal acne is neither a type of acne nor has it got anything to do with fungus—it is a type of infection that happens in your skin’s hair follicles. It’s also referred to as Pityrosporum folliculitis or Malassezia folliculitis. It tends to appear as small red bumps (often mistaken for actual pimples) that don’t vary much in shape or size, along with itching in most cases. It can also cause whiteheads and skin irritation.
It’s often confused for acne vulgaris, which is more commonly known as regular acne, although both are two different conditions caused by two different things. To put it simply, they won’t respond to the same treatment. It’s also important to note that if you keep using anti-acne treatments against fungal acne, chances are you’ll end up making it worse than before.
That’s why it’s crucial for you to understand what fungal acne looks like and how it develops in order to be able to treat it properly.
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As mentioned above, fungal acne isn’t hard to treat—it’s knowing what you’re dealing with that can be difficult. One sign your acne is fungal and not of the ‘normal’ acne is if it’s itchy. Also, if you spot whiteheads or blackheads that are roughly a millimetre big, there are strong chances that it could be fungal. Pus-filled bumps caused by fungal acne tend to be nearly all the same size, whereas bacterial acne can cause pimples and whiteheads of varying sizes.
Fungal acne usually shows up on the chest, back, or upper arms, but can also occur on the face, just like typical acne can. Furthermore, it often appears in clusters of small whiteheads. Regular acne is less clustered and more sparse.
Fungal acne is the result of yeast growth, so you may experience other yeast-related conditions, like psoriasis and dandruff. This can help you determine whether your breakouts are from yeast or another cause. But when does the infection of hair follicles develop and acne-like symptoms show up?
There are a few reasons you may be getting fungal acne, here’s what they are:
Trapped moisture, sweat: Wearing sweaty workout clothes for too long can encourage yeast growth. Re-wearing workout clothes without washing them may also expose your skin to fungi that have grown in the clothes. Regularly wearing non-breathable clothes can also encourage extra sweat and moisture, which can foster a skin environment ripe for yeast growth.
Medication: If you take antibiotics, the bacteria on your skin can be reduced. That can allow for the overgrowth of a fungus.
Suppressed immune system: People with compromised immune systems may be more likely to develop fungal acne.
Diet changes: Fungi and yeast feed on carbohydrates, so balancing your intake of sweets and carb-rich foods may help slow fungal growth.
Heat and humidity: People living in hot climates, where sweating is more likely, may experience fungal acne more frequently.
Contact with others: Fungal acne might be contagious (after all, yeast is known for spreading). If you’ve had bodily contact with someone who has fungal acne, it may be the cause of yours.
To determine if your symptoms are a result of fungal acne, a dermatologist will ask you about the symptoms you’re experiencing. This will likely include how long you’ve had the breakout, what you’ve used to treat it so far and what symptoms you’re experiencing.
In some cases, your dermatologist might also want to do a simple, painless skin scraping in order to examine it under a microscope or take a skin sample. From there, they’ll offer you different treatment options. To properly treat the fungal infection, you need to restore the balance between yeast and bacteria on the skin.
Several techniques can help, such as: showering more regularly, wearing looser clothes, trying a different body wash and shampoo, exfoliating excess dirt and oil, and using over the counter antifungal treatments.
If you’ve attempted to treat your suspected fungal acne at home and the breakout persists for more than three weeks, call your dermatologist. Although it’s rare, dermatologists sometimes call in an oral antifungal treatment like Fluconazole (if you’ve ever been prescribed medication for a vaginal yeast infection, this is likely what you took).
While fungal acne can’t be prevented completely, these steps may help reduce the chances of a return infection:
Use a dandruff shampoo regularly: This regular rinse may help maintain a healthy balance of yeast on your skin. Once the breakout is gone, you can cut back on how often you use the shampoo as a body wash to as little as once a week.
Wear breathable fabrics: Breathable fabrics allow for airflow, which can cut down on warm, moist environments that encourage fungus growth. If changing your clothing options helps treat fungal acne, consider wearing similar types of clothing.
Shower after sweating: A quick rinse after a workout or sweaty day at work can help prevent yeast growth issues.
Eat a balanced diet: Fungi like yeast thrive on sugary carbohydrates, so balance your diet with fruits, vegetables, and proteins to help discourage overgrowth.
When we think about skincare, we tend to put our sole focus on the face and forget about the rest of our body from the neck down. One particular region affected by our neglect is the butt. Did you know that you can also get acne down below, even on top of stretchmarks and cellulite? These can be just as distressing as a break-out on your face.
Worry no more, because thanks to the new beauty and skincare trend, amazing brands focusing on products targeted for the wellbeing of our booties are popping up, meaning this long-overlooked body part can now finally get the attention it deserves! Here are some of the best butt-care products you should try.
Anese makes cruelty-free skincare for your booty, boobs and body that actually works. Because all of your assets need tender, loving care. The company has a no-bull policy when it comes to its skincare. Its products are made with purposeful, high quality, ethically sourced ingredients—with thousands of positive reviews, Anese is the body care know-it-alls!
Anese’s ‘That Booty Tho’ scrub has already become a cult-favourite for many. “This ultra-finely milled formula contains a unique mix of oils, extracts, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids perfect for a gentle yet effective bum exfoliation,” writes L’Officiel.
Customers can either choose to buy the scrub as a one-time purchase for $29 or subscribe to a recurrent delivery of your choice for $24.65. While Anese is not yet available in the UK, the brand has recently announced that it will be available very soon. Scrub that ass!
Sol de Janeiro’s ‘Brazilian Bum Bum Cream’—pronounced ‘boom boom’—is a fast-absorbing (and luxurious) Brazilian body cream with an addictive scent from a blend of salted caramel and pistachio notes. Its formula tightens and firms the skin of your fabulous peach while adding a hint of shimmer to it. Tasty!
You can get your own little ray of sunshine on Cult Beauty for £18 for 75 millilitres or £44 for 240 millilitres. Pick your fighter.
You might not have noticed, but it can get pretty dry down there. So why not moisturise it twice? If you’re as into skincare as I am, then you’ll be interested in this second option: Evereden’s ‘Nourishing Stretch Mark Cream’, which retails for $45 on the company’s website.
This intensely hydrating cream combines 12 nutrient-dense ingredients with powerful peptides to instantly soothe and relieve any kind of itchiness. Potent natural actives synergistically reduce the appearance of imperfections, rebuild collagen, and improve skin elasticity. And yes, Evereden ships to the UK.
Bawdy’s ‘Slap It Caffeine Butt Mask’ is a caffeine-infused mask designed to retexturize and clarify the sensitive skin of your bum, leaving your skin looking plump, hydrated, and smooth. Bonus? You can order it on Amazon with next day delivery for only $10. Be a badass with a great ass!
Made with a blend of high performing ingredients including apricot, orange flower, and watermelon, Truly’s ‘Buns of Glowry’ serum will instantly give your bum the firmness and glow we all pine for. You can buy your new favourite serum on Truly’s website for £20.42 as a one-time purchase or £18.37 if you decide to subscribe to this product.
Whether this tush-oriented trend is the result of the increased amount of time we now spend sitting on our butts at home remains unsure, but I personally can’t complain about it. From 2019, we’ve seen a boom in what we’re calling ‘inclusive wellness’—care that focuses on every aspect of yourself and every part of yourself. Looking back on the 90s and toxic trends such as heroin chic, it’s hard to think in 2021 that butts were ever considered undesirable.