How to Get Rid of Keratosis Pilaris

Learn how to treat and prevent keratosis pilaris and "chicken skin" |

Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis pilaris (KP) is a condition that makes you look like you have “chicken skin." These tiny bumps (they often appear in a lattice formation) usually occur on your upper arms, outer calves, or thighs.

However, they can show up anywhere on your body, even your face.

To treat KP and ingrown hairs, you have to:

  1. Exfoliate
  2. Moisturize/Protect

Exfoliators and moisturizers have a synergistic effect on your KP. Exfoliating the surface of your skin helps keep your pores clear, while moisturizing keeps your skin conditioned and prevents the buildup of dead and dry skin cells. You may notice that KP is worse in the winter than it is in the summer because skin tends to be drier when it's cold.

To exfoliate, you can dry skin brush, buff with a loofah, or use body scrubs in the shower. You can also apply products with AHAs or BHAs, such as AmLactin or LacHydrin. Body skin is generally much tougher than facial skin, so you can exfoliate everyday if you want. I actually dry skin brush twice a day to keep my KP at bay.

Using gentler body soaps, shower gels, or installing a shower filter or water softener will further help reduce KP. You should also avoid picking at the places where you have KP because that will only damage the hair follicle even more and cause possible scarring.

With a consistent routine of exfoliation and moisturization, you will probably see a reduction in KP in around one or two weeks. However, you must maintain this routine if your want your KP to stay clear. Treating keratosis pilaris isn't a one and done thing. KP will come back if conditions are ripe and it is up to you to make sure your skin doesn't provide this kind of environment.

Last updated: September 20, 2012

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