How to Get Rid of Neck Acne and Its Causes

Woman getting spa treatment and massage at her neck area

The body can at times produce too much sebaceous oil exposing your skin to an acne breakout. Acne occurs when excess oil, bacteria, and dead skin clog the openings on your skin. Neck acne is particularly common among people who sweat too much and too often, perhaps due to physical activity or illness. 

If the breakout springs up soon after a bout of stress or before your period, there is a good chance that your hormones are imbalanced. Such pimples are usually cystic in nature and can be painful, reddish, and easily irritated by hair or clothes. Because cystic pimples are deep, they can take longer to heal and may leave scars. Click here to learn more about how to remove scars. Most of the minor rashes respond well to home remedies. Cystic acne which lasts for several weeks should be examined by a dermatologist.

What Causes Neck Acne

Pimples are common around the jawline, the face, and the chest, but can also occur on the neck, especially around the nape. Several factors are to blame, including:

  • Exfoliating or scratching the skin aggressively
  • Failing to take a shower immediately after a workout
  • Fluctuating hormones during menstruation and puberty
  • Heavy make-up, sunscreens, and creams that block the pores
  • Stress
  • Using soap and body washes containing irritating ingredients
  • Medications
  • Hair rubbing against the neck
  • Dirty clothes touching the skin
  • Failing to exfoliate the neck well after a shave
  • Jewelry especially those made from plastic, some plant-based materials, and false metal
  • Non-breathable materials

Mild acne results in blackheads and whiteheads, while the more severe manifests as pustules, nodules, papules, or cysts. Cysts or nodules form under the skin while pustules and papules appear on top of the skin.

Lady with a braid in her hair

Your doctor should closely monitor abnormal bumps. They could also indicate the following conditions:

  • Skin infection
  • Skin cancer
  • Keloid
  • Infected cyst

Neck Acne Treatment

There is a wide spectrum of zits treatment that can be administered. OTC drugs and home remedies can help in eliminating mild spots. If yours is severe, have a dermatologist evaluate you. Do not be tempted to pick at or pop the bump; otherwise, you could cause scarring. You also risk introducing bacteria from your hands to the affected area.

1. OTC Products

Minor pimples should clear after several days of applying OTC products. However, it may take weeks or even months for severe neck acne to respond to some of the products. You can check this out for more information.  Once the symptoms have disappeared, you may need to continue using the product for a few more days to prevent a recurrence. Several OTC creams can be used to treat acne, including gels, lotions, creams, and more. It is crucial that you read the instructions carefully to ensure they are used correctly. The best ingredients include:

  • Salicylic acid: Dries out the scars causing them to peel
  • Benzoyl peroxide: Kills acne-causing bacteria
  • Sulfur: Attacks the acne-causing bacteria and unclogs the pores

Should you experience an allergic reaction upon using any of the OTC products such as redness or persistent burning, discontinue the product. You can also learn what microdermabrasion does for you, and also the results of it.

2. Prescriptions

If you are experiencing a severe acne outbreak around your neck, have a dermatologist evaluate you for a proper diagnosis. Cystic neck acne is diagnosed by its clinical appearance. Even with the absence of nodules, pink scars which settle after remission may still be present. Unless your doctor suspects folliculitis caused by yeast, a biopsy may not be necessary. The treatment may include oral, topical medication, or extraction. While hormonal therapies, including the use of oral contraception, may prevent a further outbreak of pimples, acne around the neck area may require combination therapy. That means oral antibiotics may be prescribed.

Black and white picture of a model and her showing off her neck

Home Remedies

Home remedies can speed up the healing process of acne. These include:

  • Cleaning the area with mild soap and warm water
  • Avoiding scratching the pimple
  • Placing a warm compress over the affected area for about 10 minutes at least twice daily
  • Staying away from UV exposure

A variety of home remedies such as masks, baking soda, and apple cidar vinegar can cure cystic acne. Orally injected, vitamin A shows variable effects. Although some people use Biotin, it is necessary to understand that it is a vitamin cofactor necessary for healthier skin and hair, but often has limited effects on acnes like this. Essential oils can also be used to clear neck acne, given that most have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. They include:

  • Rosehip oil
  • Tea tree oil
  • Sandalwood oil
  • Evening primrose oil
  • Lavender oil

Your diet can also contribute to the eruption of bumps around your neck. Greasy foods, for instance, can worsen your acne outbreak. Foods with high glycemic indexes are also culprits for flare-ups.

Ways to Prevent Neck Acne Outbreak

Several ways can be employed to prevent an outbreak around the neck. These may include:

1. Rethinking your Grooming Routine

Your facial hair could be contributing to the acne outbreak on your neck. Beard tends to hide bacteria and oils, which can then clog the pores leading to an outbreak on the neck and chin. It is advisable that you shampoo and exfoliate your beard and hair regularly. This is a regimen that will also get rid of excess skin cells which could clog the pore. A single blade razor might also help in the prevention of acne. Multiple blades often irritate the skin. Remember also to get a shaving cream designed for sensitive skin.

2. Wear Breathable Clothes

A lot of people suffer from acne mechanica. This is a type caused by friction from clothes. People who fail to shower immediately after a workout are at a higher risk of this type of acne. Keep off clothes that hug the body too tight. If you live in humid areas, wear clothes that give the neck area breathing space.

Most neck pimples disappear on their own, while others respond fast to over the counter products or home remedies. It is possible to prevent them by using proper lifestyle changes and hygiene. However, should you experience severe and painful acne, consult a dermatologist. If the pimple have pus, last longer than 6 weeks, contain a hard lump, bleed, heal but return too soon, or cause emotional distress, have a dermatologist evaluate them.

Leave a Comment