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What is Keratosis Pilaris?

Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis Pilaris is a very common benign skin condition that consists of tiny red or skin-colored bumps that some people refer to as “goosebumps” or “chicken skin.” These bumps typically occur on the arms, legs, and even the face. It occurs when our normal hair follicles develop an extra “build-up” of skin cells that do not readily exfoliate off during the normal skin shedding process. This condition tends to occur more in children than adults and typically improves with time throughout adulthood. Although this is a harmless skin condition, it can be a common annoyance, especially during the winter months when Keratosis Pilaris is known to worsen.

What causes Keratosis Pilaris?

There is no known direct cause of keratosis pilaris, but we know that genetics plays a role in the development of this condition. Keratosis Pilaris has the tendency to worsen during cold, winter months when the humidity is low, and we have heaters on in the house that can further dry out our skin.

What are some tips to manage Keratosis Pilaris?

Moisturize

One of the most important things to remember with Keratosis Pilaris is to moisturize the skin regularly after bathing or showering. This means that right after you get out of the shower or bath, immediately apply a gentle moisturizer even when the skin is damp or wet to seal in the water that will otherwise evaporate from the skin. Doing this crucial step alone can significantly improve the rough bumps on the skin and prevent dryness. Some great moisturizers over the counter are Cerave or Cetaphil cream, and our H&H Science Simply Bee Body Butters here at Trillium Creek, which includes natural oil-based ingredients that nourish and moisturize the skin without stripping the natural skin barrier.

Cleanse

The next step in managing this condition is choosing a good cleanser that is both exfoliating and gentle. Regular soaps are not preferred for this condition because most soaps can strip off the natural barrier of the skin and cause moisture depletion. It is best to pick a gentle cleanser to use that is both nourishing and hydrating like Dove for sensitive skin bar soap over the counter or our Simply Bee H&H Science Bar soap and gentle scrub, which contain all-natural brown sugar, almond oil, and coconut oil.

Additional Topicals

Glycolic-Urea for Keratosis Pilaris

Other additional topicals that can be beneficial to apply in between bathing are lotions that contain ingredients with glycolic acid, lactic acid, or salicylic acid. These ingredients work specifically to gently exfoliate the skin, which can result in smoother skin and are best used as daily maintenance therapy. There are some over-the-counter options, prescription options, and products from our H&H Science line that contain these ingredients for patients with Keratosis Pilaris.  

Contact Trillium Creek Dermatology

Do you still have questions on specific items about Keratosis Pilaris and need some help? Connect with our board-certified dermatologists at any of our main locations by scheduling a consultation, or call Trillium Creek Dermatology today at 330.725.0569 for your own customized treatment plan!

*Content in this article has been sourced from AAD.org