Hyperpigmentation on Buttocks: How To Reduce Dark Spots
It’s no secret — butts are in. The bigger, the better. And if showing off what your mother gave you is one of your favorite things, there’s nothing worse than pulling on your shortest skirt or your favorite pair of shorty shorts, turning around to check yourself out in the mirror and… seeing that your behind has fallen behind.
When you get dark marks on your face, you probably know what to do to try to even out your skin tone. You might even be an expert at treating hyperpigmentation in other problem areas like your elbows, knees and underarms. But when it comes to the derriere, you may not know where to start.
Luckily, if dark marks on your rear end put an end to your daydreams about pool parties and swimsuit thirst traps, there’s still hope for your next bikini debut. So let’s have a chat about what causes dark marks on your bottom and how to get rid of them.
What Causes Dark Marks on Your Buttocks… And What Can You Do About It?
Bum blotches are a real-life ruiner when it comes to your favorite summer looks. While it may feel totally different from the blemishes on other parts of your body because, hello, it’s your butt — it actually isn't, for the most part. Dark marks on your buttocks are generally just another type of hyperpigmentation.
People with naturally dark skin tend to struggle with hyperpigmentation more often, but it can happen to anybody. There are many different causes of hyperpigmentation, including the simply that… it happens. Which is to say, sometimes your skin just isn’t going to cooperate, and that’s (frustratingly) normal.
Dead Skin Cell Build-Up
Sometimes when we get lax on exfoliating, dead skin cells start to build up. When skin cells build-up, the process by which your skin makes pigment goes a bit nuts, and the result is the area looks a bit darker. You probably have an exfoliating step in your facial skincare routine, and maybe you do even exfoliate your body. But you might not be paying particular attention to your booty.
If your peach is somewhat less than perfect, you might want to start with a simple solution: exfoliate! Working an exfoliating cleanser into your shower or bath lineup and paying special attention to your rear may help the appearance of any dark spots no matter what the cause is, but especially if it’s just skin cell build-up.
If you want to go the extra mile to clear things up, a chemical exfoliant can be really helpful.
Using a cream, gel or polish with a high concentration of Alpha Hydroxy Acids on your bum can help keep your skin fresh and gleaming. Alpha Hydroxy Acids help you to shed surface layers of your skin and encourage new cell growth.
AHAs are thought to improve many common skin problems and overall improve the texture of your skin, so they’re a great thing to add to your toolbox when you’re trying to fix hyperpigmentation.
Blemishes or Folliculitis
Your teenage self knew facial blemishes all too well. You’ve probably heard of back-ne — you’ve maybe even had a brush or two with the dreaded chest blemishes. We’re sorry to report that there’s yet another type of acne to watch out for bumps on your buttocks AKA “buttne.” If you can’t think of anything more annoying than a butt pimple, you’re not alone.
Now, you could just have straight-up blemishes on your rear that irritate your skin and result in frustrating hyperpigmentation. But when acne affects the rear, it’s often actually something called folliculitis. Folliculitis is common, and it’s not usually harmful. It’s just an infected or irritated hair follicle. When the hair follicle gets infected, a pustule or papule can grow around it, which looks an awful lot like a zit. This irritation can cause hyperpigmentation and other blemishes.
Folliculitis is generally harmless, but it can develop into an infection, so it is important to check in with a doctor or dermatologist if you’re worried and be sure to keep the area clean. In addition to keeping clean and not applying anything too abrasive to the area, common treatments for folliculitis are prescribed creams and medications, depending on the type, so a doctor really is key.
Another common cause of hyperpigmentation on your buttocks is Melasma. Melasma can result from a hormonal imbalance due to pregnancy or birth control pills, or it can even be due to getting too much sun! It’s more common in people of color. Luckily, it isn’t dangerous — it’s merely a localized change in the pigment of your skin. Melasma can go away on its own, but you’ll want to be sure that if you’re a sun's out, buns out person, you load up on SPF. If you’re concerned about butt-ne, an oil control sunblock will be a great option to keep everything balanced. You can also improve the look of Melasma the same way you try to combat most hyperpigmentation — with regular exfoliation and even chemical exfoliants.
However, if Melasma is really getting you down, a visit to the dermatologist is your best option. They’ll make recommendations and help you get the treatment you need to strut your stuff with pride!
If your booty is your favorite thing to show off, you might clock quite a few hours at the gym or the squat rack. Whatever your cheek-shaping workout routine is, if you’re sweating a lot and wearing tight clothes, this can cause dark spots to appear!
The combination of sweat, dirt and tight clothing traps dead skin cells and bacteria, irritated hair follicles and generally irritates the skin or even causes acne. We know that your butt looks great in your fave pair of leggings — but next time you’re out to pump some iron, try some looser sweatpants or breathable shorts to give your skin some space to breathe.
If you must wear tight clothing to work out, be sure to change out of it as soon as you’re finished and get in the shower as soon as possible to wash off the side effects of all your hard work!
Parts of our body that encounter a lot of friction can be prone to blemish-inducing irritation. Areas like your knees, elbows and underarms are frequent victims of this! This is called Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIH), and it’s exactly what it sounds like. When your skin is damaged or irritated, it can stimulate melanin production, and as it heals, it creates darker areas on your skin. The most common example of this is dark areas that linger after acne has healed.
Luckily, PIH is usually temporary and will clear up on its own. Suppose your dark spots seem to be due to Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation, or you’re noticing new spots after you’ve just fought off a wave of butt-ne. In that case, it’s worth speaking to your dermatologist to discuss treatment options. Otherwise, your best bet is to get to exfoliating!
You could also look into working a product with brightening properties into your routine. It might feel a bit silly at first to buy products specifically for your derriere, but it’s just like any other part of your body...sometimes it needs some love too! A Vitamin C serum is great for evening out skin tone and reducing the appearance of dark blemishes, as are products rich in Alpha Hydroxy Acids, like Lactic Acid, Glycolic Acid or Malic Acid.
As it turns out, dark spots on your rear end are much like dark spots anywhere else! They have similar causes as well as similar treatments.
Dark spots anywhere on your skin aren’t usually a cause for major concern, but it’s always great to consult your doctor or dermatologist to be sure you’re pursuing the right course of action.
Once you’re sure you’re in the clear of dark spots, you may have noticed a hyperpigmentation causation pattern and can follow our recommendation on how to handle your dark spots. For any kind of hyperpigmentation, you’ll just want to give your skin a little extra care to help it recover from whatever is afflicting it. Abrasive exfoliants, chemical exfoliants and serums with Vitamin C or other brightening components may go a long way toward evening out your skin tone.