By Daniella Araujo, beauty intern For as long as I can remember, I’ve had little red bumps on the backs of my upper arms. During the winter, they would also pop up on my thighs. I didn’t know what caused them or what they were, but I wanted to get rid of them. I googled “small bumps on my arms” and results for Keratosis Pilaris— a common genetic follicular disorder manifested by the appearance of rough bumps on the skin—came up. Luckily, it’s not a serious condition, but it’s an eyesore. Though there is no cure, there are ways to treat it. After trial and error, I finally found the perfect KP skincare regime that helped me get rid of the bumps and patches of rough skin:
- Soap swap. Harsh sulfates in soap dry out your skin and cause further irritation if you’re prone to KP. I switched out my go-to bar soap for a moisturizing body wash. Look for one that’s fragrance-free and infused with lotion. I like Olay Ultra Moisture Body Wash ($8, drugstores); it’s soap-free and contains shea butter for extra moisture.
- Scrub and hydrate.Exfoliation and hydration are the keys to getting rid of those icky bumps. Giving your skin a good scrub removes the excess keratin buildup, but it’s important to replenish your skin with a rich body lotion to keep it from drying out. My routine started with DERMAdoctor KP Duty Body Scrub ($44, dermadoctor.com), which has glycolic and lactic acids to slough away the top layer of dead skin. Then I applied DERMAdoctor KP Duty Dermatologist Moisturizing Therapy ($36, dermadoctor.com) to my arms and thighs twice a day.
- Consistency is key. After two months, my bumps began to disappear and I simplified my regimen so that it was easier to commit long-term. I still start with Olay body wash but I only exfoliate once a week. I follow that with Amlactin Moisturizing Body Lotion ($15, drugstores), which keeps my skin soft and smooth.