How to Stop Chest Acne

by Shannon Marks ; Updated July 18, 2017

Acne appears when glands in your pores make sebum, an oil meant to lubricate your hair and skin that can also clog pores. Bacteria, dirt and dead skin cells also clog pores. The best way to keep acne under control is to keep your skin clean and use medications formulated to kill bacteria and help stimulate the growth of new, smooth skin. Daniel Kern, founder of the website Acne.org, reports that most people with facial acne will also have body acne. Because the skin on the chest is thicker than facial skin, breakouts here can be more severe.

Wash your skin each morning using a fragrance-free, gentle soap. While perfume may not cause acne, it can irritate your skin, especially if you also use acne medications.

Let your skin completely dry after showering. Pat dry with a towel rather than rubbing, which can distribute oils or irritate deeply rooted pimples.

Spot treat each pimple with a 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide product. You can skip this step if benzoyl peroxide is too drying or if your breakouts are mild. However, if your skin does not respond at all, you can try a product formulated with 5 or 10 percent benzoyl peroxide.

Apply 10 percent alpha hydroxy acid to the areas with the worst breakouts. If you only get a few pimples on your chest, you can spot treat each pimple.

Exfoliate your skin two or three times a week with a store-bought scrub, or make your own exfoliator using 3 parts baking soda to 1 part water. An exfoliator helps wash away dead skin cells and loosen clogged pores.


  • Wear cotton clothing, especially in hot weather when you're likely to sweat. If you suffer from severe breakouts on your chest, try forgoing fabric softener detergent and sheets, which can leave a waxy residue on your clothing, towels and bedding. Instead use an antistatic dryer ball.

Photo Credits

  • Victor Holguin/Demand Media

About the Author

Shannon Marks started her journalism career in 1994. She was a reporter at the "Beachcomber" in Rehoboth Beach, Del., and contributed to "Philadelphia Weekly." Marks also served as a research editor, reporter and contributing writer at lifestyle, travel and entertainment magazines in New York City. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in literature from Temple University.