What is it and how to treat
Keratosis pilaris, although harmless, it is a frustrating condition
It is more than just rough skin. This common skin condition is caused by a build-up of keratin, the protein found in hair, nails, and skin. Dry skin can also exacerbate this condition.
When too much keratin sits on top of the hair follicle, it blocks the follicle’s opening, causing a bump above it. When hundreds of hair follicles become blocked by the keratin, keratosis pilaris can occur, which is how the condition earned its name. Keratosis pilaris is caused by genetics.
What Are the Symptoms of Keratosis Pilaris?
The condition is characterised by small, raised discoloured bumps on your skin (not to be confused with strawberry skin, which is often darker in colour) that are commonly found on the upper arms, legs or buttocks.
Other symptoms to look at include:
• Itchy skin
• Dry skin
• Rough skin where bumpy patches persist
• Noticeably worse bumps during colder or dryer months
As dry skin worsens the symptoms of keratosis pilaris, the regular application of a moisturizer to keep the skin hydrated is recommended
Creams rich in Vitamin A boost cell turnover and prevent clogged hair follicles. Lactic acid, alpha hydroxy acid, and salicylic acid are also recommended
Exfoliation is the process to remove dead skin from the body. Since keratosis pilaris is caused by a build-up of keratin, exfoliation can make a big difference.
Exfoliation methods include:
• Dry body brushing
• Exfoliating body scrub
• Chemical exfoliator