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Aa the lockdown continues and summertime started in Europe, we want to talk about Pityrosporum folliculitis, commonly known as fungal acne. This stubborn condition can happen to anyone at any time. We thought it is worth knowing its symptoms and how to tackle them.

What is Pityrosporum folliculitis?

Well- known as fungal acne but named by dermatologists as pityrosporum folliculitis, this skin concern is caused by an overgrowth of yeast in hair follicles. Yeast is found in everyone’s skin. Pityrosporum folliculitis appears when there is an imbalance between yeast and bacteria on the skin. High yeast levels create inflammation, which turns into skin imperfections.

It usually affects the body, specifically chest and back. However, it can also appear on the neck and face.

Example of fungal acne
Example of fungal acne; source: Stock Adobe

How do you know if you have it?

Fungal acne very often is mistaken for bacterial acne.

What are the main differences between bacterial and fungal acne? Fungal acne frequently appears on the neck, chest and back. The face can be affected but less frequently and usually it impacts a jawline and forehead.

Bacterial acne usually appears in the form of whiteheads and blackheads. When you struggle with fungal acne the spots often all look very similar and they appear in groups close to one another. Very often fungal acne is very itchy. At the same time, bacterial acne is sore.

An extra point to notice is that one of the symptoms of Pityrosporum folliculitis is dandruff. If you start having skin issues described above and in addition have dandruff, there is a high chance you developed fungal acne.

Why you may develop fungal acne?

There are two most common reasons, why you may develop this type of skin condition. Very frequently you may develop this condition if you’ve taken antibiotics recently. Antibiotics eliminate bacteria and disturb the yeast balance on your skin.

The second most frequent reason is it can be triggered by humidity and sweat. If you wear tight, non-breathable clothes at home during the lockdown or you do not take a shower and change your clothes immediately after a workout, you may develop Pityrosporum folliculitis.

We write about this topic as fungal acne may appear more frequently in the current situation. Nowadays, if you are wearing a face mask or other face cover as a part of Covid-19 safety measures, using the same face mask multiple times without disinfecting it may create additional skin issues.

Add to Wishlist iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Serum
Add to Wishlist iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Serum

Ingredients to use

Skincare in this situation is very important. Standard products for acne may not help. Ingredients that are great and have anti-fungal properties:

Extra skincare tips: Do not over-moisturize your face and body. Applying multi-step hydrating products can support their growth.

COSRX-Advanced-Snail-96-Mucin-Power-Essence
COSRX-Advanced-Snail-96-Mucin-Power-Essence

How to treat fungal acne?

Keep the routine simple and focus on specific steps: balancing, calming, hydrating.

Body wash

Klairs Gentle Black Sugar Charcoal Soap creates dense black bubbles. The charcoal eliminates dead skin cells, and organic Ghassoul from Morocco draws sebum out of the skin.

For face

COSRX Salicylic Acid Daily Gentle Cleanser helps to reduce breakouts and promotes clear skin. Formulated with 0.5% salicylic acid, it tackles breakouts. Tea tree oil helps fight blemishes and willow bark water and Saccharomyces ferment hydrate skin making it softer and more even. Check also By Wishtrend Acid-Duo 2% Mild Gel Cleanser is a mild acid cleanser that contains 1% LHA & 1% of PHA.

COSRX Full Fit Propolis Light Ampoule contains a non-sticky and highly effective texture. Black bee propolis is a natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredient. Hence, the ampoule helps to heal stressed skin and reduce redness.

COSRX Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence is a lightweight, quick-absorbing formula designed to improve skin tone and texture. It contains snail mucin which has strong healing, antiseptic and soothing properties.

You may find that iUNIK Tea Tree Relief Serum will be a great alternative. It contains 67% tea tree extract and 19.5% Centella extract which helps soothe sensitive skin, reduce acne, brighten the complexion, and refine skin texture.

Itchy skin requires soothing. Cooldown itchy skin and strengthen its natural skin barrier. The Real Barrier Cicarelief Serum has a low pH similar to that of healthy skin and helps it stay balanced. It also smooths out surface roughness caused by irritation and dryness.

Check Real Barrier Aqua soothing gel-cream which is designed to calm the irritated and itchy skin and use the breakthrough MLE formula to rebuild the skin barrier.

Benton Aloe Propolis Soothing Gel is a brilliant soothing gel. Aloe is a natural and soothing ingredient that penetrates deep into the skin to calm and nourish it. At the same time, propolis adds hydration and antibacterial benefits.

Extra tip

Increased skin temperature increases inflammation and sebum production which indirectly leads to yeast overgrowth. Avoid taking long hot showers and do not sunbathe.

Take a shower immediately after a workout and wear fresh clothes.

When you are wearing a reusable face mask, make sure you wash it frequently and disinfect it.

Not sure, see a dermatologist

If your symptoms still persist after a couple of weeks, it’s time to see a dermatologist.

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