Blackheads on Inner Thighs: Causes and Treatments

Cropped photo of a young woman dry-brushing her legs

Body Beware

There is much ado regarding the cleansing, exfoliating, moisturizing and pampering of the face. To keep the pores clean is a mighty feat. Free radicals and environmental factors, excessive oil and dirt and a day’s worth of touching the face bring about the many facets of acne. But, body beware!

Pores cover 90% of the largest organ covering the muscles and bones. Except for the palms on the hands and the soles of the feet, the body manages 5 million pores. And every single one of those pores is susceptible to becoming a blackhead.

Imagine one day, putting on a pair of shorts, or drying off after a shower, and noticing dark spots on the inner thighs. There is something familiar about them; they resemble the same dark spots seen on the nose, chin and forehead. In a moment of revelation, and dread, the realization of blackheads on the inner thighs ignites the same feeling of discovering them looking in the mirror. How in the world do blackheads get to a place usually reserved for the face?

A pore means a hair follicle. A hair follicle means a sebaceous gland. A sebaceous gland means oil production. Wearing tight fitting clothing can cause rubbing, friction and constriction. Combine excessive dead skin cells, oil and sweat clogging the pores. It’s a recipe for blackheads.

If the perception that blackheads are reserved for the face, it’s time to recognize that acne doesn’t discriminate. And that much ado pampering and indulgence to keep the face looking beautiful, now needs to be transferred to the inner thighs.

Be Gentle

Picking, squeezing at blackheads on the inner thighs just won’t do. Digging at blackheads can cause infection, and hurt worse than picking blackheads on the nose. Opt for a natural way to reduce blackheads from taking over the inner thighs. For starters, fresh clean comfortable or loose fitting clothes. Shower immediately after working out. Wash the inner thighs with a gentle pH-balanced soap, or acne body wash, and exfoliate with a gentle scrub.

Don’t over exfoliate or the skin will become irritated and tight clothing will only serve to increase the discomfort. If the blackheads persist after a few weeks of a regular daily hygiene routine, consider consulting a physician and talk about a topical cream. Salicylic acid- and retinol-based creams and alcohol-free sprays can work to keep the area free of dirt and excessive oil and aid in healing the skin and restoring balance.

Food for Thought

Oatmeal: One of the most gentle, natural cleansers to apply to the skin is oatmeal. Known for anti-itching properties, oatmeal contains a natural cleansing property called saponins. Filled with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, oatmeal naturally treats dry skin, and provides soothing relief as it cleans deep into the pores.

Try five tablespoons of ground oatmeal, make a paste with water, and gently rub onto the inner thighs for 1-2 minutes. Rinse with warm water. For a smoother exfoliant, add whole milk, or yogurt.  

Cinnamon, Lemon Juice and Turmeric: This concoction combines the anti-microbial intensity of turmeric, cinnamon’s healing properties, plus a punch of Vitamin C. Equal teaspoons of cinnamon and lemon juice, and a pinch of turmeric makes a powerful paste and a fantastic blackhead treatment for the skin. Test a small area for sensitivity and allergic reactions. 

Sugar VS Salt Scrubs: Sugar is gentle, and has natural humectant properties, which provide moisture to the skin, whereas, Salt is more coarse, can create small tears in the skin and sucks moisture like a sponge. Make a brown sugar (1 cup) scrub with almond or coconut oil (½ cup), Vitamin E oil (½ teaspoon) and pure vanilla extract (1 teaspoon). 

Green Tea: Use dry green tea leaves, ground and added to water to make a paste. Gently scrub on the affected area for 2-3 minutes. Since green tea combines antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties, this one makes a lot of sense.

Endless Blackheads

With some patience, regular cleansing and a reprieve from the skinny jeans, blackheads on the inner thighs should clear. It’s important to watch for signs of redness and excessive irritation if the blackheads don’t clear up. A condition known as Hidradenitis suppurativa can appear as blackheads, but a combination of persistent blackheads and excessive friction can turn to some far worse.

Those inner thigh blackheads can become small, painful, pea-sized lumps. Over time these lumps become what are known as tunnels; tracts which connect the lumps under the skin’s surface become red and inflamed. It takes time for Hidradenitis suppurativa to heal, and as they heal they can release pus. Medications can be prescribed, and in worse case scenarios, surgery is performed to cut away the tunnels and allow the lesions to heal.

Pore Uproar

A lot of time, emphasis, concern and money is centered on the face. The beauty market is saturated with endless choices; the cleansers, toners, exfoliants, masks, peels, oils, strips, serums and vitamin powders. Google acne treatment for thighs and the choices are minimal to none. Find a regular cleansing routine that works without causing irritation. Consider a homemade remedy and stick to it.

The body has an amazing amount of pores. Everywhere on the vast map of the body, pores can fall victim dirt and dead skin cells. Keep inner thighs washed regularly. What about armpits and buttocks? Yes, blackheads will show up there too! Take the to pamper and treat and refresh and delight the face to eliminate blackheads. Why not the inner thighs? You’re in the shower anyway!

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