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Keratosis Pilaris: “Chicken Skin” and How to Treat it

By HERWriter Guide
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chicken skin or keratosis pilaris and how you can treat it iStockphoto/Thinkstock

If you immediately know what "chicken skin" means then you might just have keratosis pilaris, also known as KP.

These small but unsightly bumps, mostly seen on the arms but also the thighs and buttocks, are genetic in nature so there's no real cure for them.

However, there are treatments that work for many, although none have worked well for me, so far. I have these red bumps on my upper arms and hate them.

People ask if I am sunburned and I tell them no, it's a skin condition -- but hey, thanks for pointing it out!

KP is caused by too many skin cells forming around the hair on the skin and becoming trapped, causing the bumps. There is nothing dangerous or harmful about KP, it can just look ugly, which is why so many people want to get rid of it.

Women suffer from KP more than men although I think the only thing my son got from me (he's the image of his Dad) was KP. Sorry, kid!

Expensive treatments like chemical peels, laser resurfacing and other skin clearing methods are available. If you have the money, they can provide great relief for KP and have your skin looking much clearer, smoother and feeling baby soft.

I talked to a nurse who works at a plastic surgery office and she told me it can be a pricey commitment so it's something that's very much on the back burner for me. Once I win that lottery I keep talking about, I'll be first in line!

She also told me to make sure go to a reputable clinic or spa since these treatments need to be done by a qualified person.

Less expensive but still effective treatments include the use of urea and lactic acids that can smooth the skin. These acids cause the skin to exfoliate and clear up.

You can find urea creams at drug stores or cosmetic and beauty stores. A good scrub beforehand will help.

I scrub my skin in the shower (using a moisturizing skin scrub) once it's warm and soft to help to unclog skin cells and allow them to surface and disappear.

Retinols can also help. In fact, any skin product (or foods) with Vitamin A can help. Vitamin A is a known factor for smooth and healthy skin.

I used Retin-A on my face for a year until my insurance wouldn't pay for it anymore.

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EmpowHER Guest

Thanks Cody for this great content.

This will guide and help a lot of people that are suffering from Kp all around the world!

Before this, I have read KP treatments at a website called KeratosisPilaris101.com

They place a lot of great info about Kp, treatments, remedies, how-to and etc. One of the best is

December 29, 2014 - 8:16am
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.