Is your backside experiencing an outbreak of 'buttne'? Here's why, and how to banish it

Illustration. (Getty Images)
Illustration. (Getty Images)
  • Most of us are guilty of spending more time sitting than we should.
  • In fact, statistics cited by revealed that the average person spends around 12 hours a day being in a sedentary position on top of the hours spent sleeping.
  • These hours were extended by this year's lockdown restrictions. And all this inactivity has been causing a 'spot' of bother for many a backside - 'buttne'. 

The outbreak of the coronavirus earlier this year – and the lockdown restrictions that came with it – has also played its part in making sure that much of our day is spent perched on a chair (if not propped up in bed).

Without having places to be and people to see, and with working from home becoming the norm for many people across the globe, it's safe to say that the winter of 2020 will be remembered as a fairly inactive one. This inactivity has been causing a 'spot' of bother for many a backside because apparently being bone idle can result in 'buttne'. 

READ MORE: Why are we still splitting hairs over whether women shave or not? Blame history... and men  

'Buttne': What is it?

Despite the witty blending of words that might lead you to believe that 'buttne' is just acne on your bottom, you'd be wrong. Or, at least, not 100% correct.

While some spots down there would fall into the acne category, more often than not the blemishes that form on the derrière are actually a result of a flare-up known as folliculitis. This is when the hair follicles in an area become irritated or infected, resulting in inflamed spots that resemble acne.  

how to treat buttne
Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash 

What causes it? 

There are a multitude of factors that can lead to 'buttne', such as friction from tight clothing (here's looking at you, skinny jeans!), not changing out of your sweaty gym gear post-workout and poor hygiene in general.

Another factor – and the one that led to a global surge during lockdown – is sitting for long hours in our cosy sweats while working from home. 

How to get rid of it

Other than stretching your legs more frequently, showering regularly and re-evaluating your fashion choices, what can be done to banish 'buttne'?

According to Dr. Pimple Popper, Sandra Lee, MD., we should be giving blemish-prone bums the same attention when it comes to cleansing as we would our face. This means looking for acne-busting, pore-unclogging ingredients in your body-care products, such as benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. These can be found in both body washes, and can also be applied topically in the form of a cream or toning solution. 

READ MORE: You really shouldn't, but this is Dr Pimple Popper's advice on how to pop those pesky zits at home 

While many people think that physical exfoliation – such as scrubbing the area with a loofah – will result in smoother skin, this is not the case.

According to Dr. Lee, this could actually exacerbate the problem. This can not only lead to the spread of bacteria and more spots to contend with but can make the existing ones more irritated and even lead to scarring and hyperpigmentation. And both of these issues are much more difficult to reverse.

So handle your tush with care so that this summer so that you can get your buns out when the sun’s out without a spot in sight. 

Products we recommend

Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Cleansing Bar for Face & Body, R365 from Clinique online 

This cleansing bar targets breakouts with encapsulated, acne-fighting salicylic acid. 

clinique cleansing bar Pure Medi Shot, R700 on

Formulated with a prescription-grade maximum strength 2% concentration of Salicylic Acid, pure products clear and prevent acne breakouts, reduce blackheads, and help to fade post-inflammatory pigmentation marks from previous lesions. 

how to treat buttne

READ MORE: Don't let body acne stop you from showing a little more skin as it gets warmer outside

Bioderma Sebium H20 Cleanser, R260 from Dermastore 

It has been specifically formulated to help address congestion in oily skins. Non-compromising to the skin barrier, this pleasant smelling cleanser refines pores and improves skin clarity. 

Benzac AC 5 Gel, R99.95 at Dis-Chem  

For the topical treatment of acne vulgaris. 

buttne treatment

Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap, R549 from Mario Badescu

Papaya and Grapefruit Extracts help breakdown dead skin cells to leave skin feeling soft and smooth. Ginseng Extract rejuvenates while Oat Protein soothes sensitive and irritated areas. Excellent choice for those with problem skin on the back, chest and shoulders.

how to treat buttne

Additional product information and images sourced from their retailers.

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