Often called “Chicken Skin”, as it closely resembles the look of a plucked chicken, Keratosis Pilaris is a very common and completely harmless skin condition that presents as patches of rough, bumpy skin.


The concern is especially noticed on areas such as the cheeks, back of the arms and thighs as well as on the buttocks, and occurs when keratin (a protein found in hair) builds-up causing a blockage within the hair follicle. Doctors have not yet identified exactly what triggers this build-up of keratin but have linked it to dryer skin conditions, as it is more prominent during the winter months, as well as to concerns such as ichthyosis vulgaris, which is an inherited skin condition where the skin does not shed skin cells effectively.


Keratosis Pilaris is considered to be partially genetically linked, especially noticed in families where the family history includes traits of allergies, eczema and asthma. The way it is inherited varies, but it often fits into an ‘autosomal dominant’ pattern; meaning that there will be a 50% chance that each child of an affected parent will inherit the condition. It is also more prevalent during childhood right up into adulthood however, it often clears up on its own later in life.


While Keratosis Pilaris is a harmless concern, most people find the appearance of the skin to be unattractive. Not only does the skin feel rough and itchy, but some may also have more noticeable bumps that appear in different colours, including white, red, and pinkish purple on fair skin, or brownish black on darker skins. Whilst no cure exists for Keratosis Pilaris, with most concerns clearing up on their own, there are a few things that can be implemented into your skin care routine to help improve the associated bumps that Keratosis Pilaris presents with.


First things first, up your exfoliation. Regular exfoliation works to remove redundant skin cell build-up, helping to clear out the plugged follicles and improving on the overall texture and appearance of the skin. The most effective actives used to help achieve this benefit include Alpha and Beta Hydroxys, such as Lactic, Mandelic and Salicylic acids, as well as topical retinoids. Making use of a medicated wash such as the DermaFix Active Cleansing Gel or the DermaFix MD Mandelic Cleanser along with gentle daily exfoliation using DermaFix DermaPolish or DermaFix DermaPolish + Activated Charcoal is recommended. Toning with DermaFix Revitalising, Brightening or Mandelic Toner advances the uptake of active ingredients in the treatment product. For more severe concerns, the DermaFix Mattifying Pore Minimizer, containing both Alpha and Beta Hydroxy, may be used as a “spot treatment” on affected areas while DermaFix MD Vitamin A Propionate used as a night-time targeted corrective helps to provide gentle resurfacing as well as correction of skin texture.


Active Cleansing Gel

The DermaFix Active Cleansing Gel is a deep cleansing product that contains an oil-free formula that thoroughly removes excess oil, surface impurities and make-up. Active Cleansing Gel helps to exfoliate and remove dead skin cells due to Alpha and Beta Hydroxy Acids with natural enzymes to keep your skin looking fresh and healthy.

Secondly, increase your skin’s hydration levels. Moisturisation will go a far way to assist with combatting the dry skin associated with Keratosis Pilaris. Regular use of DermaFix Skin ResQ provides intensive relief for chronic dry skins.


With the increase in Retinoid and Alpha and Beta hydroxy use, the use of sun protection is imperative to help protect against skin discolouration and damage that comes with UV exposure. DermaFix DermaShield SPF40/SPF50 provides high UVA/UVB/HEV-light protection and is a must for daily use. Antioxidant DermaFix Ferulic +C+ E applied before the application of sunscreen improves skin texture as well as providing additional protection.


Along with the above product recommendations, other treatment options may include in clinic protocols such as advanced skin resurfacing, or chemical peeling, as well as Conditioning Alkaline Wash. For more information on the above-mentioned products or for any advice relating to your skin concerns, please call the DermaFix Cosmeceutical Skin Care head offices on 0861282323 directly.