Have you ever experienced areas of tiny, textured bumps on the skin, maybe on the backs of your upper arms or legs in particular? Safe to say most of us have come across this at some point, you may have even heard it referred to as ‘chicken skin’ in the past, but what actually is this familiar skin concern?
What is Keratosis Polaris?
Keratosis Pilaris (KP) is a very common skin condition characterised by areas of dry skin and texture from small, raised bumps most often seen on the sides of the face, and back of the arms and thighs. It can affect anybody regardless of their age or skin type - although it’s most common in those under 30 – and KP can also appear on other areas of the body too.
What causes it?
These areas of texture appear due to ‘follicular hyperkeratosis’ which is where dead, sticky skin cells gather together and fill the entrance to the hair follicle instead of exfoliating away, forming a Keratin plug at the surface. This shows as the tiny bumps we see at the follicle and can sometimes present with irritation and redness around the area too.
Keratosis Polaris can often be quite stubborn, and the more dry your skin is, the more severe the KP appears. Ever noticed it seems worse during the cold winter months, but clears a little on a sunny holiday? Exfoliation and hydration are key in your fight against KP.