You might not have heard of Keratosis Pilaris, but chances are you know what it is. It looks like goosebumps on your arms and is sometimes called 'KP' or 'chicken skin'.
Keratosis Pilaris is a very common disorder - some studies estimate that it affects 50-80% of all adolescents, predominantly females. It doesn't usually itch, nor indicate any health problems, so most of the time it is quite bearable - which is probably why it often gets left to its own devices.
What is Keratosis Pilaris?
Keratosis Pilaris is basically, little bumps - very similar to goosebumps. Lots of people call it 'chicken skin' for this reason. Keratin is believed to build up in the hair follices and cause firm little plugs. Keratin is a protein and the main material making up the outer layer of our skin (hence the name Keratosis). These plugs of keratin give the skin that raised bumpy and spotty appearance. The colour varies from skin tone, and can also be slightly pinkish or slightly reddish.
A small 2011 study proposes a slightly different cause - being a hair shaft defect. This is due to their finding 'coiled' hair in the follicles of those in the study. Either way, the result is the same!
Keratosis Pilaris usually shows up in childhood first and commonly there is a flare up in early adolescence. KP is associated with, and often made worse by, skin dryness, so it will often be worse during winter. Although it starts to improve during mid to late adolesence, adults will sometimes retain the rash, and usually see a further imporovement during mid life. The average age when spontaneous improvement is first noted is 16 (British Medical Journal, June 1994).
If you suffer from Eczema, dry skin or a Vitamin A deficiency, you're also more likely to suffer from KP. You'll usually find it on your upper arms (back) and/or thighs but it can also be seen on the face, buttocks and eyebrows.
How do I treat Keratosis Pilaris?
There is no permanent cure for Keratosis Pilaris, but happily, it does tend to improve over time and it is super easy to treat. There are some treatments designed to help smooth the roughness of KP skin. We tend to think the most effective is also the simplest - a good old fashioned moisturiser for super hydrated, moist skin. Remember, KP tends to be prevalent in those who already suffer with skin dryness, so it makes sense that moisturising should be a priority. Some people also suggest gently exfoliating with a loofah, pumice, or even a washcloth can help smooth the skin out.
We've had a fair few people email us who've reported an improvement in the condition since using MooGoo. To help loosen the Keratin plugs, we suggest washing with one of our MooGoo Milk Cleansing Bars because the super-fatted Cocoa Butter and Olive Oil in them seems to help release the keratin build-ups. After your bath or shower, make sure you moisturise. MooGoo Full Cream and the MooGoo MSM Soothing Cream are awesome all body moisturisers packed with skin repair ingredients!
Thankfully, Keratosis Pilaris is really easy and simple to treat and we don't believe there's any need to purchase any specialised, 'miracle' treatments.
You may also like: