Congestion and spots on your back, chest or even your bottom require the same fail-safe standby you’ve hopefully already embraced for your face: salicylic acid. Dr Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Exfoliating Body Treatment, £58.00 has this pore-purging active, along with other skin-clearing acids, in small wipes you simply rub over affected areas, while Paula's Choice 2% BHA Body Smoothing Spot Exfoliant, £31.00 has it packed in a lotion. Smooth on and see spots shrivel.
Caught short? The magic number is 2%: at this level, salicylic acid has a fast, noticeable effect on congestion. Kate Kate Somerville EradiKate Salicylic Acid Blemish Spot Treatment, £49.00 can be directly applied to any body area to stop acne in its tracks, or you can blend five drops with an oil-free body hydrator (such as plain aloe vera gel) to smooth over larger areas.
For Dry, Irritated Skin
A mix of water-trapping humectants, nourishing emollient oils, and moisture-sealing occlusives is needed to treat super-dry, eczema-prone skin, along with calming agents like oat and chamomile extracts. Malin + Goetz Vitamin B5 Body Moisturizer, £33.00 and Susanne Kaufmann Body Butter, £56.00 have got the goods.
Caught short? Any face oil is a blend of essential fatty acid-rich, emollient plant oils: Ren Clean Skincare Vita Mineral Omega 3 Optimum Skin Oil, £28.00 is a great example. Add a few drops to a basic (or fancy, whatever you like) body cream or rub the oil (makes sure it’s unscented) onto irritated patches before applying cream as a soothing, softening supplement.
For Chicken Skin & Scaliness
Keratosis Pilaris (chicken skin) happens when tiny body hairs get trapped inside the skin, while rough, scaly skin is due to a lack of exfoliation and hydration. Both conditions need a liberal daily application of peeling AHAs such as lactic and glycolic acid to lift away dead cells and blockages. Ameliorate Transforming Body Lotion, £9.00 Ameliorate Transforming Body Lotion will show improvement in a matter of days. Sunday Riley Charcoal Smoothie Body Scrub, £32.00 teams acids with exfoliating beads for an even faster rough-to-smooth turnaround.
Caught short? If only certain areas, like the backs of your arms or the insides of your knees are affected, treat them to your glycolic acid toner or mask (try Caudalie Glycolic Peel, £22.00 Caudalie Glycolic Peel), every day for five to seven days, preceded by daily body brushing: satisfaction guaranteed.
Scars and bruises can leave post-inflammatory pigmentation on your limbs that can take years to fade – and let’s not even talk about sun spots. AHAs (see above) and vitamin C are your gold-standard ingredients for lifting discolouration surely but surely. Sarah Chapman Skinesis Overnight Exfoliating Booster, £64.00 has vitamin C and collagen-boosting peptides to regenerate skin.
Caught short? A daily high dose of active vitamin C applied directly to a stubborn discoloured patch or scar can visibly lighten it. Murad Invisiscar Resurfacing Treatment, £35.00 pairs ascorbic acid (vitamin C) with other powerful brighteners in a silicone base to ensure the vitamin C remains potent. Alternatively, under you boy lotion, apply drop of Dr Dennis Gross Professional Grade IPL Dark Sport Concentrated Serum, £99.00 with AHAs, ascorbic acid and other potent brighteners.
For Slackening Skin
For firmer, smoother, more even skin, retinol is still the no.1 go-to for your face as well as your body. The past year has increasingly seen it popping up in bodycare: Chantecaille Retinol Body Treatment, £85.00 is one to try.
Caught short? Medik8 Retinol 6TR Intense Supercharged Vitamin A Serum, £39.00 is a powerful retinoid blend that is oil-based, making it easy to mix with any oil-based body creams and lotions before smoothing it on from the neck down. Use four to five drops per limb but scale it back to one or two if irritation occurs, and then slowly build up. Sunday Riley Luna Sleeping Night Oil, £45.00 is another good one for this trick.