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Help, There’s a Rash on My Butt!

You’ve got a rash on your ass? Wow, sucks to be you, buddy. Just kidding, you know we’re all about discreetly helping you solve your most irritating scatological issues. And since you’ve turned to Dr. Internet for advice on your itchy skin condition, we’re gonna assume telling you to go see your friendly local dermatologist isn’t what you’re after. 

That said, there may be reasons you will have to seek out healthcare for the rash on your butt. But also, maybe not. Let’s get diagnosin’!

8 Types of Butt Rashes (and How to Treat Them)

Just like unhappy families, all skin conditions are unhappy-making in different ways. We really can’t tell you what to do until we know what we’re looking at. Here’s a non-exhaustive list of some of the most common symptoms and causes of your new skin rash.

Allergic Contact Dermatitis

Looks and feels: Red, dry, scaly, crusty, oozy, possibility of blistering, very itchy. Painful/tender. 

Common causes: Where to start? Poison ivy, poison oak, harsh soaps and detergents, personal care products to which you personally, poor guy, are allergic.

Cures: You’re going to have to figure out what’s behind the case of contact dermatitis personally occupying your specific butt, first, but over-the-counter calamine lotion and time will help if it’s poison ivy. Removing the offending soap/detergent/lotion from your arsenal will obviously be necessary if that’s giving you an allergic reaction. Switching to fragrance-free personal care can also help. 

Atopic Dermatitis (AKA Eczema)

Looks and feels like: Red, dry, scaly, leathery patches, possibly crusty or weeping, can definitely be itchy but not necessarily.

Common causes: Environmental allergens, wool, stress, dry air, genetics. There’s a reason eczema affects 10-25% of the population at some point in their lives. 

Cures: Stress relief, cortisone cream, a humidifier, removal of the offending textile or allergen from your life. 

Psoriasis

Looks and feels: Red, scaly, cracked, rough. Maybe white patches on top of the red scaliness. 

Common causes: Autoimmune condition. Your immune system is attacking your own skin cells.

Cures: Steroid cream and a trip to your doctor, who can help you get to the root of this unpleasant rash. 

Lichen Sclerosus

Looks and feels like: Shiny, lighter than your normal skin tone, itchy, tends to be located near the anus. The skin may appear thinner and wrinklier than in unaffected areas.

Common causes: Autoimmune disease.

Cures: Steroid/hydrocortisone cream, antibiotic ointment, and calling your doctor. Not to freak you out, but this particular butt rash can progress to squamous cell carcinoma if you ignore it. 

Fungal Infection (AKA Ringworm)

Looks like: Red or just generally darker than your skin tone in a circle/oval/patch shape, bordered at the edge by a somewhat lighter ring.

Common causes: Basically the same as jock itch, just moved next door from your groin area to a new home (your ass). 

Cures: Changing out of your workout clothes and showering immediately, not whenever you happen to get around to it. Athlete’s foot cream. Other antifungal creams. Incidentally, preventing a fungal infection on your butt will also help keep swamp ass at bay. 

Keratosis Pilaris

Looks and feels like: Little red bumps. Can be almost sandpaper-like. Not itchy or painful.

Common causes: Clogged hair follicles. 

Cures: Switch to a body wash containing lactic, glycolic, or salicylic acid. Moisturize—yes, you, a dude, are going to start moisturizing your butt — with a cream or lotion containing either salicylic acid or a high percentage of urea. 

Folliculitis (AKA Butt Acne)

Looks and feels like: Pimples—small, painful ones. 

Common causes: Clogged or infected hair follicles.

Cures: Exfoliate regularly, antibiotic ointment, benzoyl peroxide, diluted tea tree oil (you can also check out our full guide to buttne here).

Heat Rash

Looks and feels like: Butt acne, but a little worse.

Common causes: Technically, sweat clogging up your pores and sweat ducts, plus friction, results in heat rash.

Cures: Body wash targeted at acne and containing benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Looser clothing that doesn’t chafe. Use shower wipes when you can’t shower immediately after a gym session. 

When to Dial-Up a Dermatologist

As much as we all love to forgo doctor appointments in favor of curing our ailments via the Internet, sometimes you gotta go to an actual dermatology or general doctor’s practice. While some of the conditions above absolutely require interacting with a real healthcare professional, there are also some general guidelines for when it’s more than just irritated skin.

Here are reasons to seek out professional medical advice for your butt rash:

  • Your rash is infected. How will you know? It’s swollen, it’s painful, and there might be fluid that looks greenish or yellowish in hue. 
  • You have a fever. If you’re running a temperature in addition to dealing with a rash on your butt, it’s probably an indicator you’ve got something more severe than a case of basic butt acne. 
  • The rash is everywhere. We really shouldn’t have to tell you that if you have a full-body rash, you need to see a doctor. 
  • The rash is not yet everywhere but is quickly moving in that direction. A fast-spreading rash to other areas of the body likely calls for medical care. 
  • The rash includes painful blisters on your anus or genitals. This is probably not a rash. This is probably genital herpes. You’ll need a prescription for oral antiviral medication and possibly something topical, as well. 

Butt Rash Prevention

Nobody likes scaly, dry skin, fungal infections, or allergic reactions. So here’s a crash course on how to care for your nether regions and prevent butt rash in the future:

Shower right after you work out and change into clean clothing. If you can’t shower, use body powder. Speaking of clothing, loose, breathable fabrics and fits are your friend. If something is chafing, make it stop, either by using moisturizer or ditching the skinny jeans. 

Lastly, switch to fragrance-free laundry detergent and consider a fragrance-free body wash as well. Remember, “unscented” doesn’t actually mean fragrance-free, and you want the latter. 

Well, this has been a journey. We never thought we’d say this, but we hope everything you’ve read today helps you get back to an ass that’s as smooth as a baby’s bottom. 

Rash Relief

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