Red Spots on Skin: Causes & Treatments and What To Do About It

in The MadeMan Blog

Skin issues are a problem for many. They can be a pain to deal with, whether it's dark or red spots. If you're experiencing red spots on your skin and face and don't know what they are or how they got there, you may have some luck after reading this.

Here at MadeMan, we believe it starts with your skin, meaning if your skin isn't making you feel confident, it can be hard to find something that does. Confidence is key in all aspects of life, and securing that should be a top priority.

What Causes Red Spots?

Many different things can cause red spots. Some are simple fixes, and others, not so much.

It can be hard to treat something when you don't know the cause or what it is. It will be much easier for you to implement the correct treatment method once you realize the ins and outs of what’s going on, and we’re here to hopefully help with that.

Heat Rash

With the summer months approaching, heat rashes may be a common issue. Usually, heat rashes only occur if you're traditionally more prone to them, but they can happen to anyone.

Heat rash is caused by trapped sweat.

When your body begins to sweat excessively and overheat, it is easy for the sweat glands to become blocked, causing heat rash. While heat rash is most common among babies and young children, adults still get it.

Here are some surefire signs you're suffering from a heating rash:

  • Clusters of small red bumps called papules
  • Firm, flesh-colored bumps
  • An itchy or prickly sensation
  • Mild or absent sweating in the affected area
  • Redness and soreness
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea

Can You Treat Heat Rash?

Heat rash will subside in around 24 hours and should be completely cleared up.

The best thing to do is cool your body and then apply a soothing or anti-itch cream to the affected area.

Keratosis Pilaris

Keratosis pilaris is a common skin condition. It causes small or brown bumps all over the skin. You can expect these bumps to appear in the outer arms, forearms, or upper back.

If your red spots feel rough or dry, itchy, or develop in small batches, you may have keratosis pilaris.

Treating Keratosis Pilaris

You have tons of options when trying to treat this skin condition. First, you want to moisturize the area using a moisturizer that contains lactic acid.

If that doesn't work, consult your doctor and discuss trying any of these products.

  • Alpha Hydroxy Acid
  • Glycolic Acid
  • Lactic Acid
  • Retinoids
  • Salicylic Acid

Contact Dermatitis

If you're allergy-prone, then chances are you've gotten contact dermatitis before. Contact dermatitis is caused when your skin comes in contact with an allergen.

The severity and treatments may vary as it's a broad diagnosis. However, here are some of the most common signs that you may be experiencing contact dermatitis.

  • Rash that appears in odd shapes or patterns
  • Dry, flaking, and cracked skin
  • Flush skin rash
  • Itchy welts or hives
  • Tightness or intense itching on the skin
  • Burning sensation
  • Oozing blisters
  • Sensitivity to sunlight
  • Thick, dark skin

Many people have allergies or are sensitive to certain products. While these skin breakouts and rashes can be intimidating, there are ways to help control the unwanted side effects.

Managing Contact Dermatitis

The best way to manage contact dermatitis is to determine what is causing your breakout or skin issues. If your symptoms are moderate to mild, they should improve with avoidance of whatever caused them.

The first step to finding what is causing your red spots or contact dermatitis is by looking at your products and what your skin has contact with every day.

Avoid skincare products with harsh or irritating chemicals, like nickel and copper jewelry, which are common allergens. If you're allergic to food or medicine, steer clear of them and be careful outside near unfamiliar plants.

Allergies are nothing to be taken lightly. Yes, some people's allergic reactions are minor and don't require medical attention, but others — not so much.

Razor Burn or Bumps

Often, shaving your face makes you feel powerful and ready to conquer the day, but that's not always the case. If your skin is prone to razor burn or bumps, you may notice irritating red bumps or spots on your skin a few hours after a shave.

How To Avoid Razor Burn

Razor bumps and burns are pretty common but are also avoidable when you know how to manage them. Here's how to get the best razor burn-free shave possible.

Step #0: Buy a New Razor

Using a new and clean razor is crucial when it comes to shaving. It's not uncommon for people to forget about replacing their razors until it's too late.

The average razor is good for five to seven uses when stored in a dry environment. If your razor is kept in the shower or on the wet sink, it'll likely rust much quicker than a properly stored razor.

Using an old razor can increase your chances of getting razor bumps, nicks, or infections in any cuts you do get.

Step #1: Cleanse the Skin

Okay, the first real step to getting the best shave is cleansing your skin first. You don't want any bacteria or dirt getting into your pores while you're shaving.

Step #2: Exfoliate

Unless you're someone who shaves every day, you may want to exfoliate when you do pick up your razor.

Exfoliating ensures you remove unwanted bacteria, dirt, or dead skin cells from your face before shaving. Remember that exfoliation is good for your skin, but only in moderation. Keep your exfoliating to a maximum of twice or three times a week.

Step #3: Apply Shaving Oil

Applying a shaving oil before shaving gel will help the razor glide easier. Razor burns or bumps are usually caused by unwanted friction on the skin. When the razor gets caught on your skin, nicks and burns happen.

Step #4: Apply Shaving Cream in an Upward Motion

You wouldn't think that the way you apply your shaving cream would affect your shave, but when you apply it in an upward motion, it can actually make it easier to get a closer shave.

Step #5: Avoid Dry Shaving

Dry shaving can be uncomfortable, but it's notorious for causing razor burn and bumps. No matter how late you are for work, if razor bumps have been an issue for you, you must avoid dry shaving at all costs.

Step #6: Shave With the Grain

Everyone is taught how to shave differently; some people have been shaving wrong their whole lives and have had no idea.

Shaving with the grain means shaving in the same direction of the hair. If you shave in the opposite direction, this can lead to severe irritation and razor bumps.

Step #8: Rinse Your Razor After Each Swipe

When you're shaving, the blade often gets jammed full of hair. You can expect the skin to get tugged and pulled much easier if you aren't properly rinsing the razor after each wash.

The main cause of razor burn is when the skin gets pulled by the razor — this can cause cuts and nicks.

Step #9: Always Use a Sharp Razor

Using a dull razor is the worst mistake for your skin. Usually, you don't realize you need to replace your razor until it's too late and you're halfway done with your morning shave.

Using a dull and rusted razor isn't only bad for your skin but can also lead to other complications like infections. Depending on how often you shave, change your razors every one to two weeks.

Step #10: Moisturize After You Shave

How you shave, and the products you use have a lot to do with your skin. If you aren't using the best razor or shaving cream, you can't expect your shave to be the best. However, have you ever thought about moisturizing after you shave?

We're here to tell you that moisturizing after shaving is essential when trying to avoid razor bumps and burns.

Eczema

Eczema is a skin condition that affects over 15 million Americans. It makes your skin red and irritated, with long-lasting effects that may be accompanied by asthma or hay fever. While eczema isn't contagious, it is a very common skin disorder.

Causes of Eczema

Healthy skin helps retain moisture and protects your body against bacteria, irritants, and allergens. Eczema is related to a gene variation that affects the skin’s ability to protect and ultimately flares up after contact with certain irritants like soaps, detergents, and washing liquids.

Environment

Yes, eczema is deeply affected by the environment. If you live in cold or dry climates, you can expect your eczema to be significantly worse than someone who lives in a warmer, more humid location.

Allergies are bad triggers as well. With allergy season approaching, you can experience worsened symptoms of your eczema.

Food Allergens

Food allergens can cause eczema flare-ups, too, if you're allergic to milk, peanuts, or soy or may experience an outbreak after consumption.

How To Help Manage Eczema

Medications

You can control symptoms of eczema with medications, creams, and ointments. Corticosteroid cream or ointment is a common prescription for eczema patients.

Antibiotic creams are commonly prescribed to patients as well. It's not uncommon for skin to get infected if you have eczema. The skin can become very dry and cracked, leaving the skin prone to infection.

However, if these creams are overused or overapplied, they can lead to certain side effects, so you must consult your doctor on the proper application amount.

In severe cases, doctors will prescribe you an oral medication to take for a short period. If you're facing a bad flare-up, then these medications can help get your skin back under control.

Therapy

Many skin therapy treatments that people with eczema find very helpful and soothing.

Many say that the worst part of dealing with eczema is the constant itching and discomfort. If you're someone who can relate, you should consider skin therapy treatments.

Wet Dressing

Wet dressing is an effective treatment for severe atopic dermatitis (eczema). This treatment can be labor intensive and calls for a healthcare provider’s expertise.

The wet dressing is essentially when topical corticosteroids and wet bandages are wrapped around affected areas of the skin.

Light Treatment

Light treatment is traditionally used for people who randomly and rapidly flare up or don't see results with topical ointment treatment.

The simplest and most common form of light therapy is called phototherapy. This type of light therapy exposes the skin to controlled amounts of natural sunlight.

While this is affected for short periods, you don't want to overdue light therapy, which can have long-term side effects. If this sounds like something you'd like to try out, discuss your options with your doctor.

Relaxation

While this may sound like an unnecessary suggestion, relaxation can seriously help calm your symptoms of eczema. When you itch or pick at your skin, you can expect it to worsen.

Prolonged Sun Exposure

Prolonged sun exposure can also cause red spots on your skin. This is called polymorphous light eruption. Polymorphous light eruption only occurs when someone has a severe sensitivity to the sunlight. In fact, this can appear as tiny red bumps or patchy raised bumps.

If you're experiencing this sun issue, you can expect it to only last ten to 15 days without scarring. It happens most often in the spring and early summer when sun exposure quickly increases.

Causes of Prolonged UV Exposure

The cause of prolonged sun exposure is UV radiation. UV radiation can be in the form of ultraviolet B rays or ultraviolet A rays; a person that gets polymorphous light eruption can be prone to getting UV radiation from either.

Preventing Polymorphous Light Eruption

The best way to prevent sun damage is by constantly applying a high amount of SPF. If your skin is already sensitive to the sun, you must provide it with the right amount of sun protection.

Applying Sunscreen

The first step to protecting your skin from the sun is applying sunscreen daily. But if you plan to stay under the sun for most of the day, you must reapply SPF protection every two hours.

You will want a sunscreen that offers the best coverage, so we suggest sticking to that at least SPF 50. However, you can get up to SPF 70.

Take Frequent Shade Breaks

When you've been out in the sun all day, your skin and body can get exhausted. We suggest taking shade breaks every hour to stay as healthy and covered as possible. This will ensure your body isn't overheating.

Taking shade breaks can be beneficial if you’re prone to heat rash, but skin conditions aside, the sun is a powerful force and must be taken seriously. The summer months can get hot, so you want to make sure you’re taking the proper precautions.

When To See a Healthcare Provider

Determining specific red dots may require a trip to your physician. This will depend on the appearance of the rash, your personal medical history, and any underlying conditions.

In general, red flag symptoms that indicate a possible infection may include:

  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Severe discomfort or swelling
  • Pus from the rash

Be sure to seek immediate care if you experience any of the above symptoms with red spots on the skin.

In Conclusion

Dealing with red spots and any skin condition can get frustrating, especially when you don’t know what’s causing the issue. On the bright side, red spots on the skin are relatively common and are not always a cause for concern.

At MadeMan, we encourage you to prioritize your skin. Even if a proper skincare regimen has never been on your radar before, now’s the time to get started for better, healthier skin.

Sources:

Atopic eczema - Causes | NHS

Heat rash - Symptoms and causes | Mayo Clinic

Contact dermatitis - Symptoms and causes | Mayo Clinic

Atopic dermatitis (eczema) - Diagnosis and treatment | Mayo Clinic

Polymorphous light eruption - Symptoms and causes | Mayo Clinic