Folliculitis Frustration

Have any of you had issues with Folliculitis? which is caused from heat + friction.

I have been battling this for better part of a year. not saddle sores per say, but a skin irritation (which my doctor has said is folliculitis).

Took a week off, hiblens, not sitting around bibs, new bibs etc, Antibiotics and still there.

Not really that bad, just frustrating. Probably started from too much time on the trainer during lockdown (16-18hrs per week), but don’t ride much on trainer currently.

Starting to consume me a little bit, and i’ve finally managed to get some good fitness and can’t really do any big volume weeks as a result.

For the first 6 months I started using the trainer, I fought issues with irritated/inflamed follicles that were annoying, and that would also periodically turn into larger saddle sores. Once a breakout happened, seemed like it was a constant battle that kept me off the bike more than once.

What ended up working for me was the right combination of:

  1. Well fitting saddle, correctly fit
  2. Quality Bib/Chamois that was a good match in terms of fit and materials
  3. Chamois Cream, 100% of the time. dznuts is my fav after trying a bunch. Assos I liked too.
  4. Salicylic body/face wash after each ride. Salicyclic acid is common in facewashes because it helps clear dead skin and ‘stuff’ from pores and follicles. I soap and rinse full groin area with normal soap, then soap with a mild facewash that contains salicyclic acid.

That combo has let me avoid (knock on wood) any major skin issues for the last couple years. Occasional small bumps are pretty common for most of us I think, but no issue that kept me off the bike since sticking these 4 points.

For me, some bibs simply seem to cause problems. Giordana and Assos are great for me. Castelli and Endura, while both being quality products, cause skin issues if I start using them again. No idea why some work better than others, but just attributing it to fit + materials not being a great match for my body.

I think good chamois cream is a must though if you have skin that’s prone to friction-related injury. It seems to work really well for me, and don’t skimp. It’s not cheap, but if it keeps you in the saddle…

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Thanks for reply, i hope there i light at the end of the tunnel. Have to say its basically all i really think about

I’ve had similar problems in the past. I agree with @perryj recommendations but also there is a good chance your saddle might be too high. Lowering my saddle a few mm cured my issues. Having a saddle too high causes you to rock around on it a lot more causing chafing/ friction etc.