As a beauty writer, I'm on nodding terms with a few unusual treatments - vajacial, anyone? - but up until the weekend before last I hadn't come across microdermabrasion as a treatment specifically for bacne. It makes sense, of course: microdermabrasion is effectively a deep manual exfoliation that resurfaces skin and stimulates circulation and cell renewal. So while it's not really suitable for very chronic acne, a blemish-prone back could certainly benefit from a session (or 6 - typically a course of treatments is recommended.)
The salon where I nearly had my eye out gave me the run of their menu by way of apology (after offering me another eyelash perm, which I declined) and I decided to give this a whirl instead.
The whole set-up was very much that of a microdermabrasion facial for the back - there was double cleansing, there were masks, and there was plenty of lovely massage - but predictably it was when the machinery was deployed that my inner gadget lover got excited. When flicked on, the base unit made very little noise; in fact it barely roused me from the snooze I'd accidentally drifted into.
Happily, it was just loud enough to cover the mortifying sound of a tiny dribble of saliva hitting the floor as I came to (turns out that gravity, sleep, and lying face-down with your mush in the void of a treatment table is a dangerous mix.)
What felt like the lovechild of a tiny hoover and a piece of sandpaper was firmly pushed and pulled across my back from neck to knicker line as the suction wand blasting super-fine micro-crystals methodically covered every square centimetre of skin. While the sensation was slightly abrasive, it didn't feel ticklish or uncomfortable in the slightest. Mostly it felt like the world's most thorough, most satisfying back scratch, without the need for any "up a bit/down a bit/left a bit... your other left!"
Immediately after the treatment, the skin on my back looked markedly improved. Its overall texture was amazing - somewhere between a baby's arse and a fluffy kitten in terms of softness - and blemishes that had been red and angry looking beforehand had calmed right down. The results are still in evidence now, 10 days later, and I haven't had any new spots rear their annoying little heads since.
If you're struggling with a less than perfect back and no amount of DIY seems to be making a difference, this is a widely available salon treatment option that gives noticeable results and is, I reckon, definitely worth considering.