Dermatology/Red bumps on legs

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Question
my legs
my legs  
Hello,
I am an 18-year-old college student and have been struggling with some sort of skin condition for a majority of my life. It mostly affects my legs and gives me tons of red bumps that look like (but are not) acne. They aren't itchy nor do they bother me much, but for aesthetic reasons, they just look plain nasty. The bumps kind of stay in the same spot for a long time and don't really wear off.
My doctor told me his best guess for not being a dermatologist (but didn't write the condition down for me), but I'm beginning to think he was wrong--he diagnosed me about a year ago and said the only thing I could do was put a special lotion on them, and I have been applying the lotion every day without avail. Incidentally, the condition seems to be getting worse and the bumps are gradually growing in number.
I will add that shaving my legs doesn't seem to be a big factor--I spent summer without shaving for weeks at a time with the same effect.
With no way to get to a specialist or fund a visit, I come here to ask your opinion on the matter and what my condition may be. Google doesn't help much with this kind of thing. :)

Answer
Folliculitis is inflammation of one or more hair follicles. It can occur anywhere on the skin.
Causes, incidence, and risk factors

Folliculitis starts when hair follicles are damaged by rubing from clothing, blockage of the follicle, or shaving. Most of the time, the damaged follicles become infected with Staphylococcus (staph) bacteria. In women shaving your legs is usually the cause.

Symptoms

Common symptoms include a rash, itching, and pimples or pustules near a hair follicle in the neck, groin, legs or genital area. The pimples may crust over.

Signs and tests

Your health care provider can diagnose this condition by looking at your skin. Lab tests may show which bacteria or fungus is causing the infection.

Treatment

Hot, moist compresses may help drain the affected follicles.

Treatment may include:

Antibiotics applied to the skin (mupirocin) or taken by mouth (dicloxacillin)
Antifungal medications to control the infection if a fungus is present.
Expectations (prognosis)

Folliculitis usually responds well to treatment, but may come back.

Complications

Folliculitis may return or spread to other body areas.

Dermatology

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Michael S. Fisher, <B>Ph.D., M.D.</B>

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