Acne treatment Acne treatment

Facial Creams for Acne

Facial Creams for Acne Facial Creams for Acne Facial Creams for Acne

Acne treatment creams are available both over-the-counter and by prescription. Each type of facial cream is effective for a different type or severity of acne. Creams range from mild treatment for blackheads to powerful medications for more severe cases of acne. Speak to your family physician or dermatologist to determine the severity of your acne as well as what topical treatments are right for you.

Salicylic Acid

Numerous over-the-counter creams and lotions contain salicylic acid as the active ingredient. Salicylic acid effectively treats non-inflammatory acne such as blackheads and whiteheads. It regulates skin cell turnover to prevent dead skin cells from building up in or around the pores. It also treats already clogged pores. Salicylic acid may not effectively treat red or inflammatory acne since it has no effect on bacteria or excess oil--the main causes of inflammatory acne. Mild stinging or irritation may occur with salicylic acid treatment.

Benzoyl Peroxide

According to the American Academy of Dermatology's AcneNet, benzoyl peroxide is the pillar of over-the-counter acne treatment. It clears acne by removing dead skin cells, fighting bacteria and reducing excess oil. Benzoyl peroxide may be most effective at treating inflammatory acne and oily skin. Over-the-counter acne creams with benzoyl peroxide contain concentrations of about 2 to 10 percent. If you have dry or combination skin and want to try benzoyl peroxide treatment, look for a lower concentration to avoid excessively dry skin.


For moderate to moderately-severe acne, your dermatologist may prescribe topical retinoids, which are derivatives of vitamin A that come in the form of a cream or gel. These potent treatments expel comedones and prevent new clogs from forming by regulating skin cell turnover and encouraging new skin growth. According to, side effects include skin peeling, dryness or redness as well as a temporary worsening of acne during treatment. Retinoids may increase sun sensitivity, so use adequate sun protection during treatment.

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