Acner.org: Acne treatment

Acner.org: Acne treatment

The Best Acne Over the Counter Products

The Best Acne Over the Counter Products The Best Acne Over the Counter Products

When you have acne, you're usually eager to find a way to make it disappear, which may be one reason there are so many acne products available. If you have an ongoing problem with severe breakouts, you may want to check with a dermatologist about prescription treatments, but for many people, over-the-counter medications work well for mild to moderate acne issues. Knowing the right ingredients to look for can help you determine the best acne over-the-counter products.

Benzoyl Peroxide

According to the Mayo Clinic, benzoyl peroxide is the most effective ingredient for treating acne. Products with benzoyl peroxide fight acne in three ways: they target and destroy the bacteria that causes inflammation, they help soak up excess oils that can block follicles, and they keep pores clear by removing dead skin cells. Products can contain anywhere from 2 to 10 percent benzoyl peroxide, so it's a good idea to start with a lower concentration before choosing a full-power version. Benzoyl peroxide can cause redness, swelling, sun sensitivity and even peeling, so keep an eye out for these symptoms. Products with benzoyl peroxide are most commonly used to treat active acne breakouts.

Salicylic Acid

Salicylic acid is also an effective over the counter acne treatment ingredient. Like benzoyl peroxide, the concentration of salicylic acid can vary among products, from 0.5 percent to 2 percent, and it's a good idea to work your way up to a higher concentration by testing products with smaller concentrations first. Salicylic acid helps keep pores from getting clogged by slowing down how quickly skin cells shed. According to the Mayo Clinic, products with salicylic acid may also help speed whiteheads and blackheads on their way by making them break down faster. Products with salicylic acid may sting when you apply them to your skin, and they can cause skin irritation for some people. Salicylic acid products are used to treat active breakouts, but they can also be used in smaller concentrations to help prevent acne.

Alcohol and Acetone

Products that contain alcohol or acetone help prevent acne and clear up some breakouts by clearing dirt, dead skin cells and other debris away from the surface of your skin. Alcohol and acetone are most commonly found in cleansers and toners that are used as part of a regular skincare routine. Unlike benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid, alcohol and acetone aren't usually effective for spot treatments. Products that contain alcohol or acetone may cause stinging or burning when you apply them to your skin.

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