Acne Spot Treatments
Pimples are caused when a pore on our skin gets clogged with oil and sebum. If this lasts long enough, bacteria can enter the picture and make the pimple become inflamed.
Hear is a run down of acne spot home remedies that may actually work :
1. Apple cider vinegar. Everyone seems to love this stuff. It reminds me of Windex in My Big Fat Greek Wedding! You can’t go wrong with it. It has antimicrobial qualities, it dries the skin and it reduces inflammation. 1 part apple cider vinegar to 3 parts water. Apply with a cotton ball. Rinse with water within 10-20 seconds.
2. Witch hazel. Love it also. One of my patients from Puerto Rico brought in a bottle of this and said she uses it for everything. In Spanish I believe it is called agua maravilla. This translates to “wonder water”. This also checks all the boxes for antimicrobial, eliminating oil and reducing inflammation.
Most spot treatments are focused on drying out the skin to help stop excess oil from building up as well as exfoliating the skin and reducing bacteria that inflame the skin.
Most OTC preparations contain either Salicylic Acid or Benzoyl Peroxide.
Salicylic acid breaks apart superficial skin cells to help remove dead skin cells from the surface. It is used in acne medications but can also be found in higher concentrations in wart treatments. It can be effective without being too irritating. It is often found in concealers for acne. Effective to treat and camouflage acne simultaneously.
Benzoyl peroxide can clear dead skin cells from the surface of the skin. In addition, it is able to kill acne causing bacteria on the skin that lead to the inflammation found with acne. By gently exfoliating and treating bacteria on the skin, benzoyl peroxide can be very useful in people that have inflammatory acne. Think of inflammatory acne as the type that looks inflamed or pink along with small pustules on the skin. These products can be a bit more irritating. I would use with caution in some instances. These are the ones where the next day you may find your makeup peeling in the area you used the product- super embarrassing if you have ever experienced it!
Prescription spot treatments usually combine benzoyl peroxide with an additional topical antibiotic such as clindamycin or erythromycin. These enhance the ability of the product to fight off acne causing bacteria.