Soap and water-
This one is a no brainer. Gentle cleansing of the skin with soap and
water, no more than two or three times a day, removes excess oils (sebum)
and may alleviate the "oily skin" appearance often associated
with acne. Be careful, washing your face too much can cause
This treatment is the the titan of all acne treatments, and a medication
commonly prescribed by physicians to treat mild forms of acne. It's
been around for years and is proven to be effective in the treatment of
acne. Benzoyl peroxide is available over-the-counter in a lotion or
a gel. Its only side effect in over-drying. Benzoyl peroxide
can bleach hair and fabric, including sheets, towels and clothing, so care
should be taken when applying it.
Salicylic acid- On the
skin, salicylic acid helps to correct the abnormal shedding of cells. For
milder acne, salicylic acid helps unclog pores to resolve and prevent
lesions. It must be used continuously, just like benzoyl peroxide,
since its effects stop when you stop using it--pores clog up again and the
acne returns. Salicylic acid is available in many acne products, including
lotions, creams and pads.
This is the oldest acne treatment around. In combination with other
agents—e.g., alcohol, salicylic acid, and resorcinol—sulfur is still a
constituent of some of the most heavily marketed over-the-counter
medications. Sulfur is less frequently used by itself as an acne treatment
due to its unpleasant odor. Although long used in treatment of acne, it is
not known how sulfur acts on the skin to influence the development of
An older medication for treatment of various skin diseases and scabies.
Sulfurated lime probably characterizes the medications that were the best
available in past decades.
Together with sulfur, a constituent of popular over-the-counter acne
medications. Resorcinol is less frequently used alone in treatment of
Alcohol and acetone-
Acetone is a "degreasing" agent, and alcohol has a mild
anti-bacterial activity. The two agents have been sometimes combined in
over-the-counter medication. However, when acetone is used alone, it may
have no effect in the treatment of acne.
Herbal, organic and
Over-the-counter products called "herbal," "organic"
or "natural" are marketed as acne treatments but their
effectiveness has rarely been tested in clinical trials. The value of such
treatments is generally unknown.
Extraction of comedones should be performed only by a dermatologist, under
sterile conditions, and usually only when comedones have not responded to
other treatment. Acne patients should not attempt to extract comedones by
squeezing or picking.
Ultraviolet light therapy-
Ultraviolet light has not been proven effective as an acne treatment. At
most, skin tanning may mask acne. However, skin tanning increases risk for
other, more serious skin conditions such as melanoma and other skin
Light Chemical Peels-
Glycolic acid and other chemical
agents are applied by a dermatologist to loosen blackheads and decrease