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It's basically a spot treatment that you can take internally. If I have a huge swollen cyst I will often take 1-2 aleve about 1/2 an hour before I go out--possibly more in another 4 hours (depending on the severity, and if I'm staying out, etc.). It drastically reduces the swelling and redness--in fact it can make that zit you tried (and failed) to pop the night before barely noticable. Often, it can fool you into thinking the zit has gone away, but don't be fooled! In about 4-6 hours, the zit will just go right back to being swollen again. But hey, this works way better than putting a warm washcloth on your face, or using that stupid Zeno device.
I take Aleve when I see an onset of cysts or acne. I am not completely clear, but it does a good job of clearing existing and preventing new acne. Works well during PMS (week before cycle) to prevent hormonal acne flareup.
Aleve is an over the counter medication that has been found to alleviate premenstrual acne and menstrual acne in many women because of the anti-inflammatory effect that it has on a person's entire system. However, Aleve (which contains Naproxen) is an NSAID medication, which means that it is not safe for everyone to take. (For instance, people who are allergic to aspirin should not take Aleve.)