Items marked with red have tested a 3 or above (out of 5) in comedogenic (pore-clogging) testing.
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I have been using this product for about a month just to try it out. I usually use the Acne.org Treatment. The Paula's Choice benzoyl peroxide is an OK product, but not great. It made my skin really dry and red. It also burns/stings a little bit when I apply it to my skin and even a little bit after. I don't find this benzoyl peroxide effective on my acne. The Acne,org Treatment is way better, it doesn't burn, it doesn't dry out my skin as the Paula's Choice Treatment, in fact, I find it less irritating. I am definitely going to keep using the Acne.org Treatment.
I've used this BP treatment for over two years following the birth of my second child, although they have changed the formula in the last year or so. Right now it's a lot more liquidy, absorbs faster and supposedly works better. I'm not sure that it works better than it did before, it's definitely slightly more drying than it was before. While I was using it, I was also on the bc pill and using Retin A cream at night (plus moisturizers and an exfoliator on occasion). This combination didn't clear my acne completely, but it kept it in good check - a few break outs a month. However, winter came and I could not put up with the dryness, so I switched to azelaic acid. I don't think this product is cost effective if you're going to do the regimen, but I also think the amount of BP the regimen calls for is not necessary. A thinner, more frequent application would probably keep bacteria in check better.
I bought this for my sons to use for their back acne and really wanted to like it, thought it would be a good 2.5% BP product to try. My sons have used Dan's BP, as well as ProActiv and Neutrogena 2.5% BP in the past with great success in treating acne. However, the Paula's Choice didn't really help clear their acne at all, it just seemed to make it more red and inflamed. Unlike the other BP products they've used, which really worked quickly and produced results, this just made the acne look worse. They stopped using it and the back acne actually cleared up quicker using nothing at all.
First the good stuff: This is 2.5% which is the ideal strength for benzoyl peroxide. Also, it's in a nice liquidy-gel formulation which spreads easily and dries relatively quickly.
Now for the drawbacks: It's $7.50 per ounce, so it will become extremely expensive to use this with The Regimen on a regular basis. Also, after the initial pleasant cool gel feeling when I apply it, a burning feeling presents itself about a minute later. It's uncomfortable but not terrible. I'm unsure if this is from the preservatives in the product, or perhaps the choice of propylene glycol instead of butylene glycol? It's hard to tell. Also, after it dries, it leaves a stickiness on my skin. While this stickiness is not a total deal breaker, it is not a very pleasant after-feel. This stickiness disappears after I apply moisturizer, but my skin is left feeling a bit tight and just not quite right. It also contains Laureth-4, which is considered a 5 out of 5 for comedogenicity (clogs pores). I'm confused about why this ingredient would be added to an acne product.
My bottom line: Kudos to Paula's Choice for selling a gel-based 2.5% benzoyl peroxide, and this might be OK to use in a pinch, but the sting, stickiness, and addition of Laureth-4 makes me give it a 3 out of 5.