For a quick list of acne treatments and how well they tend to work, check out the acne treatments overview page.
Generally speaking, for most people, proper application of benzoyl peroxide can completely clear acne and keep it clear until it naturally subsides with time.
For people with severe, widespread, and scarring acne, isotretinoin (Accutane®) is an oral treatment that can produce long-term remission of acne in about 2/3 of people, but comes with many side effects, some of which can be lifelong. It also causes severe birth defects, and may cause premature aging and joint pain in the long-term. For all of these reasons, all other options should be exhausted first. If it is used, it must be administered in close partnership with a physician.
Females: If you are experiencing irregular menstruation, particularly if it comes with excessive hair growth, be sure to see your doctor concerning poly-cystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). If PCOS is diagnosed, oral contraceptives are normally prescribed and can clear acne and relieve other symptoms at the same time.
Many other topical and oral treatments exist for acne, most of which produce moderate, yet incomplete, results. Home remedies, aside from a few exceptions, tend to produce little to no results.
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Latest in Acne Treatments
At Home Treatments
Urine Therapy for Acne
Urine contains some compounds that have potentially positive impacts on acne bacteria, but contains other compounds that may contribute to skin inflammation, which could make...
September 09, 2020
The Top 12 Most Common Side Effects of Isotretinoin (Accutane)
(1) Dry Lips - 100%, (2) Dry Nose - 66%, (3) Dry Skin - 50%, (4) Dry Eyes - 40%, (5) Acne Worsening - 35%, (6) Joint/Back/Muscle Pain - 26-29%, (7) Chronic Fatigue - 25%, (8) Headaches - 10-12%, (9) Hair Loss - 9%, (10) Photosensitivity - 5-12%, (11) Vision Changes - 5-10%, (12) Chest Pain - 5%.
September 03, 2020
Photodynamic Therapy - PDT
Information on how photodynamic therapy (PDT) is performed for acne, which type of light is best, and which photosensitizer is best. Side effects and what kind of results you can expect are considered.
August 13, 2020
Salicylic acid (BHAs)
Salicylic acid is a common ingredient in over-the-counter anti-acne medications, washes, spot treatments, and makeup. It penetrates into the skin where it helps unclog pores...
July 29, 2020
Resorcinol - Everything You Need to Know
Resorcinol is a rarely-found ingredient in over-the-counter acne treatments that exfoliates the skin. It is almost always combined with other medications, particularly sulfur. It is also sometimes used at higher percentages in professionally-administered chemical peels.
July 21, 2020
Light Therapy - Blue and/or Red Light
Blue and/or red light devices may help to reduce acne, especially stronger light devices found in doctors' offices, but usually not to a dramatic degree...
July 16, 2020