Topical Antibacterial
501 Reviews
Topical Antibacterial
Based on All Available Studies
Strength of Evidence
Topical Antibacterial
Side Effects
Topical Antibacterial’s Real World Take
At prescription strengths (15 - 20%) studies show it should help reduce mild-to-moderate acne by a significant and noticeable amount after 3 months or so of treatment, so that’s not too shabby. However, it is unlikely to completely clear the skin on its own.
Topical Antibacterial
How to Get It
Azelaic acid is available in 15% - 20% by prescription. Have a dermatologist? Make an appointment to get this medication. Don't have a dermatologist? See The American Academy of Dermatology Physician Database to find one. Azelaic acid is also available over-the-counter in strengths 10% and lower. Here are some places you can find it online.
Read All About Azelaic Acid
Compare To Other Treatments

Used Azelaic Acid? Rate It:

Choose from 1 to 5 stars
December 21, 2023
Did not work for me - itching and burning after using, acne got worse
I am 35 years old female and I have struggled with acne on and off since 12 years old. I have always had blackheads and whiteheads which were more-less controlled with Dual gel (benzoyl peroxide with clindamycin). 3 months ago I have started developing painful inflamed acne on my jawline, cheeks, and around mouth after going through a very stressful life events (so potentially hormonal and stress-induced acne) and Dual gel did not seem to control it. My dermatologist prescribed Skinoren cream (Azelaic acid) to use in the morning and Aknemycin plus in the evening. My skin was itching after using Skinoren cream during every single use, often for hours after I applied it, no matter whether I put moisturiser, make up or let Skinoren alone. I persisted with it for 4 weeks, hoping my skin would get use to it and my acne would improve. However, I got several chemical burns from Skinoren and my acne got much worse. I decided to stop taking it after 4 weeks as itching did not improve. My skin seems to be too sensitive to this product. Perhaps combination with Aknemycin plus made my skin much more sensitive to Skinoren cream.
October 23, 2023
Don't work for everyone
Used azelaic acid for pustules on and around nose and near chin area 0 affect on them .
September 21, 2023
Made my skin dry, red, irritated.
I used this stuff once or twice a day (about 2 pea-sized worth) - at first, I thought it was working well. Then I noticed my skin was becoming increasingly irritated / red. Then I did a patch test on my neck, and broke out in a cluster of tiny small white heads. I never break out on my neck. I stopped using the product after about 2 months. I know it works so well for some others, but not for me.
January 19, 2023
Wonderful! Works on rosacea!
Excellent Product, after 1 week rosacea looks better, skin just looks brighter and no side effects.
January 7, 2021
White Patches from Azclear

Recently started using Azclear 20%. I have an olive complexion and have started to notice patches of lighter skin on my face. Has this happened to anyone else and should I continue using this product?

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1 user(s) found this helpful

November 22, 2020

its a miracle! after years of trying this and that in desperation of treating my long term diagnosed rosacea,

my poor end of her tether doctor, unwittingly prescribed yet another combo erythromycin with a tube of skinoren!

as usual, on goes the cream first wondering how many times i,ll have to apply this! before its obvious that nothing is happening.

literally within seconds, i could feel the creams acid reaction on my face! this was very new.

i applied a good heavy layer over my entire face and rubbed it in well, the next morning at least 70% of my rosacea had gone! 

i repeated the application until i could no longer feel the acid reaction, 4 days, and the rosacea is completely gone!

i still had some lumps and bumps on the back of my neck, applied the cream, gone in 2 days!

the rosacea has now been gone for 8days, this is the tricky bit, keeping it away.

so far 8 days is a new record for me, im keeping my fingers crossed.

February 6, 2019
Works, give it time

Finally a product that is working for my acne. After exhaustsing my dermatologists arsenal of topical medications, they gave this Finacea one last shot before putting me on Accutane. At first I wasn't pleased and didn't see much change, but kept using as prescribed (at night first for the first month, then morning and night since) and now at month 3, I have ZERO pimples. This is the first time my face has been clear in years. This cream has been a godsend. 

February 27, 2019

Hi. I just asked my dermatologist for a prescription.  It is very expensive unfortunately,  but I'm getting it anyway.  I hope I get good results...I'm at the end of my rope with my face. 

December 22, 2018
Life saver

I began laser treatment for acne after having a very bad breakout after going to France in August 2018. I tried everything! Creams, natural measures, diet (lost about 1stone in - month) cutting out everything including diary and bread. My journey was immense and my mental health at an all time low! Finally went to see the derm who prescribed skinoren. Within 2 weeks I saw massive changes in my skin. Much clearer and brighter. I have got a spots still appearing but I started it in November and my skin is the most clear it has been in over 6months! So happy! 

July 4, 2018
pros and cons
good for closed comedones, bad for inflammatory acne
April 2, 2018
Not a fair overview of this does say "prescription* treatments..the Rx is finacea 15%, just.saying.
I don't have MD behind my name, but! this info on azelic acid does not apply in my experience to the Rx what you get from eBay or Amazon yeah I get that, but overall it's a disservice to the community *not* to cover azelic acid as finacea....

Finding a Doctor

The right dermatologist can make a big difference to your patient experience and the success of your acne treatment plan. Here are the steps to find a dermatologist who is a good fit:

  1. Use the search feature on the American Academy of Dermatology website to look for board-certified dermatologists in your area, and filter the search results for doctors with a special interest in treating acne.
  2. Read online patient reviews of any dermatologists you are considering and ask people you know whether they have any experience with these dermatologists.
  3. Do your research and go to your first appointment with questions prepared.
  4. Listen to what your gut feeling tells you once you see a dermatologist in person. If you are not completely comfortable, try a different dermatologist.

Finding a Doctor

Only a select few plastic surgeons specialize in acne scar revision surgery. Be certain to find a provider who specializes in acne scar repair and who is passionate and experienced in this area.

Be sure to:

  • Look at before and after photos, the more the better, especially patients with similar scarring to your own.
  • Be realistic about results. Look for improvement, not a cure.

Questions to ask a potential scar revision specialist:

  • Are you board certified? Be certain that they are board certified.
  • How long have you been performing these procedures? Normally, the more experience the better, however, some younger surgeons may be more on top of the latest procedures.
  • Can I speak to some of your other patients? Ask for references for several patients who had similar scarring and speak to them about the process and their satisfaction with results.

Red flags:

  • Their story changes: As you discuss different treatment options, if they tend to change their mind easily, or agree with whatever you say, consider this a red flag. A confident, experienced surgeon will possess strong, unwavering opinions.
  • Your gut tells you "no": Trust your gut. If you just don't feel that the doctor is the right fit, trust that and move on. On the other hand, if you feel they are the perfect specialist for you, trust that feeling.