I know the experience all too well. When you wake up, look in the mirror and see a new pimple. I’ve personally dealt with acne for about 8 years, ranging from moderate to severe. However, over the past year, I’ve reached a place where I can both prevent and treat any acne I get. After years of trial and error, here are my recommendations to any active acne you have.
The first thing you should remember is to be gentle with your skin. Some people reach for the strongest spot treatment they can find or want to pop it, but both of those solutions can happen in a more educated way that will help prevent acne scars which are harder, and sometimes impossible to treat with Over-the-Counter (OTC) products.
With acne, you need a course of action. One of the quickest ways to handle a pimple is to use a hydrocolloid bandage. Some people suggest you use a lancet or a sterilized needle to create a small puncture to the pimple, after that’s handled you can squeeze with your clean hands or q-tis until everything is out. After that, you wash your face again and once that area of your face is dry, apply the hydrocolloid bandage. Hydrocolloid bandages were originally created for wounds. However, people use them on acne because they speed up healing. These types of bandages can be bought by searching hydrocolloid bandage or what the most skincare brands call “acne patches". Acne patches can be found at stores like Target, Walmart, or online on Amazon. The biggest difference between acne patches and hydrocolloid bandages are the shape and size. Acne patches usually come in small circles that are the perfect size for acne while hydrocolloid bandages are larger. If you prefer hydrocolloid bandages you can cut them or use a hole puncher to make them into circles. Another way to use acne patches is to apply one to a clean face and leave it there until the gunk from the pimple comes out on its own. This is the method I use, and it does take a bit more time but the results are similar.
The biggest pro of acne patches are they protect your skin and speed up the healing process. I personally consider them a must have for my skincare routine. Another benefit of acne patches are they help with acne marks like PIH and PIE. Acne marks are the red or brown skin you may see after a pimple is gone. For some acne patches, prevent acne marks and for others, they may see their acne marks go away sooner. For people of color with brown skin like myself, PIH can be more stubborn and long lasting. The use of acne patches are a great way to combat so your skin can look the way you want it to.
Another method of dealing with acne is to spot treat. Spot treatments usually include ingredients like Salicylic Acid, Benzoyl Peroxide, Clay. and Sulfur. Spot treatments provide ingredients that will address the acne directly. When using spot treatments, it is important to spot test before applying it to multiple places on your face. There is no one ingredient that will cure acne. However, these ingredients typically give the best results.
Skin is complex and while one solution might work for someone else, it may not work for you. The best advice I can give is to be patient with your skin. The first product you use might not work at all or as quickly as you would like. My other suggestion would be to head over to Reddit and search for the subredditr/skincareaddiction and r/acne. These are communities where people talk about their skincare routines and how they treat their acne. `