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Top 10 Best Acne Treatments in 2021

Are you dealing with stubborn acne issues? Get to know these 10 acne treatments that might work for you.

Reasons to look for a good acne treatment

Acne is one of the most common skin issues out there. However, it’s also among the most devastating things because it can significantly affect a person’s quality of life.

Luckily, there are now treatments out there that actually work in getting rid of acne. But, the problem is that there are just too many options, making it difficult to find one that would work for your skin.

If this is your case, then you have come to the right page. Here, we have done the groundwork for you and compiled the best acne treatments in 2021. Hopefully, this will make it easier to find a solution for your stubborn acne.

Before jumping into the list of best acne products, why do you need to look for a good acne treatment, to begin with? Here are some of the main reasons:

  • For confidence

Although skin acne is a common issue of many people, it is undeniable that it can significantly affect one’s confidence. This is because, to some degree, appearance matters in how one perceives themselves. Besides, there’s no reason to prolong your acne suffering when there are treatments out there that can help end it. You just need to find the right one that works for you.

  • Skin compatibility

There are plenty of acne treatment products out there. However, what may work for others may not for you because everybody has different types of skin and sensitivities. This is why it’s highly recommended to be vigilant when looking for acne treatment.

Don’t just take other people’s word for it. See for yourself whether it would be compatible with your skin type. You can do this by checking out the product ingredients and see whether it can help address the causes of your acne before deciding to buy an acne treatment.

  • To save money

Acne treatment can be quite costly, especially those that are high quality and have been thoroughly tested and researched. This is why it’s important to get a good acne treatment that works for you in your first few tries. Or else, you have to continuously switch to different treatments, rendering what you already spent on others as useless.

  • To prevent it from getting worse

If you have an early onset of acne, it’s important to find a good acne treatment immediately. This is because if you wait for it to get worse, it might progress to whiteheads, blackheads, and worse of all, painful and uncomfortable acne.

Moreover, when you deal with acne during its early stage, you would not need strong medicine to clear it out. This means it would require less effort, time, and money. You also save yourself from suffering from a lot of emotional and mental issues caused by lack of confidence.

Best premium option

Natural Health Source ClearPores Acne Treatment

Recommended
93 %

Natural Health Source ClearPores Acne Treatment

This product is best for treating acne inside and out. Not only does it help get rid of acne on the surface level, but it also helps restore your internal balance so that the acne does not come back.

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The ClearPores system has a 3-step approach to treating acne both those that are already existing and those that are about to develop. This 3 step approach includes daily supplements, a deep facial wash, and a protection cream. However, the downside with this one is that it might be difficult to stick with the 3-steps consistently.

Best overall for the price

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Recommended
95 %

Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

This product is best at clearing out acne. It also works well in evening out the texture of your skin.

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This product contains one of the best acne-fighting ingredients which is Salicylic acid. It also contains green tea leaf extract that helps reduce redness of pimples.

The nice thing about this product is that although it is an exfoliant, it is non-abrasive. This means that you don’t have to worry much about irritating your skin.

However, the product gushes out from the bottle quickly. You might want to use some cotton pads to avoid using too much product.

Best for oily skin

CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser

Recommended
95 %

CeraVe Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser

This product is best for those who are suffering with acne due to excess sebum.

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This product is a cream cleanser that contains Benzoyl Peroxide. Its formula can gently remove excess oil and dirt on the skin and leave it feeling fresh and moisturized. It also contains paraben-free, fragrance-free, and non comedogenic so it’s okay for sensitive skin.  

This is a good product but the formula is a bit runny. This means that you might need to use more products to cover your face fully.

Best spot treatment

Mighty Patch The Original Spot Treatment Stickers

Recommended
93 %

Mighty Patch The Original Spot Treatment Stickers

This product is best for reducing the size of large pimples. It is also best for helping pimples dry quickly.

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The mighty patch absorbs pimple gunk thanks to its hydrocolloid content. It is clinically tested and drug-free so it does not irritate the skin.

However, the adhesive is quite strong. The yellow or white head on the pimple might pop as you remove it causing it to bleed.

Best for adults

Differin Gel Adapalene 0.1% Acne Treatment

Recommended
94 %

Differin Gel Adapalene 0.1% Acne Treatment

This product is best at reducing the redness and size of acne. It also helps moisturize the skin and make it look healthier.

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The Differin Gel Acne treatment can reduce the appearance of acne in 12 weeks. It contains 0.1% of Adapalene which is a type of retinoid. Not only does this help reduce the amount of acne but it will also help make your skin look more moisturized and healthy.

This product does work but you need some patients. It might take around 6 weeks and above before you see any type of improvements.

Best for teens

Proactiv 3 Step Acne Treatment

Recommended
90 %

Proactiv 3 Step Acne Treatment

This is best for dealing with acne caused by puberty. It also works for skin that needs deep exfoliation.

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This treatment kit includes a cleanser, toner, and repairing treatment. The cleanser has exfoliating features and contains 2.5% Benzoyl peroxide similar to the repairing treatment. Meanwhile, the toner contains glycolic acid.

Since this is a 3-step kit, the price of it is significantly more expensive than the other treatments on this list. But, that’s understandable, given that you are getting 3 products at once.

Best affordable

Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel

Recommended
95 %

Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Spot Gel

This product is best at shrinking the size of pimples. It also best at reducing redness.

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This acne spot treatment gel contains 10% Benzoyl peroxide. This high amount of Benzoyl peroxide makes pimples shrink in a matter of hours. You will also notice that the pimples are less red. However, the formula is quite strong so it’s not recommended for those with sensitive skin.

Best for sensitive skin

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Dermatological 3 Step Acne Treatment

Recommended
94 %

La Roche-Posay Effaclar Dermatological 3 Step Acne Treatment

This is best at drying out pimples and revitalizing it.

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This acne treatment promises to reduce 60% of your acne in just 10 days. It does live up to its promise and you might notice the result even after 24 hours of using it. The set includes the actual acne treatment, a sunscreen, and clay mask.

However, since it’s a set of products, the price is a little bit more expensive. Then again, you are getting several things at once.

Best for acne-prone skin

Neutralyze Exfoliating Pads Acne Treatment

Recommended
87 %

Neutralyze Exfoliating Pads Acne Treatment

This product is best at removing acne-causing factors on your skin.

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These pre-soaked face wipes are packed with acne-fighting ingredients such as Mandelic Acid and Salicylic Acid. It also uses Nitrogen boost skincare technology to help make your skin look healthy again.

These wipes are unscented and paraben-free. But, the exfoliating features of the pad are quite potent so it’s not recommended for those with very sensitive skin.

Best for dry skin

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Kit

Recommended
92 %

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Control Kit

This product is best at reducing acne size and redness.

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This acne treatment kit includes a cleanser, treatment, and hydrating gel moisturizer. Its common active ingredient is Benzoyl peroxide.

The cleanser and treatment addresses the size and redness of pimples. Meanwhile, the moisturizer helps bring back the freshness of your skin. However, take note that the moisturizer is not fragrance free so if you have sensitive skin, it might negatively react to it.

What to look for in a good acne treatment

Here are the factors to consider when looking for a good acne treatment:

Cause of your acne

These are the 4 main factors that cause acne:

  • Bacteria
  • Excess sebum production
  • Inflammation
  • Clogged hair follicles due to dead skin cells or oil

Acne can also be triggered and worsen due to the following:

  • Stress
  • Diet
  • Certain medications
  • Hormonal changes

To identify the cause of your acne, you need to pay attention to your lifestyle. You can start by checking your face towels and pillowcases if they are clean. If they are then check whether you have an oily skin type or if there are visibly clogged hair follicles. Most importantly, assess your lifestyle if you experience any triggers prior to the onset of the acne.

Skin type

Once you have figured out the cause of your acne, you also need to determine what your skin type is. Knowing this information will help you streamline the treatment that will work best for your skin.

Active ingredient

When looking for good acne treatment, it is important to know the active ingredients to look out for. You should also know how exactly these ingredients work so that you can assess whether it’s a good choice for your skin type.

Here are the ingredients to look out for in a good acne treatment:

  • Sulfur

Sulfur has the ability to remove the top layer of the skin. This can help unclog pores and reduce the appearance of whiteheads and blackheads. It can also help shrink and lessen the redness of pimples.

This ingredient is commonly found in acne spot treatments, face masks, and cleansers. If you have sensitive skin, this ingredient is fine because it’s a gentle antibacterial agent.

  • Retinol

Retinol is a retinoid which is a derivation of vitamin A. It can help improve skin-cell turnover rate by removing the top layer of dead skin and stimulating new collagen growth.

  • Alpha-hydroxy acids

AHAs are chemical exfoliants that remove dead skin cells and minimize the buildup of sebum. It is commonly found in peel exfoliant but it is not recommended for daily use since it is quite potent. Ideally, it should only be used once a week to avoid skin irritation.

  • Salicylic acid

This is a Beta-hydroxy Acid or BHA that can remove the top layer of dead skin. It deeply penetrates into the pore and unclog it to minimize the number of blackheads and pimples.

  • Benzoyl peroxide

Benzoyl Peroxide kills acne causing bacteria and helps reduce the number of pimples and blackheads.  However, take note that high concentration of this might cause skin drying or irritation.

Cost

Acne doesn’t go away overnight. You need to consistently use acne treatments until it is fully clear. This is why it’s important to find one that fits your budget and you can sustain for a long period. This is because if you stop midway, you will not get the full benefit of the treatments and you might need to start over again.

FAQ

What food can help improve acne?

One of the factors that trigger acne is diet. But, there are foods that can actually help minimize its appearance such as grass-fed beef, flaxseeds, fish, spinach, and many more.

How fast does acne clear up with treatment?

You might be able to notice some of the results of your acne treatment between 4 to 6 week of consistent usage. However, it also depends on the severity of your acne to begin with and how compatible you are with the treatment that you are using.

How to know if the acne treatment is working?

You will know if the treatment is working if the amount of blackhead and whitehead is lessened. It’s also an indicator that the treatment is working if the pimple size shrinks and it is less red. If you notice itchiness, it can also be a sign that the treatment is working and it is exfoliating the top layer of your skin, preparing it for new, healthier skin.

Final verdict

When choosing an acne treatment, make sure to listen to your skin so you know exactly what you need. There are plenty of treatments out there but those mentioned above are some of the best. By the end of the day, you should pick one that works well for you.

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