The Best Acne Treatment for 2016
Nobody thinks popping pimples is a good idea. But it’s just so satisfying — mostly because you can actually see something happening. Contrary to the marketing promises of “blemish banishers” and “zit zappers,” immediate results are not the trademark of acne treatments, a frustrating truth to anyone suffering through a breakout. And while pimples are personal (your stress-induced spots will look and act differently than your best friend’s breakout), the best acne treatments will include a regimen of products to hit all of acne’s root causes. That’s why our team spent conducted an extensive study of the 42 most popular acne treatments on the market to determine which ones are effectively designed to unclog pores, heal breakouts, and soothe redness.
How We Found the Best Acne Treatment
We looked for kits with at least two active ingredients proven to fight acne, like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or glycolic acid.
We cut anything with simple alcohol, which can irritate your skin and actually make you more susceptible to breakouts, enlarged pores, and inflammation.
We eliminated kits with benzoyl peroxide spot treatments — while effective, benzoyl peroxide can be irritating to the skin in high concentrations.
Our Top Picks for the Best Acne Treatment
Best Overall: Paula’s Choice Clear Regular Strength System — this three-step system offered the most balanced approach to fighting acne while also protecting skin.
Runner Up: Proactiv+ 3-Step Program — Proactiv offers a number of kits, but this one offers a combo of benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid will provide a solid one-two punch.
Honorable Mention: Dermalogica Clear Start Kit — This five-piece set is gorgeous and effective, but with a pretty major downside —the only set available is travel sized, and at a pretty high price tag.
What Now? Take Action
Assess your situation. Are your blemishes a majority of red pimples or white bumps? For the former, tailor your regimen to a benzoyl peroxide-heavy ingredients list, like Proactiv+ 3-Step System. For the latter, Paula’s Choice will be a better place to start.
Check the labels on your makeup. Acne treatments won’t be as effective if you cake one pore-clogging cosmetics. Look for labels that state “non-comedogenic” for foundations and concealers.
Consult a professional. If your acne is severe, painful, or refusing to get lost, you may just be beyond what an over-the-counter treatment can do.
The Bottom Line
We recommend the above products based on our criteria and research, but you may have to experiment to find out what works best for your breakouts. We recommend trying something new if you don’t see improvement after six weeks.
This article originally appeared on Reviews.com, for the full version visit: http://www.reviews.com/acne-treatment/