OTC Medications for Acne

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Treatments for Acne 4.7 out of 5 based on 266 votes.

You could keep acne under control with the help of a few effective over-the-counter medications.

Benzoyl Peroxide

    Benzoyl peroxide is an anti-bacterial agent that is available in the form of cream, gel, and wash. It is an effective way to treat acne and get over the problem of pimples.

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    Salicylic Acid

      Salicylic acid is known to be a highly effective acne treatment ingredient. it is one of the four FDA approved ingredients, that forms a part of many OTC acne treatments.

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        Sulfur has been used to treat acne for ages. It is found in various washes, soaps, and creams. Sulfur helps in peeling and drying of the skin and is also effective at breaking down existing blackheads and whiteheads. However, it may also promote the development of new ones by increasing cell adhesion. It is used to cure various types of acne without any specification.

        The side-effects include peeling and redness of skin. Also, it smells really bad and might discolor the skin. A little bit of irritation has also been reported in a few cases.


          Resorcinol is also used to treat acne among other skin conditions. It is sometimes combined with other acne medications, usually sulfur, and rarely taken alone. It helps in breaking down hard and rough skin. Therefore, it is good at breaking down existing blackheads and whiteheads. It is generally available in the form of cream to be used as a topical medicine. It is used to cure Acne Vulgaris in general and also sometimes used to heal Pomade Acne, Infantile acne, and Acne Conglobata.

          It is advisable to avoid other irritating cleansers, astringents or face washes along with resorcinol, as it itself is considerably irritating.


            Alcohol and acetone are two organic products for treating acne that are on the surface of the skin. If used individually they do not give you any side effects.

            Birth Control Pills

              Birth control pills are quite effective in treating acne because they are capable of changing hormone levels in the body, and reducing the acne causing effects of Testosterone.

              Click here to know more about Birth Control Pills.

              Comments (3)
              • Naomi  - salicylic... safe in pregnancy?
                is salicylic acid recommended for pregnant women with acne?
              • Sasha  - n/a
                salicylic acid is safe for pregnant women. It doesnt enter your blood stream when you put it on topically. Even if you were to ingest it, it would be like taking aspirin which is the more "natural" form of salicylic acid.
              • Rema
                It's best to consult your doctor. I won't risk my babies life or health to anything... not even acne.
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