Acne Treatments That Work
Acne Treatments: What Works Right Now continued...
Pore-cleansers are even more effective if you find two or three products you
like and rotate them every two to three months, Crutchfield says.
"You can actually build a resistance to treatment. Essentially, the acne
outsmarts the medicine and the breakout begins again, but rotating products can
often solve that problem," he says.
What about the pre-packaged acne treatment products often sold on
infomercials, the Internet and shopping channels? Day says these products
usually contain benzyl peroxide or salicylic acid or both - the same
ingredients in the acne medications sold in drugstores.
Crutchfield says that what gives these products an edge is the fact that
they come with a recommended regimen. This, he says, increases compliance,
which is a essential to the effectiveness of any product. "If they have any
'magic', that's it," Crutchfield says.
For occasional breakouts - or to keep skin clear after ending a regimen -
you may want to skip the topicals altogether and go high-tech with Zeno, an FDA
approved heated electronic "zit zapper." It uses the body's "heat shock
response" to kill bacteria and clear pimples.
While the company claims Zeno can clear each pimple with just a few 2
1/2-minute long treatments spread over 24 hours, Crutchfield says it does so
for only about 60-70% of patients - and it works best only on mild
"This is not for severe acne - it's good for maintenance once your acne is
under control or if you have an occasional pimple, but that's all," says
Acne Treatments: How Your Doctor Can Help
When over-the-counter acne treatments just don't seem to do the job, don't
despair - your local dermatologist has another bag of tricks that can help.
Often, the first line of prescription defense is antibiotics - both topical and
oral, and sometimes both.
"Antibiotics work fast, so they can bring about a quick result," says Day.
This, she says, is particularly true when used in conjunction with a benzyl
peroxide product and a good cleansing regimen.
One of the newest soldiers in the antibiotic army is Solodyn, an extended
release drug which offers a continuous but very low dose of the antibiotic
minocycline. Another is MinocinPac - the first prescription treatment package
that combines minocycline withskin calming topical products designed to work