Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier
WebMD

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started
My Medicine
WebMD

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion
    WebMD

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community
    WebMD

    Community

    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Acne Health Center

Font Size
A
A
A

Acne: Tips for Keeping It Under Control - Topic Overview

You can help prevent acne from getting worse by the way you wash your face:

  • Gently wash your face once or twice a day with warm water and a mild soap or acne wash.
  • Use gentle, circling motions rather than scrubbing your face.
  • Always completely rinse your skin after you wash it, and gently pat it dry. Avoid rubbing your skin.
  • If your face feels dry after washing it, use a moisturizing lotion. Look for skin care products that say "noncomedogenic" on the label.

Other tips include the following:

Recommended Related to Acne

You Asked! Expert A's to Your Beauty Q's: Aging Skin and Acne

Kelley Ellis, a structural engineer in Sugar Land, Texas, wanted suggestions for an easy skin care regimen that battles aging skin and breakouts. Read on to learn what Mary Ruth Buchness, MD (a medical, surgical, and cosmetic dermatologist in New York City) and Laurie Polis, MD (director of Dermatologic Services at the SoHo Skin and Laser Dermatology Group, also in Manhattan) had to say about this not-so-unusual dilemma. Q: I'm in my 30s and want to use anti-aging products. I also need to treat...

Read the You Asked! Expert A's to Your Beauty Q's: Aging Skin and Acne article > >

  • Shower as soon as you can after any activity that causes heavy sweating, especially sports.
  • Try keeping your hair off your face. Having hair hanging in your face can cause a breakout. Washing your hair every day may help.
  • Try not to scrub or pick at your pimples. This can make them worse and can cause scars.

For mild acne

Mild acne, with a few pimples that clear up on their own, may not need any medical treatment. Try an acne cream with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. These work best when used just the way the label says.

It can take time to get acne under control. But if you haven't had good results with nonprescription products after trying them for 3 months, see your doctor. A prescription gel or skin cream may be all you need.

For moderate or severe acne

Moderate acne can mean more pimples or skin that always has breakouts. Severe acne can mean hundreds of pimples that cover the face, neck, chest, and back, or bigger, solid red lumps that are painful (cysts). For moderate or severe acne, call your doctor. There are medical treatments that can help get acne under control. And getting treatment early may prevent acne from getting worse or from causing scars.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: 2/, 014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
1
Next Article:

Acne: Tips for Keeping It Under Control Topics

Today on WebMD

Girl with acne
See if you know how to control your acne.
happy woman with clear skin
Triggers and treatments for blackheads, whiteheads, and cystic acne.
 
Bride with acne
Dos and don’ts for hiding breakouts.
close-up of a young man soaping his face
Why adults get acne and how to treat it.
 
Doctors
Article
Boy cleaning acne face
Quiz
 
HPV Vaccine Future
Video
beauty cream
Article
 
Bride with acne
Slideshow
Woman applying mineral makeup
Slideshow
 
69x75_mineral_makeup.jpg
Video
Arrows pointing on teen girl blemish
Quiz
 

WebMD Special Sections