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The Best Anti-Acne Products to Try, According to Dermatologists

No prescription needed!
The Best Anti-Acne Products to Try, According to Dermatologists
IMAGE Brands
ILLUSTRATOR Igi Talao
No prescription needed!

Going to the dermatologist is the best way to find the most effective acne treatment for you. But with COVID-19 restrictions and high consultation fees, not all of us have the privilege of setting a dermatologist appointment to seek skincare advice for our skin troubles. Fortunately, there are plenty of licensed dermatologists online who are more than eager to suggest some over-the-counter products to help address our common skincare woes.

Here are eight dermatologist-recommended products to add to your anti-acne regimen:

1. Cerave Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser

Dr. Jenny Liu claims that this drugstore cleanser is great for treating acne because it contains an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredient called benzoyl peroxide. Studies have shown that wash-off benzoyl peroxide treatments like this are less irritating but still very effective, making this cleanser a good option for acne-prone skincare newbies who haven't tried the ingredient before. 

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Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser, P1200, CERAVE, Beautymnl

2. COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch

In her Top 10 Acne Mistakes video, Dr. Sherenee Idriss talks about why you shouldn't be picking your blemishes. She says that although it's satisfying sometimes, popping pimples can ultimately lead to inflammation, infection, residual scarring, and even more breakouts in the future. With this, she explains that you can refrain from touching your zits by spot treating these bumps with hydrocolloid patches or pimple patches. Besides preventing you from touching the swollen area, these patches will also help draw out the contents of your pimples.

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Acne Pimple Master Patch, P200, COSRX, Lazada

3. The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

Also known as Doctorly on YouTube, Dr. Muneeb Shah and Dr. Luke Josiah Maxfield suggest using acne treatments with antibacterial acids like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, and azelaic acid. According to them, these ingredients unblock clogged pores, control inflamed areas, and break down excess sebum on your skin’s surface. One inexpensive product they suggest is The Ordinary's Azelaic Suspension 10%, a lightweight cream that improves skin texture and reduces the appearance of pimples.

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Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%, P800, THE ORDINARY, Beautymnl

4. La Roche-Posay Effaclar Serum

Dr. Dray Suarez is arguably the most popular dermatologist on YouTube, so we definitely trust her advice to use this serum for treating acne. She claims that this serum is effective but non-drying because it contains LHA, a less irritating form of salicylic acid. She further explains that LHA controls inflammation and clogged pores by gently exfoliating your skin and reducing the appearance of hyperpigmentation.

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Effaclar Serum, P2494, LA ROCHE-POSAY, Zalora

5. Paula's Choice 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

Salicylic acid is already known to be a superstar ingredient for fighting acne, and Dr. Maren Locke confirms it’s the best anti-acne treatment to use because it’s oil-soluble. This means salicylic acid is able to penetrate your oil glands to unclog acne-causing debris without that unpleasant stinging sensation. One specific product she recommends is this fragrance-free and non-irritating exfoliator from Paula's Choice, which contains 2% salicylic acid to decongest and brighten your skin.

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2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant, P2345, PAULA'S CHOICE, Beautymnl

6. Kate Somerville EradiKate Daily Foaming Cleanser

As someone who is oily-skinned and acne-prone herself, Dr. Anjali Mahto uses this foaming cleanser as the second step of her skincare routine. She says that a lot of acne treatments tend to be too drying and overpowering, but this product effectively cleanses your skin in a gentle way. She also notes that this product contains sulfur, a great ingredient for fighting blemishes and absorbing excess oil.

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EradiKate Daily Foaming Cleanser, P2300, KATE SOMERVILLE, Sephora.ph

7. Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser

We’ve all been guilty of overloading our skin with too many products at once. Thankfully, there are dermatologists like Dr. Daniel Sugai to remind us that drying anti-acne treatments can cause our oil glands to overcompensate and produce even more sebum in the long run. Likewise, he recommends alternating your salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide cleansers with a mild and fuss-free cleanser like the Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser. This rotation will ensure that you won’t be putting your skin at risk of overexfoliation, increased irritation, and hypersensitivity.

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Gentle Skin Cleanser, P799, CETAPHIL, Lazada

8. Belo Essentials AcnePro Pimple Gel

Filipino dermatologist Dr. Vicki Belo recommends this acne spot treatment from her very own budget-friendly skincare brand. She explains that this anti-blemish gel, along with the other products in the AcnePro line, contain purified bee venom to treat inflammation, dry up spots, and even lighten hyperpigmentation. This antibacterial formulation is also non-comedogenic, fragrance-free, and hypoallergenic!

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AcnePro Pimple Gel, P190, BELO ESSENTIALS, Shopee

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