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Back to Basics: The Best Zit Zappers

I've never been one to have consistently gorgeous, glowy skin. It's always either a little bit dry, kind-of blotchy and almost always oily on the nose. Oh, and around that time of the month, you can bank on being able to play a fierce game of connect-the-dots. Having been a connoisseur of spot treatments since puberty, these are three of my go-to products that help pacify my pimples without causing dry patches or added aggravation. Which is your all-time favorite topical zit zapper?

Clearasil Tinted Acne Treatment Cream ($5.79) can be found at most drugstores. It doesn't sting or make you teary-eyed from the strong scent when you have to apply it to your face. The best part about using the tinted version is that it really helps cover up the red without having to pile on potentially bacteria-infested concealer.

Origins Spot Remover ($10) is a minty-smelling, transparent spot treatment gel that contains salicylic acid to dry out sebum and help kill old and new bacteria. It tingles just a touch upon contact, but it's nothing you can't handle. It stays clear and won't dry to an embarrassing flaky finish. Also, the tiny bottle is sure to last you through all twelve bouts of PMS per year, since all you need is a super-small amount.

For one more tried-and-true spot treatment that's slightly pricier,


YonKa Juvenil Purifying Concentrate for Problem Skin ($37.95) is the product I use when my skin is red and irritated all over. I use it if I have excessive swelling and sensitivity since it's so calming and gentle. It contains five essential oils that ward off bacteria, heal, sooth and restore your skin to a calm and balanced state. Also, it has a heavenly botanical smell and doesn't sting in the slightest.

Join The Conversation
satoriv satoriv 7 years
I meant totally :)
satoriv satoriv 7 years
I really adore Yonka's Juvenil, one of the best stuff I ever used but I have no idea how to find in here in the U.S. My mom brings it to me when she comes to see me. The price is totallt worth it.
lady-kate lady-kate 8 years
i'm in love with murad's line of acne products. there is the cleansing soap, an exfoliating gel, spot treatment, and moisturizing lotion. the exfoliating gel is perfect if you have a dry spot or you can tell a pimple is on its way. also, the 'skin perfecting' moisturizer is great for acne-prone skin. i can't use anything oily or greasy without seeing the results on my face. i don't work for murad, this has just been my favorite line so far. :)
i-am-awesomeness i-am-awesomeness 8 years
I use a product from Avon. I'm not sure if it's called blemish concealer.. I think it's overnight blemish remover(pretty sure). It comes in a white tube w/a blue cap, and it's under skincare solutions in their little catalogs. It dries out any zits. I put it on as soon as I see something coming on. It works great and it's pretty cheap too. Definitely give it a try!
Bella-Donna Bella-Donna 8 years
Besides a cortisone shot (or an ice pack or even toothpaste) what brings down the swelling and redness of a pimple (any stage, but all the while angry as hell)?? My zits like attention, they don't come and go unnoticed.. :|
Ellenora Ellenora 8 years
I swear by Neutrogena On the Spot cream. It stings a tad (especially after you properly pop that zit) but it looks 20x better in the morning. Clearasil doesn't react well to Differin gel which I use nightly to control my nasty acne.
magalaya magalaya 8 years
Mario Badescu's Drying Lotion by far! I use all their products and they're amazing.
nals33 nals33 8 years
My skin gets use to products fairly quickly.. So, every 3-4 months I'm switching between a few spot treatments. I'm currently using PTR's ABA/AHA Acne Clearing Gell and PTR's Spot Treatment. But, I really like Kinerase's spot treatment. It's very gentle and non-drying. I also like Murad's spot treatment. It works pretty well and quickly.
leeluvfashion leeluvfashion 8 years
Mario Badescu Dry Lotion is my go-to zit zapper.
bailaoragaditana bailaoragaditana 8 years
I'm a big fan of tea tree oil, but the most amazingly effective blemish-killer I've ever used was a combination of tea tree oil and benzoyl peroxide. (I don't remember the brand, but it came in a little tube, and was fabulous like nobody's business!)
Francoisehardly Francoisehardly 8 years
The neutrogena product mentioned has worked for me but it doesn't always. I have used certain oils as a spot treatment though and it actually dried out the acne overnight.
gooz1231 gooz1231 8 years
that neutrogena stuff latraf mentioned does nothing for me :( i havent tried out a lot of the other things that were mentioned, but i will get them and hope for the best.
kahribar kahribar 8 years
The Mario Badescu stuff is the best.
MsSwank MsSwank 9 years
I used to use Salicylic Acid products, whic are great but almost always cause my skin to be dry/flaky. The best treatment by far that I have found to date for blemishes is straight Tea Tree Oil. You can get it in the vitamin section of any store like Walmart, Target or Meijer. It is also the most cost effective - I purchased a 4 oz bottle made by Nature's Bounty from Walmart for less than $10. I use a tiny amount on a q-tip each night and apply to the blemish directly. It also doesn't dry out the skin or make your skin sting like when applying Salicylic Acid.
JaimeLeah526 JaimeLeah526 9 years
I use the Neutrogena stuff laratf mentioned. That stuff works great.
chiquita29 chiquita29 9 years
I used to use the Origins but gave it up because I couldn't stand the clove smell, it was so strong. Does it still smell like that?
0danielle0 0danielle0 9 years
Philosophy's "On a Clear Day" works best for me, especially if I resist picking. It makes scary-looking bumps go away overnight. :)
meganehoward meganehoward 9 years
I agree with Mario Badescu's Drying Lotion (I swear by their products). I used to used a similar one found in a drugstore called Bye Bye Blemnish and its around $10 instead of $20 for Mario and it works just as well... same sulfur idea.
AmberHoney AmberHoney 9 years
Bare Escentuals Blemish stuff works the best for me, no burning, no stinging, - pure product also.
emalove emalove 9 years
I like the Herbal Blemish Stick by Burt's Bees for the occasional zit...dries them right up and it's all-natural.
brittanyk brittanyk 9 years
The Neutrogena stuff that laratf mentioned works awesome on me. I've tried the Clearasil you mentioned above doesn't really work well on me, and it irritates my skin. I have to be really careful because my skin is irritated really easily.
theglossarie theglossarie 9 years
Neutrogena Rapid Clear Acne Eliminating Gel works in 8 hours...CRAZY. I swear by the stuff!
ashleygaidhlig ashleygaidhlig 9 years
I haven't tried YonKa's spot zapper, but I'd like to give that one a try. Origin's didn't do anything for me, but Mario Badescu's drying lotion works wonders.
shmuffin123 shmuffin123 9 years
I have to say, I didn't believe it until I tried it but if you use Lush's Fresh Farmacy as a spot treatment it works over night. Even the nastiest blemish will be beaten into submission overnight. It's great b/c the Fresh Farmacy is actually a soap that you can use on your face, to make the spot treatment just take an itty bitty piece of the soap off and make a paste with water, apply directly to blemish. Leave on overnight and the next day you will be amazed with the results. Also Lush Fresh Farmacy gets bonus points for not using any plastic packaging, the soap comes wrapped in recycled paper. Banish blemishes and be a friend to the earth at the same time. I don't work for Lush, but I love a lot of their products and just wanted to share.
beerchaser101 beerchaser101 9 years
Neutrogena On The Spot acne treatment works great!
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