If there's one thing about acne we can all gree on, it's that...
Acne is an annoying and often persistent skin problem that plagues many people. It can be extremely irritating, both physically and psychologically, and it can be hard to manage. One common question people ask is, can acne be spot treated?
The answer, unfortunately, is not a simple one. Spot treating is when a person targets only one specific area where they’re experiencing pimple- and blemish-related problems. This kind of targeted approach can work in some cases, but it’s not always effective.
Let's dive deeper into this topic below!
Can you spot a treat? Well, it depends...
If the acne is mild and has just appeared, spot treating could be an effective solution. Use a gentle, non-drying cleanser on the area twice a day, and apply a thin layer of an acne-fighting topical cream, like salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, to the affected area.
This should help clear the issue up in a few days. In cases of mild acne, it's usually possible to spot and treat pimples by applying topical creams.
However, if the acne is more severe, spot treatment may not be enough.
What about cases of severe acne?
In these cases, you’ll likely need to use an entire acne treatment regimen, such as a cleanser, toner, moisturizer, and acne-fighting cream all in one routine.
This approach should be more effective since it treats the entire face and not just one area. Plus, it will be less drying to the skin since the entire face is being treated.
Although spot treating can be effective for mild cases of acne, it’s important to take extra cautionary measures if you're looking to reduce spot-treat severe forms of acne like a cyst for example.
In all honesty, over-the-counter creams and serums may not be enough for you to see any noticeable differences in the skin.
In cases of severe acne, while you may find some success with applying the same products you would in the case of mild acne, our #1 suggestion is to consult your dermatologist.
As much as we'd like to say "hey, try this product to spot-treat acne!", in the case of severe acne, this usually sets unrealistic standards and can lead to spending hundreds of dollars on wasted products.
When it comes to spot-treating, for cases of mild acne, it's more than reasonable to spot-treat by applying acne-fighting topical creams, like salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, to the affected area. For non-inflammatory acne, in particular, you should see the issue clear up in a matter of days.
However, when it comes to cases of severe acne, consulting your dermatologist is going to be your best bet, as you likely won't see immediate or powerful results by attempting to apply topical acne-fighting products.
So in short, yes, you can spot-treat acne, but there is most certainly a limit to the results you'll see depending on how severe your acne is.