Acne (Pimples) - Home Remedies

Not ready to share? Read other Patient Comments

Please share some home remedies to treat acne. How do you treat or cover up a pimple before a special occasion?

Share your story with others:

MedicineNet appreciates your comment. Your comment may be displayed on the site and will always be published anonymously.Patient Comments FAQs

Enter your Comment

Tell us a bit about your background to make your comments more useful to other MedicineNet users. (Optional)

Screen Name: *

Gender of Patient: Male Female

Age Range of Patient:

I am a: Patient Caregiver


* Screen Name will appear next to the published comment. Please do not include your full name or email address.

By submitting your comment, and other materials (collectively referred to as a "Submission") to MedicineNet, you grant MedicineNet permission to use, copy, transmit, publish, display, edit and modify your Submission in connection with its Web site. MedicineNet will not pay you for your Submission. You represent that you have all rights necessary for MedicineNet to use your Submission as set forth above.

Please keep these guidelines in mind when writing your comment:

  • Please make sure you address the question asked.
  • Due to the overwhelming number of comments received, not all comments will be published.
  • When selecting comments to publish, our staff will choose those that are educational and complement the topic. Please try to stay on topic.
  • Your comment may be edited. We would typically edit comments to make them clearer and more readable. We will remove personal information such as last names, email and web addresses, and other potentially harmful information.
  • We will not notify you if your comment has been published. We suggest that you check back on the topic article regularly.
  • We do not provide medical or healthcare advice, treatment, or diagnosis.

Thank you for participating!


I have read and agree to abide by the MedicineNet Terms and Conditions and the MedicineNet Privacy Policy (required).

To prevent our systems from spam, please complete the following prior to submitting your comment.

Please select the black triangle:

What can you do about acne on your own?

Think back to the three basic causes of acne and you can understand why the focus of both home treatment and prescription therapy is to (1) unclog pores, (2) reduce bacteria, and (3) minimize oil. But first a word about...

Lifestyle: Moderation and regularity are good things, but not everyone can sleep eight hours, eat three good meals, and drink eight glasses of water a day. You can, however, still control your acne even if your routine is frantic and unpredictable. Probably the most useful lifestyle changes you can make are to never to pick or squeeze pimples. Playing with or popping pimples, no matter how careful and clean you are, nearly always makes bumps stay redder and bumpier longer. People often refer to redness as "scarring," but fortunately it usually isn't in the permanent sense. It's just a mark that takes months to fade if left entirely alone.

Open the pores

Cleansing and skin care: Despite what you read in popular style and fashion magazines, there is no magic product or regimen that is right for every person and situation.

  • Mild cleansers: Washing once or twice a day with a mild cleansing bar or liquid (for example, Dove, Neutrogena, Basis, Purpose, and Cetaphil are all inexpensive and popular) will keep the skin clean and minimize sensitivity and irritation.
  • Exfoliating cleansers and masks: A variety of mild scrubs, exfoliants, and masks can be used. These products may contain salicylic acid in a concentration that makes it a very mild peeling agent. These products remove the outer layer of the skin and thus open pores. Products containing glycolic or alpha hydroxy acids are also gentle skin exfoliants.
  • Retinol: Not to be confused with the prescription medication Retin-A, this derivative of vitamin A can help promote skin peeling.

Kill the bacteria

  • Antibacterial cleansers: The most popular ingredient in over-the-counter antibacterial cleansers is benzoyl peroxide.
  • Topical (external) applications: These products come in the form of gels, creams, and lotions, which are applied to the affected area. The active ingredients that kill surface bacteria include benzoyl peroxide, sulfur, and resorcinol. Some brands promoted on the Internet and cable TV (such as ProActiv) are much more costly than identical and sometimes more potent products you can buy in the drugstore.

Benzoyl peroxide causes red and scaly skin irritation in a small number of people, which goes away as soon as you stop using the product. Keep in mind that benzoyl peroxide is a bleach, so do not let products containing benzoyl peroxide come into contact with fabrics, leaving unsightly white spots on colored clothes, shirts, towels, and carpets.

Reduce the oil

You cannot stop your oil glands from producing oil (unless you mess with your hormones or metabolism in ways you shouldn't). Even isotretinoin (Accutane, see below) only slows down oil glands for a while; they come back to life later. What you can do is to get rid of oil on the surface of the skin and reduce the embarrassing shine.

  • Use a gentle astringent/toner to wipe away oil. (There are many brands available in pharmacies, as well as from manufacturers of cosmetic lines.)
  • Products containing glycolic acid or one of the other alpha hydroxy acids are also mildly helpful in clearing the skin by causing the superficial layer of the skin to peel (exfoliate).
  • Masks containing sulfur and other ingredients draw out facial oil.
  • Antibacterial pads containing benzoyl peroxide have the additional benefit of helping you wipe away oil.
Return to Acne (Pimples)

See what others are saying

Comment from: Dem kartel, 13-18 Male (Caregiver) Published: February 20

My son had acne for over 3years, I used lemon to wash his face in the morning and it has helped.

Was this comment helpful?Yes

Stay Informed!

Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox FREE!