Can Toothpaste Get Rid of Pimples Overnight?

Medically Reviewed on 12/9/2021
how do you get rid of pimples overnight?
The American Academy of Dermatology does not recommend using toothpaste on pimples because it may result in skin damage in the long run.

The American Academy of Dermatology does not recommend using toothpaste on pimples because it can damage the biological barrier of the skin. Though it may be effective in the short term, the use of toothpaste may result in skin damage in the long run.

Toothpaste can cause pimples to dry out because it contains:

  • Calcium carbonate
    • Calcium carbonate helps dry out pimples by absorbing excess oil on the pimples.
    • This causes them to shrink, diminish, and, eventually, disappear, as well as unclogs pores and helps the skin return to its normal state.
    • Pimples dry up and shrivel over time, forming dead skin tissues that gradually defoliate and the pimple disappears.
  • Triclosan
    • A vital yet common ingredient with many advantages, such as being highly effective at killing germs.
    • It may, however, cause pigmentation in people with sensitive skin.
  • Methanol
    • Pimples become more painful and swollen because of the bacteria in them. 
    • Toothpaste contains trace amounts of methanol, which help cool and provide relief from swollen pimples and other blemishes.
    • Methanol has been shown in studies to reduce swelling and improve cold-receptor activity.
  • Silica
    • Soothes Inflammation
    • Heals damaged skin
    • Speeds up healing of the damaged skin
  • Baking soda
    • Toothpaste contains baking soda, which has cleansing and absorbent properties that help draw dirt and impurities from the pores.
    • In this manner, it destroys the pimples and prevents the formation of new pimples.

While other ingredients in toothpaste, such as hydrogen peroxide and essential oils, may help shrink the pimple, this home remedy for breakouts is not worth the risk. It may irritate and damage the skin as a side effect.

Toothpaste as a home remedy is in no way superior to over-the-counter medications, such as:

Natural at-home remedies associated with clearing up acne when applied topically include:

  • Honey
  • Tea tree oil
  • Pure aloe
  • Fresh mint
  • Citrus fruits
  • Apple cider vinegar

How can I cure my acne or pimple problems?

Benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid are two well-known over-the-counter acne treatments. They can provide clearer skin when used together consistently.

A diet rich in antioxidants, complex carbs, and polyphenols helps maintain healthy skin.

  • Salicylic acid
    • This ingredient is known to aid in the removal of dead skin cells from the skin's surface (which can contribute to clogged pores).
    • Salicylic acid can be found in a variety of skincare products, including cleansers, scrubs, creams, and cleansing wipes.
  • Benzoyl peroxide
    • Benzoyl peroxide helps kill the bacteria that can cause acne.
    • Benzoyl peroxide is commonly found in a variety of products, such as face washes, creams, gels, and premoistened clothes.

Acne is a skin condition that can affect any skin type, so how a person with dry skin treats their acne will differ from how someone with very oily skin treats their acne. It is critical to consider a person's skin type and the condition of their skin to begin with. This will result in a better outcome.

Other best acne ingredients to consider when choosing skincare products are:

  • Alpha hydroxy acid (AHA)
    • Acne may be prevented by keeping pores clear and associated hyperpigmentation treated by removing dead skin cells.
    • Typically found in cleansers, toners, and serums.
  • Beta hydroxy acid (BHA)
    • Usually used in cleansers and toners.
    • Can reduce acne by reducing oil and inflammation.
  • Vitamin C
    • Usually used in serums.
    • Can manage inflammation and pigmentation.
  • Niacinamide
    • Can regulate oil production and reduce acne-related inflammation and redness and the appearance of pores.
    • Usually used in serums and lotions.
  • Retinoids
    • May treat inflammatory acne and hyperpigmentation and improve texture.
    • Avoid mixing with AHA, BHA, or benzoyl peroxide.
    • Commonly used in serums and moisturizers.
  • Sulfur
    • May treat whiteheads and blackheads, which can prevent acne from forming.
    • Used in spot treatments and cleansers.
  • Zinc
    • Soothes inflammatory acne and suppresses sebum production.
    • Used in lotions and spot treatments.


Skin Health: How to Get Clear Skin See Slideshow

6 ways to get rid of severe acne scars

The most effective treatments to get rid of severe acne scars are:

  1. Chemical peeling
    • They use strong chemicals (acids) to remove the outer layer of skin and reduce the appearance of scars.
    • Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) and glycolic acid are involved.
  2. Botox injections
    • Acne scars with puckered skin around them respond well to these treatments.
    • Botulinum toxin (Botox) injections can improve the appearance of the skin by relaxing this puckered area.
  3. Punch excision
    • This procedure entails surgically removing an acne scar with a punch that is the same size as the scar.
  4. Dermabrasion
    • A rapidly rotating wire brush or wheel with a rough surface is used to remove the damaged top layer of skin during the procedure.
    • To reduce the appearance of deeper scars, the procedure exfoliates the top layer of the skin deeply.
  5. Microneedling
    • It punctures the skin on the scars' surface with a small, handheld pen or a needle-studded roller.
    • As the punctured skin heals, it produces collagen, which smoothens out the skin and reduces the visibility of acne scars.
  6. Laser resurfacing
    • To reduce the appearance of scars, the procedure involves removing the top layer of skin to reveal the underlying younger skin cells.
    • It makes the skin's surface more even.

Discuss with a dermatologist the best-suited treatment for acne scars.

Medically Reviewed on 12/9/2021
Image Source: iStock Images

Cleveland Clinic. A Dermatologist’s Advice on How to Get Rid of a Pimple — Stat!

Gozali MV, Zhou B. Effective treatments of atrophic acne scars. J Clin Aesthet Dermatol. 2015;8(5):33-40.

Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital. Does Putting Toothpaste on a Pimple Make It Go Away?

Titus S, Hodge J. Diagnosis and Treatment of Acne. Am Fam Physician. 2012 Oct 15;86(8):734-740.