Acne Spot Treatments That Actually Work

By Claudia Shannon / Research Scientist / Honayst

So, you've got a pimple. Pimples have the unique ability to pop up just before major life events—think wedding days and job interviews— but that doesn't mean you can't get rid of them on the fly. That's where spot treatments come in.

"Acne spot treatments are a great add-on to your skin care routine if you find yourself breaking out with an occasional pimple or blemish," explains Dr. Shereene Idriss, a New York-based dermatologist. "When applied overnight, they help dry out a pimple making them disappear faster."

As for key ingredients to look for when it comes to an acne spot treatment, Dr. Idriss suggests: "Benzoyl peroxide, an AHA, a BHA, or they are made up of a hydrocolloid material which helps dry up active lesions." Don't let your blemish get you down, shop the ten best acne spot treatments, below.

Acne Spot Treatment Oil-Free Treatment

Clean & Clear's Acne Spot Treatment has been known to reduce the size of pimples in just four hours. It's advised to use an overnight treatment to dissolve surface oil on the skin and reveal a clearer complexion.

Acne Pimple Master Patch

Cosrx's waterproof pimple patches extract impurities overnight while also reducing redness and irritation. These patches are also helpful in reducing the appearance of acne scarring.

On-The-Spot Acne Treatment

A drugstore staple. Neutrogena's On-The-Spot Acne Treatment contains 2.5% benzoyl peroxide gel, so it's less drying on skin compared to its counterparts.

EradiKate™ Acne Treatment

You know those pimples you can feel but can't see? The EradiKate Acne Treatment is the perfect product to stop a pesky pimples in its tracks. Star ingredients include antibacterial sulfur, exfoliating BHAs, and healing zinc.

Drying Lotion

The drying lotion contains three famous ingredients: salicylic acid to fight bacteria that causes acne, sulfur to cleanse the skin, and calamine to calm irritation. The product is very intense, so add it to your nighttime routine over a daytime spot treatment.

Super Spot Remover Acne Treatment Gel

Prepare for the tingle. You'll know the product is working overtime by the immediate reaction your skin will have. Don't worry, apple and cucumber extracts soothe the skin to prevent irritation and work overtime to fight hyperpigmentation.

Salicylic Acid 2% Solution

Pure Salicylic Acid is the perfect spot remover that works to exfoliate the skin and promote cell turnover. This product can be a bit strong so it's not recommend for those with sensitive skin types.

Dynaspot

This spot treatment not only targets blemishes at the first sign of breakouts, but also reduces the appearance of pores and calms irritated skin.

Acne Patches

Peach Slice Acne Patches are small, clear patches that can be worn day or night with or without makeup. The patch works like a sticker by absorbing impurities and protecting the treated area.

SpotLite Acne Treatment Device

Technically, this acne treatment device isn't a spot cream like the rest, but it does work to zap pimples. The red light reduces inflammation while the blue light works to kill bacteria that causes acne. You can expect to see noticeable results just after two weeks of use.