Skip to main content

How many of us have searched, especially in our adolescence, for a pimple cream with immediate and almost miraculous effects?

Oh yes, because it is a blemish so common to many people, young people but also adults, that a valid solution capable of definitively combating the problem has always been sought. 

So today we too join the chorus of those looking for the best cream for pimples: fighting acne is the focus of today's article that will lead you to discover your skin, to understand why it appears, how to protect skin with acne and how to fight it through the use of suitable creams.

Pay attention to the ingredients of the products you choose: they are what make the difference and can lead to a good result or a worsening of your starting situation.

But let's not waste any more time: now it's time to find solutions and say goodbye to the pimples that make us dissatisfied with our face.

Why do pimples appear: here is the dilemma

Sebum that clogs the pores, bacteria that proliferate and cause infections: here is a summary of the process that leads to the appearance of those blemishes that we usually call with the term "pimples".

They can affect every part of the face, favoring the most delicate areas such as the forehead, nose and chin. Basically all the parts of the face that are most visible and that make it difficult for us to hide the defect when we are away from home.

A good foundation is not enough to solve the problem! In fact, it is necessary to act from the inside and fight the origin of the problem, first by identifying the type of pimple and then applying an anti-pimple cream externally on the affected part that can make the face shine naturally.

Also pay attention to the products used: in many cases it is they who stimulate the proliferation of infections that result in pimples! For this you need to know well the ingredients that optimize your beauty routine from those that can compromise it.

The first step in the fight against pimples is characterized by an analysis of the problem: what kind of pimples do you have?

And what kind of pimples do you have?

pimple cream

Let's borrow some terms of a more scientific nature to explain the types of pimples that can attack the face when we least expect it. 

Naturally, it remains the dermatologist's task to identify the precise form, but in principle, let's analyze together what he could tell us about our diagnosis: 

  • Acne. It is the most common disorder and affects all ages. It originates from excess sebum that clogs pores and leads to inflammation that we visually see in the form of pimples on the face.  
  • Comedones.  The classic whiteheads and blackheads that often disfigure our face are called comedones in medical terms. Here too the origin depends on the excess sebum which cannot come out due to the dead cells deposited in the skin.

Curiosity: why are some dots white and others black? It all depends on their position: if the blackhead is on the surface it will have a dark to black appearance, as it is more subject to exposure to external agents such as sun and smog. Instead if it is deep you will notice the so-called white head that some tend to crush causing even more damage, a longer recovery and even a few too many scars!

  • Seborrhea. This is the rarest case. It leads to more or less serious redness and must be treated promptly to avoid the appearance of scars which are then difficult to eliminate.  

In each of these cases the remedy is similar: the use of an ointment for inflamed pimples which may contain different substances depending on the problem that caused the appearance of the skin blemish. But there is another thing that must be analyzed before buying pimple cream: your skin type.

In fact, each skin has its own uniqueness and must be treated in a specific way to obtain valid results. That's why there isn't just one type of cream and that's why it's always advisable to consult your doctor before acting.

However, let's try to get to know each other better and understand which is the best cream for pimples based on the type of skin we have. 

Arm yourself with a mirror and look carefully at your face. If you identify the characteristic feature of your facial skin, you will always know what it needs, even when you have to choose a normal moisturizer or an anti-wrinkle cream.

Skin type and acne cream: how to choose accurately

If the skin of the face were "normal" for everyone, there would be no acne or redness problems to be treated. Unfortunately, many of us have to deal with these problems precisely because we have a skin type that can be oily, dry, sensitive or mixed.

If you don't know which case you fall into, we'll help you with this special description that we're going to make and that will lead you to understand your type of dermis in just a few steps. This will make it easier for you to choose the best pimple cream.

Oily skin

The hallmark of a defined oily skin is the lucidity that distinguishes it. 

The reason? The sebaceous glands produce more sebum than they should and this excess tends to clog pores more easily and facilitate the appearance of pimples. During adolescence it can be linked to hormones and changes taking place (for example the onset of the first period). Then, in adulthood, it is linked to events such as menopause or pregnancy.

Let's start from the assumption that oily skin doesn't take care of itself: that is, we can reduce lucidity and unclog pores, but only by choosing to act with a truly impactful, daily and constant skin routine.

Cleansers for washing the face, exfoliants and non-greasy moisturizers are what you need to take care of this type of face without attacking it or amplifying the problem. Obviously the formulations chosen must be delicate and contain non-alcoholic active ingredients which would tend to produce more sebum. 

Our advice? Favorite i natural soaps, excellent for counteracting excess fat and therefore also helping to fight the appearance of pimples. These should be used sparingly and without exaggerating: this is the only way to obtain a balance that will make the difference right from the first applications. 

Combination skin

Can it happen to see traits of different skin types on your face? Well yes and in these cases we are talking about combination skin. But don't worry: it's not synonymous with some rare skin condition! It is just a specific conformation of yours that is determined by the oil glands (i.e. those found on the forehead, nose and chin) which are more reactive than the others.

So it happens that in these areas the skin is oily and in others it tends to look dry. But this peculiarity is not frequent in adolescence, but occurs above all when the skin is more adult, starting from the age of 20. 

It is also affected by seasonal changes. In summer it is more evident, while in winter it tends to homogenize.

Remember that sebum production also takes place as a function of heat and humidity. The T-zone usually gets even more oily during the summer while the cheeks remain more normal. The dryness of the cheeks tends to disappear during the hot season.

What to do then? The solution is to choose creams for combination skin or focus only on the affected part and use dedicated ointments or lotions. So the important thing is to avoid applying the products all over the face as in the case of oily skin: otherwise the problem will be exacerbated and the most sensitive part will become more inflamed where the pimples will also appear.

Sensitive skin

And then there is sensitive skin which can also be associated with the other two categories described above. In a nutshell it means that it is more prone to redness, although it is not necessarily oily or combination, and requires a few more precautions before choosing the most suitable pimple cream.

Forbidden to use aggressive creams: here you really risk doing permanent damage even more difficult to cure. The active ingredients of a cream for sensitive skin, whether it is for pimples, wrinkles or a moisturizer, are essential: the formulation on the label must necessarily be taken into account.

And here the first problems arise: how do you know about the right active ingredients that your ideal cream must have?

Even if we are not expert doctors on the subject, we still want to give an overview of the most common active ingredients to understand which ones to avoid and which ones to prefer when choosing the acne cream to use.

The active ingredients of a pimple cream 

Here are the most important ones:

  • Peroxyde benzoyl: oxygenates the skin to eliminate bacteria and make it a hostile environment. Eliminate dead skin cells and unclog pores. 
  • Salicylic acid: bactericidal and exfoliating, eliminates dead cells and unclogs pores. It allows cell renewal and fights acne in a less invasive way.
  • Azelaic acid: acts as a powerful antibacterial and as an antioxidant. Fights acne and neutralizes free radicals.
  • Acid glycolic: Eliminates inflammation of the oil glands.
  • Witch hazel: restores balance in sebum production.
  • Sulfur: reduces the oily stretch of the skin.
  • Clay: Natural mineral that absorbs excess oil from the skin and helps eliminate impurities that clog pores.
  • Vitamin A acid (retinol or retinoic acid) indicated in the treatment of the most acute forms of acne.
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide): sebo-reducing but also exfoliating. Used in prevention treatments, it is also excellent for treating acne, blackheads and whiteheads. 

An excellent Niacinamide-based product that we want to recommend is this: The Ordinary Niacinamide.

A pimple miracle cream mainly contains the first two active ingredients mentioned. Between the two, perhaps the second is the one that is more successful, as it is more delicate on the skin, even very sensitive and capable of reducing inflammation related to acne.

Then there are other substances which, together with those just listed, can help improve the situation and hinder the appearance and proliferation of pimples, but also soothe, hydrate and nourish the skin of the face, such as aloe vera, arnica, calendula, chamomile, hyaluronic acid, Vitamin B5 (panthenol) and antioxidant plant extracts.

What is the best pimple cream?

pimple cream

In order to be able to identify the best cream for pimples, whether adolescent or characteristic of more adult skin, it is good to know even marginally the concentrations of each active ingredient mentioned.

Creams with Benzoyle Peroxide must have a concentration ranging from 2.5% to 10%. A higher dosage would be counterproductive because it causes irritation and slower healing. 

Instead, creams with salicylic acid must have a concentration ranging from 0.5% to 3%. In this case higher dosages have no side effects, again for the reason that we are talking about a more delicate active ingredient that does not attack the skin. At best, it might not have any significant effect.

Be careful when choosing: here's what to avoid!

There are active ingredients that are good for the skin and help fight acne, but there are several that should be carefully avoided, especially when you are predisposed or subject to redness. 

What's negative about them? Simple, they don't have benefits for the dermis but actually they can make the situation worse because they block the pores more. 

Or rather: in some situations they can also promote hydration or fight wrinkles, but in case of acne they shouldn't be applied at all.

Here's what they are: 

1) Mineral oils, paraffin, silicones: their power in creams is to soften the skin and release a feeling of lightness. But in order not to be aggressive or harmful, they must be contained in small concentrations. In case of acne, however, they are not indicated.

2) Alcohol: it is used to degrease the skin but if it is applied for a prolonged period or when one suffers from acne it can hurt the skin as it stimulates the production of sebum and therefore facilitates inflammation. 

If you read these words on the label and above all you find them in a pimple cream, go look for other products!

In particular, always remember that the most sensitive skin needs salicylic acid as the main ingredient. Instead, if you have combination or oily skin you can also opt for concentrations of benzoyle peroxide, more aggressive but still effective.

A few final tips to fight acne

Now that we know more about acne in all its facets, we have the means to be able to fight it with awareness.

So let's remember the highlights:

  1. Know your skin type.
  2. Find the best pimple cream for your skin type.
  3. Pay attention to the active ingredients contained in the formulation of the ointment.
  4. Apply it consistently only on the affected part.
  5. Wait until you begin to see the first results.

And above all, here are our recommendations:

  1. Don't improvise: always seek the opinion of your dermatologist.
  2. Do not pop pimples because you risk leaving scars on your face.
  3. Do not favor creams with more aggressive active ingredients just because of media messages that promise miraculous cures.
  4. Do not overdo the applications but follow the instructions.
  5. Don't forget to carry out your beauty routine every day, even if acne has not yet appeared. And use gentle products that won't further damage the skin.

And finally, what are the best creams to buy?

Lastly we wanted to add our own personal list of choices that we believe are the most valid among those on the market. 

Choosing a pimple cream we have seen requires attention and patience (you may not even find the right one on the first try because each skin reacts differently to its active ingredients).

But first let's answer the question: where do you buy pimple cream? Pharmacy and parapharmacy are the most accredited places. Those for medical use only cannot be found everywhere but only in these retailers, while creams that combine moisturizing and cleansing formulations are also more easily available online.

So let's also talk about the latter which act on several fronts and, above all, have a tested and approved effectiveness. 

Benzoyle Peroxide based products

You have certainly seen it in advertisements: Benzac cream, 5% or 10% depending on the intensity of the problem and your skin type. It is one of the best in the industry because it not only fights pimples but also blackheads, hydrating the skin and eliminating impurities.

Products based on salicylic acid

The range of products in the La Roche Posay line is specific for skin care. In its formulations to cleanse, degrease and tone it is an excellent ally against acne. 

Indeed, it includes several corrective treatments designed for acne-prone skin, which aim to purify the skin surface and correct imperfections using the delicate formula of salicylic acid.

Other products with a high degree of effectiveness

Organic ingredients, antibacterial action and suitable for all skin types, Le Pomiere pimple cream eliminates acne blemishes with delicate ingredients. Among its qualities is that of reducing the production of sebum and being able to be used in different skins, from the most sensitive to the mixed one.

Ducray Keracnyl cream is more specific for combination skin. It has a soothing, normalizing and purifying sebum action.

Pimplecare is a really powerful acne cream that aims to dry out the pimple from its first applications. Contains both salicylic and azelaic acid for a dual action and more effective that fights directly against bacteria. But in its formulation we also find Niacinamide which is excellent for counteracting the harmful effects that are reflected on the skin such as stress due to sunlight or smog.

How about? Have you found the right product for you? Surely now you know how to look for the best one for you and for the well-being of your face.