Banish Breakouts With 15 Best Acne Products In 2021

by Chaitra Krishnan
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Nothing’s scarier than waking up to a massive zit right where everyone can notice it— UGH! And it’s no secret that we all wait for the day when the universe can decode why our skin breakouts right before those special moments! However, until that happens, let’s put our trust in the best acne products. Keeping those stubborn blackheads at bay and helping your skin stay clean and clear, these products are no less than BFFs for acne-prone users out there. So, if blackheads and breakouts are making you cancel out from social events, we say you try and include these acne treatment products in your skincare routine right away. Yep, let’s banish them once and for all! Now, are you ready to take control? Check out our list of the 15 best acne products of 2021 for you.

Read on to know more!

TOP 10 PRODUCTS
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Avarelle Acne Cover Patch
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Differin Gel Acne Treatment
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Mario Badescu Drying Lotion
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New York Biology Dead Sea Mud Mask
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EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen- SPF 46
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Clean & Clear Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub
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Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Cleanser
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PanOxyl Acne Foaming Wash
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SKINKISSED Face Serum
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DRMTLGY 24 Hour Acne Serum
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15 Best Acne Products To Treat Blackheads, Whiteheads, And Pimples!

1. Avarelle Acne Cover Patch

Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them show! Sounds familiar? Well, that’s the best way to experience these acne cover patches by Avarelle. A must-try for those who can’t keep from picking on the zits, these powerful adhesive patches are formulated to diminish the appearance of acne and pimples overnight. And if you are lucky, they may even eliminate all the gunk! Also, these premium hydrocolloid stickers contain cica, calendula oil, and tea tree oil. Stick on to get rid of pimples, ASAP!

Pros:

  • Ultra-thin patches
  • Drug-free and all-natural
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Blends in with all skin shades
  • Easy-peel and travel-friendly
  • Ideal acne product for sensitive skin and other skin types
  • Suitable for applying during the day and night

Cons:

  • Pricey

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2. Differin Gel Acne Treatment

Developed by dermatologists and claiming to clear acne from the roots, this acne treatment ensures positive results in 12 weeks! And by results, we mean no more zit surprises after consistent use. This water-based formula penetrates deep into pores, soothes inflammation, improves the skin texture, and prevents new acne from forming. Besides this, it’s ideal to use once a day and contains Adapalene, which is top-notch retinol to fight acne. Try it!

Pros:

  • FDA-approved
  • Corrects skin tone
  • Stimulates cell turnover
  • Alcohol-free and fragrance-free
  • Non-comedogenic and oil-free

Cons:

  • Not suitable for sensitive skin

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3. Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

Let those pesky whiteheads dry while you enjoy your goodnight’s sleep! Yep, rather than pondering over how to make your skin look clearer the next day, let Mario Badescu Drying Lotion do the job for you. With salicylic acid, zinc oxide, calamine, and sulfur, the formula dries up the blemishes, shed the dead skin cells, absorbs excess oil, and exfoliates the pores too. And the best takeaway— it’s an award-winning on-the-spot solution! Need we say more?

Pros:

  • Pulls out impurities
  • Soothes the affected areas
  • Vegan, cruelty-free, and gluten-free
  • Phthalate-free, paraben-free, and sulfate-free
  • Suitable to apply on face, neck, chest, and back regions

Cons:

  • Pricey

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4. New York Biology Dead Sea Mud Mask

This mask may not have the most satisfying color, but its effects will make you want to apply it every day! Gentle, safe, and skin-softening, it deep-cleans pores with pure dead sea mud and sheds dead skin cells, oil build-ups, and impurities effortlessly. And that’s not all; the formula also contains aloe vera, vitamin E, sunflower seed, jojoba, and calendula oils to stimulate blood circulation and fight acne. A combo that you and your skin will love— do not skip it!

Pros:

  • Mineral-infused formula
  • Refines the skin’s texture
  • Stimulates skin renewal
  • Purifies and cleanses intensely
  • Prevents breakouts and reduces pores
  • Cruelty-free, paraben-free, sulfate-free, and alcohol-free
  • Suitable for all skin types

Cons:

  • Messy
  • May stain clothes

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5. EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen- SPF 46

Is your sunscreen anti-acne? Because EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen is! Powered with SPF 46, it will protect your skin from harmful UVA/UVB/IR damages and prevent breakouts too. So, if your skin is acne-prone or dealing with hyperpigmentation or rosacea, this broad-spectrum sunscreen will be ideal. Its formula contains zinc oxide, hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, and lactic acid. Are you worried about the white cast? Don’t be for the infused zinc oxide is 9.0% transparent! Try it!

Pros:

  • Lightweight formula
  • Dermatologist-recommended
  • Leaves a silky and sheer finish
  • Soothing and prevents sunburns
  • Oil-free, non-comedogenic, and non-greasy
  • Paraben-free and fragrance-free
  • Suitable for sensitive skin types
  • Safe to use daily and after every 2 hours of sun exposure

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Not waterproof

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6. Clean & Clear Deep Action Exfoliating Scrub

Nothing feels more refreshing than a good scrub! If you haven’t tried an exfoliating scrub before, then this oil-free and deep-action scrub by Clean & Clear can be your first. Watch it refresh your skin like you’ve stepped out of the best shower ever. This intense exfoliator claims to eliminate the dirt, impurities, and oil build-ups from the pores to leave a superior, clean feeling. Also, it leaves no ground for acne or zits to form. Still, want to give it a miss?

Pros:

  • Deep-cleansing scrub
  • Gentle and soothing
  • Provides a tingling sensation
  • Leaves skin smooth, soft, and healthy-looking
  • Suitable for daily use

Cons:

  • Intense fragrance

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7. Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Cleanser

This powerful cleanser with 10% benzoyl peroxide (acne killer!) will target the acne head-on without irritating your skin. Are you dealing with excess greasiness too? If yes, then you will love this product even more because it claims to control sebum production for several hours! All in all, it fights acne and reduces their appearances in just 1 day and also makes your skin appear healthy, fresh, and shine-free. Why miss it?

Pros:

  • Reduces redness
  • Prevents future acne
  • Rich and creamy texture
  • Non-comedogenic, non-drying, and oil-free
  • Gentle and safe to use twice a day

Cons:

  • Sensitive skin may feel slightly itchy

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8. PanOxyl Acne Foaming Wash

Strong enough to overpower blackheads and zits, this benzoyl peroxide-infused cleanser is a must-try for those with severe acne woes. With a patent-pending acne control formula that offers maximum strength, the antibacterial ingredient eliminates acne-causing bacteria and deep-cleans the pores intensely. Want more? It prevents future breakouts as well! Acne haters, switch to PanOxyl now.

Pros:

  • Foaming face wash
  • Unclogs pores
  • Pulls out dirt and impurities
  • Dermatologist-recommended
  • Suitable to use on face, back, and chest

Cons:

  • Slightly drying

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9. SKINKISSED Face Serum

This face serum by SKINKISSED will make you and your squad wow at your kissable glow! Yep, its traditional, natural, and pro-beauty ingredients work towards nourishing, hydrating and rejuvenating skin effortlessly with every use. So, all those stubborn zits and acne scars, consider them taken care of! Besides this, SkinKissed Face Serum has anti-aging benefits too. Bask in, ladies!

Pros:

  • Improves complexion
  • Leaves skin tighter and brighter
  • Stimulates skin renewal and healing
  • Contains hyaluronic acid to treat dryness
  • Vegan and cruelty-free
  • Non-comedogenic and oil-free
  • Suitable for dry, mature, and sensitive skin

Cons:

  • Not suitable for severe acne problem

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10. DRMTLGY 24 Hour Acne Serum

Are breakouts making you lose confidence? This solution might be the redeemer you are looking for! Powered to battle out the worst whiteheads, pimples, and blackheads within 24 hours, it claims to do it without drying your skin. Packed with two powerful ingredients— glycolic acid and benzoyl peroxide, the blend not only targets acne and pimples but deep-cleans pores and eliminates chances of future breakouts too. Yep, tough on those unwanted bacteria living rent-free on your skin, this one reduces scars, inflammation, and redness as well. Try it!

Pros:

  • Boosts cell turnover
  • Improves complexion
  • Prevents oil build ups by 85%
  • Combats cystic acne and hormonal breakouts
  • Suitable to use on face, chest, and back
  • Cruelty-free, sulfate-free, gluten-free, alcohol-free, and paraben-free
  • Ideal for normal, dry, combination, and oily skin

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • May be strong for sensitive skin

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11. Acne Treatment Acne Face Cream

How about countering acne with this creamy bliss? Though pampering, it’s powerful enough to tackle breakouts, reduce cystic acne, and pimples within 24 hours! Yep, all thanks to its natural formula that contains tea tree oil, apple cider vinegar, aloe vera, and Cleanmax TM to curate a powerful acne treatment for your skin. From eliminating inflammation and excess sebum to stimulating cell turnover, this Acne Face Cream is a must-try, we think!

Pros:

  • Soothing cream
  • Fast-acting and safe
  • Prevents acne scarring and improves complexion
  • Free from artificial fragrances, colors, and GMOs

Cons:

  • May leave a shiny film on the skin

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12. Paula’s Choice Clear Acne Body Spray

Be acne-free and flaunt your clear skin confidently with this body spray! Paula Choice Clear Acne Body Spray is gentle enough to use daily and is formulated to combat all types of breakouts, bumps, and redness too. Infused with salicylic acid, barberry extract, and licorice extract, this body liquid spray ensures maximum strength to exfoliate dead skin cells, refine pores and reduce age lines as well. So, if you are or know anyone who’s not a fan of creams and serums, this body spray will be the ultimate savior!

Pros:

  • Combats cystic acne
  • Prevents future breakouts
  • Corrects skin tone and bumpy texture
  • Ensures clean, smooth, and clearer skin
  • Gentle, non-abrasive and fast-acting
  • Cruelty-free, paraben-free, silicone-free, and alcohol-free
  • Suitable for oily, dry, normal, acne-prone, and combination skin

Cons:

  • Not suitable if you are sensitive to smell

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13. La Roche-Posay Effaclar Duo Dual Action Acne Treatment

Are you battling the worst kind of breakout? Try a dose of this dual-action acne treatment ASAP! Infused with 5.5% benzoyl peroxide and LHA (lipo-hydroxy acid), it can be used as an acne spot treatment or as an all-over treatment too. Versatile and with micro-exfoliating power, it not only kills acne-causing bacteria but also unclogs pores and pulls out grease and debris. A must-try to get rid of blackheads, whiteheads, and blemishes, it absorbs quickly into the skin and leaves no greasiness or residue behind too. Try it!

Pros:

  • Leaves skin smooth and enhanced
  • Allergy and dermatologist tested
  • Paraben-free and fragrance-free
  • Non-drying, oil-free, and non-comedogenic
  • Suitable for sensitive skin

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • It may sting slightly.

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14. PCA SKIN Clearskin

Why is PCA SKIN Clearskin a must-try? Because unlike regular acne treatments, it’s a moisturizer but with the power to treat acne-prone skin. So, if you don’t mind loosening your purse strings a little, this premium product offers the benefit of both— to moisturize and keep your skin acne-free! Its plant-based formula contains niacinamide, marigold flower oil, cucumber fruit extract, vitamin A, lemongrass extract, and more to boost hydration, correct uneven skin tone, and purify skin too. Do not miss it!

Pros:

  • Light and nourishing
  • Diminishes discoloration
  • Absorbs quickly and non-oily
  • Improves complexion and retains moisture
  • Fragrance-free, dye-free, cruelty-free, and non-irritating
  • Suitable for oily, normal, acne-prone, and sensitive skin

Cons:

  • Expensive

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15. QRxLabs Glycolic/Salicylic Acid Acne Control Pads

Travelers and busy bees, here’s an option for you! These ultra-soft pads will keep your acne in check and prevent future breakouts with a blend of 10% glycolic acid and 2% salicylic acid. Made of non-woven and professional-grade material, its formula also contains vitamin B5, C, E, green tea, allantoin, and calendula extracts. From unclogging pores, controlling sebum production to hydrating intensely and protecting skin from UV damages, these anti-acne pads will do it all for you. Yep, stay acne-free on-the-go with this one!

Pros:

  • Soothes and protects the skin
  • Reduces fine lines and wrinkles
  • Leaves skin soft and refreshed
  • Counters inflammation and redness
  • Exfoliates intensely and boosts collagen
  • Easy-to-use, FDA-registered, and cruelty-free
  • Silicone-free, paraben-free, and eco-friendly

Cons:

  • May leave a slightly sticky feeling

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So long, acne! There you go, those were the 15 best products to get rid of acne this season. Are you still unsure which products will best suit your skin? Or wondering how to use acne products? We’ve explained it all in our buying guide below.

Buying Guide

How To Choose The Best Acne Products?

It is simple! Look out for the following features in the products before buying:

Skin Type: The product must suit your skin type! Inspect if your skin is oily, dry, combination, sensitive, or acne-prone, and then pick a product that best suits your skin condition to enjoy maximum benefits.

Anti-acne Ingredients: Salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and adapalene are the three ingredients you must look for in your acne treatment.

  • Salicylic acid is a chemical exfoliator that unclogs pores but is gentle enough for sensitive skin.
  • Benzoyl peroxide is THE acne-killer! It not only eliminates acne-causing bacteria but exfoliates pores as well.
  • Adapalene stimulates cell turnover, thus keeping the skin clear of inflammation and oil buildups.

Intense exfoliation: Since acne is caused due to oil, dirt, and other impurities clogging open pores, intense exfoliation is IMP to detoxify pores and eliminate the chances of breakouts. So, pick a product that guarantees intense cleansing.

Oil-controlling formula: Excess sebum or greasiness can also lead to breakouts. Hence, if you have oily or very oily skin, you must choose an oil-free, water-based, or oil-controlling acne product for the best experience.

Non-comedogenic: Lastly, you must inspect if the product is non-comedogenic, which means it doesn’t clog pores. Also, the formula should be non-drying and non-irritating, so it does not harm your skin.

How To Use Acne Products?

Have you never used acne products before? Here’s how you can include them in your regime:

Cleanser: Dealing with clogged pores? Include non-comedogenic acne products such as Neutrogena Rapid Clear Stubborn Acne Cleanser or PanOxyl Acne Foaming Wash to deep-clean pores and the skin.

Serum: Serums are lightweight and they penetrate pores quickly. So, if you don’t mind using a serum after cleansing, DRMTLGY 24-Hour Acne Serum and SKINKISSED Face Serum are some of the best good products for acne.

Moisturizer: After the serum is absorbed, you can moisturize your skin generously. And yes, there are acne clearing products or rather moisturizers, such as PCA SKIN Clearskin and Acne Treatment Acne Face Cream that you can use.

Sunscreen: Lastly, sunscreen! Never leave your house without sunscreen. And yes, your sunscreen can be anti-acne as well. And in our opinion, EltaMD UV Clear Facial Sunscreen would be ideal.

Caution: However, it’s not advisable to use multiple acne products together. Consult your dermatologist if you are planning to use more than one acne-related product on your skin.

With that, now anyone can be an armchair expert on how to curb stubborn acne! Don’t let those blackheads confine you to your room when our list of best acne products can restore your stunning glow effortlessly. Now, what are you waiting for? Go on, flaunt your skin confidently. Be it a special date or occasion, let these acne products have your back no matter what pops up! Happy acne-free skin to you!

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Is It Bad To Use Multiple Acne Products?

Yes, using too many acne products can be harsh on your skin. Acne products have concentrated formulas, and most of them have the same ingredients. Hence, using multiple acne products is not advised.

Are Acne Products Safe During Pregnancy?

Yes, most of the acne products are safe to use during pregnancy but, to be sure, consult your doctor before applying any topical products.

Can Acne Products Make Acne Worse?

It depends. If you use a new acne product every few weeks, then it can irritate your skin. Besides this, your acne may worsen if the product is not suitable for your skin type.

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Chaitra Krishnan

Chaitra is an extremely passionate writer and storyteller. She has a triple main Bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Communicative English, and Economics and a Master’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. She has more than three years of experience in content writing and editing and specializes in beauty, fashion, and lifestyle genres. Her background in journalism helps her guide her team in churning out fine content for the readers. When she’s not editing or juggling tasks at work, she likes to daydream and stalk doggos on Instagram.
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