If you have acne, you’ve probably used products that contain benzoyl peroxide.
Benzoyl peroxide is both an anti-bacterial and exfoliant. “BP” works by loosening dead skin cells that are stuck in the follicle, and releases oxygen to kill bacteria. That’s how BP reduces inflammation.
Because it doubles as an exfoliant and potent anti-bacterial, it’s rare that acne clears up without benzoyl peroxide.
BP comes in strengths of 2.5%-10%, and can be a cream, gel, cleanser, or spot treatment. BP is one of the few acne ingredients that works immediately, so you actually get a benefit from it when it’s in cleanser form. However, BP is active for up to 4 hours after applied to the skin, so leaving it on overnight in a cream or gel form is the best way to get its full benefit. It’s important to note that oil-based moisturizers stop the action of BP, so it can only be used with water-based hydrators like our Hydra Gel, Hyaluronic Serum, or Vitamin C Serum.
Benzoyl peroxide is an over the counter acne medicine that is found in many drugstore products. While drugstore brands like Neutrogena or Clean & Clear contain the same strengths (2.5-10%) of BP, the quality of ingredients is better in professional products. You’ll see better results using professional, high-quality products. (Just like your food tastes better when you cook with organic, fresh ingredients vs. canned.)
You’ll see improved results when working with a professional, too. Your Acne Specialist examines the severity of acne and your skin’s sensitivity, then recommend the strength and solution that’s right for you. As you progress through treatments, Acne Specialists monitor your progress. As your skin adjusts to BP, you’ll be able to tolerate higher strengths or combine with other effective anti-acne active ingredients, like BP with sulfur, or salicylic acid and glycolic acid.
If you’re already using BP, watch the video (made by one of our very own clients!) on how to correctly use BP.