The 10 Best Acne Spot Treatments

When a breakout hits, the goal is always the same: Get rid of the blemish, stat. These 10 spot treatments do just that, without disrupting everything else on your face.

 

1/10

Peter Thomas Roth Acne Spot and Area Treatment

Not only does this fast-acting formula work quickly to clear blemishes, but it also helps prevent the formation of future ones. The secret is a combination of oil-controlling (but not drying) sulfur and skin-exfoliating glycolic acid, mixed with soothers like aloe vera and nourishing vitamins. $32, peterthomasroth.com

2/10

Ilike Herbal Clay Spot Treatment

This mega-multitasker relies on clove oil, a potent essential oil, to act as an antiseptic to really purify pores and absorb excess oil. The end result: Pimples are dried up fast—without leaving the rest of your face red and itchy. $48, ariva.com

3/10

Clinique Acne Solutions Emergency Gel-Lotion

Salicylic acid is a go-to ingredient in many acne spot treatments, but some skin types just work better with benzoyl peroxide. This lightweight gel-lotion has it, in a medication that goes to work on stubborn, recurring pimples. $17, clinique.com

4/10

Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

This pink liquid gets rave reviews on the regular for shrinking pimples—even whiteheads—overnight. The main ingredient is skin-soothing, anti-itching calamine, which is also what makes the lotion work especially well on bug bites. $17, mariobadescu.com

5/10

Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Spot Treatment

With an incredible “reduces pimples in four hours” claim behind it, this powerful gel starts to work the second you apply it, thanks to a formula that contains the maximum-strength salicylic acid on the market. $10, cleanandclear.com

6/10

Dermalogica Concealing Spot Treatment

The hard-hitting duo of sulfur and zinc oxide help bust breakout-causing bacteria in your pores while clearing away excess oil and congestion. Best of all, it’s tinted, and the formula is so lightweight that you can apply it midday as soon as a breakout hits. $35, dermalogica.com

7/10

Suki Transformative Purifying Masque

Don’t let the name fool you: Even though it’s pegged as a mask, this tiny product works wonders when used as an overnight spot treatment. Even brand founder Suki says to give it a try to bust blemishes while you sleep: “I formulate my purifying masque as the ultimate stress-reducer for your worst skin problems—and as your go-to overnight ‘spot’ weapon.” $49, sukiskincare.com

8/10

Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Targeted Spot Treatment

Packed with tea tree, calendula, yarrow, parsley and willow bark extract (a natural source of betahydroxy acids), you only need a tiny drop of this herbal-scented oil to remove redness and calm breakouts. $10, burtsbees.com

9/10

Origins Super Spot Remover

Perfect for treating post-pimple darkening, this healing gel relies on salicylic acid to treat breakouts, while calming caffeine and red algae reduce irritation and redness. $16, origins.com

10/10

Murad Acne Treatment Concealer 

This stay-put, easy-to-use stick concealer treats acne as it covers it with an ingredient lineup that includes salicylic acid, vitamin A and an antioxidant powerhouse blend of vitamin C, E and green tea. $21, murad.com

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