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How it works:

  • Share your skin goals and snap selfies

  • Your dermatology provider prescribes your formula

  • Apply nightly for happy, healthy skin

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How to get rid of acne and how to prevent it

5 simple skincare tips from the acne treatment experts.

Curology Team Avatar
by Curology Team
Updated on Jul 6, 2023 • 4 min read
Man cleansing with Curology in bathroom
Curology Team Avatar
by Curology Team
Updated on Jul 6, 2023 • 4 min read
We’re here to share what we know — but don’t take it as medical advice. Talk to your medical provider if you have questions.

If you had three wishes, would you use one of them to get rid of pimples? We feel you. But it doesn’t take a genie in a bottle — just a superbottle* and some simple skincare management. Luckily, we can help you out with both.

Acne can be caused by multiple factors, from hormones to genetics to diet (read What causes acne? for a complete breakdown). We’re here to help you make managing it easier with a few pro tips for keeping your skin happy, healthy, and free from future breakouts.

How to prevent acne (or keep it from getting worse)

  1. In the wise words of TLC, “I don’t want no scrubs”. Tempting as it may be to scrub your skin clean, it’ll backfire on you! Whether you’ve got clogged pores, blackheads, or a full-blown breakout, excessive exfoliating and cleansing will aggravate your skin and make matters worse — irritation is actually a common cause of acne. So don’t punish your skin for breaking out. Treat it with kindness so it can heal and so its natural protective barrier can stay strong.

  2. Don’t pop. A popped pimple often turns into a red spot, which can last months, or worse: it might leave an acne scar behind. Instead, try a hydrocolloid bandage. They help to shrink pimples by absorbing pus and oil. You can go undercover with the emergency spot patch by Curology — it’s extra thin, so you can wear it out and about (and even layer it under makeup).

  3. Keep your skin out of hot water. Wash your face with lukewarm, not hot, water. Hot water strips your skin of its natural protective oils, leaving it dried out, irritated, and vulnerable. It also can make your skin look more red, because hot water enlarges the tiny blood vessels near the skin’s surface. Splashing your face with cool water can help reduce redness, too!

  4. Simplify your skincare routine — cut back on the products. Over-the-counter acne treatment such as benzoyl peroxide, BHAs (salicylic acid), and AHAs (glycolic acid, lactic acid) can help when used in moderation, but too much can irritate your skin. Start with just one ingredient, and only add another after you know that your skin is tolerating the first without dryness or irritation. Any time you want to try a new skincare product, start low and go slow to give your skin time to adjust.

  5. Avoid sugar for sweet victory. Foods that cause acne include high glycemic index foods: anything that’s high in sugar or simple carbohydrates (high glycemic index). Low glycemic index foods include fresh fruits and vegetables, and plenty of other options! Check out The Guide To Foods That Cause Acne to learn more about how a change in diet can help you get rid of acne and prevent breakouts.

  6. Give your skin the unique care it needs with a Curology Custom Formula. You don’t necessarily have to schlep over to a dermatologist and pay premium prices to get the right treatment for your (sk)individual breakouts. Try Curology free for the first month and get your very own customized cream that treats and defeats acne and benefits your skin in many other ways, from reducing post-acne marks to preventing or smoothing fine lines and wrinkles.

Curology box with curology bottles

What about that custom formula?

Each custom cream contains a formula of active ingredients designed by dermatology providers just for you and your skin’s unique needs. While over-the-counter treatments (such as cleansers and creams with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide) can get rid of around 35% of acne (according to a Consumer Reports study), prescription treatments can be twice as effective at clearing your skin!

Get your personalized skincare routine with Curology

Get your personalized skincare routine with Curology

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curology bottle

Try a free trial and see why tens of thousands swear by our custom treatments to achieve their skin goals, whether that’s to get rid of acne, fade acne scarring or post-acne spots, or smooth away and prevent fine lines or wrinkles.

• • •
Our medical review process:We’re here to tell you what we know. That’s why our information is evidence-based and fact-checked by medical experts. Still, everyone’s skin is unique—the best way to get advice is to talk to your healthcare provider.
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Curology Team

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