Should Benzoylperoxide Be Applied Everyday All over the Face to Prevent Newbreakouts or Just on Active Acne Lesions?

There is a v.popular acne website that advocates the generous use of benzoylperoxide every night and day,to combat acne and to prevent new breakouts.My derm advises me to use it as a spot treatment and only when i get acne,not,all the time.Which is true?

Doctor Answers 3

Using benzoyl peroxide for acne pimples

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Benzoyl peroxide is a terrific treatment for acne which was developed in Canada. It can be used as a spot treatment if you get very occasional acne, but works even better preventatively if you apply it to the whole face daily (if you can tolerate it), or 2-3 times per week to the full face. Because it is drying (as are many acne treatments), make sure to use a mild cleanser, and to moisturize your face. Also best to speak with your dermatologist about the best treatment options for your acne. We'd be happy to assess your acne at Toronto Dermatology Centre, phone: 416-633-0001.

Toronto Dermatologic Surgeon

Benzoyl Peroxide for Acne - How To Use Properly

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I usually tell my patients to avoid spot treatment, but rather apply their acne medicines more consistently and to the general areas where the breakouts occur.  Not only does this help prevent acne, but it helps already present acne go away more quickly.  That being said, I do also occasionally recommend benzoyl peroxide as a spot treatment for larger pimples as it helps dry them out. Benzoyl peroxide should be applied no more than once daily as it can be very drying.  It is also often more effective when used in conjunction with topical RetinA (tretinoin) and/or topical antibiotic lotion. 



Channing R. Barnett, MD
Boca Raton Dermatologist
4.1 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Acne and benzoyl peroxide

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If you only have one pimple infrequently, you can just spot treat.  If you continuously have acne, you should use BP sparingly once a day all over.  Twice a day is usually too drying.  You should speak to your dermatologist who can also add a tretinoin cream and perhaps a topical antibiotic with your BP.

Martie Gidon, MD, FRCPC
Toronto Dermatologist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.