Ask the Experts: Zit-Zapping Tips

In the Clear: Top Zit-Zapping Expert Tips
ESSENCE.COM Mar, 05, 2010

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Here, we rounded up the top ten expert tips on how to prevent and treat stubborn breakouts, for good.

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“Frequent washing irritates skin," says dermatologist Dr. Kenneth Beer. He recommends cleansing twice daily with a salicylic acid cleanser like Neutrogena Acne Wash ($6.39,

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Wipe down bacteria-laden cell phones and remotes with BabyGanics Surface Wipes ($10, and rid makeup brushes of oil and dirt with Clinique Makeup Brush Cleanser ($13,

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Dermatologist Rosemarie Ingleton suggests using oil-free makeup, and liquid foundations instead of compacts. Peter Thomas Roth Mattifying Gel ($35, soaks up oil and removes shine.

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L.A. aesthetician Anastasia Soare suggests this pimple-fighting home remedy: Squeeze half a lemon in a bowl and mix in one egg white. Apply over face or body acne for five minutes, and rinse.

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“Treat inflamed zits with a benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid gel,” says Dr. Ingleton. Try Intraceuticals Clarity Blemish Repair Pen ($89,

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Never squeeze zits, warns Dr. Rosemarie Ingleton. “Instead, have your derm perform an extraction using a special tool that removes all the content without inducing more inflammation.”

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If oil and dirt from your bangs causes forehead zits, time to pull it back! Or try hair products containing natural oils that won’t clog pores, like Kairos Anti-Acne Hair Care Trio ($60).

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Stress can cause breakouts, so clear your mind at a spa like the Fix Malibu Medispa (! Try the Fix Zit Facial or Hydra Facial, which painlessly sucks out debris with a gentle little vacuum.

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“Healthy skin starts on the inside," says Dr. Howard Murad. He recommends eating colorful raw fruits and vegetables, and taking supplements containing vitamin A and Zinc to reduce skin irritation.

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Dr. Murad suggests curing dark acne scars (aka “hyperpigmentation”) with products containing skin-lightening hydroquinone. Try Murad Acne Post-Acne Spot Lightening Gel ($60,