With this guidance in mind, these are the best acne treatments, according to dermatologists—plus the products Vogue editors have tested and loved. 

Best Tools for Acne

The best beauty tools are known to amplify even the most thorough skin-care regimens. That said, LED light therapy is often the blemish-fighting treatment recommended by our network of experts. Take a new approach to masking with the Dr. Dennis Gross LED device to combat blemishes by destroying acne-causing bacteria through an at-home blue light treatment known to kill acne-causing bacteria. Otherwise, the Solawave wand combines four treatments into one (red light therapy, micro-current technology, facial massage, and therapeutic warmth) to fade blemishes, increase absorption of skin-care ingredients, and promote a youthful complexion. 

Dr. Dennis Gross

DRx SpectraLite FaceWare Pro LED Light Therapy Device

A powerful LED Light Therapy Device that uses a combination of blue and red LED lights to enhance collagen production, reduce discoloration, and tackle acne for a radiant complexion every time. It’s no wonder celebrities like Rita Ora and Lucy Hale have been spotted using the device.


Radiant Renewal Skincare Wand

Don’t have room for yet another bulky skincare device that eventually collects dust underneath your bed? This portable skincare wand is compact enough to take with you and use on the go, enhancing the skin with red light therapy, galvanic currents, facial massage, and therapeutic warmth.

Best Face Wash for Acne

“If you notice that your skin is acne-prone, it can feel good to double cleanse because it helps degrease the skin,” says Bowe, who recommends starting with Bioderma’s micellar water, then cleansing with Skinfix’s foaming cleanser—both options, she notes, are gentle enough not to damage the skin barrier. Dr. Corey L. Hartman, board-certified dermatologist and founder of Skin Wellness Dermatology in Birmingham, Alabama, likes the CeraVe Foaming Cream Cleanser, especially for those with sensitive skin, and the SkinCeuticals LHA Cleanser Gel, which is formulated with a cocktail of acids to “treat acne and prevent aging.” Meanwhile, Wu recommends the Avène Cleansing Foam for those with acne-prone, dry, sensitive skin, and the Paula’s Choice Pore Normalizing Acne Cleanser for normal to oily skin types because it “contains salicylic acid to fight blackheads and congestion, along with panthenol to soothe skin and help prevent irritation.”


Acne Foaming Cream Cleanser

An acne foaming cream from CeraVe that epitomizes simplicity at its finest. It’s readily available at every drugstore on the market and owes its effectiveness to a blend of ingredients, including 4% benzoyl peroxide, hyaluronic acid, and niacinamide.

You can always rely on SkinCeuticals for their top-tier formulations, and this cleansing gel is no exception, brimming with lipo-hydroxy acid, glycolic acid, salicylic acid, glycerin, and sorbitol. Your breakouts never stood a fair chance.


Removing makeup, dirt, pollution, and the aftermath of a busy day from your skin can be a challenge. Fortunately, this Avene cleansing foam takes care of it all for you, providing a thorough cleanse with Avene thermal spring water, non-sulfated surfactants, glycerin, and diglycerin.

Paula’s Choice

Clear Pore Normalizing Acne Cleanser

If your regular cleanser isn’t doing enough to combat your breakouts, it might be time to consider switching to an acne cleanser. We love this one from Paula’s Choice because it’s gentle enough for daily use.

Best Toner for Acne

Post-cleanse, look for a toner or exfoliating solution to further unclog congested pores, wipe away dead skin, and remove impurities. Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant is one of the most recommended products, and Green says it’s gentle enough for daily use. “This product gently exfoliates the skin, breaking down sebum and debris that are clogging the pores to reveal a smoother, healthier complexion,” she explains. La Roche-Posay’s toner, too, leads with salicylic acid—working alongside glycolic acid to unclog pores and smooth bumpy skin.

Paula’s Choice

Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant

And the Oscar goes to Paula’s Choice for yet another skincare essential we can’t get enough of. This leave-on exfoliator contains 2% salicylic acid, which helps exfoliate away dead skin cells, unclogs pores, and hydrates and soothes irritated skin.

La Roche-Posay

Effaclar Clarifying Solution

The solution for you (pun intended) is this exfoliating acne toner from La Roche-Posay, formulated with salicylic acid and glycolic acid to help clear out pore-clogging debris and oils while improving skin texture.

Best Serum for Acne

If you’re interested in adding an acne-treating serum or moisturizer to your regimen, consider starting with The Ordinary’s Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%—a notably affordable option that’s recommended by several of our experts. “[Niacinamide] has a calming and brightening effect on the skin, helping to improve overall tone and texture while reducing breakouts and controlling excess sebum and oil production,” says Green, who notes that those with oily skin or breakouts will benefit from the healing, anti-inflammatory properties of this serum.


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