In this post, I’m only going to talk about how I spot-treat individual pimples, but I won’t be including the complete skincare regimen for acne-prone skin, since my current routine is not yet entirely for acne-prone skin. I’ll just save that topic for later.
If you have acne-prone skin or at least you get a pimple before your period comes up, then you know what I’m talking about. It has happened to all of us and you can bet it will happen again. So let me share with you some of the effective K-beauty products I’ve been using to handle this recurring dilemma (at least in my case it’s a monthly thing. huhu 😢).
The way I deal with this problem depends on the type of pimple I have. If it’s a blind pimple (red lump that is “closed” and is slightly sore to touch with no signs of coming to a head anytime soon), I use solution powders, which are supposed to shrink the pimple and reduce inflammation and redness. I treat the pimple with this solution until it either completely disappears or until it has come to a head and is ready to pop (hopefully by itself, because I want to avoid picking at my face as much as possible).
Once the pimple has popped, I no longer treat it with solution powders, but with a hydrocolloid bandage. These spot patches aren’t very effective with blind pimples, so you would want to wait until your pimple has popped before you use one of these if you want to maximize the effect.
Now, let me elaborate on the two approaches.
For Blind Pimples
The products I use are Onsaemeein Magic Solution Skin Powder and Petitfee Hate U!Red Spot Sulfur Powder.
1. Onsaemeein Magic Solution Skin Powder
I use the Onsaemeein Magic Solution Skin Powder before bed and/or when I’m just staying at home and don’t have to go out. It looks very similar to the other more popular spot treatments (hello, Mario Badescu Drying Lotion), and works pretty much the same way, only this one is a lot cheaper. It slowly but surely reduces the inflammation and flattens the pimple. It’s non-drying, gentle and effective. I use it daily until the pimple is “healed” or has come to a head.
Powerful Acne-Fighting Ingredients
Zinc Oxide – It’s good to see this is one of the top ingredients of this solution. Zinc oxide calms inflammation, protects the skin, soothes redness, reduces the size of the pimple and dries out oil production. Zinc oxide becomes even more effective when combined with other acne-fighting ingedients, such as the following:
Witch Hazel Extract – A liquid astringent that has anti-bacterial and soothing properties, which help decrease redness and inflammation.
Dryopteris Crassirhizoma Extract – A skin-conditioning ingredient that has similar effects to Witch Hazel extract. It has anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects.
Salicylic acid – Unclogs pores by dissolving dead skin and other debris, to resolve or prevent pimples. It has a drying effect that’s why it’s ideally used with something moisturizing. Seeing it towards the end (rather than at the top) of the ingredient list explains why this solution is non-drying.
Note: Do not shake the bottle. Make sure the pink sediments are all settled at the bottom of the bottle before using. After cleansing and toning, dip a cotton swab into the pink sediment. Apply it directly on the pimple. Let it dry and leave it on. Avoid this area when applying the rest of your skincare products.
2. Petitfee Hate U! Red Spot Sulfur Powder
This is a treatment and concealer in one, which I apply over my zit/s at daytime or whenever I need to go out and face people. I prefer to cover my zits with an acne-clearing concealer than just a plain concealer so that they are continuously being treated and protected even when I have to wear some makeup. Most acne-clearing concealers are pink-based and are too light for my skin tone, so they tend to highlight my zit rather than conceal it. In contrast, this Petitfee Sulfur Powder is yellow-based so it matches my skin tone and conceals blemishes very well. I wear it under my makeup before I apply my foundation, and then I also build it up over my makeup if the pimple still needs more concealing.
Note: Make sure you shake this well before using. For hygienic purposes, I clean the applicator with a wet cotton pad before putting it back into the bottle. Avoid double-dipping, so you don’t introduce bacteria into the product.
Powerful Acne-Fighting Ingredients
Calamine – This popular ingredient is a combination of zinc oxide and 0.5% ferric oxide. I already explained above how zinc oxide works. Meanwhile, ferric oxide is an anti-pruritic (anti-itch) agent, so you don’t have to struggle with any urge to scratch your pimple.
Dimethyl sulfone – Also known as methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), this organic sulfur compound is mainly used for the treatment of acne and really oily skin. It has anti-parasitic, anti-itching, and anti-oxidizing properties. It also dilates blood vessels to increase blood flow to the area that needs to be healed. It also helps prevent or minimize the formation of ugly scars, as it keeps collagen fibres bouncy and elastic.
Salicylic acid – See description above.
Tea Tree Leaf Oil – This potent oil is known for its antiseptic, anti-fungal and oil-controlling properties that help prevent acne. It also penetrates deep into the skin to disinfect pores, dry out existing zits, and prevent further outbreaks.
Ginkgo Leaf Biloba Nut Extract – A potent antioxidant and soothing ingredient.
For Popped/Lanced Pimples
3-4. Skinfood Trouble Clear Spot Patch & Aritaum’s A.D.F. Hydrocolloid Dressing
As I mentioned earlier, hydrocolloid bandages work best on popped pimples or at least those that have already come to a head. This is because the active surface of the spot patch works by absorbing the moisture leaking from the zit, and then forms a gel that keeps the leakage in place within the structure of the adhesive matrix. Regular hydrocolloid bandages don’t have active ingredients that reduce inflammation or kill bacteria. They simply have a gel-forming mass that is meant to absorb pus and plasma from the pimple. The absence of moisture speeds up the healing process and minimizes scarring. After about six to eight hours, you’ll find that your zit is already flat and dry, and therefore it’s also much easier to cover with concealer.
Some hydrocolloid bandages do have active ingredients, like the Aritaum one, which has tea tree extracts. But even the regular ones that do not contain active ingredients work just as well.
How To Use
1. Cleanse your face the way you normally would.
2. Apply one of the hydrocolloid bandages over a popped zit. Do NOT apply any skin care products on the zit before putting the bandage on.
3. Leave it on overnight or for 6 to 8 hours.
4. Gently remove the bandage. You would know that you have done it correctly if you see some white gunk on the adhesive surface of the patch.
The are many brands of spot patches, but the ones I have tried are Aritaum’s A.D.F. Hydrocolloid Dressing and Skinfood’s Trouble Clear Spot Patch. Each pack comes with 24 round patches of three different sizes. The more popular k-beauty brand is Cosrx, but I haven’t tried that one yet. According to some who have already tried both the Aritaum and Cosrx patches, they work just the same, but the Aritaum one is cheaper and it even has tea tree extracts 😉
Have you tried any hydrocolloid bandages already? Drying lotions? Magic potions? Anything that helped clear your skin? Please let me know in the comments below. Let us help each other get rid of our acne once and for all! 🙂
I got most of these products from two of the limited edition boxes I bought from Althea (1 & 3 from the Double Trouble Box and #2 from Bbo Song Skin Box) I bought #4 separately. Here are their individual prices:
1. Onsaemeein Magic Solution Skin Powder 30mL – P380 on Althea Korea
2. Petitfee Hate U! Red Spot Sulfur Powder 15mL – P320 on Althea Korea
3. Skinfood Trouble Clear Spot Patch – 4,400KRW (P200) on Skinfood Korea
4. Aritaum’s A.D.F. Hydrocolloid Dressing – P140 on Althea Korea
If it’s your first time to shop at Althea, follow this link to get your P350 Gift (P200 off on your first purchase + P150 rebate). Enjoy!! 😊