Because acne is the most widespread skin disorder in the world, a lot of research has been done to determine how acne forms and how it is eliminated. Over the years a number of different treatments, medicines, and products have been developed to help control and eliminate acne.
Currently there are about 7 different treatments that are widely used in the prevention and elimination of acne. Subsequently, there are literally thousands of different products that use these treatments in one form or another.
Accutane (Isotetinoin): Accutane is a very powerful drug that is a derivative of vitamin A. It is normally prescribed for severe acne in cases where other treatments have failed to work. Accutane is normally taken for 4-6 months. The downside to Accutane is the high occurrence of side effects, some very serious.
Antibiotics: Antibiotics are designed to fight bacteria and are thus used to control acne mainly from the inside. There are topical antibiotics such as clindamycin that are applied directly to the skin. Other antibiotics such as tetracycline are in pill form.
Benzoyl Peroxide: This is an anti-bacterial agent that has been used to control acne for many years. It has been proven to work very well in the elimination and prevention of acne. Benzol Peroxide can be found in many prescription and over-the-counter medicines and products.
Herbal Remedies: A relative newcomer to mainstream acne fighting are herbal remedies. It is thought that certain herbs are effective in regulating oil levels and other bodily functions that pertain directly to acne.
Retin-A (tretinoin): Retin-A is a combination of retinoic acid and vitamin A acid. It is designed to treat acne, wrinkles, and sun damage. It supposedly does this by unplugging follicles and turnover over dead skin cells.
Salicylic Acid: This is another widely used formula in controlling acne, especially preventing future breakouts. Salicylic acid helps slow down the shedding of cells inside the follicle. It is available in many over-the-counter treatments.
Sulfur: Sulfur is used in acne control mainly to promote drying and peeling of the skin. This may be good for eliminating existing acne but its effects on preventing future acne are questionable.
There you have it. Most acne regimens consist of one or more of the above formulas. It is important to note that everyone's skin seems to react differently to these treatments. For some people, benzoyl peroxide works great. For others salicylic acid may work better. You really have to experiment a bit and find out which treatment works best for you.