7 Overnight Acne Treatments That Diminish Breakouts By Morning

Multi-task while you sleep.

7 Overnight Acne Treatments That Diminish Breakouts By Morning
Have you ever thought to yourself, argh, this breakout just appeared at the *worst* possible moment? We know we have plenty of times, which is why we’re always on the lookout for products that can help zap our zits as fast as possible. But instead of resorting to tricky techniques like squeezing or popping (a word to the wise: don’t do it), we prefer to turn to tried-and-tested ingredients to tackle breakouts. Even better, some of our favorite products can even work while you sleep.

We know the unwelcome pimple won’t vanish overnight, but we can certainly try to tame it. According to Dr. Dendy Engelman, a board- certified dermatologist, there are a few star ingredients to look out for like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinol. These ingredients can help reduce redness and swelling, and help rid the acne-causing bacteria that clogs pores, all while preventing additional pimples. Chemical exfoliants are also great to speed up a pimple’s healing process and prevent acne by reducing the buildup of dead skin cells, excess sebum, and bacteria.

However, if you’re dealing with recurring or severe acne, Dr. Dendy shares a different route to consider. "Prescription topical acne medication like Onexton, which can help treat persistent breakouts more aggressively than most over-the-counter and skincare treatments." Or say we need to zap a zit fast, a cortisone shot from your dermatologist would be your best bet. “Cortisone shots rapidly reduce the appearance of pimples and help them heal faster. You may not want to run to your dermatologist every time you notice a blemish, but this is a reliable option for clearing up surprise pimples when time and efficacy is a priority.”

Below, Dr. Denny shares her recommended overnight treatments for those pesky pimples, plus a few of our favorites!

Witch Hazel Toner Clarifying Cleansing Pads

“Using a gentle toner after washing your face is a great way to rebalance your skin and remove any lingering impurities that could clog your pores, like makeup and excess oil. Humphreys Witch Hazel Toner Clarifying Cleansing Pads are my top recommendation for all skin types. Formulated with wild crop certified witch hazel and aloe leaf juice, they work effectively to balance and clarify, and they are safe for even the most sensitive skin.”


Effaclar Duo Acne Spot Treatment

“Spot treatments can help a pimple heal and disappear more quickly by targeting the blemish with concentrated ingredients that reduce inflammation and kill acne-causing bacteria beneath the skin.”

La Roche-Posay

Salicylic Acid Acne Healing Dots

“Acne patches are a safe and fast way to help treat blemishes. By delivering concentrated ingredients directly to the pimple within a sealed, protected environment, acne patches can quickly reduce the appearance of a blemish and speed up the skin’s healing. For people who are tempted to pick at their skin, it’s also a great way to keep fingers off the pimple while it heals. I love Peace Out Acne Healing Dots, which utilize encapsulated salicylic acid, retinol and aloe vera with a hydrocolloid polymer patch for visible improvement to a pimple in as little as six hours.”

Peace Out

Acne Treatment Differin Gel

“I often recommend Differin® Gel to patients who suffer from frequent or persistent acne breakouts. Differin® is a prescription-strength topical treatment that you can get over the counter, and it is clinically proven to treat and prevent breakouts with once-daily use.”


Beta-Clarity AHA Clarifying Peel

“To address widespread breakouts and prevent future blemishes, I recommend treating your skin with a chemical peel (use once per week at most to avoid irritating your skin). Glo Skin Beauty’s Beta-Clarity AHA Clarifying Peel is excellent for those with oily, acne-prone skin, or anyone who is experiencing an acne breakout. This peel is a professional-quality treatment that blends hydroxy acids (including salicylic acid), witch hazel and vitamin C to decongest and reduce the appearance of pores, balance sebum production, target blemishes and unevenness, and strengthen the skin barrier. I love that it comes in a kit with easy-to-follow directions, so patients can do this themselves at home when their skin needs a detox.”

Glo Skin Beauty

DRx Blemish Solutions Acne Eliminating Gel

Who says you have to wait until after a breakout is over to get rid of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation? This treatment by Dr. Dennis Gross contains niacinamide, a brightening agent that inhibits pigmentation in the skin. Salicylic acid works hard to clear out your clogged pore, resulting in smooth and even skin as the sun rises.

Dr. Dennis Gross

Eradikate Acne Treatment

How can we create an overnight acne treatment list without including this iconic spot treatment? The EradiKate Acne Treatment contains salicylic acid to dissolve sebum in a breakout while safely drying the fluid buildup to shrink the head of the pimple overnight. This treatment is ideal for those battling whiteheads that are nearing their head. Just remember not to shake the bottle!

Kate Somerville

Part of the series:


You May Also Like