With a little extra care at the end of the day, you can clear your complexion by morning: Here are expert tips on getting rid of a pimple overnight
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Wash this way
Jennifer Ahartz, global curriculum developer at Dermalogica in Los Angeles, CA, suggests starting with a double cleansing if you want to get rid of a pimple overnight: “The first cleanse helps to remove oil, makeup, and pollution from the skin and the second cleanse removes any remaining debris, helping to keep the follicles clear,” she says. “I recommend using Dermalogica PreCleanse first to remove excess build-up; do your second cleanse with Dermalogica Clearing Skin Wash to wash away impurities and bacteria.” Learn what dermatologists do when they get a pimple.
Preparing your skin
After washing your face, add a leave-on exfoliant, mask, or moisturizer before getting skin ready for treatment. “Often, people overtreat a pimple in order to try to get rid of it, essentially worsening it due to the irritation,” says Melissa Kanchanapoomi Levin, MD, a dermatologist and clinical assistant attending professor at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, NY. “While there is no magic cure for bringing pimples down overnight, there are things you can definitely do to minimize the inflammation.” Make sure these symptoms aren’t one of the 8 signs your skin products are secretly damaging your face.
When to pop
One way to get rid of a pimple overnight? Pop it: If it’s a whitehead or a blackhead and easy to extract, go for it, says Sandra Lee, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in Upland, CA, . However, touching cystic or other types of acne will make matters worse. If you do decide to take matters into your own hands, she says, apply a warm washcloth or take a steam shower to soften the pimple first, which make it easier to extract. Get more details on how to pop a pimple safely.
When not to pop
“If the pimple is a cyst or nodule, I recommend you can see a dermatologist for a simple steroid injection that can get rid of the pimple by decreasing inflammation,” says Dr. Levin. In the meantime, help reduce the inflammation by applying benzoyl peroxide, an effective anti-inflammatory and bacteria-fighting agent that minimizes redness and swelling. Learn how to banish cystic acne for good.
Ready to pop?
After steaming your face to open up your pores and the pimples, use sterilized extracting tools, says Dr. Lee. Make sure to apply alcohol afterward to clean out the wound.
Some acne treatments are designed to target a specific area or breakout. For oily skin, Dr. Lee’s x SLMD Acne Spot Treatment has a salicylic acid formula that unclogs pores and controls oil production, which clears acne fast and prevents the creation of new blackheads and whiteheads. Likewise, the x SLMD BP Lotion uses 3 percent sulfur to regulate sensitive skin’s oil production, stop the growth of acne-causing bacteria, and gently exfoliate, says Dr. Lee
Acne dots, like COSRX Acne Pimple Master Patch, also are great for bringing a pimple down overnight. “You can’t guarantee that a pimple will be gone in the morning, but squeezing it repeatedly and touching the area often will not help, and will likely make things worse,” says Dr. Lee.