A blemish buster for EVERY skin type (and budget!)

Posted by Lipglossiping On March - 10 - 2011

Since the 90s, I’ve been in posession of at least one form of blemish busting treatment.  Hence my excitement at devices like the LMS Spotlights… it all stems from growing up with ads like these (and Grange Hill!):

They must have made a long-lasting impression!

I think it’s the promise of being able to regain some control over your skin at a time when your hormones are doing everything in their power to relinquish you of any say at all in how your body behaves.

How times have changed!  Sure, many of the active ingredients remain the same: salicylic acid, witch hazel, benzoyl peroxide, tea tree oil, toothpaste… (not really), but blemish-busting is a slick, billion-dollar business and far less blush-worthy than it used to be!

Here’s some blemish-busting treatments to suit all skin-types and budgets:

1. Murad Blemish & Wrinkle Reducer – £57.00

More sophisticated than your average zit zapper, Murad’s Blemish & Wrinkle Reducer is aimed at those of us who are (quite frankly) too old to be putting up with spots!

On the blemish-busting side, it features encapsulated salicylic acid to deliver a slow-release, prolonged treatment alongside Silver Citrate, the product’s anti-bactierial of choice.  The formula also claims to minimise fine lines and wrinkles with something called Kombucha Collagen Defense™

A good option for anyone with problem skin over the age of 30.  You can buy online in the UK from LookFantastic.

2. Proactiv Repairing Night Lotion – £17.95

A Salicylic Acid/Retinol blend that is known globally for its brand affiliations with some of the biggest teen-sensations on the planet: Jessica Simpson, Katy Perry, Justin Bieber…

This is one targeted toward younger consumers with skin concerns and a quick google shows just how well-known and widely-used the brand’s products are.

You can buy online in the UK from their website.

3. Origins Spot Remover – £10.00

Origins Spot Remover promises to be a gentler alternative to the harsher side-effects of chemical zit zapping!  We’re all familliar with the dryness that can be left behind once a spot has been busted.  It’s sometimes just as annoying to deal with the flaky skin as it is the initial blemish!

Another Salicylic Acid based formula with the added antibacterial benefits of witch-hazel and clove.

This seems to be a good all-rounder for many skin types.  You can buy online in the UK from the Origins website.

4. Nelson’s Pure & Clear Anti-Blemish Treatment Gel – £8.17

Tea Tree Oil and Arnica extracts work together to calm blemishes in this high-street treatment gel.  I’m a fan of Arnica’s ability to relieve aches and hopeful that it can work its herbal magic on zits too!

A natural, purse-friendly option with ingredients that suggest a more gentle approach.  You can buy online in the UK from the Boots website.

5. ELF Zit Zapper – £1.50

An impressively priced product that still manages to squeeze in active ingredients such as Salicylic Acid, Tea Tree Oil, Witch Hazel and Camphor.

Housed with a convenient roller-ball delivery method, this would be a great option for those of you who only need something for emergencies.

You can buy online in the UK from the ELF website.

6. The Doctor Brand Blemish Relief: Step 2 Spot Eliminator – £6.95

As the name suggests, this is step 2 of a 3-step programme designed to clear the skin from blemishes.  Interestingly, it bucks the common ingredient trend and lists Sulfur as the top active ingredient (though good old SA still puts in an appearance further down the list!)

I’m also pleased to see Allantoin in the list which is known for it’s anti-irritant properties and is something I used to actively look for in mineral foundation mixes that I wear.

You can buy online in the UK from the Boots website.


What are some of your favourite anti-blemish treatments?

9 Responses to “A blemish buster for EVERY skin type (and budget!)”

  1. Katrine says:

    Oh my gosh… I remember the Oxy 10 ad. It worked! It killed off zits, it also killed of pretty much any kind of moisture in ones skin!
    Oh those where the days, I can even remember the scent of it.

  2. Superdrug Tea Tree and Peppermint Spot Stick. I swear by it. And it’s cheap and lasts forever! It’s popped up on my blog at least twice now!


    Tempted to give the elf zit zapper a go though, even if the name puts me off a bit :S ‘Zit’ just sounds more icky than ‘spot’ for some reason!

  3. susy says:

    hi :) you forgot to mention the mario badescu line especially the mario badescu drying lotion :)

  4. Patricia says:

    OMG the memories. I watched that ad on MTV (at the time we could only get MTV UK) and felt so annoyed I couldn’t buy it where I lived, hahaha. So it was Clearasil or nothing *shudders*

    I’m pretty happy with my anti-blemish gel from Clinique, but I think I might try the Origins one next, since I’m trying to go green…

  5. redtiger21 says:

    Haha, I remember that ad! I used Oxy as a last resort when my skin was awful age 17- the facewash follwed by Oxy 5 in the morning, and the horrid wipes followed by Oxy 10 in the evening! After a few days my chin had almost been burnt off!!! Are they even allowed to sell that stuff anymore?! I still get spots, I genuinely haven’t had a fully clear face even ONCE since the age of 11 (I’m 29 now)- but I don’t bother with any zit zappers nowadays, I really don’t find they do anything, the on-the-spot treatments don’t get rid of the zit, and they make the surrounding area so flaky you can’t cover the zit with makeup, and any kind of general skin treatments are no good as I have mega- dry places too. My skin is really the bane of my life!!

  6. Vijaya says:

    I’ve never met anyone for whom proactive works. I’m sure these people exist; I’ve just never met one!

  7. Desiree says:

    The Oxy10 ad is beyond my times but I am using it at the moment (and have done an earlier review on it). It works for me, probably because I do have oily skin.. I have heard a lot of good things about the Clean and Clear Persa Gel 10. I have been wanting to try it out but I don’t think it’s available here in the UK ):

  8. Ann says:

    Another vote for the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, it’s kinda legendary. I actually don’t have this, I use Kate Somerville’s version of it, but it’s basically the same thing. They work off of very high concentrations of sulfur. They’re basically pink goop at the bottom of a little bottle, with alcohol on top. You dip a Q-tip through the alcohol to pick up some of the pink stuff, and dab that onto your spots, let it dry (into pink patches) and leave it on overnight.

    I also like Fresh’s Umbrian Clay – it’s a clay mask, but it’s best used as an overnight spot treatment. If you just dab it on spots, instead of putting it over a large area, it doesn’t really flake off overnight. It absorbs impurities from the skin, as well as pulling away extra oil without over-drying, and treats and protects spots overnight. It’s also great if you’re having a hard time not picking – you can’t pick at it if it’s covered in clay.

    One ingredient that I don’t think any of the treatments you mentioned includes is benzoyl peroxide. That’s because it’s ‘behind the counter’ in the UK – you have to ask the pharmacist for it. A lot of blemish treatments that are popular in the US contain this ingredient, and are either unavailable in the UK, or are actually *reformulated* without their most effective ingredient for sale in this country! It’s something to watch out for! BP can be really effective, but it can also be over-drying, and I don’t think it’s good for the skin long-term. I still use BP, but I try to limit it to only when I’m having a bad breakout.

  9. Julia M says:

    Benzoyl Peroxide-based products used to be my spot-banishers of choice, but my skin just can’t deal with them anymore. They’re very drying! Isn’t that what Oxy contains?
    These days I use Tea Tree Oil and crushed up aspirin for my Salicylic Acid fix. I really want one of the red light things you featured though!

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