Edwina Ings-Chambers: Breakouts be gone!

New spot treatments have been landing on the beauty desk almost weekly for months and the team at YOU has been putting them through their paces. In order to make the grade they had to work across different issues, from the odd blemish to adult acne. Here are our top newbies…

spot treatments

    • Murad Outsmart Blemish Clarifying Treatment (£35, murad.co.uk). A multi-pronged approach, this gel-like serum targets current breakouts while also hitting the bacteria that cause spots and boasts soothing ingredients such as honey and rice extract to calm redness. Salicylic and glycolic acid also keep pores clear to help prevent fresh spots forming, while sebacic acid regulates sebum. Our resident YOU HQ tester says it clears up her blemishes immediately, and is the only thing she knows will work. Also worth a mention is the Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser (£38, murad.co.uk) – aimed at those after smoother, younger-looking skin, we’ve found that its combination of chemical (salicylic, glycolic and lactic acids) and mechanical (jojoba beads) exfoliators does a fantastic job of keeping skin of all ages clear. Great for zapping even the most cyst-like spots.
    • Dr Dennis Gross DRx SpotLite Blemish Reducer (£58, spacenk.com). This clinically proven and FDA-cleared device uses blue and red LED light to treat spots at all stages, whether just about to surface or fully developed. The blue light hits just beneath the surface of the skin to fight spot-causing bacteria, while the red light penetrates deeper into the dermis promoting healing and reducing inflammation. Not bad for three minutes… We’ve yet to find a beauty guinea pig who this doesn’t work on – even those with extra-sensitive skin. Great for all-round, noninvasive blemish control.
    • ZitSticka Killa (£27, cultbeauty.co.uk). The genius of so-called ‘spot stickers’ is that any risk of spreading bacteria (or, dare we say it, temptation to pick) is shut down by the protective barrier covering the blemish. These newcomers were tested at length, and found to be most effective when used in the early stages of a spot, noticeably limiting the severity and duration of said blemish. Great for preventing pimples reaching their full potential.

And holding their own against the latest spot-zappers are these old favourites…

    • Mario Badescu Drying Lotion (£16, beautybay.com). Simply dip a cotton bud into the pink sediment at the bottom of this tiny but mighty bottle and cover your blemish. Best used overnight when skin repairing peaks – its blend of salicylic acid and calamine solution dries out the spot, reduces redness and helps stop it getting any bigger. Great for a quick clear-up, working best on angry whiteheads with redness reducing dramatically.
    • Clinique Blackhead Solutions Self-Heating Blackhead Extractor (£22, clinique.co.uk). A total game-changer. Rubbed on to clean, dry skin, once water is added this heats up to help open pores. Then the nifty lid with exfoliating bumps turns into a tool to help scrub away any stubborn sebum clogging your pores. We’ve seen the evidence! Great for even the most committed of blackheads.
    • Kiehl’s Nightly Refining Micro-peel Concentrate (£41, kiehls.co.uk). A fantastic one for regular use, the star ingredient of this at-home peel is quinoa husk extract, which has been found to have ‘exemplary skin exfoliation benefits’. Combine this with fruit acids, phytic acid and cactus extract, and cell turnover is increased, skin tone improved and texture refined. It also helps reduce the regularity of breakouts. Suitable for sensitive skins and cheaper than a professional peel – what’s not to like?

Great for introducing into a consistent routine for clear, glowing skin

  • Omorovicza Silver Skin Saviour (£65, omorovicza.com). The potent antibacterial properties of colloidal silver are put to use to treat infected skin, alongside niacinamide (vitamin B3) to control sebum production and both salicylic and glycolic acids for exfoliation, cell renewal and a clearer complexion. Our tester was bowled over. Great for feeling as though you’ve had a facial in the comfort of your own home.