Two years ago, I finally found a prescription medication that successfully treated my cystic acne breakouts. My skin was clear and my confidence was growing day by dat. Shortly after, production of the medication was discontinued and my skin had a resurgence of painful acne.
After years of trying to find a spot treatment to replace the prescription I was using before, I have finally found an over-the-counter alternative that is effective and affordable.
What is cystic acne?
Cystic acne is acne that occurs deep under the skin. It can stay under the skin for months and can be extremely painful. One of the main causes of this type of acne are hormones called androgens. When people go through puberty during teenage years, these hormones increase which can spark cystic breakouts. Later in life, many adult women (up to 50%) experience this same time of acne as a result of hormonal fluctuations during their period cycle.
About the product
The Mario Badescu Buffering Lotion ($19) is an overnight treatment created to target cystic acne. The light-weight formula is used as a spot treatment and easily absorbs into the skin. You shake the bottle before use, and apply it to active breakouts after cleansing and toning your face. It is notable that cream and lotion should not be applied over top of blemishes that you are treating with the Buffering Lotion. This product is formulated for people with oily/combination skin.
This product stinks – the smell reminds me exactly of the topical medication that my doctor used to prescribe to me. After shaking the bottle, I drop a little bit of the product on the back of my hand and then dab it on top of my active cystic breakouts. This product is only intended to treat, not to prevent skin concerns so it should not be used all over the face.
I was expecting the Buffering Lotion to sting my skin when I applied it because of the harsh scent. I was happy that I didn’t feel a thing when it touched my face. The runny, milky formula easily absorbed into my skin and didn’t leave behind any uncomfortable feeling of tightness.
The next morning, the painful spot I treated next to my nose had decreased to half the size and it didn’t hurt nearly as much as the day before. Success!
I have continued using this product for about a month now, and every time a cystic spot pops up I put this on overnight and it actually makes a huge difference in the appearance of my breakouts. Of course, cystic acne can never really be healed overnight, but this product speeds up the healing process. This truly is an over-the-counter alternative to the prescriptions that I used to have for my acne. I highly recommend this for women who experience hormonal breakouts during their monthly cycle. It is a lifesaver.
*Mario Badescu is a cruelty-free brand