There are a number of reasons that one may be looking for alternatives to prescription acne medications, and in our case, it may be different from yours.
My daughter had used many over-the-counter acne products over the years, including Proactiv and X Out, Neutrogena, and many others.
The thing about many of the non-prescription acne products is that while they do help to clear up current acne, many of them that we had tried in the past did not resolve the problem entirely. In other words, the acne would just keep coming back.
She was eventually prescribed an acne pill, and I can tell you for certain that it was worth the $75 per month that it cost me to get the prescription filled (insurance did not cover this particular Rx). Her face had never looked so clear. Unfortunately, it was not a long-term drug, meaning the dermatologist would only prescribe it for about 6 months, and as soon as the prescription ran out, her acne came back.
This led the dermatologist to recommending over-the-counter alternatives while she worked out another prescription that my daughter could use, as we had already exhausted several options.
Here are the Top 4 Prescription Acne Medication Alternatives
Neutrogena Oil-Free Face Wash
Neutrogena Light Therapy Face Mask
Differin Adapalene Gel 0.1%
One of the prescription acne medications that was prescribed to my daughter was a gel with Adapalene, however, it was entirely too strong for her sensitive skin. Immediately after applying it, her face not only burned, but her eyelids turned bright red (no, she did not apply it to her eyelids). The dermatologist had her try it every few days hoping that her skin would gradually accept it, but that never happened.
Finally, the dermatologist recommended the Differen Gel, as it had the same ingredient as the prescription (Adapalene), just at a lower dosage. This is an over-the-counter acne medication that she described as being the same as the prescription, only with a lower dosage.
It seemed to be the perfect strength, as her skin would no longer turn fire red after applying it. It did take a week or so of slight dryness, but eventually, her face accepted the product, and it did a pretty good job of helping to clear up her acne.
With that said, it did not give the same results as the acne pill.
Neutrogena Oil-Free Face Wash For Acne
Neutrogena has come a long way over the years. They are a trusted brand with trusted products that work. This cheap drug store face wash was also recommended by a dermatologist. You can find it here on Amazon, or buy it in the drug store.
As the name states, it is oil-free. It is gentle for your face, and allows the acne fighting ingredients to work without drying out the skin. Always make sure to use a moisturizer with any product, whether for acne or not.
The moisturizer that my daughter uses, because of course, her dermatologist told her to, is also a Neutrogena product, and it is dye free, and specifically made for sensitive skin. It comes from the same line as my favorite face cleanser from Neutrogena.
So, you’re not living under a rock, and that means that you have heard of Proactiv. You may even know someone who has used it. This is definitely a product that everyone should try first, even before going to the dermatologist if you are trying to clear up mild acne.
I have done a complete review on the Proactiv 3-Step Acne Treatment, so I will not go on about it here. Read the post, as it discusses Proactiv as well as X Out.
Neutrogena Light Therapy Face Mask
About six months ago on one of our visits to the dermatologist, we were handed a brochure of over-the-counter acne treatments that actually work, and this was at the top of the list.
The dermatologist told us that they recommend it to many of their patients, and the reports they have received have been great. We were given a coupon to try it out, so of course, you know me, off to the store we went.
My daughter has used this many times, and although you don’t actually see it clearing up acne as you would a cleanser, it is meant to clear the pores to keep pimples and blackheads from forming.
It is a great addition to your acne treatment, whatever it is that you decide, and is also available on Amazon Prime, so that’s obviously a bonus!
Of these 4 Prescription acne medication alternatives, I hope that you found one that may help you clear up acne, and stop new acne from forming.
Until next time, Stay Happy, Stay Healthy, Stay Beautiful!