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Acne · June 18, 2021

When to Use a Pimple Patch as an Acne Spot Treatment

Which kinds of acne work best with pimple patches?

Heres the thing: most pimple patches typically contain ingredients like salicylic acid, tea tree oil and, most importantly, healing hydrocolloid treatment all of which are delivered to your zit via a targeted patch treatment.

Pimple patches are best for those red, whitehead type of zits, explains Dr. Miriam Gonzalez Vega, MD, a dermatologist based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Because of their anti-inflammatory impact, pimple patches are good for clogged pores that are in the process of getting inflamed, she explains. FYI, the next time you see a super red zit coming in, pop on a patch for the speediest recovery.

And, yep, since pimples patches are literally a hideaway for your zit, theyre good for healing purposes, too. They also serve as a cover so that you dont see the pimple itself. When youre not looking at something, then youre less likely to pick at it, making it go away faster without marks or hyperpigmentation, explains Gonzalez Vega.

That said, heres when to use topical treatment instead

If you have persistent acne, then its time to ditch pimple patches and instead opt for a topical treatment, Gonzalez Vega advises. If you have consistent acne, you need treatment consistently so that it goes away. Its not just oh I have pimples here and there, which is where those patches come into play, she explains.

TL;DR, you cant just put patches all over your darn face. Topicals allow you to spread the treatment all over your complexion if need be, something thats not possible when using microdose pimple patch treatments.

All that said, no matter what kind of acne you have, Birchbox has a product to help you heal it. (If you want to! Theres nothing inherently wrong with acne, yah know?) Keep scrolling.

For Pimple Patches: Hero Cosmetics Pimple Patches

Whether you need a patch with hydrocolloid (for healing), salicylic acid (for getting under the skins surface), or niacinamide (for smoothing its surface down), Birchbox carries (nearly) the entire line of Hero Cosmetics Pimple Patches that you can order straight from our site. Plus, at 18 dollars max and roughly 36 patches per box, theyre pretty darn affordable, too, and will last for a decent amount of time.

For Topical Treatment (And A Little Bit Of Everything Else): Peter Thomas Roth Acne Clear Essentials Kit

If you want both a pimple patch and a spot treatment at your disposal, this acne essentials kit by Peter Thomas Roth will do just the trick. It has basically everything youd need to tackle your acne: patches, topical treatment, cleanser, moisturizer, correcting pads, and more. And yep, at 35 dollars, its basically a steal.

Okay so, now that youre equipped with all the info from an expert derm on pimple patches and more, its time to add some of these products to your cart and start your acne healing journey, stat. Happy skincare shopping.


Megan Gustashaw

Megan Gustashaw is a freelance writer and editorial consultant based in Austin, Texas. With a focus on men’s and women’s fashion, beauty and lifestyle, she has written features for both established fashion brands and leading digital publications including GQ, Glamour, Architectural Digest and more.