Pimple patches may look like small bandages, but they do so much more than cover up a whitehead. These adhesive stickers are hydrocolloid dressings, similar to those used to treat wounds. They are ideal for draining all the gunk out of a pimple without irritating or drying skin. Many are also coated with acne-fighting ingredients, like salicylic acid or tea tree oil. As no two pimples are the same, brands have started to offer pimple patches in different sizes to treat everything from tiny eruptions to full-blown zits.
Pimple patches are usually applied after cleansing and before bed so they can work their magic while you sleep. But some are invisible enough to be worn during the day. No matter when the acne sticker is applied, it will help improve blemishes because it keeps acne-fighting ingredients pressed into skin. Medical esthetician Jordana Mattioli says this increases the efficacy of the treatment so we see results faster.
Unlike some drippy acne creams that can stain and discolor clothes, pimple patches keep the medication under the protective sticker. And since the treatment is applied only where needed, it’s less likely to cause irritation. You’re also less inclined to pick at your pimple when it’s covered up by a patch.
Intrigued? Scroll through the gallery above to see some of the best pimple patches that help heal zits STAT.