Have you ever tried soaps to deal with your ugly acne? Yes, we are serious! ‘Acne-fighting’ soaps are a thing! You can get rid of pesky acne and breakouts with the help of good, old soaps, and it works! However, the soaps intended for acne and pimples differ from regular ones. They mainly comprise ingredients that are capable of combating acne-causing bacteria. So, if you are yet to give acne soaps a try, here is your chance to pick one for yourself. Read on to know about the 10 best acne soaps in India that can give you flawless skin sans breakouts and blemishes.
What is Acne?
Your skin has millions of pores, which are the openings of hair follicles comprising hair shafts and sebaceous glands. As the sebaceous glands secrete sebum and lubricate the skin, the skin remains soft and supple. However, there are times when these pores on the skin get clogged due to the excess secretion of sebum, accumulation of dead cells, and/or buildups of dirt, grime, and bacteria. As a result, your skin develops acne.
You can find acne anywhere on the body, including the face, neck, shoulders, chest, and back. Severe acne can be painful and may sometimes lead to permanent scarring. It may also cause emotional distress by affecting your self-esteem. However, there are several home remedies and treatments for acne that can help you get rid of the issue effectively.
Though acne is not life-threatening, it is the most common skin condition experienced by Americans (1).
What Causes Acne?
Some factors can trigger the development of acne and breakouts by making the sebaceous glands overactive. These include (2):
- Changes in hormonal levels in the body during puberty or pregnancy
- Certain medications (corticosteroids, specific birth control pills)
- Bad food habits (too much intake of refined sugar or carbohydrates)
- High levels of stress
Types of Acne
Acne can be of different types, but they are primarily categorized into the following way (3):
1. Non-Inflammatory Acne:
These are also called ‘comedones’ like blackheads (open comedones), whiteheads (closed comedones), etc., that do not swell up and respond well to OTC treatments like salicylic acid.
2. Inflammatory Acne
These lesions are swollen, painful, and more likely to cause scarring. Usually, they are hard to get rid of, but oral or topical antibiotics along with benzoyl-peroxide and topical retinoids may help combat it successfully. The most common inflammatory acne include pimples, papules, pustules, nodules, cysts, etc.
What are Acne Soaps?
When it comes to using soaps to treat acne-affected skin, it is essential to pick the right product specifically made for oily and acne-prone skin. A good acne soap should be capable of eliminating dirt and excess oil from your skin efficiently, thereby keeping it squeaky clean. Make sure that your preferred soap is strong enough to do that. Here are a few more essential points to keep in mind about acne soaps:
- Skip foaming soaps that make a lot of suds as your acne-affected skin needs exactly the opposite to big bubbles and rich lathers. They will dry out your pores and make them narrower by tightening the skin around them, thereby leaving the product stuck into the pores.
- Soaps aiming at acne removal should not contain alcohol, harsh chemicals, or scratchy abrasive ingredients. Instead, a perfect acne-cleansing soap should produce a creamy lather with very small bubbles. As tiny bubbles do not force the product into the pores, the lather can easily be rinsed off the skin (4).
- A soap containing exfoliators, such as alpha-hydroxy acids, is also suitable for smoothing rough, patchy areas of the skin.
Your acne soap should also come with emollients. Check the ingredient list of your chosen product to find names, such as glycerin, petrolatum, mineral oils, lanolin, etc., so that your skin does not lose its natural moisture while getting rid of acne. Most of the medicated acne-fighting soaps also contain special ingredients (salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, sodium sulfacetamide, etc.), which take good care of the skin while combating acne.
How to Find Right Acne Soaps?
Before we bring you the list of the most effective acne soaps available in India, here are 3 easy steps to choose the right one:
1. Know the Root Cause
The key to finding a suitable acne soap is figuring out the root cause of your acne. While the topical application of the soap works as a temporary solution for acne, knowing and targeting the root cause first will help you make the most of it. So, change poor food habits, embrace a healthy lifestyle, exercise regularly, and follow the proper skincare routine to combat all acne-causing factors internally. This will, indeed, help you find out the triggers and pick the most effective soap to combat it.
2. Identify Your Skin Type
Know your skin type before you make a purchase. This is highly important as applying the wrong product to acne-prone skin can cause adverse effects in no time. As a result, you may end up making your acne even worse. Hence, make sure that you evaluate your skin before evaluating the right soap for yourself.
3. Research Thoroughly
Now, take time to research thoroughly and find the best soap based on nature as well as the requirements of your skin. We have summed up the selection of ideal acne soaps below:
- Dry Skin: Try soaps with moisturizers, humectants, emollients, and other hydrating agents.
- Oily Skin: Look for potent ingredients like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and sodium sulfacetamide.
- Sensitive Skin: Stick to soaps that contain gentle, non-irritating ingredients and anti-inflammatories.
- For Whiteheads: Choose soaps with benzoyl peroxide.
- For Cystic Acne: Go for a soap that is rich in sulfur.
Top 10 Highly Effective Acne Soaps in India
Acne soaps come in all price ranges to suit your skin type and treat your breakouts. Check out here the list of 10 most effective acne soaps available in India:
1. Dermadew Acne Soap
The Dermadew Acne Soap by Hedge & Hedge works wonderfully for oily, acne-prone skin. Containing emollients, moisturizers, and nourishers, it leaves the skin soft while drying acne.
- An extremely gentle oil-based cleanser
- It contains both natural and synthetic anti-acne actives
- Major ingredients used are salicylic acid, tea tree oil, aloe vera extract, olive extract, willow extract, glycerin, and manuka concentrate
- Cleanses the skin effectively
- Does not over-dry the skin during the process
- It leaves the skin clean, soft, and supple
- Dries out existing acne fast
- Fades out acne marks over time
- Prevents the occurrence of new acne
- Creates a rich lather
- It has a beautiful yet mild aroma
Price: Rs. 175 for 75 gm.
2. Acnil Pimple Care Soap
Use the Acnil Pimple Care Soap to wash your face twice a day (thrice for very oily skin) to open clogged pores and counter bacterial attacks. It also keeps the skin soft and smooth.
- An antiseptic soap designed for pimple care
- It contains sulfur, salicylic acid, thiosopol, sodium silicate, and isopropyl myristate (IPM)
- Controls too much oil secretion
- It prevents the occurrence of acne
- Roots out existing acne
- It helps open up clogged pores
- Fights against acne-causing bacteria
- It does not cause excessive dryness
- Strengthens the natural moisture barrier of the skin
- Keeps the skin hydrated and soft
- Tones and refreshes the skin
- Promotes smooth, blemish-free clear skin
- Develops a rich lather
- It has a natural floral fragrance
Price: Rs. 60 for 75 gm.
3. Acnelak Pimple Care Soap
New Acnelak Pimple Care Soap has an improved formula that can be used on oily and acne-prone skin 2-3 times a day. It maintains oil levels in the skin and kills acne bacteria.
- Oil-free formula with antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties
- Comprises 0.5% triclosan, aloe vera extract, palmarosa oil, lemon oil, tea tree oil, zinc oxide, propylene glycol, and triethanolamine lauryl sulfate
- Rids the skin of excess sebum with oil-dissolving ingredients
- Weeds out acne-causing bacteria trapped in pores
- Prevents and reduces acne scars
- It leaves the skin smooth, clean, and clear
- Hydrates the skin thoroughly
- Nourishes it from deep inside
- It leaves it completely clean.
- Enhances the texture of the skin
- Reduces redness, swelling, and tenderness
- It helps in soothing inflammation
- Heals open acne blemishes quickly
Price: Rs. 85 for 75 gm.
4. SebaMed Clear Face Cleansing Bar
The SebaMed Clear Face Cleansing Bar is a perfect deal for healthy skin. Being rich in natural moisturizing factors is safe for people with acne-prone and sensitive skin.
- A soap-free, ultra-mild formula developed by dermatologists
- Features a natural moisturizing complex of vitamin E, lecithin, vitamins, and amino acids
- It helps rebalance the stressed skin
- Eliminates skin impurities effectively
- Removes excess sebum through deep pore cleansing
- Combats the proliferation of acne-causing bacteria
- It prevents the formation of acne, pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads
- Maintains the skin pH at 5.5
- Zaps out free radicals from the skin
- It does not make the skin feel dry or stretched
- Protects and supports the natural moisture barrier of the skin
- Keeps the skin fresh, soft, and supple
- Free from oils, colorants, parabens, paraffin, propylene glycol, phthalates, etc.
- Safe for very sensitive or allergy-prone skin
Price: Rs. 189 for 100 gm.
5. Richfeel Calendula Soap For Acne
The Richfeel Calendula Soap is a time-tested and potent antiseptic formula that quickly gives acne-free, radiant skin. Wash your face with this soap twice a day for the best results.
- A gentle, non-dehydrating, antiseptic formula
- Infused with calendula extracts
- Thoroughly removes impurities
- Visibly reduces excess oil on the skin’s surface
- It helps fight acne-causing bacteria
- Soothes inflammation, irritation, skin burns, and swelling
- It keeps the skin moist even in winters
- Protects the skin from oxidative damage
- It gives a healthy, balanced, and even-toned skin
- Enhances the complexion
- Helps in removing suntans, blemishes, and acne scars
- Perfect for daily deep cleansing
Price: Rs. 89 for 75 gm.
6. Lacne Facial Cleansing Bar for Acne-Prone Skin
Though not available easily, the Lacne Facial Cleansing Bar is highly beneficial for oily and acne-prone skin. It also gives healthy skin with emollients, moisturizers, and nourishers.
- A medicated retinoid product
- Fortified with both natural and synthetic anti-acne actives
- Used for curing mild to moderate acne, pimples, and blackheads
- Contains aloe vera extract, willow extract, vitamin E, manuka concentrate, tea tree oil, olive oil, glycerine, triclosan, salicylic acid, and zinc
- Controls the overproduction and keratinization of sebum
- Ensures faster healing of acne
- Reduces inflammation and swelling
- It gives a soft, smooth, supple, and fresh feeling
- Suitable for all skin types
Price: Rs. 171 for 75 gm.
7. Vaadi Herbals Becalming Tea Tree Anti-Acne Soap
The Vaadi Herbals Becalming Tea Tree Anti-Acne Soap is handmade, antimicrobial soap. It not only keeps acne and infections at bay but also gives blemish-free, flawless skin.
- A handmade, organic-certified anti-acne soap
- Extremely gentle on the skin
- Has high concentrations of essential oils (tea tree oil, clove oil), turmeric, and citrus extract
- Unclogs skin pores by removing dirt, excess sebum, and germs
- Kills acne-causing bacteria
- Cures skin infections effectively
- Aids in fading acne and pigmentation marks
- It gives blemish-free, flawless skin over time
- Protects and nourishes the skin
- Free of parabens and harsh chemical
- Highly recommended by doctors for treating acne
Price: Rs. 54 for 75 gm.
8. Azac Multi-Action Acne Soap
If you want a simple but potent acne-fighting soap, go for the Azac Multi-Action Acne Soap. Besides treating the existing acne, it prevents scarring and the formation of new acne.
- A pH-controlled, cosmetically acceptable formulation
- The only soap with azelaic acid (2.5%) and wheat germ oil (0.5 %)
- Checks on the excess oiliness of the skin
- It does not dry out the skin in the process
- It helps in destroying acne-causing bacteria
- Cleanses the hair follicles effectively
- It prevents the formation of scars
- Lightens the marks left by acne
Price: Rs. 95 for 75 gm.
9. Lushveda Anti-Acne Tea Tree, Neem & Clay Soap
Take the overall care of your oily skin with the Lushveda Anti-Acne, Tea Tree, Neem & Clay Soap. It has a unique luxurious blend of ingredients that gives flawless skin sans acne.
- A handcrafted, natural, cold-pressed soap
- It has a unique luxurious blend of tea tree oil, neem (leaf extract and essential oil), castor oil, virgin coconut oil, shea butter, and French green clay
- Cleanses the skin deeply
- Refines clogged skin pores
- Regulates sebum production
- Treats acne and its scars
- Enhances blood circulation in skin cells
- Promotes cell renewal
- Heals all sorts of blemishes
- Reduces inflammation
- Increases the natural moisture level of the skin
- It brings out its natural glow
- Free of synthetic chemicals and parabens
Price: Rs. 185 for 115 gm.
10. Soulflower Pure Tea Tree Soap
The Soulflower Pure Tea Tree Soap is a premium, organic, medicinal beauty soap for daily use on oily and acne-prone skin. It will make you look and feel good inside out naturally.
- A 100% pure, vegan, natural, and extra-gentle soap
- A traditional handmade product made by using the cold-pressed method
- Active ingredients are tea tree oil, basil oil, castor oil, olive oil, coconut oil, palm oil, palm kernel oil, and vitamin E
- It helps in controlling excess sebum
- Keeps the skin well-moisturized
- Provides a single solution for antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial protection
- Treats acne and blemishes effectively
- Free of SLS, chemicals, fragrance, and synthetic colors
Price: Rs. 300 for 150 gm.
How to Apply an Acne Soap?
- Cleanse both of your hands with a cleanser before applying the acne soap.
- You can either apply the soap directly to your facial skin or make a lather with your clean fingertips and apply it to the face to steer clear of bacteria.
- Let the soap work for the next 15-30 seconds.
- Rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Finally, pat your skin dry with a clean towel.
Always do a patch test before using an acne soap for the very first time. If applying a tiny dab to your inside forearm does not cause a skin reaction within 12 hours, then it is totally safe for you.
Is There Any Side Effect of Acne Soaps?
If you fail to choose the right acne soap for your skin, you may end up experiencing lingering after-effects like scaliness, feeling of tightness, redness, irritation, hives, etc. Make sure that you seek the opinion of a dermatologist and switch to a gentler soap or cleanser to prevent the issue from getting exacerbated.
When our skin pores get clogged by excess sebum, dead cells, and dirt buildups, we develop acne. It can be both non-inflammatory and inflammatory based on the root causes and appearances. Hormones, medications, genetics, foods, stress, etc. can lead to acne on the face, neck, shoulders, chest, and back. Severe acne may cause pain and even permanent scarring. While there are many home remedies, topical drugs, and other medicinal acne treatments, using soaps specifically designed for treating oily and acne-prone skin may also help. A good acne soap eliminates dirt and excess oil from the skin completely to keep it squeaky clean. It feels gentle and non-irritating on the skin while producing a creamy lather with very small bubbles. Common ingredients to look for in acne-fighting soaps are salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, sodium sulfacetamide, emollients, glycerin, petrolatum, mineral oils, lanolin, etc. But make sure that you know the root cause, identify your skin type and do your own research before picking one for yourself.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can Standard Bar Soaps Help Acne?
Standard bar soaps are often overly drying for the skin. This may clog the skin pores and give you breakouts by making the sebaceous glands in the skin overactive.
Is Medicated Soap Good for Pimples?
Medicated soaps that come with acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid, sodium sulfacetamide, benzoyl peroxide, etc., can improve the appearance of skin by clearing up pimples and acne effectively.
Is Ice Good for Pimples?
The anti-inflammatory properties of ice help in reducing the inflammation caused by pimples. This also gradually reduces the pimples’ size, thereby making it disappear over time.
What Foods Cause Acne?
Refined grains, refined sugar, highly processed foods, greasy foods, certain dairy products, soda, fruit juices, etc., are known to be the triggers of acne.
What is best for body acne – benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid?
Benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid are widely used in acne products. While salicylic acid is more suitable for sensitive skin, Benzoyl peroxide is generally recommended for normal skin. Although salicylic acid is mild, it still has exfoliant properties and may cause adverse reactions. In this case, it is safe to use sodium hypochlorite, which is suitable for all skin types.
- “Acne: Tips for Managing“, AAD.org
- “What Causes Acne?“, Healthline.com
- “Types of Acne and How to Treat Them“, Healthline.com
- “Using Soap to Cure Acne – It Really Works!“, FacingAcne.com