Acne Treatment with OTC Medications – Plainview Dermatologist

NYC Dermatologist Dr Jeff Ellis

By Jeffrey Ellis, MD

Hicksville, New York 11801

Physician (MD, DO), Dermatology


Nonprescription acne medications can help many patients – and trying them first can be a great first step in treating acne.

If you try out an over-the-counter (OTC) acne product for 2-4 weeks, and find that your skin is not yet clear, then it is time to call a dermatologist.

We have many tools and techniques that we can customize to your needs to clear your skin and get you looking your best!

Visit Dr. Jeff Ellis’ website at Belaray Dermatology.

About Over-the-Counter Medications for Acne

A recent Los Angeles Times article, “Come on, it’s just acne” by Dr. Valerie Ulene covered her experience seeking acne treatment for her teenage daughter.

First she described their efforts with at-home and over-the-counter (OTC) acne treatments and pointed out that Americans spend $330 million a year on nonprescription acne remedies.

The article stated that most dermatologists think that non-prescription topical acne medications might be advised for the first line treatment of mild acne, but that only benzoyl peroxide has sufficient evidence to support its claims as an acne treatment. (Others, such as sulfur, resorcinol or “natural” remedies, are lacking this evidence).

Dr. Ulene concluded that in order to combat acne, her daughter needed a dermatologist. Her acne had progressed beyond what over-the-counter products (even good ones) could manage, and that a combination of prescription medications was required to clear up her skin.

“When it comes to anything beyond mild acne, doctors hold the cards. The most effective medications all require a prescription.”