Which are the best body washes and soaps for acne-prone skin?
Can you use acne face wash on your body?
Those are just two of the questions we’ll answer today in our reviews.
To begin, let’s discuss which ingredients are best for treating acne on the body.
- What You Need to Get Rid of Body Acne
- What about Tea Tree Oil?
- How to Clear up Body Acne
- Top Body Washes & Soaps for Acne-Prone Skin
- pHisoderm Anti-Blemish Body Wash
- Neutrogena Body Clear Acne Treatment Body Wash
- Mountain Falls Clarifying Body Wash
- Solimo Clarifying Pink Grapefruit Body Wash
- Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap
- Eau Thermale Avene Cleanance Cleansing Gel
- Humane Face & Body Acne Wash, 10% Benzoyl Peroxide
- Dr Song Benzoyl Peroxide Wash 10%
- Era Organics Tea Tree Oil Cleanser
- The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Body Wash
- CLn SportWash
- Safe House Naturals Detox Face and Body Wash
- Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap for Acne-Prone Skin
- Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Bar Soap Tea Tree
- SAL3 Acne Bar Soap – 3% Salicylic Acid, 10% Sulfur Body Wash
- African Black Soap
- Aspen Kay Naturals Dead Sea Mud Soap
- Keika Charcoal Black Soap Bar
- CLn Physician-Developed Therapeutic Body Wash
- Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser
- Free & Clear Liquid Cleanser
- Sebamed Liquid Body Wash, for Sensitive Skin
What You Need to Get Rid of Body Acne
Three of the best ingredients for clearing up acne include benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and sulfur.
Each one has pros and cons.
Benzoyl peroxide clears up breakouts by killing the acne that causes pimples.
It works quickly, too.
In just a few days, you’ll see fewer blemishes.
The cons include dryness, redness, irritated skin, and bleaching of fabric dye.
If you overdo it with the benzoyl peroxide, your skin is likely to peel and swell (1).
To avoid problems, start with a weaker concentration, like 5%, or don’t use it every day at first.
Salicylic acid unclogs pores and exfoliates the skin.
It reduces inflammation and shrinks pore size.
On the downside, it takes a few weeks to get acne under control.
It can make your skin sting and dry it out (2).
Sulfur stinks, but it’s a time-tested remedy for acne.
People have been using it for more than 2000 years to treat their skin (3).
It unclogs pores and sheds dead cells.
Like other remedies for acne, it can be very drying.
What about Tea Tree Oil?
Tea tree oil, also known as melaleuca, is a homeopathic remedy for skin problems like acne and athlete’s foot.
There’s evidence that it’s effective against blemishes, although it may work more slowly (4).
Never take it internally – only use it topically. It may cause a burning sensation and redness.
How to Clear up Body Acne
It’s easier to get rid of body acne or bacne when you use a body wash made to treat it.
For example, if you use a shower gel with benzoyl peroxide, let it sit on your skin for a few minutes before you rinse (5).
And don’t give up on your new salicylic acid body wash for at least a month because it needs time to make changes to your skin.
Then, follow these other tips to prevent pimples:
- Wear loose workout clothes (friction can worsen acne)
- Take a shower right after working out
- Put on clean, dry clothes
- Don’t scrub or pop pimples – be gentle to avoid infection and scarring
- Switch to oil-free non-comedogenic lotion
- If you can’t use body acne treatment products because of irritation, switch to a mild bath soap
- Avoid products with artificial fragrances and dyes because they could cause irritation
Now let’s look at the top soaps and shower gels for acne.
Top Body Washes & Soaps for Acne-Prone Skin
pHisoderm Anti-Blemish Body Wash
pHisoderm designed this body wash to be pH-balanced to protect your skin. When it’s not too acidic or too basic, it prevents dryness and irritation.
It contains 2% salicylic acid, the maximum concentration for over-the-the counter products. The salicylic acid sloughs off dead skin and opens up pores.
When your pores are clear, they won’t clog with bacteria and swell to form pimples. Your skin will stop producing extra oil.
Other ingredients include aloe, chamomile, and Vitamin E. These calm and strengthen the skin.
Neutrogena Body Clear Acne Treatment Body Wash
Neutrogena’s body wash is similar to their face wash as it has a pink grapefruit fragrance.
It’s been tested by dermatologists to clear up and prevent breakouts. It features Micro-Clear technology that sends the salicylic acid deep into pores to resolve the problem.
The formula also has Vitamin C from grapefruit extract. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that promotes healing and slows down aging.
Users like this formula because it lathers well, rinses easily, doesn’t leave a residue, and keeps their skin clear.
Mountain Falls Clarifying Body Wash
If you want the benefits of Neutrogena’s body wash without the price tag, try this knockoff. Like the original, it has 2% salicylic acid plus grapefruit extract.
Solimo Clarifying Pink Grapefruit Body Wash
And here is another knockoff of Neutrogena’s body wash made by Amazon’s company, Solimo.
Again, it features 2% salicylic acid and smells like grapefruit.
Mario Badescu A.H.A. Botanical Body Soap
Even Mario Badescu’s body soap smells like grapefruit.
It contains papaya, grapefruit, ginseng, and linden extracts.
The fruits provide the alpha-hydroxy acids that naturally exfoliate the skin.
Meanwhile, ginseng and linden moisturize and rejuvenate.
Eau Thermale Avene Cleanance Cleansing Gel
Avene’s Cleansing Gel builds on thermal spring water that’s rich in minerals. It adds zinc gluconate to reduce inflammation and monolaurin to regulate sebum.
Together, these components deep-cleanse the skin and remove excess oil and impurities.
It won’t strip the natural moisture or upset the pH balance.
Humane Face & Body Acne Wash, 10% Benzoyl Peroxide
Humane’s body wash is potent. It has 10% benzoyl peroxide, the maximum concentration you can buy over-the-counter.
It is not recommended for sensitive skin. On the other hand, it might be just what you need to get rid of moderate to severe acne.
The formula is vegan and free of parabens, sulfates, formaldehyde, propylene glycol, synthetic fragrances and dyes, petrolatum, GMO ingredients, and triclosan.
Try it, and if you don’t love it, contact the company for a full refund.
Dr Song Benzoyl Peroxide Wash 10%
Dr Song’s wash also has 10% benzoyl peroxide and comes with a 100% money-back guarantee.
If you don’t want to shower with it, you can use it as a spot treatment.
There are no artificial fragrances, sulfates, or parabens in it.
Era Organics Tea Tree Oil Cleanser
Era Organics puts several powerful natural ingredients in this cleanser.
Not only does it contain tea tree oil, but it also has aloe, goldenseal, burdock root, St. John’s wort, dandelion, and pomegranate seed oil.
It’s made in the USA and free of parabens, perfumes, and sulfates.
While that sounds nice, you might be wondering what those other ingredients can do for you.
For one, St. John’s wort is naturally antibacterial, and so is goldenseal.
Then, dandelion balances oily skin.
If you’re all about natural products, this one is definitely worth a try.
The Body Shop Tea Tree Skin Clearing Body Wash
The Body Shop makes a popular body wash with tea tree oil.
The oil is made from hand-harvested leaves grown in the foothills of Mount Kenya. It’s a Community Trade product that supports local farmers.
Each ingredient is explained on the label so that you understand what you’re getting.
CLn’s SportWash is made specifically for athletes. It’s antimicrobial to prevent acne, ingrown hairs, and fungal infections like jock itch.
It won’t discolor your towel, and it’s free of artificial fragrances and parabens.
Oddly though, one of the ingredients is sodium hypochlorite. Yes, you read that correctly – it’s bleach.
It turns out that diluted bleach can help clear up skin problems (6).
Instead of watering down the laundry bleach yourself, try this product instead.
For best results, massage it into your skin and wait two minutes before rinsing.
Safe House Naturals Detox Face and Body Wash
Are you a fan of essential oils? Then you may appreciate this body wash.
It contains several oils plus activated charcoal and bentonite clay.
The result is a skin-smoothing deep-cleansing experience with an invigorating fragrance.
You can try it for 30 days and get your money back in full if you aren’t satisfied.
Highlights include frankincense, clary sage, lavender, rosemary, eucalyptus, and tea tree oil. These are blended in a base of handmade liquid glycerin soap made from plant oils.
Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Liquid Soap for Acne-Prone Skin
If you love the tingly feeling of peppermint on your skin, you might enjoy Dr. Bronner’s liquid soap.
The ingredients are simple: coconut, olive, jojoba, and peppermint oils plus a potassium solution.
There’s nothing synthetic or artificial.
Even the bottle is 100% post-consumer recycled plastic.
Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Bar Soap Tea Tree
We know that not everyone loves liquid body washes. That’s why we included bar soap, too.
Dr. Bronner’s tea tree oil bars are surprisingly good at making lather and moisturizing the skin.
They have no artificial components, and everything is plant-based.
Moreover, each bar is packaged in 100% post-consumer recycled wrappers.
SAL3 Acne Bar Soap – 3% Salicylic Acid, 10% Sulfur Body Wash
The SAL3 soap combines salicylic acid with sulfur for the perfect acne-fighting product.
No, it doesn’t smell good. The natural scent is not masked by an artificial fragrance.
But the results are worth it as it treats acne as well as keratosis pilaris, psoriasis, rosacea, and winter itch.
If it’s too drying at first, skip a day between uses. Alternate with a milder non-comedogenic soap.
African Black Soap
Some people swear by African Black Soap. It gets rid of blackheads, whiteheads, and pimples. It also lessens oiliness.
It’s made from unrefined shea butter, cocoa butter, and palm oil. It also has plantain skin ash to remove impurities and provide gentle exfoliation.
Aspen Kay Naturals Dead Sea Mud Soap
If you can’t make it to Israel this year, bring the Dead Sea to your bathroom. The soap is made with pure mineral mud from Israel.
It works well for baths, washing your face, and also for shaving. The ingredients detoxify the skin.
Happily, it has a pleasant fragrance due to pure essential oils. These include lemongrass, eucalyptus, and peppermint.
Keika Charcoal Black Soap Bar
Keika’s black soap is larger than the average bar. But size doesn’t matter as much as the effects.
Using it is a spa-like experience.
It’s handmade from natural oils like coconut, palm, and sunflower.
But the black color comes from activated charcoal. The charcoal and bentonite clay exfoliate and absorb impurities.
The soap also has Himalayan pink salt and essential oils like tea tree, lemongrass, and peppermint.
CLn Physician-Developed Therapeutic Body Wash
Up to this point, we’ve reviewed medicated soaps to kill acne bacteria and unclog pores.
Now, let’s look at mild shower gels that won’t trigger acne in the first place.
CLn’s Therapeutic Body Wash is clinically-proven to diminish redness and heal dry skin. It’s good enough that the National Eczema Association awarded it the Seal of Acceptance.
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser
Cetaphil’s cleanser has won awards and is often recommended by dermatologists. You can use it on both your face and body as it removes makeup but won’t dry out the skin.
One of the best benefits is that your skin won’t feel tight or itchy after you wash. It won’t leave a residue, and it won’t strip the natural protective oil.
On the downside, it has parabens and a sulfate.
Free & Clear Liquid Cleanser
For the ultimate anti-allergy body wash, you need Vanicream’s Free and Clear Cleanser.
The list of chemicals it doesn’t contain is longer than the list of ingredients.
Interestingly, it proves that you don’t need much to keep your skin clean.
Sebamed Liquid Body Wash, for Sensitive Skin
Sebamed’s wash makes sure to remove excess oil and dirt without clogging pores or drying out your body.
It’s excellent if you’re trying to heal a nasty breakout, and the acne meds are causing irritation. It’s also good for psoriasis, rosacea, and eczema.
It has a pH value of 5.5, which is ideal for the skin. And it contains plenty of vitamins and moisturizing ingredients.
On the downside, it contains parabens. Happily, this is less of a risk as it’s not a leave-on product.
Get rid of body acne, starting with the way you bathe.
Switch to an acne-fighting soap and enjoy healthier skin.
Active ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid will kill acne bacteria and unclog pores.
Give your new body wash time to work as it may take a few days to a few weeks to clear up the problem.
Let us know in the comments below which one you tried and how it’s working for you.
1. https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a601026.html accessed November 19, 2019
2. https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a607072.html accessed November 19, 2019
3. https://www.acne.org/sulfur-for-acne.html by Dan Kern, published June 13, 2019, accessed November 19, 2019
4. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/acne/expert-answers/natural-acne-treatment/FAQ-20057915?p=1 by Brent Bauer, M.D, accessed November 19, 2019
5. https://www.aad.org/back-acne accessed November 19, 2019
6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3666086/ by Caitriona Ryan, et al., published April 26, 2013, accessed November 19, 2019