Benzoyl peroxide soap is a popular treatment used to combat acne. The main ingredient is benzoyl peroxide, which is also incorporated in many other skin products such as facial scrubs, facial cleansers, gels, lotions, and even toners. Benzoyl peroxide is usually the treatment of choice for acne cases which are mild to moderate.
What makes benzoyl peroxide soap work? How does the main ingredient work?
Basically, benzoyl peroxide kills the bacteria that is responsible for the formation of acne. This bacteria is known as Propionibacteria acnes, or P. acnes, and they thrive in environments where there is little or no oxygen. What benzoyl peroxide does then is to introduce oxygen into the pores, resulting in the death of the bacteria. More than killing the acne-causing bacteria, though, benzoyl peroxide also helps reduce oil on the skin. It is also known to help with the removal of dead skin cells, which clog the pores.
Benzoyl peroxide soaps come in many different packages and strengths. In general, the higher the concentration of the main ingredient in the soap, the more effective it is against acne. However, there are certain precautions that one should take when using benzoyl peroxide soap. While it is generally effective, there are certain skin types that may not react well with the main ingredient. Also, care must be taken to follow the instructions included in the packaging. It is better to apply the soap to the affected areas only as irritation may occur in otherwise healthy skin. Thorough rinsing is necessary as well, since benzoyl peroxide left on the skin may result in irritation.
While benzoyl peroxide soap is available over the counter, it is always a good idea to consult a dermatologist to determine if it is the best treatment for your condition.