Me and acne go WAY back. I think it was sophomore year of high school when we first met. It was not until over ten years, hundreds of dollars, and countless OTC products and prescriptions later that I found my Holy Grail of acne-fighting products: Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash 10% Benzoyl Peroxide!
Note: post contains affiliate links that may provide compensation to help support the blog at no added cost to you
At first I thought it was just going to be the normal hormonal teenager experience that clears up with a little Proactiv, but no. To put it simply, acne sucks. Big time. I know many people have been through it: the panic when you break out before a big event or not wanting to leave the house because you are so embarrassed… Been there. I get it.
One of the worst parts was the frustration of feeling so hopeless, like I was the one person who nothing is going to work on. I tried everything: birth control, OTC topicals and about every prescription out there. I tried pretty much anything ending in a –cycline, retinols, Differin, Duac…you name it, I tried it. I even tried Accutane.
My Experience with Accutane
For those of you who don’t know, Accutane is a super strong drug that is often the last resort of acne medications that they say will get rid of acne in nearly everyone. Dermatologist Dr. Berson says, “Accutane has an over 80% success rate, and most patients will only need one four- to five-month cycle of the drug to be cured.” No “significantly reduce the appearance of” but “cured”?! I thought this was the answer.
Now, again, Accutane is no joke with some very serious potential side effects. Read more here or here. It can cause birth defects in pregnant women so you have to be on birth control, take blood tests, and sign a waiver that you won’t get pregnant when on it… yeah, not messing around. Some people even say that it causes them to have horrible depression. Thankfully, I didn’t have that side effect, but it was a pretty rough experience.
Accutane stops oil production in your skin so your face, your lips, everything gets SO DRY. And pretty much the only thing that helped was slathering my face with Vaseline, and let’s be honest, that’s not a good look. So, fast forward six months of taking the pills touted as the most effective acne treatment and telling myself it would all be worth it because my acne would be gone…it wasn’t. Don’t get me wrong, I know many people who did see great results with Accutane, but it did not work for me.
How Panoxyl Changed Everything
Now I don’t want to be too dramatic here…my acne was not the worst you’ve seen by any means but it would just never go away. That is, until I found it…the one, the only…Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash 10% Benzoyl Peroxide (make sure you get the 10%, not 4% version), which is pretty much the highest concentration you can get without a prescription and read my tips below.
3 Ways Benzoyl Peroxide Fights Acne:
- Helps reduce inflammation
- Helps unclog pores
- Prevents new blemishes from forming
Now, its important that you don’t overdo it so make sure you read my tips below. I have very sensitive skin, but I followed the tips below and did not have any problems. Remember to always review the directions and warnings on the product as well and discontinue if you have a reaction.
How to use Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash:
- Start small and slow to let your skin get used to it. I recommend beginning with about a pea-size amount and washing your face with it every other day (only at night) for the first week or two.
- It will stain any colored towels or clothing it gets on so make sure you dry your face with a white towel and wearing an old t-shirt or something.
- Very important! Make sure you moisturize after washing at night. I use Cerave Moisturizing Lotion and love how light yet effective it is. More on this brand below.
- After a week or two, if your skin hasn’t had any adverse reactions, increase the frequency to washing every night with it. If your skin gets too dry or red, you can back off to every other night again or 4 times per week.
- As time passed, I could start to use a bit more of the product without having any problems with extreme dryness since my skin got used to it. If you do get a bit dry just reapply your Cerave moisturizer.
Now you may be asking what I do in the morning if I don’t use Panoxyl. Below is my full skincare regimen. You may be shocked by how simple it is, but I believe that we tend to overcomplicate our skincare regimen; since I have sensitive skin, using too many products can cause redness and irritation.
My daily skincare regimen:
- In the morning, I wash my face with CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser. Cerave products were developed with dermatologists and replaces the vital ceramides naturally found in our skin that can get stripped away. It is super gentle and even endorsed for people with eczema. Here’s a coupon as well.
- After washing, I moisturize with my Cerave Moisturizing Lotion.
- I work out in the evening, so if I have been wearing any makeup, I will wipe it off with a gentle Pond’s cleansing towelettes before my workout. These are also good if you have been working out in the yard all day and need a mid day skin refresh while still being gentle on your skin.
- Wash with Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash at night (see above) and moisturize.
Success with Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash:
Following these simple steps, I have had amazing success with Panoxyl! I’d say that I started to see results fairly quickly, but it probably took 2-3 months to where my skin was fully acclimated to the product and consistently clear.
Again, it is very important to use moisturizer like Cerave after washing since your face will get too dry if you do not. If you don’t, your skin will think it needs to produce more oil to make up for it and that can lead to breakouts. If you are still finding it too overdrying, you can try Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash with just 4% benzoyl peroxide.
I still get the occasional zit on my forehead or jawline around my period (aren’t hormones wonderful?), but nothing like it was. These days it feels like even the ones I do get will improve practically overnight. It really has been a life-changing product and to think I could have skipped all the tears, antibiotics, and prescription drugs and just popped by the local drugstore!
I realize that everyone’s skin is different so I would not be so naïve to think that just because Panoxyl Foaming Acne Wash 10% Benzoyl Peroxide worked for me, it will be the perfect product to cure everyone’s acne. BUT it is absolutely worth a shot given how easy and inexpensive it is to try. If you decide to buy at the store instead, here is a coupon from Panoxyl.
And that is really what this blog is all about…sharing my experiences so that y’all can benefit, saving you time and money. So, this feels like a very fitting end to the first She Tried What review!