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How To Get Rid Of Acne, According To A Dermatologist

Here are the most effective ways to get clear skin for every budget.
PHOTO: istockphoto

If you feel like commercially available products aren't solving your pimple problems, we researched and verified with a dermatologist the best ways to get rid of acne. Here, we detailed its causes, the safest professional treatments to get, and even the products we can use at home. With our guide, you'll be able to pick the most suitable method that will get you clear skin in the safest and fastest way possible.

What causes acne/pimples to form in the first place?

Yanee Vasquez, M.D. of Aesthetic Science Clinic explained that women can get acne from hormonal imbalances (stress, late nights, and monthly periods) and from an irritation to a beauty product. 

How do we properly get rid of acne/pimples?

While popping pimples by yourself seems like a "quick" way to get rid of an angry zit, she stressed why it's a big no-no: "Self-management of acne such as popping a pimple is not recommended because it can lead to further irritation and inflammation with post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation or what is commonly known as acne marks," she warned.


To avoid ruining your skin, it's best that we leave it to the experts to get rid of acne or pimples. Below, the most effective acne and pimple solutions you can turn to, depending on your skin's need and budget:

How to get rid of acne and pimples

Anti-Acne Facial

When to get it: If you have oily skin with mild to moderate acne.

Where to get it: Skin Station; Flawless Face and Body Clinic; dermatological clinics

Why it works: It uses products that clean deep-seated dirt in the pores. It also comes with a blackhead, whitehead, and pimple extraction service done by an esthetician.

How much it costs: P900 to P1,500

How fast you can see results: You need three monthly treatments and up to see results.

Acne Surgery

When to get it: If you've got a recurring, cystic acne problem.

Where to get it: Dermatological clinics

Why it works: "Getting treated by a dermatologist is the best way to deal with an acne problem. We often suggest comedone extraction, acne surgery, and the use of topical and/or oral anti-acne medications," Dr. Vasquez said.

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How much it costs: P1,800 to P3,500, depending on the clinic

How fast you can see results: Two months and up, with consistent maintenance

Insulated Microneedling

When to get it: You want your cystic acne gone for good.

Where to get it: Skin Philosophie by Nikita Talens, M.D.

Why it works: It selectively destroys hyperactive oil glands and prevents acne from coming back. You'll need at least three sessions of this treatment to score clearer skin.

How much it costs: P12,000 per session

How fast you can see results: One to two months

Fractional Needling Therapy with Retinol

When to get it: You have cystic acne but are also concerned with signs of aging.

Where to get it: Flawless Face and Body clinics

Why it works: It uses Vitamin A serum to fight acne, wrinkles, and sagging skin.

How much it costs: P4,500 per session

How fast you can see results: One to two months


Pimple or KI Injections

When to get it: If you have a pimple you want it gone ASAP.

Where to get it: Dermatological clinics

Why it works: Kristine Batungbacal, M.D. of Flawless Face and Body Clinics divulged that all of their doctors use diluted Triamcinolone acetonide suspension to reduce the redness of the spot. "A patient may have this treatment each time he/she has an inflammatory pimple. Usually, we can do another injection after a week if the inflammation has not completely subsided," she said. She also suggested that one should undergo a facial before the injection.


Dr. Batungbacal also warned of possible scarring. "Yes, it may lead to a scar and sometimes, discoloration (post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation). This is why the preparation of the suspension and injection technique is important," she disclosed.

How much it costs: P100 to 150 per pimple

How fast you can see results: One day

Spot Treatment Products

Where to get it: Beauty stores and drugstores

What can work: Dr. Vasquez advised that if access to proper treatment is difficult, look for a product with benzoyl peroxide and apply it to the area of the affected lesion. 


Benzac Gel, P350 to P850, depending on the benzoyl peroxide concentration, Watsons

How fast you can see results: Three to five days

How can you make sure that you won't get acne scars?

The answer is simple: Have it checked by a professional as soon as it rears its ugly head. "Treat or manage your acne before complications such as acne scars and acne marks set in," Dr. Vasquez recommended. She also said that management of acne is a long-term process and will require several visits to see significant improvement.

But when you already have pimple marks, you can try chemical peels, laser treatments, and micro-needling to lessen the appearance of scars. Here are some of the services you can try:

Anti-Acne Peel 

Where to get it: Skin Philosophie by Nikita Talens, M.D.

What is it: A chemical peel that smoothens the surface of the skin while managing acne.

How much it costs: P1,200


Spanish Peel

Where to get it: Aesthetic Science Clinic

What is it: A peel that reveals a new, smoother skin surface with a downtime of three to five days. Apart from acne marks, it can also reduce the appearance of large pores, dark spots, wrinkles, and fine lines.

How much it costs: P3,000 per session

Fraxel Laser

Where to get it: Flawless Face and Body Clinic and other dermatological clinics

What is it: A laser treatment that repairs acne scars, wrinkles, small warts, discoloration, syringoma, sebaceous hyperplasia, and other small skin lesions.

How much does it cost: Starts at P5,000 per session, depending on the clinic

TriFractional Treatment

Where to get it: Skin Philosophie by Nikita Talens, M.D.

What is it: TriFractional radiofrequency treatment boosts skin surface renewal. It is then followed up with micro-needling when needed.

How much it costs: P10,000 per session

Fire-Xel Skin Rejuvenation

Where to get it: Aesthetic Science Clinic


What is it: An advanced laser treatment that boosts the repair and growth of collagen and elastin fibers. It can diminish acne scars, fine lines, wrinkles, superficial pigmentation, and sagging skin. You need to have an average of six sessions done every three to four weeks for best results.

How much it costs: P5,800 per session or P30,000/6-session package

The Bottom Line

It's always best to trust a dermatologist when it comes to treating acne or pimples. It might seem expensive but look at it as an investment. It's better to cash in a big chunk of money right away for a surefire solution rather than to spend a few pesos multiple times (that will accumulate in the long run) with a hit-or-miss fix.


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