Clean the area with gentle cleanser and apply a spot treatment to help reduce inflammation. Avoid touching or picking at the area to prevent further irritation.
After popping a pimple, it’s important to take proper care to prevent further irritation and promote healing of the affected area. Firstly, gently clean the area with a mild cleanser and warm water to remove any remaining pus or bacteria. Then, apply a spot treatment containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide to help reduce inflammation and prevent the spread of acne-causing bacteria.
One common mistake people make is actually picking or squeezing the pimple before it’s ready. This can actually worsen the inflammation and lead to scarring. As dermatologist Dr. Joshua Zeichner advises, “Don’t mess with your pimples. If you do, you can worsen the inflammation, introduce new bacteria, and potentially cause a scar.”
It’s also important to avoid touching the affected area as much as possible, as our hands can carry bacteria that can further aggravate the acne. Additionally, be mindful of the products you’re using on your skin, as certain harsh ingredients like alcohol or fragrances can strip the skin of its natural oils and exacerbate acne.
Here’s a helpful table summarizing some do’s and don’ts for post-pimple care:
|Clean the area with a gentle cleanser||Pick or squeeze the pimple|
|Apply a spot treatment with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide||Touch the affected area unnecessarily|
|Use non-comedogenic (non-pore-clogging) skincare products||Use harsh or fragranced skincare products|
|Keep your hands off your face||Forget to moisturize the area to prevent dryness|
As the saying goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” In order to reduce the likelihood of getting pimples in the first place, aim to maintain a consistent skincare routine that includes gentle cleansing, exfoliating, and regular moisturization. With proper care, your skin can look and feel its best.
Other viewpoints exist
After you’ve popped the pimple, wash your face and hands a second time with antibacterial soap, and then apply a small amount of alcohol to the remains of the blemish—this will help keep bacteria from repopulating it.
See the answer to “What should I do after popping a pimple?” in this video
In her video “I Didn’t Pop My Pimple & What Happened (TIMELINE),” the YouTuber discusses the benefits of not popping pimples and allowing them to naturally progress. She documents two experiences where pimples improved significantly over time without intervention, and suggests moisturizing with a vitamin C cream to improve any redness left behind. While this method may not work for everyone, she encourages viewers to give it a try during quarantine and take pictures of their progress to determine if it is effective for them.