The 13 Best Acne Patches to Banish Pimples Fast

Pop ‘em on any time of day.

selection of some of the best acne patches including cosrx
(Image credit: Brittany Holloway-Brown/Future)

Popping a pimple may be satisfying (trust us, we get it)—but it’s a huge no-no. Picking at and pressing on whiteheads, cysts, or pus-filled breakouts is just one big ol' recipe for infection and scarring. So, exercise that willpower and pop on one of the best acne patches. These little stickers work like magic to absorb all the gunk from your pimple and promote a *much* faster healing process—they're the best spot treatment for acne

The biggest pimple patch pro? They can be worn around the clock. Some of our go-tos (cough cough COSRX) are not only invisible, but can also be layered underneath makeup. Others, like Starface, are so cute you’ll want to wear them out and about. Regardless of which pimple patch you decide to go with, just remember it needs to be placed on clean, dry skin. “Do not apply [acne patches] over makeup, serums, or moisturizer, as some skin textures cannot successfully absorb the active ingredients or keep the acne dots fully applied to the face with a layer of product under them,” explains Peace Out Skincare founder Enrico Frezza (opens in new tab)

So, without further ado, keep scrolling to shop the best acne patches out there, from hydrocolloid options to dots that fade post-inflammatory pigmentation. 

What to Look for in an Acne Patch

When picking the best acne patch for your skin, there are two things to consider: The ingredient list and the stage of your pimple. 

“There are different patches to help at different stages of the life cycle of a pimple, from its earliest stage to post-pimple marks,” says board-certified dermatologist Dr. Caroline Robinson. She recommends looking for hydrocolloid patches with ingredients like tea tree oil, salicylic acid, or niacinamide if your pimple is starting to form or has already reached a head. There are also special microneedling acne patches to help fade dark marks left behind from your breakout.

How Long Does It Take for a Pimple Patch to Work?

While a pimple patch will likely shorten the lifespan of your pimple, the time it takes for your pimple to disappear is going to vary. “Sometimes it takes one acne dot, and other times it has taken two to three acne dots to achieve this,” says Frezza. “It depends on your acne, the depth of your pimple, and the amount of gunk your pimple is producing.”

The Best Acne Patches

Meet the Experts

enrico frezza
Enrico Frezza

Enrico Frezza is the Founder and CEO of Peace Out Skincare, which he was inspired to start after suffering from severe acne in his teens.
After three years and fourteen prototypes, Peace Out Acne was born in 2017, the first-ever hydrocolloid acne dot to be infused with active ingredients that target and treats the root cause of a breakout, not just the symptoms. Enrico’s passion disrupted the acne skincare industry and Peace Out Acne dots will forever remain the industry’s leading go-to acne healing dot. Since then Enrico has launched six more first to market best-selling skin-tech patch products.

caroline robinson
Caroline Robinson, MD

Dr. Caroline Robinson is a board-certified medical and cosmetic dermatologist in Chicago and the founder and CEO of Tone Dermatology, an innovative and inclusive dermatologic practice on Chicago’s near south side. Her recent awards include: ULTA Beauty 2021 MUSE 100, 2020 National Minority Quality Forum 40 Under 40 Leaders in Minority Health Award, Refinery29 2020 Most Innovative Skin Expert.