Acne Treatment All-Stars: Epiduo vs Proactiv Solution

epiduo vs proactiv

Acne is arguably the leading skin disorder affecting both men and women, and adults and teenagers on a global scale. Acne can appear on most areas of the face and body, and it can develop in mild, moderate or severe forms. Currently, there is no cure for acne. With its many contributing causes, and its incidence in virtually every skin type and on all body areas, effective acne treatments are hard to develop for the masses. Consequently, the acne treatment industry is flooded with acne medications in all types and formulas. Two of today's most buzzed about acne treatments are Epiduo™ Gel and the Proactiv® Acne Treatment System. How do the two compare? Is one reportedly better than the other? What are some alternative cosmetic treatments for acne?

What's Behind the Buzz?

Both of these acne treatments come in the form of topical solutions. The Proactiv system, which has been sold in the U.S. since the mid-90s, was developed by two female dermatologists as a complete skin care regimen for acne sufferers. Boosted by intensive media marketing campaigns and an impressive list of celebrity spokespeople, including Vanessa Williams, Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, Serena Williams, Julianne Hough and Jessica Simpson, Proactiv became one of the best-selling acne treatment systems to date.

Epiduo Gel, the newer of the two treatments, just received its FDA approval in January of '09. Epiduo is a prescription acne treatment that is getting recognition for its groundbreaking combination of the acne-fighting ingredients adapalene and benzoyl peroxide.

How Does Each Product Treat Acne?

The Proactiv treatment system includes a Renewing Cleanser, a Revitalizing Toner, and a Repairing Lotion. Patients are directed to use all three parts of the system together for the best results. The sole active ingredient in Proactiv's cleanser and lotion is 2.5% benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl peroxide is one of the most popular and effective treatments for mild to moderate acne, and it works by killing acne-causing bacteria and helping to unclog pores. Proactiv's toner is designed to help calm skin, remove excess oil, and eliminate redness or blotchiness using ingredients like glycolic acid, witch hazel extract and aloe.

Epiduo gel for acne is currently the only topical treatment to use 2.5% benzoyl peroxide combined with 0.1% adapalene (Differin). Adapalene mainly acts as an effective pore cleanser, but is said to have anti-inflammatory properties as well. According to Epiduo's official website, the product is also not an antibiotic, so it doesn't encourage bacterial resistance over time, which can make acne harder to treat in the future. Epiduo patients should apply the product gel daily in small amounts to treat mild, moderate and even severe acne conditions. Epiduo must be prescribed by a licensed medical professional or dermatologist, whereas Proactiv can be ordered online or purchased at major drugstores.

What Acne Consumers are Saying

Consumer product reviews can certainly better inform your treatment expectations, but it's still hard to determine if a specific acne treatment is superior to another just by viewing others' opinions. This is because the causes and conditions of acne aren't the same for everyone, so an acne treatment's efficacy will differ amongst a group of patients. This is why dermatologists often start acne patients on small treatment doses at first; to wait and see how skin responds before distributing full-strength treatments.

The reviews of Proactiv consumers, minus celebrity spokespeople, carry plenty of raves and rants. Reasons for negative Proactiv reviews ranged from complaints about Proactiv's cost, to its ineffectiveness at treating acne, to Proactiv's worsening effect on acne symptoms, etc. From reviewing these and reading about the products' usage directions and information, it seems fair to say that several upset consumers were under the impression that Proactiv drastically improves more severe nodular acne—in fact, Proactiv is better geared to help mild acne conditions.

It's a bit harder to get an in-depth perspective from current Epiduo reviews, since the treatment just became FDA approved for distribution earlier this year. Thus, the amount of consumers who've used it, and used it long enough to accurately assess its effectiveness, is still relatively small. Epiduo may need to be used for several weeks before real results start to evidence themselves. Unfortunately, this is the case with many prescriptions acne treatments—they make our skin go from bad to worse before we glimpse anything good. Some of the early Epiduo reviewers said that the product indeed led to some worsened skin symptoms with initial use, such as breakouts, dryness, redness and peeling.

Cosmetic Enhancement Alternatives for Acne

In order to find out whether Proactiv, Epiduo, or a professional cosmetic skin treatment will provide the best solution for your acne, it's best to schedule a consultation appointment with a cosmetic skin care professional or dermatologist. They can assess your acne condition first-hand, then suggest appropriate treatment options.

If you don't want to wait for prescription acne medications or topical acne creams to kick in and do the trick, cosmetic skin treatments have helped many acne patients get fast results. Popular skin care procedures for treating acne include Blue Light Therapy, a form of Photo Dynamic Therapy, as well as IPL Photofacial and Fractional Laser Resurfacing. Laser skin care procedures are particularly helpful for treating blemishes, acne scars and rosacea, as well as improving skin cell stimulation and growth. Non-laser acne treatments include Microdermabrasion and chemical peels, which exfoliate and slough away damaged, acne-prone skin cells.

To learn more about cosmetic skin treatments for acne and acne scar removal, or to meet with a skin care professional to discuss your individualized acne treatment needs, contact our representatives today!

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