Your Secret Weapon Against Zits

Best pimple stickers for men 2021

Your Secret Weapon Against Zits

Pimple stickers are a thing and they really work. Here are the best ones for your needs.

When you’ve got a zit, the last thing you want to do is pick it or pop it, irritate it or push the bacteria into your skin even more. What you really want is for something to gently and effectively suck all the pus, bacteria and dead skin cells out of your pore and help the skin heal fast. These handy patches, another Korean skincare innovation like sheet masks, do just that. And it's as simple as slapping on a sticker.

Unlike spot treatments, these patches won't rub off or dry out your skin. The adhesive nature keeps the active ingredients right where they're supposed to be and prevents dirt and other bacteria from further inflaming an angry zit. How do they work? Most are small hydrocolloid bandages, which means they're designed to absorb fluid from the pimple. And you can see them working. As the patch absorbs your zit's grime, the patch expands and turns white (trapping all the bad stuff inside). After wearing the patch for a few hours or overnight, you'll peel it off and the skin underneath will be flatter and much less inflamed.

It's best to keep these on hand, before you actually need them. That way, when you notice a zit forming in its early stages, you can slap one of these on and kill it before it becomes a serious, painful problem. But now there are a handful on the market, so we've pulled together the most effective for a range of skin needs.

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Best Pimple Stickers
for Men in 2021

For serious, deep down,
cystic pimples

This Australian-based skin-care brand is making waves with their innovative one-two-punch patch. First, you prep and clean the affected area with a swab soaked in exfoliating salicylic acid, clarifying tea tree oil and vitamin E. Then you apply the patch, which is covered with dissolving microneedles that push medication—hyaluronic acid, peptides and niacinamide—into the skin. What happens is the angry zit bubbling under the surface gets treated before it even erupts and without drying and flaking the skin on top.

Killa kit,
$29 by ZitSticka

For whiteheads &
just-picked zits

One of the first on the scene, this K-beauty favorite has retained its reputation because it's so reliable. It clings to skin and won't budge—we tested one while at the gym and it withstood both sweat and the shower. If you have a whitehead or just picked a nasty zit and want to make sure everything's out, this patch pulls out all the gunk that's been trapped, leaving a flatter appearance and helping it heal faster.

Acne pimple master patch,
$6 by Cosrx

For invisible cover

More than likely, you'll wear these patches overnight. But if you're looking for a patch you can discreetly wear during the day—or want to keep yourself from touching a zit and making it worse—this is it. It's super thin, incredibly sheer and slightly matte, so it really blends into skin while the highest grade of hydrocolloid gets to work sucking out pus and other impurities from a pimple. The dissolving micro-needles deliver acne-fighting salicylic acid below the surface of the skin, along with calming ingredients like niacinamide and cica to calm inflammation and brighten skin.

Prickly Pimple patches,
$18.99 by Cardon

For redness &
reducing scars

These aren't made with hydrocolloid technology like most of the patches, so you won't see them changing colors or pulling stuff out of a pimple. Instead, these little clear dots are designed to reduce inflammation and irritation—like an advanced spot treatment that won't evaporate or rub off on your pillowcase. The thin stickers are lined with a gel infused with tea tree oil and a retinol alternative that helps speed up the healing process and reduce redness.

Blemish dots,
$22 by Skyn Iceland

A Quick Fix

Trying to adios a pimple for a big event later in the day? New York dermatologist Dr. Whitney Bowe suggests dabbing on some over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream. “It will calm the inflammation and flatten the pimple—just don’t use it too often or it can thin the skin.”

NOTE: Items featured in this story are independently selected by the editorial team. Purchasing via our links may earn Valet. a portion of the sale, which helps fund our editorial mission.

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