Clean & Clear Acne Medication

Clean & Clear is an over-the-counter skincare brand with products designed to control acne blemishes and blackheads. Its manufacturer, American consumer healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson, primarily markets Clean & Clear acne treatments to teen girls seeking a quick and easy way to get rid of pimples, while preventing them from coming back. The brand’s acne medications include gels, cleansers and serums containing benzoyl peroxide and/or salicylic acid to heal blemishes and control oily skin to prevent future breakouts.


In the early 1990s, the American consumer healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson acquired the Clean & Clear brand from Revlon. Today, the brand includes more than 40 products in 10 lines sold in 41 countries. Available at drugstores, Clean & Clear sells at a lower price point than Johnson & Johnson’s other skincare brands, including Neutrogena and Aveeno.


Clean & Clear Maximum Strength Persa-Gel is the brand’s strongest acne-fighting medicine. The advanced Clean & Clear Advantage product line contains Acne Spot Treatment, the Acne Mark Eraser Kit (with Breakout Erasing Cleanser, Mark Erasing Spot Treatment, Daily Protecting Moisturizer SPF 15, and Nightly Mark Clearing Lotion) and the Acne Control Kit (containing Acne Control Cleanser, Acne Control Moisturizer and Fast Clearing Spot Treatment).

Active Ingredients

Maximum Strength Persa-Gel contains 10 percent Benzoyl Peroxide as its active ingredient, which targets bacteria in the skin’s pores to eliminate individual pimples. Items in the Clean & Clear Advantage line are meant for all-over facial application and accordingly contain 1 to 3 percent benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Some products also contain alcohol, which breaks through oily buildup on the skin.


Persa-Gel is a light, transparent gel, sold in 1 oz. tubes. Its manufacturer claims that the formula is identical to one originally available only by prescription. Users apply the gel directly on blemishes to dry the pore and eliminate the pimple. The Acne Mark Eraser Kit and Acne Control Kit come with a complete daily regimen of cleansing, toning and moisturizing products for twice-daily application.


Persa-Gel quickly dries out the oily sebum that clogs pores and forms pimples, reducing the agonizing time a blemish takes to disappear on its own. Because the gel is transparent, you can apply it without noticeable residue. Advantage products work together to reduce acne as well as the spots or marks they temporarily leave behind, though full results may take four to six weeks to become apparent.


Benzoyl peroxide may cause mild side effects, including dryness or peeling of skin, flushed feeling, tingling or stinging at the application site. Wear sunscreen and a hat when going outside, and try to limit your exposure to sunlight while you use Clean & Clear products. The National Institutes of Health advises against using soap, alcohol-based lotions or abrasive cleansers on the skin while applying products containing benzoyl peroxide.

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