How to Treat Pimples With Rubbing Alcohol

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Pimples can be painful as well as cosmetically embarrassing. The infection and redness caused by bacteria and fatty acids in skin pores results in those unattractive white bumps. You can hasten their disappearance with frequent treatments using common rubbing alcohol. Alcohol has a drying effect that will clear up pimples faster than if they are left untreated. Rubbing alcohol is also a useful short-term alternative if you run out of prescription medication for acne.

Things You'll Need

  • Washcloth
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton swabs
  • Dip a washcloth in warm water, wring out the cloth and use it as a hot compress on the pimple for five minutes to clean the area. Heat also brings pimples to a head for faster elimination.

  • Dip a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol and brush the swab gently over the pimple. Leave the alcohol on the infected area until the alcohol evaporates -- about 10 minutes.

  • Repeat the pimple swabbing with rubbing alcohol two to three times a day until the bump begins to dry and fade away.

Tips & Warnings

  • Rubbing alcohol kills bacteria, which is a key component in the formation of acne.
  • Resist the temptation to squeeze pimples, which can lead to skin scarring.

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