Murad Acne Control Outsmart Acne Clarifying Treatment review
I had hoped that by the time I passed 30, I wouldn’t still be struggling with acne. These days, at 32, it’s mostly under control–although stress and a bad habit of resting my chin on my hand can cause my acne to gleefully return. In a perfect world, I’d get enough sleep, drink enough water, meditate most of my stress away and would never dream of touching my blemish-free skin.
But in the real world, I’m still up way past my bedtime (probably scrolling through dog photos on instagram), chugging double-strength matcha lattes with lavender syrup and running around like my hair is on fire (and I probably need to touch up my roots too).
Lifestyle isn’t the only thing to blame–genetics aren’t on my side either. My mom has struggled with acne in her younger years, as did my grandmother on my dad’s side (her horror stories of acne treatments back in the day make me incredibly grateful for modern medicine!)
At my age, many of the harsh treatments meant for tween acne solve one problem (pimples) while causing another (irritated skin). It’s not to say these products are bad–they were great for that time period in my life, but my skin is very different than it was over a decade ago, and needs more nuanced solutions for skincare.
I’ve tried a few other Murad products in the past, and have always LOVED how effective they were, even on my finicky skin (their Advanced Active Radiance Serum that I reviewed for we heart this is still one of my fave products!)
I’m SO grateful that WHT ringleader Stef sent me the Murad Acne Control Outsmart Acne Clarifying Treatment ($44) to test out. This lightweight gel serum contains “Penta-Acid Technology”–a fancy way of saying that it has five different acids, each for a specific task.
- Salicylic acid (1.0%) – treats and prevents acne
- Lysophosphatidic acid – reduces the appearance of pores
- Hydroxydecanoic acid – a fatty acid, helps control oil
- Sebacic acid – another fatty acid, also helps control oil
- Glycolic acid – exfoliates
Additionally, honey extract has been added to hydrate skin, and boswellia extract and rice extract have been added to soothe skin by counteracting redness and dryness. Murad’s paraben-free, sulfate-free, phthalate-free and gluten-free formula says it clears up acne in just one week for 96% of patients.
Typically, you should ease into acne treatments, using a small amount a few times a week, just once a day, and then gradually increase it to the recommended usage. Being the rebel/dedicated product tester that I am, and because Murad claims to be “Always Healthy. Never Harsh.” I decided to dive straight in to twice daily use, using a generous amount over most of my face, just to see what would happen (my face is both my canvas and also my petri dish).
I was surprised (and relieved!) to see my breakouts clear up rapidly–in less than a week. The cystic acne and blackheads around my cheekbones and nose (stress related) started to shrink and disappear, and the pimples and cysts around my chin and neck (from habitually touching my skin) cleared up as well. I noticed a huge improvement within just two days, and it just got better and better by the end of the week. Also, the naturally fragranced formula contains lemon, lime, lavender and tangerine–it makes me feel fancy and relaxed.
This treatment is one of my favorite acne treatments that I’ve tried (and I’ve tried almost everything!) It’s worth every penny of the $44 price tag. And it truly helped me to outsmart acne.
How about you we heartsters, what’s your favorite way to send acne packing? Share in the comments!