What should I look for in an over-the-counter acne treatment?

OTC Acne meds. Something that smells good, works well and is portable. A bit of color is an additional plus so you can treat and camouflage at the same time! salicylic acid and low percentage benzoyl peroxide are common ingredients.
Salicylic acid. All over the counter acne medicines contain salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. Either one will help acne and if tolerated they can be used in combination at different times . If there is no improvement in 1-2 months see a dermatologist for prescription strength medications.

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What can help treat back, buttocks, and back of the thigh acne? I've tried over-the-counter body acne treatment with no luck.

Acne vs folliculitis. It's important to distinguish whether you have acne or folliculitis. If it is folliculitis, to determine if it is pityrosporum folliculitis. Treatment depends on the diagnosis. If you are certain it is acne, use otc 10% benzoyl peroxide wash daily, leave on for 5 minutes before rinsing off. If it doesn't improve, see your dermatologist for a definitive diagnosis and rx treatment. Read more...