There are few things more frustrating than going to bed with clear skin and waking up with a mammoth zit on your face. Especially if it’s a cystic blemish — the kind that’s super sore and swollen and never comes to a head.

Fortunately, it’s 2024, and there are many good treatments out there that help minimize cystic acne from forming and help control those mighty bumps. This post features 5 carefully chosen acne treatments with the most effective results available on the market today. When I say carefully, it means that our listing is based on the analysis of over 2430 real user reviews, dermatological tests, and in depth understanding of the brands behind these products.

Our team of skincare experts only picked the highest rated and most successful products that work best for cystic acne.

Our Skincare Experts Have Evaluated Over 100 of The Top Products  For Cystic Acne in 2024 & Reviewed Thousands of Customer Reviews

Best Cystic Acne Treatments in 2024
Our #1 Pick:
Misumi Acne Control Trio Kit 
  • Calms cystic breakouts & reduces swelling fast
  • Premium grade, naturally-derived ingredients
  • Thousands of happy customer reviews
AHA 10% Skin Perfecting Cleanser Misumi AHA 10% Skin Perfecting Cleanser
  • Simple and affordable
  • Unclogs and reduces the appearance of pores
  • Helps rehydrate the skin
aamtbl-table__image Murad Acne Control 90-Day Bestseller Kit
  • It works surprisingly well
  • It is oil-free
  • Contains Salicylic Acid
Exposed Skincare Expanded Kit
  • 5 Piece kit with dermacloth
  • Gentle, nontoxic
  • Save $10 with monthly subscriptions
aamtbl-table__image Proactiv+ 3 Step Acne Treatment System
  • Uses a mild exfoliator
  • Reduces the signs of aging
  • Lightens acne scarring

How We Chose the Best Acne Treatment in 2024

Here are a couple of factors we keep in mind when choosing the best acne treatment.

1. Quality of Ingredients
A few ingredients to look for in your cystic acne treatment: salicylic acid (to exfoliate and remove pore-clogging debris that cause cystic acne in the first place), glycolic acid (the best at exfoliating and unclogging impurities and excess oil due to it’s tiny molecules), lactic acid (to fight acne and even out skin tone),  benzoyl peroxide (to clean out the P. acnes bacteria that contributes to acne), or sulfur (to lessen inflammation), witch hazel (a natural astringent that tightens pores, preventing aggravation of acne and future breakouts.

2. Regimen Sets

“I recommend acne kits because sticking to one product line, with products designed to work well with one another, will have the most effective results.”

3. Real Customer Reviews and Before & After Pictures

We’ve gathered and evaluated over three thousand real customer reviews. This is a no censor, no filter skincare review zone. We say it like it is.

4. Test Results

Yup, our skincare experts test all our top products on teenagers battling various types breakouts.

5. Customer Service and company Policy

We only recommend companies that we trust operate with integrity, are good to their customers and their environment, and have hassle-free return policies and exceptional customer service.

5 Best Treatments for Cystic Acne 2024

#1- Misumi Acne Control Trio Kit

Now only $63.96
Buy From Official Website

Finally an acne treatment kit that lives up to its hype! Misumi’s Acne Control Trio Kit has proven time and time again to be extremely effective. It is our favorite acne treatment system for achieving blemish-free skin. The best part is that it is only 3 easy steps and is super manageable for teenagers and adults with a busy schedule.

This brand has been a favorite about dermatologists and high-end skincare specialists for over 25 years but has only just been made available directly to consumers lasts year.

This Acne Control Trio Kit comes with their signature Clear Skin Salicylic Cleanser, as well as their day-time non-comedogenic moisturizer and brand new Natural Spot Treatment. The Salicylic Cleanser is an incredible combination of Salicylic Acid, Glycolic Acid, Lactic Acid, and natural ingredients like Lavender Flower Oil. It doesn’t just tackle blackheads, whiteheads, and blemishes, but also reduces redness and swelling without drying the skin. Lavender has great antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which helps to calm angry breakouts and prevent severe acne scars and uneven skin tone.

The Calming Daily Moisturizer with SPF 30 is the only cream you’ll need for your day time routine. It uses Green Tea, Salicylic Acid, Aloe, Cucumber, and many other natural ingredients to hydrate, treat, and protect the skin. Lastly, the Natural Spot Treatment fights any blemishes the pop up and works fast and effectively to clear your skin. If you want an easy-to-use but high-quality skincare routine, with real and lasting results, Misumi has got you covered.

Best For: Acne-prone skin


  • Simple and affordable, 3 steps treatment that works
  • This formula combines not one, or two, but three of the most effective acne-fighting ingredients.
  • Salicylic acid helps to clear blemishes and promote healing, quickly reducing redness and swelling.
  • Glycolic acid deeply exfoliates, removing dirt, oil, and sweat that clogs pores and cause acne.
  • Unclogs and reduces the appearance of pores
  • Incredibly powerful product with natural ingredients. This anti-acne cleanser easily beats Proactiv and other tough competitors.
  • Lactic acid improves skin texture and reveals radiant and youthful skin.
  • Helps rehydrate the skin
  • Contains Lavender which has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and sebum-balancing properties. This product will help calm angry breakouts, and prevent severe acne scars and uneven skin tone.
  • 100% money-back guarantee


  • Salicylic acid is amazing at tackling acne, but if you’re allergic to BHA, this product is not suitable for you. We recommend trying Misumi’s AHA 10% Skin Perfecting Cleanser.
  • At $79.95, it is a little pricier than its competitors, but the kit offers a generous amount that is sure to last around 2 months. PRO TIP: If you subscribe to get the product delivered every 1-2 months, you’ll save 20%.


For optimal results, pair the Trio Kit with Misumi’s Pore Purifying Toner. The two miracle-workers will help you achieve visibly clearer skin in two to three weeks.

Misumi also offers a 60-day 100% money-back guarantee policy so you can try them absolutely risk-free!


It works!

I’ve purchased just about every over the counter acne product out there for my 13 year old daughter and nothing worked. I was ready to get her on prescription meds when I found Misumi. It was highly rated so I figured, one more try. Within a week we could already see results. Her skin is almost completely clear now, and I don’t think she has been consistent with treatment. As long as she has acne, you will have us as a customer.

John M

Verified Buyer

My skin says thank you!

When I hit 22 everything changed and my skin declared war. I began breaking out and majorly. I frequently had cystic acne break outs and my self-esteem suffered. I tried every system/cleansers and gave each one months hoping results would just take time. Nothing cleared up my skin and I was defeated after six years of break out after break out. This cleanser is amazing! AMAZING. My skin, for the first time, is clear after using this product for only a month. It leaves my face feeling soft and clean. At night if I see a potential pimple I have confidence that I can wash my face and by morning find nothing but clear, clean skin. I am going to start using the toner too. You won’t regret this cleanser and your skin will thank you in a big way like mine is.

Molly K.

Verified Buyer


#2 – Murad Acne Control 90-Day Bestseller Kit

Image result for Murad Acne Control 90-Day Bestseller Kit

The Acne Control 90-Day Bestseller Kit by Murad has been called the Proactiv+ for teens with acne-prone and sensitive skin. It’s a five-step system with a similar list of active ingredients and a drastically lower price tag.

One ingredient that is unique to this system is low concentration of salicylic acid. It’s gentler on skin and soaks in slower, delivering its exfoliating goodness evenly without missing anything.

Like many systems, there is a cleanser and moisturizer that you use twice daily and an acne treatment lotion you can use up to three times a day. What is missing here is a toner which we’d really love to see Murad develop and include in their kit, as toners are an integral product for managing acne-prone skin.

Some people get positive results with this system within two weeks, and for others it can take more like eight weeks.


  • contains Salicylic acid
  • good for deep cleansing
  • good price, compared to competitors like Proactiv
  • gentle formula for more sensitive skin
  • getting the extra two sample-size spot treatments is a bonus


  • Missing a non-comedogenic toner 


#3 – Exposed Skincare Expanded Kit

Coming at #1 is Exposed Skincare’s 5 Step Expanded Kit. To be honest, we were quite skeptical of this brand, due to it’s strong push for subscription and membership. It was also quite hard to track down all the ingredients in their products. We believe skincare brands should make their ingredients list as transparent as possible, but since we saw so many positive customer reviews, we had to see if they live up to their reputation.

While Exposed Skincare products may not have the most potent formulation, the kit has a more allergen-free product due to its formula that combines both artificial and natural ingredients. It also boasts of a more robust skincare system than Murad, but we think it’s too complicated for the usual customer, especially teens, hence the #3 spot.

Exposed Skin Care works by making sure your face is as dirt and bacteria free as possible for long periods of time. This explains its complex morning and evening routine. The ingredients it makes use also optimizes cleansing, clearing, and acne treatment applications.

Kit Includes: Facial Cleanser, Clearing Tonic, Acne Treatment Serum, Clear Pore Serum, Moisture Complex, Free Derm-X Cloth


  • Great for blackheads and whiteheads
  • Good choice for individuals with mild acne
  • Long lasting results that clears skin from the inside out


  • 6 Piece Kit can be exhausting to manage consistently
  • You will need to subscribe to their membership to receive a discounted price
  • Not that easy to return products


#4 – Misumi Complete Clear 3-Step System (Preorder Only)

Complete Clear 3-Step System

$63.96 (2-3 Months Supply)
Click for Best Price

Misumi’s 3-Step Trio Kit includes their signature AHA 10% Cleanser, Retinol Intense Repair PM Creme, and their best-selling Pore Purifying Toner that everyone (from teens to adults) has been raving about.

Unlike many acne products nowadays that contain harsh chemicals that irritate the skin, all of Misumi’s products are based on natural and healthy ingredients. Their AHA cleanser is a unique and powerful blend of Glycolic Acid, Chamomile, Japanese Plum, Seaweed Extract, Rosehip Oil, and more. You could say it has all the things we would want in an acne-fighting cleanser or face wash. Their Pore Purifying Toner combines Witch Hazel Extract, Lavender, Sage, and many other acne-fighting herbs that will help calm breakouts, clear the skin, and close pores to prevent future breakouts. Their moisturizer is designed specifically not to clog pores.

When it comes to strength, effectiveness and quality, we are yet to find an acne system on the market that beats this one. 


  • Natural, high-quality ingredients
  • Calms cystic breakouts
  • Reduces redness and swelling
  • Only 3 easy steps
  • Deliver real and fast results. (Or else they guarantee money back)
  • Contains Lavender Oil which helps prevent severe acne scars, control oily skin, and calm breakouts
  • Made in the USA in an FDA licensed facility
  • Their chief chemist has been making some of the world’s leading acne products for over 25 years. This is their most effective formula to date.
  • Lots of loyal customers who say Misumi has been the only thing that has worked for them. Real reviews with before and after photos to prove it.
  • 30 Day Money Back Guarantee


  • The acne kit clears the skin from the inside out instead of drying it out like most spot treatments or BP products, so it can take longer to see results for some customers. You’ll generally see clearer skin in two to six weeks of use (or else they guarantee money back).

Pro tip: Choose a subscription plan (30 or 60 days) and get 20% savings on the kit. Easy cancellation anytime.

Great cleanser for teen cystic acne

My 18 year old has been using the salicylic cleanser for three weeks now and he is reporting a reduction in acne and overall clearer skin. He feels the product is improving his chronic cystic acne and he wants to continue using it. This has been a long journey with his teenage acne and trying various products that don’t dry his skin out and cause redness and discomfort. He says this cleanser is not drying out his skin and he will stick with the regimen which is a huge success as he often gives us after two weeks due to the pain.

Kathryn C

Verified Buyer


#5 – Proactiv+ 3 Step Acne Treatment System

adult acne treatment, hormonal acne treatment, best acne treatment

Proactiv+ is pretty much required for any acne treatment system list. It’s the most well known and, for many, the most effective that people have found. Proactiv+ is still around and people still swear by it. If you haven’t considered it before, here’s a quick rundown of the three steps you do twice a day.

First, the Skin Smoothing Exfoliator uses a mild exfoliator, 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide, and glycolic acid to kill bacteria, dry up oils, and remove dead skin.

Second, the Pore Targeting Treatment uses 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide to reach deep into pores.

Lastly, the Complexion Perfecting Hydrator uses salicylic acid, botanicals, moisturizing oils, and hyaluronic acid spheres which are ultra-hydrating and reduce the signs of aging. This lotion will also lighten your skin, helping to hide acne scarring.


  • Uses benzoyl peroxide, glycolic acid, salicylic acid, and botanical extracts
  • Lots of people have great success
  • Years of testing and perfecting
  • Lightens acne scarring


  • Contains silicone
  • Not oil free
  • Not everyone wants skin lighteners
  • Benzoyl peroxide can stain fabrics



If you’re tired of expensive acne products that don’t work for your cystic acne, try one of the top rated acne treatments for 202 and let us know what works (or doesn’t) for you. After testing over a hundred acne kits and OTC treatments recommended by dermatologists themselves, we’ve found the most effective cystic acne treatment on the market: Misumi’s Acne Control Trio Kit. This manageable system will calm breakouts, reduce redness and swelling in three easy steps. And best of all, it won’t break your bank! Try it yourself and let us know what you think.

Buy From Official Website