Benzoyl peroxide is a topical skin product for acne treatment. It reduces the bacteria count and oxidizes proteins produced by bacteria. It also works by decreasing the amount of free fatty acids that are irritating to the skin.
Benzoyl peroxide is available as a cream, gel, lotion, or face wash. It can be applied directly to the area of the skin where acne is present or used to prevent the development of acne (for example using a face wash).
For cream, gel, and lotion, apply Benzoyl peroxide 1-2 times per day after cleaning your face with soap and water. For cleansers, wash 1-2 times per day.
Products containing Benzoyl peroxide are only for those aged 12 years or above. Initially, Benzoyl peroxide can be irritating to the skin, so we suggest you start with the lowest concentration (2.5%). Lower concentrations are often just as effective, and less irritating than higher concentrations.
Finally, remember to wash your hands after applying Benzoyl Peroxide.
Common side effects of Benzoyl Peroxide are skin reactions, for example dry skin and redness. It can also bleach your hair and clothing.
Avoid sun exposure and use sunscreen if you have applied Benzoyl Peroxide on your skin.
Common dosing schedule:
Benzoyl Peroxide should be applied to the skin at a different time than tretinoin. If using both medications, apply Benzoyl Peroxide in the morning and tretinoin in the evening.
This schedule is for reference only, adjustments may be made according to individual needs.
Some common medications Benzoyl Peroxide may interact with:
In Hong Kong, most Benzoyl Peroxide–containing products are over-the-counter medicines and can be purchased without a prescription from any retail outlet in Hong Kong. This includes grocery stores, convenience stores, medicine shops, and pharmacies. It can also be obtained from doctors.
However, a few products are prescription-only medicines and require a prescription from a doctor to be purchased in a pharmacy. They can also be obtained from doctors. To find a pharmacy near you, refer to the list of pharmacies (“Authorized Sellers of Poisons”) from the Hong Kong Department of Health.
For more information about drug names and ingredients, you can visit Hong Kong’s Drug Office at https://www.drugoffice.gov.hk
Need more information?
For detailed information about the use of Benzoyl Peroxide in children, pregnancy and breastfeeding, and for questions about drug interactions, please check with your pharmacist or doctor.
Disclaimer: our goal is to provide you with the most relevant drug information and common dosage for Hong Kong. This information does not constitute medical advice. For specific treatment recommendations and advice, always discuss with your doctor or pharmacist, and follow the instructions included with your specific medicine.
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