- A method for minimizing acne breakouts that has gained momentum in recent years is the hydrocolloid patch.
- These sticky patches absorb pus from pimples, resulting in noticeably smaller and less inflamed blemishes.
- I tried hydrocolloid patches for the first time from a relative newcomer to the scene, Mighty Patch, and they worked much better than those from a popular competitor.
- As someone who has struggled with acne-prone skin for years, I’m often skeptical of supposed quick-fix solutions, but the effectiveness of the Mighty Patch stickers have made me a convert.
From extraction facials and laser treatments to special face washes and oral antibiotics, I’ve tried many tactics in my decade-old battle with acne. Some, like acne extractions, work very well over the long term, but are quite expensive. Others have dried out my skin or even resulted in more breakouts. The only solution that really works for short-term relief – and that I wish I had tried way earlier – is the hydrocolloid patch.
Hydrocolloid patches are originally designed for wounds but turn out to also be perfect for those painful (both physically and emotionally) breakouts that erupt the night before a big event like an interview or a date.
They work by attracting water and absorbing fluids such as pus so that by the next day, you can literally see everything they’ve sucked up from your pimples. COSRX is the most popular hydrocolloid patch brand, earning rave reviews from other media sites like Buzzfeed and Refinery29 and a 4-star rating from 2,700+ Amazon reviews, but I’m a stronger believer in a new brand’s hydrocolloid product: Hero Cosmetics’ Mighty Patch.
- Hero Cosmetics
Mighty Patch hydrocolloid patches come in 36- or 72-count packs, and each one measures 12mm across – smaller than a penny. They work best on pimples with fluid or pus in them, meaning there’s a visible whitehead.
After showering and drying my face, I stuck the patches directly on the blemishes that fit this description, then let them work their magic. Sometimes, depending on the pimple, I could see and feel results in as quickly as a few hours. Other times, they took longer to take effect, and I slept with them overnight.
- Hero Cosmetics
The results are somewhat gross, but oddly satisfying: The sticker turns white with the pus it has absorbed.
The difference after applying a sticker is clear, and not only visually. Each time, my pimples dramatically reduced in both size and pain. I was amazed at how well they worked, and quickly became very comfortable with slapping them all over my face every night.
I also bought myself the COSRX patches to compare their performance, and considering their high reviews and cult status, I was surprised to find they were much less effective than Mighty Patch. The COSRX hydrocolloid patches come in multiple sizes while Mighty Patch’s are all one size, and they’re cheaper than Mighty Patch. However, they were prone to falling off my face as I slept, and rarely absorbed as much fluid as the Mighty Patch stickers. While Mighty Patch may be more expensive, I’d much rather opt for the product that actually works.
A side benefit of these hydrocolloid patches is that they prevent bored, wandering fingers from touching and picking pimples. Every person who has acne hears over and over again and knows from personal experience that picking leads to irritation and scarring, but it’s much easier said than done not to do it. As the patches work to minimize your blemish, they also protect the affected area from exposure to unclean pillows and hands.
Having dealt with acne since I was a teen, I regret not trying these gentle, non-invasive, and non-drying hydrocolloid patches earlier, but am now a serious proponent of using them for banishing acne. They’re easy to slip into your bag to take on the go, and as simple stickers, they’re low maintenance.
I’m stocking up on the Mighty Patch ones in particular because they’ve shown time after time that they’re the best in the market.