I Can Always Rely on This $9 Face Wash to Save My Skin Overnight, and Over 17,000 Amazon Ratings Agree

And you can buy it on Amazon.

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Panoxyl Face Wash
Photo: Courtesy/InStyle

This month, my skin went through some sort of breakout that felt like a teenager acting out in some sort of inexplicable angst. My skin became riddled with bumps that weren't exactly zits, a few actual zits, some welts, and incredibly clogged pores along my t-zone. The breakout combined with the looming staring down an isolated Covid holiday season has stressed me out, which only made the breakouts worse. Thus, I reverted to a $9 face wash that saved me before in a time of need.

The last time my skin went through a really horrible breakout was when the first Covid quarantine started in March 2020. I think a combination of stress, triggering of pre-existing PTSD, and some mid-twenties change in my skin converged and wreaked a similar type of havoc on my skin. This is when I first started using PanOxyl Acne Foaming Wash.

PanOxyl Acne Foaming Wash Benzoyl Peroxide

Shop now: $9; amazon.com

Available at Walmart, Walgreens, Target

Its key ingredient, benzoyl peroxide, is antiseptic, and the face wash was first recommended to me by a dermatologist. In a nutshell, the formula is supposed to kill acne-causing bacteria (battling existing breakouts and preventing new ones), remove dirt from your skin, and unclog stubborn pores. At 10 percent, the PanOxyl Wash has the highest amount of benzoyl peroxide available over the counter.

When I used the face wash in 2020, it was in conjunction with a few other things, which eventually cleared up my condition. I reached for the tube again this time because I remember how stripped and clean it made my skin feel — I could actually immediately feel it make my skin less oily. For the last two weeks, I have been trying to use it twice a day. There have been days when I've skipped it altogether and there is a marked difference following that — namely new bumps and zits and the return of my oily t-zone.

My skin has not been reborn, but it's getting there. At the very least, the breakouts have mostly subsided, my pores have begun to clear out, and my face is overall less oily. I still have to deal with the hyperpigmentation and other aftermath of the breakout, but I feel a sense of safety knowing that I can rely on this simple $9 face wash during my worst and most mysterious flare-ups.

And more than 17,700 five-star ratings say that I'm not alone. Reviewers have praised the face wash's affordability and effectiveness. One reviewer wrote, "I'm 35 years old and have dealt with cystic acne since I was 13. This is the clearest my face has ever been." Another user explained that they noticed a difference after only the first use. At $9, it's a really affordable way to get your skin under control — buy yours at Amazon.

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