Using clindamycin gel to treat acne
Learn more about how clindamycin gel is used to treat acne, its different formulations (gels, creams, lotions), and frequent combinations available such as benzoyl peroxide or tretinoin.
Medically Reviewed by: Dr. Carolina Fernandez Quiroga, Dermatologist
Table of Content:
What is Clindamycin used for? | Common Clindamycin Brands | Clindamycin Side-Effects | How to use Clindamycin? | Who should use Clindamycin? | Who cannot use Clindamycin? | How to get Clindamycin?
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What is topical clindamycin used for?
Clindamycin is an antibiotic that stops bacteria from growing1. Clindamycin gel is used to help control acne2 and requires a prescription from a licensed healthcare provider.
According to a clinical study, Topical 1% percent clindamycin followed by a good acne skin care routine reduced acne in people with moderate inflammatory acne after patients used it twice daily for eight weeks3.
Using clindamycin for acne
Topical clindamycin, in addition to some basic acne self-care, will reduce the number of lesions or pimples in a patient’s face caused by bacteria growth4; it is usually prescribed in combination with other acne medications.
Topical clindamycin solutions for acne
Topical clindamycin is available in the following formulations:
Common names or brands of clindamycin gels and creams
- Clindacin Pac
- Cleocin T
- Clindacin P
Side effects of using clindamycin gels
Dryness, oily skin, redness, burning, itching, or skin peeling may occur. Tell your doctor if these side effects last long or get worse6.
Clindamycin and benzoyl peroxide gel
The combination of benzoyl peroxide and clindamycin works very well in controlling acne because it kills the bacteria that causes acne and helps reduce skin inflammation.
When clindamycin is used alone, the acne bacteria may develop resistance quickly, but benzoyl peroxide kills the resistant bacteria7.
Common names or brands of clindamycin and benzoyl peroxide
- Z-Clinz 10
- Z-Clinz 5
Clindamycin and tretinoin gel
The combination of Clindamycin and Tretinoin is also a very effective way to combat acne because it kills the bacteria that cause acne and keeps patients’ skin pores clear. It also helps reduce the number of pimples and helps them heal faster.
Clindamycin is an antibiotic that stops the growth of bacteria that cause acne, and Tretinoin is a retinoid that affects skin cells’ growth.
A clinical study revealed that applying a combination of Clindamycin and Tretinoin for 12 weeks helped reduce the appearance of acne with minimal side effects8.
Common names or brands of clindamycin and tretinoin gels
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Frequently asked questions about using clindamycin gels for acne
This FAQ section covers:
- How to Use Clindamycin or its Compound Form for Acne?
- Who Should Use Clindamycin Gels and Creams?
- Who Cannot Use Clindamycin Solutions?
- How to a Get Clindamycin Gel/Cream for Acne?
How to use clindamycin or its compound form for acne?
If a healthcare provider prescribes topical clindamycin, they advise patients to apply it twice daily. Some formulations, like foams, may contain alcohol stinging or burning when applied to the skin.
Before applying a clindamycin gel or lotion, patients must wash their face thoroughly with warm water and soap, rinse well, and pat dry9.
The medication should be applied on the whole affected by acne, not just to the pimples themselves, as this will prevent new spots from appearing10.
Patients should not discontinue the use of clindamycin if they start seeing results. Antibiotics should always complete a full course to ensure the medication kills the bacteria. Stopping too early can increase your risk for antibiotic resistance.
Healthcare providers usually intend for antibiotics like clindamycin to be used as shorter-term treatments. Patients will usually apply them for 3 to 4 months in combination with benzoyl peroxide or a retinoid11.
After this time, your healthcare provider may recommend you stop clindamycin but continue using benzoyl peroxide or retinoids.
Who should use clindamycin gels and creams?
Patients with mild to moderate acne.
Who cannot use clindamycin solutions?
Patients with hypersensitivity cannot use topical clindamycin or lincomycin.
Clindamycin can also not be used by patients with a history of inflammatory bowel disease or history of antibiotic-associated colitis.
Systemic clindamycin has neuromuscular blocking properties that may enhance other neuromuscular blocking agents. Therefore, it should be used with caution in patients receiving this medication12.
How to a get clindamycin gel/cream for acne?
Healthcare providers can prescribe clindamycin gels or its compound formulations (benzoyl peroxide and tretinoin), and patients can pick it up at their pharmacy of choice.
To get a prescription for clindamycin, you can use one of the 13 Dermatology Services that offer online consultations.
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