How to Get Rid of Painful Pimples

By Marc Peterson

How to Get Rid of Painful Pimples

How to Deal With Painful Pimples

You wake up, take your first look in the mirror, and discover that your clear, smooth skin has broken out in pesky, annoying pimples overnight. Sound familiar? Unfortunately, it’s something that most of us have experienced at one point or another. It usually doesn’t stop there either- not only do those little pimples look bad, but they also often serve as a very painful reminder of your new surprise breakout.

Not sure what type of treatment you should use for your skin type? Take our personalized skincare quiz to find out.

Start here

As each person’s skin is different, when managing your acne it’s important to be aware of possible acne sources to help you determine which specific issues are causing your skin problems. While this article will be providing possible causes and treatments as well as various skin care tips for painful pimples, it’s important to note that if you’re experiencing heavy or frequent breakouts, it’s recommended that you visit a professional dermatologist to receive a full assessment on your condition. They can help you understand your skin type, identify the cause or causes of your acne, and explain the different remedies and treatments available. Once you are prepared with this knowledge, you can begin not just treating your current acne, but also take preventative steps that will help minimize future breakouts and keep your skin healthy and clear.

Avoid Stress

While a surprise breakout - especially on the morning of a big event - is certainly enough to justify a fair amount of stress, it’s important to try and stay as calm as you can. Research has shown that stress and acne can be directly correlated. Many find that they break out more frequently during higher periods of stress such as finals week or in the days leading up to important events like a job interview or a wedding, and breakouts can add even more stress, causing even more breakouts in turn. However, if you can find ways to lower your stress in these periods, you’ll have better chances of staying clear for longer.

Short-Term Treatment Methods

There are plenty of short-term methods that can help reduce pain and inflammation from breakouts- something that works for your best friend might not work for you at all and vice-versa! It’s all about knowing your skin and knowing what works best for you.


At its base, a pimple is inflammation from a clogged hair follicle. Just as with any other form of inflammation, such as a sprained ankle, ice is a great way to help bring down both the swelling and numb the pain caused by a breakout. However, the key to icing your pimples is persistence, as the inflammation will eventually return as the cooling effects of the ice wear off. Ice works especially well if you’ve can catch the breakout in its early stage as it’s just beginning to raise.

Witch Hazel

Another remedy that works for many people is witch hazel. Witch hazel is a plant that is commonly used as both a general facial astringent and an acne remedy. Not only does it soothe the skin and help with inflammation, its astringent properties also help alleviate any extra redness caused by the inflammation. It can be found in formulations with and without alcohol (for many, alcohol in skincare products can be harsh and cause breakouts on its own).

Tea Bags and Ibuprofen

The powerhouse duo of a tea bag and ibuprofen is also known to help alleviate acne pain. Heat a tea bag (preferably black or green tea), let most of the water drain from the tea and allow the bag to cool down, and then place it gently against the angry pimple. Tea contains tannins which help reduce swelling and soothe the skin. Using a tea bag in addition to taking ibuprofen, which will also help with the swelling, can greatly reduce the persistence of the pimple and the pain. When taking ibuprofen, it’s important to remember that as with any medicine, make sure you take the correct amount and that you are not allergic to any of its ingredients, active or otherwise.


Although many think of it only as a beauty myth from the past, there are also plenty of acne patients that have success with using toothpaste to help reduce their breakouts. While it may sound odd, toothpaste can be used as a spot treatment to help dry out any pesky spots and help alleviate their pain, as well as speed up their disappearance. It’s best to do this at night before sleeping to give it its maximum amount of time to work, and to sleep in the face-up position so that the toothpaste won’t transfer to your pillows or sheets overnight.


Speaking of sleeping, sleep is another great method to help manage and minimize your breakouts. Our bodies need sleep to heal, it’s our way of recharging the battery to our regeneration process. Instead of stressing about your pimples or over-obsessing with how to treat them, simply cleanse your skin, apply your treatment, and lay down and relax. If you worked a long day, try and get to bed a bit earlier so that your body has more time to heal.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil can also work wonders against acne. Although it’s not the most powerful short-term solution, it’s a great natural oil that will help fight acne-causing bacteria and inflammation. Many recommend mixing concentrated tea tree oil with honey, applying to the face as a mask for a short period of time, and then rinsing off. However, those who apply it as an overnight spot treatment can do so by mixing tea tree oil in a moisturizer or facial oil before applying (in its raw form it can be irritating to the skin, despite its benefits).

As you can see, there are plenty of remedies out there for dealing with painful pimples, and it’s important that you find the one which works for you. Although we do not recommend popping any painful pimples, as it can lead to more problems down the road more often than not, if you absolutely must do so, research safe and proper ways to do so. A pimple serves as a storage bubble for bacteria and infection. As long as it is contained, it stays in that specific hair follicle. By popping acne and releasing the bacteria contained within, there is a chance that it can spread to other pores and cause further breakouts.


Week 8

Tired of dealing with painful pimples on a regular basis? Give BioClarity a try.

Try it now

All the above mentioned remedies are specifically for short-term treatment of painful acne. If you are frequently experiencing multiple, painful breakouts and are having a difficult time mitigating your problems, only a professional can analyze your situation and prescribe the right form of treatment. However, by knowing your skin, eating the right diet, exercising, and staying ahead of any stress you can help minimize and prevent any painful and annoying breakouts. Practice daily skin care with BioClarity and harness naturally-derived ingredients and powerful acne fighters to avoid future breakouts.