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Does Shaving Pimples Help Acne?

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Updated October 13, 2009

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

Question: Does Shaving Pimples Help Acne?
I get lots of pimples with big white heads. My friend says to clear acne, I should shave the tops off the pimples with a razor, then wash with a drying soap and apply acne treatment. It sounds like it might work. Should I be shaving pimples?
Answer:

The first thing to come to mind -- ouch!

The second -- don’t shave the tops off pimples.

Shaving pimples won’t help them clear faster. What it can do is open your skin up to infection and possible scarring. Besides, acne treatments can sting quite a bit when applied to broken skin.

Instead of shaving over pimples, you should shave around them as much as possible.

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