Acnecide Gel

  • Attacks "Propionibacterium acnes", which is one of the main causes of acne
  • Improves the appearance of Acne on the Face
  • Reduces the appearance of redness and irritation
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From As low as £9.99

Disclaimer: The prices displayed should only be used as a reference of our prices for this medicine. If you are approved for treatment, our prescribers will decide on a suitable treatment for you to jointly consider.

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order before 2pm

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What is Acnecide gel?

Acnecide is the brand name for a medicine called benzoyl peroxide. It is a topical gel treatment for acne, primarily mild to moderate acne.

This medicine attacks bacteria called Propionibacterium acnes, which is one of the main causes of acne.

You can buy Acnecide gel without needing a prescription from your local pharmacy. It is suitable for adults and children over 12 years of age.

What is Acnecide gel used to treat?

Your doctor or pharmacist will give you Acnecide gel to use on your skin for the treatment of acne on the face, chest or back.

Acne is a very common problem that can occur at any age, although it is most likely to occur during puberty and young adulthood. Around 95% of people aged between 11 and 30 suffer from acne to some degree.

This skin condition often goes away on its own over time, but some people find that they need a treatment like Acnecide gel to clear the problem. In some cases, a prescription-strength medicine may be required.

Not only will Acnecide treat your spots, it can also help to prevent blackheads and whiteheads from appearing.

How does Acnecide gel work?

This gel contains the active ingredient benzoyl peroxide 5%, which fights the bacteria known as Propionibacterium acnes. This bacteria is harmless, but it causes acne by creating waste and fatty acids which irritate your sebaceous glands; this makes them inflamed and creates unsightly spots and zits on your skin.

Benzoyl peroxide's antibacterial properties mean that it is able to target the bacteria and reduce the spots and skin redness associated with acne. This makes for clear skin and a boost in self-confidence.

How to use Acnecide gel

Acnecide gel is for external use only.

  1. Wash the affected area with a mild skin cleanser, then gently pat the skin dry.
  2. Apply a thin layer of the gel to the affected areas of skin once or twice a day. If you have sensitive skin, use Acnecide once a day before bed.
  3. If you experience drying or peeling of the skin, try to reduce how often you apply the gel, until your skin gets used to it.

Avoid exposure to strong sunlight while using this treatment.

See your doctor or pharmacist after using Acnecide for one month, so they can see how your treatment is progressing. How long you use Acnecide depends on how quickly your acne improves.

Please see the patient information leaflet for full instructions.

Who can use Acnecide gel?

Acnecide gel is safe for most adults and children over the age of 12 years old to use, but it is not suitable for everyone.

Before you purchase this medicine, be sure to inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have any of the following conditions:

  • You are allergic to benzoyl peroxide, any of the other ingredients contained in this medicine, or any other medicines
  • You have broken or damaged skin in the areas you need to apply the gel
  • You have severe acne with nodules or cysts; these may need to be treated by a doctor to avoid scarring

You should not use Acnecide gel without speaking to your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. If you are breastfeeding, do not apply this gel to your breasts.

Always read the patient information leaflet for a full list of reasons why Acnecide may not be suitable for you.

Acnecide Gel common side effects

As is the case with all medicines, Acnecide gel comes with the risk of certain adverse effects, although not everyone who uses it will experience them.

Common side effects of Acnecide Gel include:

  • Dry skin
  • Red or peeling skin
  • Sting irritation, including burning or peeling

This list is not exhaustive. Please, refer to the Side Effects tab on this page for a list of rarer, more serious reactions you may experience.

Always read the patient information leaflet for a full list of adverse effects associated with Acnecide gel.

Can you buy Acnecide gel over the counter?

Yes, you can buy Acnecide gel from pharmacies without needing a prescription in the UK.

Can you buy Acnecide gel online in the UK?

You can buy Acnecide online from most UK pharmacies such as Medicine Direct.

Order before 2pm and we can offer you next day delivery on your purchase.

For your own safety, you should not order any type of medicine online, unless it is from a regulated pharmacy like Medicine Direct.

Acnecide alternatives

Various alternatives to Acnecide are available for acne treatment.

Medicine Direct also stocks Clearasil Rapid Action Cream, which should be applied to the skin after washing your face. This over-the-counter treatment has been clinically proven to reduce spot size in just four hours.

Prescription treatments are also available from our pharmacy. We also sell topical medicines such as:

View the Acne page on our site to see the full range of treatments available.

Acnecide Dosage

Our pharmacists and prescribers follow NICE prescribing guidelines when prescribing Acnecide Gel

Always use Acnecide gel as instructed by your doctor or pharmacist. Read the patient information leaflet thoroughly before you start to use it. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure of anything.

Acnecide gel is for external use only. Avoid contact with your eyes, mouth and nostrils. Getting it in your eyes will likely make them sting and impair your vision temporarily.

If you get this gel in your eyes, you should rinse your eyes out thoroughly with warm water for a few minutes, until your eyes stop stinging. Speak to your doctor if the stinging continues.

What if I use more than I am supposed to?

Using too much Acnecide gel may cause skin irritation. If this happens, wash off as much gel as you can and wait for the irritation to subside.

When your skin irritation has gone away, you can start to use Acnecide as normal again.

What if I forget to use it?

If you forget to apply Acnecide 5%, just apply it as normal when you remember.

Do not apply more than twice a day; to effectively treat acne, it is important to keep up your application of this treatment. Some people find it beneficial to set an alarm to remind them to use it.

How long will I need to use it for?

How long you will need Acnecide will depend on the severity of your acne.

Benzoyl peroxide should start to work after around 4 weeks. Once your acne is under control, you may wish to keep using the medicine to prevent it from coming back.

How long does Acnecide gel take to work?


Benzoyl peroxide will normally start to work after around 4 weeks. To reach its full effect, it may take up to between 2 and 4 months.

Is Acnecide safe to use for a long time?


Your doctor or pharmacist will advise you on how long you should use Acnecide gel for. See them after using it for one month, so they can check on how well it is working. As with any medicine, you should use Acnecide for the shortest time possible.

How long should I leave Acnecide gel on for?


You should apply Acnecide gel twice a day, after cleaning the affected areas of skin. You may wish to wash the gel off after a few hours to begin with, but you should try to leave it to work on the skin for as long as possible.

Can Acnecide make my skin worse?


It is possible that Acnecide may make your skin worse when you first start your treatment. Once your skin starts to get used to acnecide you should see a visible improvement in the symptoms of your acne.

Will Acnecide cause my skin to breakout?


Acnecide may cause your skin to breakout early into your treatment. This is due to your skin getting used to the treatment. If you do experience a breakout this should clear after 2 weeks.

What happens if I use too much Acnecide?


Using too much Acnecide Gel could irritate your skin, make your acne worse and also increase your chances of experiencing side effects.

When should I apply Acnecide Gel?


You should apply Acnecide gel twice daily, once in the morning and once at night before bed. If you find that Acnecide is irritating your skin you should reduce your application to just once daily.

What can I expect before and after treatment?


Acnecide should produce visible improvements when compared before and after your treatment. Over the course of 2 to 4 months you should find that your acne has visibly improved.

How long should I leave Acnecide gel on my skin for?


Acnecide gel should be left on your skin until your next application. For example if you apply the gel before bed, you should wash this off in the morning before your morning application. The same routine should be followed for your morning application, leave this on until washing your skin before your night time application.

Can I wear makeup or moisturiser after applying Acnecide?


Yes, however it is best to wait for 15 minutes before applying anything else to your skin to ensure that Acnecide Gel has been fully absorbed by your skin.

How much can I buy Acnecide gel for?


You can buy Acnecide for £9.99 at Medicine Direct, you can buy a maximum of 3 x 30 tubes.

Acnecide Side Effects

Below is a list of serious side effects; these are rare and affect less than 1 in every 1,000 people who use Acnecide gel. Nonetheless, you should stop using it if:

  • You get blisters on your skin
  • The skin you are using the treatment on becomes swollen

If these reactions affect you and do not improve, or get worse after a few days, you should contact your doctor as soon as possible.

In rare cases, it is possible to suffer a serious allergic reaction to this medication. You should stop using it and either go to A&E or call 999 straight away if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • You are wheezing
  • You have tightness in your chest or throat
  • You have a skin rash that is red, itchy, swollen, blistered or peeling skin
  • You are finding it difficult to speak or breathe
  • You have swelling in your lips, mouth, tongue, throat or face

You may require immediate treatment in hospital if you have a serious allergic reaction.

Always read the patient information leaflet for a full list of potential adverse effects.

Acnecide Warnings and drug interactions

Certain other medications may irritate your skin if you use them at the same time as Acnecide gel.

It is very important that you inform your doctor or pharmacist if you are currently taking any other medicines, before you start to use Acnecide. This includes both prescription and non-prescription medications, herbal remedies, vitamins and supplements.

Do not use Acnecide at the same time as any other treatments that may cause your skin to become dry or irritated. This includes alcohol-based skincare products.

Always read the label of new medicines and skin treatments, to check the possible side effects.

Alternatively, you could purchase treatments that are specifically designed to treat sensitive skin; this will minimise your chance of a reaction.

Do not use any other products that contain the same active ingredient as Acnecide, or any other medicines to treat acne, unless advised to do so by your doctor. This may result in your skin becoming very sore.

Warnings for using Acnecide gel

This medicine is for external use only. Avoid contact with the eyes, mouth and nostrils. If you get any of the medicine in your mouth, eyes or nostrils, rinse the gel out thoroughly with clean, warm water. Contact your doctor if you suffer any adverse effects.

Do not swallow Acnecide; if you accidentally ingest this medication, contact your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

If you have any questions or concerns at all, we advise you to discuss these with your doctor or pharmacist before you start to use this medicine.

Buy Online Safely

Never purchase any medication online unless it is from a pharmacy that is registered with the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPC), like Medicine Direct. This will ensure that you do not purchase any fake and potentially dangerous versions of real medicine.

When you order at Medicine Direct, you can rest assured that you will only receive genuine versions of the medication you wish to buy. We are fully licensed with both the General Medical Council and General Pharmaceutical Council.

We offer speedy delivery, and if you order from our website before 2pm, we can offer you next day delivery on your products. This means you can begin treating your acne more or less straight away.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding

It is normally safe for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding to use Acnecide gel.

However, if you are currently breastfeeding, you should avoid using the treatment on your chest area. You should also make sure you always wash your hands after applying the treatment, before you touch your baby. This will make sure your baby does not come into contact with the treatment.

Before starting a new medication, you should always inform your doctor or pharmacist if you are currently pregnant, think you may be pregnant, are trying to get pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

Acnecide Ingredients

The main active ingredient within this medicine is: Benzoyl peroxide

For a full list of the inactive ingredients, please read the Summary of Product Characteristics

Delivery Company Delivery Service Price Details
Royal Mail UK Delivery Standard UK Tracked £2.99 3 - 4 Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Delivery - Tracked £5.95 Order by 2pm (subject to Dr approval) Next Working Day Delivery
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Next Day Tracked Morning Delivery by 12:00pm £12.95 Next Working Day Morning Delivery by 12:00pm
DPD UK Next Day Delivery Tracked Saturday Delivery £9.95

Delivery specified for Saturday

Order Friday by 2pm (subject to Dr approval)

Please note that next day delivery to Northern Ireland, Scottish Highlands & Islands and British Isles cannot be guaranteed. Please contact our team for more information.

This page has recently been medically reviewed by Hussain Abdeh MPharm: 2211840

Published on: 12/10/2020

Updated on: 24/08/2021

This content has been written by our Superintendent Pharmacist Hussain Abdeh and has been medically reviewed by our Pharmacist Sonia Khan

Hussain Abdeh Superintendent Pharmacist at Medicine Direct

Hussain Abdeh
MPharm: 2211840

Pharmacist Independent Prescriber

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