Folks On TikTok Are Using Band-Aids to Clear Up Their Pimples—Here’s Why It Works

Elizabeth Denton
Folks On TikTok Are Using Band-Aids to Clear Up Their Pimples—Here’s Why It Works
Photo: Adobe/Retailer. Design: Cierra Miller/STYLECASTER.

There have been pimple tricks for decades. As a teen, you might have been told to put toothpaste on a zit to dry it out overnight. (Don’t do that.) Now, there’s a TikTok Band-Aid acne trend that’s going viral that has a few people…well, confused. But when you break it down, it’s actually pretty genius. Though, it’s really nothing new. Allow me to explain.

Folks all over TikTok are heading to the pharmacy to grab hydrocolloid bandages. Not the regular Band-Aids but the thick, squishy ones for healing a wound. They’re putting these right on their face, on top of mature pimples that have fluid in them. When they wake up, they pull off the Band-Aid and look in awe at all the white gunk that’s been absorbed into the bandage from the pimple. There’s no faking this result.

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It’s the epitome of oddly satisfying.

You might be wondering how these patches are different from regular pimple patches. Well, they aren’t. Pimple patches are made from hydrocolloid, which was originally created to be a bandage for wounds in the 1980s. Hydrocolloid is made from gelling agents such as pectin or gelatin (some patches are vegan and made without gelatin) that absorbs pus and fluids inside the wound (or pimple) and locks it into the material. Think of pimple patches as a safe way to “pop” a pimple without scarring or risk of bacterial infection.

You can actually make pimple patches with these big hydrocolloid bandages from the drugstore by cutting them up. Though they might not be as good as regular zit stickers. Here’s why. As you can see in each TikTok video, folks are having trouble pulling the Band-Aids off their skin, which can cause redness and irritation on an already sensitive area. Regular pimple stickers are less, well, sticky and are made for the face. Plus, many brands including ZitSticka, Peace Out and Hero Cosmetics have acne-busting ingredients inside the sticker so you’re not only removing the sebum, but also treating the acne. That’s important.

Hydrocolloid patches work. But they’re meant to be used as part of an acne treatment plan. If you use these once in a while, you still have to be sure to keep up with your pimple-fighting skincare regimen or you’ll just be chasing pimple after pimple. Still, if you want to use a large hydrocolloid patch to flatten an area of pimples overnight, go for it. We just recommend using the ones from a trusted acne brand. They’re often not much more expensive than regular Band-Aids and you get a ton in a pack.

Shop some of our favorite options below to join in on the TikTok trend. And you can shop all the best pimple patches here.

Mighty Patch Surface

Mighty Patch.

Hero Cosmetics Mighty Patch Surface

These drug-free hydrocolloid patches don’t hurt when you remove them from your face or body.



Rael Acne Pimple Healing Patch

These are contoured to fit acne hot spots such as the nose, chin and cheek.

Peace Out Oil-Absorbing Pore Treatment Strips

Peace Out.

Peace Out Pores

These are meant for your nose but you can really use these patches anywhere. They’re made from hydrocolloid to suck out sebum and puss, but also have vitamin A to help minimize the appearance of pores, as well as DMAE to help firm skin.

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