ELF Zit Zapper Review

When ELF released their Zit Zapper product I was curious, but quite skeptical. An acne spot treatment for a dollar? Right. Sure. But last time I did an order I figured oh what the hell, lets try it out. 
Honestly? I’m pleasantly surprised. I had very low expectations, but I actually really like this. So yes, an acne spot treatment. For a dollar. 

The reason I decided to finally give this a go is the ingredients. Most drugstore acne spot treatments have an active ingredient of benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid and not much else going on. Not to say those aren’t good products, it’s just that so many of them are so gosh-darned alike. When I compare some of the most popular acne spot treatments, they mostly tell the same story. The benzoyl peroxide creams such as ZapZyt, C&C Persa-gel, and Neutrogena On The Spot are all pretty much whatever % benzoyl peroxide, and agents to deliver that medication in a creamy formula. 

ZapZyt Inactive Ingredients: Laureth 4, Carbomer 940, EDTA (Ethylenediamine-Tetra-Acetic Acid), Diisopropanolamine, Water USP (Purified)

Persa-gel 10 Inactive Ingredients: Carbomer, Disodium EDTA, Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose, Laureth 4, Sodium Hydroxide, Water

For whatever reason, the BP treatments usually don’t contain a whole lot of extras like fragrance or skin-soothing ingredients. Salicylic Acid treatments often do. In fact, one of my favorites is Neutrogena’s 3-in-1 Hydrating Acne Treatment, which contains (along with a TON of fragrance) cucumber extract and whatnot to supposedly make it hydrating. Honestly, to me it’s just 3-in-1 Not Incredibly Drying Acne Treatment but whatever, I like it ok?

ANYWAY. So what I’m getting at is ELF’s Zit Zapper offers us something NEW. And new things are shiny. And refreshing! Zit Zapper’s formula is a blend of good for your skin ingredients — witch hazel, tea tree oil, salicylic acid, and camphor. Camphor is an ingredient I don’t encounter a whole lot in skin care products, but it’s amazingly effective at healing breakouts when combined with other acne fighters. Usually it’s found in higher end skincare. Treatments I’ve tried with camphor include Renee Rouleau’s Night Time Spot Lotion and Mario Badescu Drying Lotion. I have seen a Drying Lotion by Bye Bye Blemish, but I haven’t tried it. It’s around $10.

Camphor is a naturally soothing/cooling substance with antimicrobial properties. You see, salicylic acid by itself does nothing to actually kill the bacteria that causes acne. It is an exfoliating agent that keeps your pores unblocked so it encourages cell turnover and healing that way, but it doesn’t have antibacterial properties. So when I saw that ELF’s Zit Zapper combines the exfoliating properties of salicylic acid with the antimicrobial properties of camphor, witch hazel, and tea tree oil, I got excited. I’ve never seen a spot treatment to combine all of those ingredients, and I’ve certainly never seen an effective spot treatment for a buck.

The resulting product is not only effective, it doesn’t burn or dry out my skin. I apply it at night, and any breakouts are looking remarkably better in the morning, and gone in a couple days. It being delivered as a liquid with a rollerball is not the most sanitary packaging, but if you are concerned you can always apply the liquid to a q-tip and dab it on to spots where you need it.

Bottom line… if you have acne, try this. Seriously. I absolutely believe that skin care is something that you should spend money on if you need to because it’s worth it, but with products like this you don’t even have to.


  1. Jacobi Johnson says

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