Hideous Cystic Acne on My Face! How Do I Get Rid of It?

Updated on August 01, 2013
N.G. asks from Arlington, TX
19 answers

Hi Moms! I have a history of acne but there is this disgusting cystic-looking monster pimple cluster thing next to my right ear. I have to go to work tomorrow after having five days off (which was apparently enough time for this thing to take over my face!) and I can not stand having this thing hanging out on my face! What do I do? I've tried to squeeze it but it hurts to squeeze and it doesn't seem to want to pop! I know I risk infection if I stick a pin in it but... what do I do?!?!

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So What Happened?

I got on birth control and it's going away. Must be hormonal!

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answers from Washington DC on

when I was a teen, I used toothpaste to dry them out?? but I woudl head to the drugstore and by some drying acne lotion/treatment

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Redding on

Please do not try to pop or break it. It could just break and spread out further under the skin.
Go to a dermatologist. This will sound scary, but they can inject you with something that will completely shrink it.
I worked with a girl who had cystic acne and that's what she did. They use such a tiny needle that it doesn't leave a mark and you don't even feel it.
I went to a dermatologist because I had a precancerous thing on my leg. I mentioned that I had a thing on my cheek that never went away. It wasn't like a normal pimple and it hurt. He stuck a little needle in it and it's gone. That was years ago. I have no idea what it was, but it worked.
It could be a type of boil too, so definitely have it checked out. Don't mess with it anymore without seeing a doctor for it.
The sooner the better.

Best wishes.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Try and get in to see the dermotologist as soon as you can.

You can request a shot of cortisone directly into the cyst. It will dry it up and you will see results overnight. I know this is not a very appealing treatment, but I suffered with cystic acne for years and have had many a shot in the face. It is a quick fix and I have never experienced and side effects whatsoever.

Do not pick at it!!! Do not poke it!!! You will wind up with a scar you wished you never had.

Try applying a warm compress to the cyst and take some Tylenol for the pain.

I totally feel your pain.

In the end, it was only birth control that fully controlled my cystic acne. The cause is most commonly hormonal.

Good luck and no matter how tempting....don't pick!!!


3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I had cystic acne. Five years ago I went on accutane. It's not for everybody, but it CURED my acne. I am thankful every day for a zit-less face! You really need to see a dermatologist to find out what your options are. Home remedies just don't work. Been there, done that. (And what you are describing could be a cyst. You shouldn't squeeze or poke at it. That will just cause more infection.)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

By squeezing it, you are causing more inflammation and making it go deeper. For cystic acne, you really need to see a dermatologist. There is no real cure for this over the counter. To take down the pain and reduce a little of the inflammation, crush an ibuprofen (it has to be ibuprofen, not Tylenol) into lemon juice (water is OK, too) and make a paste. Put the paste on the spots and cover with a bandaid over-night. Take 2 ibuprofen orally, as well. This will only make it feel a little better. Like I said, you need to see a dermatologist. And stop squeezing!!! You'll cause it to infect, get bigger, and scar!!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on


2 moms found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

Hi N.,

My daughter uses a line of acne products called ZAP-IT. Her biggest issue is her diet. The Zap-it works but she has to be consistent with it. High grade tea tree oil will heal it as well. If it's a high grade it won't dry the skin. It absorbs deeeeep into the skin and heals from the inside out, faster than anything I've seen. I'd give it a try on this monster!

God bless,


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Go to the dermatologist and ask about steroid treatment. I'm not sure what they will say, but I have suffered acne for years (darn it!) and nothing has worked...NOTHING! Then one day I had some tooth problem and the dentist prescribed a high dose steroid to calm down the tooth nerve. To my pleasant surprise, within 24 hours my acne, ALL OF IT, was gone! Since then, I use over the counter cortisone cream every once in awhile a couple of times a day for a week. My doctor said not to do this because long term use thins the skin, so I am definitely ignoring her advice at times. But nothing else works and my acne is horrible!!! I'm 37 years old so who the heck knows what is up with my skin???!! I pay close attention to advice on posts like this, but have yet to read anything that I haven't tried that works:(

Good luck with your problem...for tonight, maybe try cortisone cream??? Sorry this is happening...I know how horrible it feels to go out in public with such skin problems.



answers from Portland on

Could you cover it with a band aid or two?



answers from Dallas on

make sure it's actually a dermatological problem first. I had a lesion on my armpit that sounds just like what you're describing and it was a MRSA infected boil. Nasty stuff, but antibiotics cleared it right up.


answers from Jacksonville on

Cold damp tea bags?


answers from Washington DC on

don't stick a pin in it! (no, not even with a sterilized one as one poster suggested.) use a concealer (i know they're not perfect, but it will help) or a bandaid until you can get to your dermatologist.
i hate it when that happens!


answers from Salt Lake City on

Have you ever used M2? My friend is an aesthetician and has given me several samples of the moisturizer and the serum. It is a bit pricey but lasts a very long time. When I get a monster zit, I put the serum on it overnight and it sucks the life out of it.

If you try to pop it, chances are it will get infected and just be bigger the next day, so try to leave it alone :)



answers from Detroit on

You need a good extra strength mask(to use daily) we use Arbonne's also they have a Spot remover to put on those tough acne spots by morning they are almost gone. PM me if you want further info. Good Luck I hope it was gone for you today.


answers from Chicago on

Make a paste of nutmeg (jaiphal) with unboiled milk and apply on affected area. This works as a wonderful ointment. Pimples disappear without leaving a mark.



answers from Boise on

Most likelty a HORMONE issue- Low cortisol ad possible high testosterone.

My daughter has Addisons disease (low cortisol/low aldosterone) and her acne flared horribly until she got on hydrocortisone.

As another poster said- you can get over the counter hydrocortisone cream (for itching) a 1/4 t is equivalent to 5 mg if i remember correctly. This a LOW dose and if someone is very low in cortisol this might not be enough and pills are needed.

You can take a saliva cortisol test to check your levels. (not a blood test!)
If your MD wont order the saliva test for you, you can get it at canaryclub.org for around 100 bucks. it will measure your cortisol at 4 differet times of the day.
Cortisol is put out in a natural diurnal pattern. If someone has hormone dysfunction- that pattern will be broke and they will have some high or low measurements outside of the normal perameters.

Good luck,


answers from New York on

Oh I hate when that happen! Is maybe for stress.
Does it has a white head?
If not I don't think is nothing you can do besides put a pimple cream and hope tomorrow is ready to squize.
Make sure you take everything out and put some pimple cream and a ice to help the inflammation.



answers from San Francisco on

Wipe the zit with rubbing alcohol, sterilize the needle by sticking in in the flame of the burner, and poke the thing. Then squeeze it. Wash it afterwards with soap. It will be fine. It won't pop unless you poke it first.

I've squeezed a zillion zits, and had an infection like once. Don't worry about infection.



answers from Dallas on

You might try putting tea tree oil on it and then leave it alone. It has antibiotic properties and can be absorbed through your skin.

I used to suffer from cystic acne and frequent break outs and inadvertently discovered it was caused by dairy. I even had cysts on my ovaries. When I went dairy free, my skin very suddenly cleared up. Within a year, the cysts on my ovaries were gone as well.

Twelve years ago, I had a roommate I shared an apartment with who suffered from acne. She followed my example and went dairy free and her acne also cleared up. She and I still keep in touch and she recently told me that her little brother was visiting her and had a pretty bad breakout. She told him to stop having dairy for awhile and see what happens. He too had all of his acne clear up as soon as he went off of dairy.

There are so many alternative to dairy that it really is worth a shot. Try using soy, almond, rice, and/or coconut milks instead. Go without cheese, substitute a trans fat free, non-dairy margarine for butter. Give yourself at least 10 days of being dairy free and see if it makes any difference for you. Good luck!

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