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Milk of Magnesia Clears Up Acne

Using milk of magnesia (MoM) on skin can help clear away the pimples and inflammation of acne.
Milk of Magnesia Clears Up Acne
Pimple acne skin teenager

Q. I just started using topical MoM (milk of magnesia) on my skin and my acne has started shrinking. I am trying to get off oral antibiotics so I hope this remedy works.

A. Many readers tell us that applying milk of magnesia (magnesium hydroxide) to the skin can help clear up acne. The only reference we have found in the medical literature is a letter in the Archives of Dermatology (Jan. 1975).

Satisfied users apply it twice a day, leave it on for 10 or 20 minutes and then wash it off.

IL in Gilbert, AZ, offered this testimonial:

“Regarding Milk of Magnesia as an acne remedy. I read about this a couple of weeks ago in the paper. I am a 44-year old woman who has had acne (regular and cystic) since I was a teenager.

“I took Retin-A when I was 18. It helped but did not clear it completely and you were correct about the side effects: depression, sensitivity to sun, redness in the face, cracked skin.

“My skin actually got better when I took birth control pills, but when I quit taking them, the acne resumed. I and my son (age 12) tried the Milk of Magnesia after reading the article. We are having excellent results – not completely clear but really helping. It seems to slough off the skin and remove the redness. I have tried everything: Proactive, Retin A, Cleocin-T. etc. I have also taken countless antibiotics to no avail.”

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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