Monday, August 30, 2010

Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

image from

It's not a very glamorous subject, but acne, pimples, zits, spots, whatever you call them, are the bane of my existence. I have had acne since I was 12 years old. It was well before I started to wear makeup so I can only say that it is genetic. It started with pimples on my chin and then eventually spread all over my face. I didn't have the painful cystic type pimples until after college. You know when you hit your mid 20's and your skin is supposed to be clear? By the time I hit 30 I had completed 2 rounds of treatment with Accutane, multiple and countless topical prescription treatments, a sundry of pills and potions cluttered my medical history and all of it with no marked improvement in my skin. Heck, even that Zeno device didn't work for me. My acne was just not going to go away. As I near my err, ahem,...40's I have found that the frequency and severity of breakouts have diminished, due to birth control medication in part, but also to vigilance and adopting the less is more philosophy in my skin care regimen. But that still does not stop the lone pimple from showing up now and then. Since I'm an expert at recognizing the first signs of a pimple I am quick to treat it. I guess since I can't prevent acne from forming, I might as well combat it once it does show up as effectively as possible.

My weapon in this war? Mario Badsecu Drying Lotion. This stinky pink potion, when applied at the first signs of a pimple, has been THE ONLY thing that has successfully reduced the pimple or erased it from my face entirely. It is my Holy Grail in defense against acne for me.

The product contains salicylic acid, calamine and other ingredients to dry out the pimple almost overnight. The is one of the few acne treatments that I have used that does not overly dry out my skin and cause terrible flakies around the offending spot. Trust me. there is NOTHING worse than having a big old pimple and then flaky dry skin surrounding it. Bleh!

The product looks strange in the bottle. The pink sediment at the bottom, the clear liquid floating on top..what is this? Well you certainly should never shake it. You want the sediment in the bottom. that's the magic stuff!

At night, after cleansing and moisturizing your skin, you can apply the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion to your skin. All you need to do is dip a Q-tip into the bottle all the way to the bottom. pick up the pink sediment and dot on your face where you need to treat the pimple. On some days you might need to take multiple dips into the product. I highly recommend, to avoid the risk of contamination, that you use a new swab each time you dip into the product. However, most times you will only need to treat one or two spots so you should be fine with just one Q-tip. Once you have treated you skin you can go straight to bed. You will wake up in the morning and some of the product will still be on your face. It washes off easily and hopefully the result will be a pimple no more or a smaller pimple than you had last night. The product may come off on your pillowcase but I have never known it to bleach fabrics or harm them in any way.

Over the years, I thought I might save a few bucks by buying a competitor product that looks the same. I'm not sure if they are all that different, however, I have noticed the times when I use a duplicate product that isn't Mario Badescu I have not had the dramatic and immediate results I experience when I used the Drying Lotion. Now since I can pick up this product from Ulta I never have to be without my beloved Drying lotion ever again.

Do you NEED this? Well if you have acne or an occasional pimple and want an easy and effective overnight treatment I say YES! This is a must have. It costs a mere $17 and one can easily order it on line from the Mario Badescu website (which gives free samples with every order) or pick up at a Mario Badescu retailer like Nordstrom or Ulta. Better yet, if you live in New York, or are visiting, you can book an appointment at the salon/spa in Manhattan!

Ingredients: Isopropyl Alcohol,Deionized Water (Aqua), Calamine, Camphor, Colloidal Sulfur, Salicylic Acid,Glycerine, Zinc Oxide, Titanium Dioxide, Talc


  1. ooh another Mario Badescu fan! I just review the Silver Powder, which works great!
    For zits I use Avene Diacneal, it works great too.

  2. Have to check your review out. I just bought this recently and by far the best. I have tried most, neutrogena, zap zyt and they really don't help. Curios about other Mario Products. Def will take my time next time around.

  3. Hi Elvira!

    I bet it's stinky, I can smell it just by looking at the ingredients list (I'm a biochemist). This really sounds good, I bet it's coloidal sulfur must be what does the true wonder (and the true stink).

  4. I love the way it smells! All of the Mario Badescu products are great - this line does not get the love it deserves from the bloggerati. Thank you for the rave about this great potion - which works wonders on bug bites too!

  5. In my experience, this stuff really burns-- and it stains!

    I think using a toothpick or something of the like would be better because the Q-tip soaks up all the liquid sitting top of the lotion, leaving you with dry pinky lotion after a few months.

    But I'm glad it works for you! :)

  6. I love this stuff! However, for some strange reason after using this frequently, it stops being effective for me :( I think I'll go give it a new try with a fresh bottle.

  7. "Trust me. there is NOTHING worse than having a big old pimple and then flaky dry skin surrounding it. Bleh!" <<<< STORY OF MY LIFE.

    I've been on so many medications and tried so many topical treatments - the doctor once prescibed me some acne cream that you couldnt use while pregnant (I referred to it as industrial strength) and all it did was peel away all the skin around the pimple for like 2cm and then did nothing to the actual pimple! >_<

    I have the Drying Cream and it works pretty well, though I think I definitely need to use it in conjunction with the Drying Lotion :P

  8. I love MB face stuff! I used to use this but now use their buffering lotion more for cystic zits. I also layer the special healing powder from the same line over it when I'm wearing make-up.

  9. I feel extremely lucky that my 5 dollar jar of Spectrogel acne lotion clears them up quite nicely!

  10. Musing On Beauty. I'm going to have to give the Silver Powder another go. Hopefully it will work for me this time...following the tips you mentioned in your blog post.

    Hell Notes For Beauty: I have been pleasantly surprised by how good the MB product line is. No over hying, just basic and effective products!

    Hi Sandra: Oooh Biochemist! Awesome. Yes. that colloidal Sulfur is it. But for some reason my skin Looooves sulfur products.

    Beautybear: Oh neat! I'll have to try it on my next bug bite!

    wuguimei: Oh sorry that it burns. I only use it on closed skin, I made the mistake and used it on an open pimple and it burned as well. I think it's the alcohol. I didn't have the staining problems you had. Unfortunately using a toothpick is not an option. You are supposed to soak up a little liquid when you collect this product w/ a q-tip. That's the whole point. Plus, having gone though 4 bottles so far I can tell you that the product runs out evenly (pink stuff to liquid)

    Mimi: Sometimes acne medications can stop working. I don't know why, but I have had the same thing happen w/ other things. God help me if the MB stuff ever stops working. I will refuse to leave the house!

    SilhouetteScreams: Gah. That sounds terrible...and sadly familiar. Yeah. I haven't tried the Drying Cream yet. Maybe I'll give it a go in a few months.

    Heather: I had no luck w/ the buffering lotion. I'm glad it worked for you. I need to try the healing powder. i have heard good things about it.

    Anonymous. Glad the $5 spectrogel works for you.

  11. Did this product used to go by a different name? It sounds like something I used years ago that was fabulous, but I haven't been able to find anywhere lately.


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