Zit happens

Everyone gets a zit once in awhile, even us dermatologists. I seem to get a nice one on my chin (and it’s always on the chin) every 1-2 months. Sometimes I try to hide it or use spot treatment – either benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid cream (available without a prescription at the drugstore), but when my 6-year-old starts asking about my new mole, I know it is time to bring out the big guns. 

A kenalog injection, also known as a steroid injection. Now this is not the type of steroid injection bodybuilders use, it is a VERY dilute and tiny amount of corticosteroid which quickly takes on that monstrous zit from a mountain to a molehill in mere hours. It sounds too good to be true, right? It’s not, the very small amount of steroid puts out the inflammation under your skin causing that nasty bump. For most people, kenalog is a magic zit eraser. There is a small risk the injection will cause atrophy (a small divot in the skin), but it is temporary (resolves in a couple months) and not very noticeable (I know from experience). 

Afraid of shots? I don’t like them either, but it is virtually painless and MUCH less painful than the zit on my chin. So keep your dermatologist on speed dial for the next time you wake up with huge pimple. Below, for your viewing pleasure, is my own photo journal of a zit succumbing to kenalog.


Day Zero. Zit happens. Good thing I have easy access to kenalog.

Zit Happens. Day 0.


24-Hrs after the emergency kenalog session. No makeup.

24 hours after an emergency kenalog session. No makeup.


48-Hrs after kenalog. No makeup. I can show my face at work.

48 hours after kenalog. No makeup. I can go to work with wearing a mask.

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