Has the Acne Cleared? Here Are 5 Things to Do Now.

You did it.

You were consistent with your skin care plan, you trusted the process, and you stayed patient throughout your journey. Now, you’re seeing clear (or almost clear) skin and acne has become much easier to control. Yay!

It almost feels like the end of a chapter, doesn’t it?

So uh, what now? Can you toss your skincare routine in the bin and move on?

Not quite.

In fact, this ‘post-acne’ stage is crucial. For one, now that the war against acne has ended, it’s time to repair skin and bring it back to peace. For another, a maintenance routine with proper skincare and healthy habits is a must to make sure acne stays away – for good.

Here are five things to do now (and in the long run):

1. Clean up the red and dark marks left by acne.

You know the pinkish red acne marks you get after pimples have flattened?

When a pimple is active, it is inflamed because the body increases blood flow to the tissue surrounding the clogged pore¹. It is the body’s natural response to fighting off the bacterial infection.

After the pimple has flattened, it normally takes 8 to 12 weeks for the blood vessels to return to their original size. The residual blood and dilated blood vessels are what cause red post-acne marks.

It is important to address and fade these red marks early on because if exposed to the sun, they can quickly collect melanin and turn into even more stubborn brown marks2.

Lighten Up is our unique formulation for soothing skin and reducing the appearance of red post-acne marks. Apply it morning and evening to see a significant improvement in skin tone within a month.

If some of these red marks have turned into dark marks, or if you have sun spots and melasma, an easy way to reduce the look of these is to use Dark Mark Defense.

Dark Mark Defense contains potent pigment-regulating agents that fade the appearance of dark spots up to 4x faster than normal. You will see good improvement within three months of use and a significant improvement after six months.

2. Use retinol and AZA to keep skin clear in the long term.

Whether it was prescriptions from your dermatologist or consistent use of Clear Out, no matter how you arrived at clear skin, keeping it clear is key.

Topical agents are the mainstay of maintenance therapy, and these include topical retinoids and AZA3 - both of which are in Clear Out, our special formulation for acne-prone skin.

Clear Out is formulated with BOTH retinol (a gentler type of retinoid) and AZA to perpetually clear clogged pores and make skin less acne-prone. It is perfect for use when you have acne, but is just as helpful as part of your clear skin maintenance plan.

If you have been using Clear Out all along, you can continue using it to keep acne away.

If you have been using other treatments and are looking for a simple and gentler way to keep skin clear for the long run, add Clear Out into your routine.

Since you're now in maintenance mode, you can use Clear Out on alternate days, at night only. This will keep breakouts away.

What’s more? The retinol in Clear Out can help fight the signs of aging and AZA can further help with post-inflammatory dyspigmentation4.

That’s what we call a win-win-win!

3. Target new spots and stop them from surfacing.

Even after acne has cleared, and even if you’re using Clear Out regularly, a pimple or two will still pop up every now and then. It’s completely normal because hey, we’re human!

These breakouts are likely to come and go fast, but if you would like to tame them before they get super inflamed and out of hand, our new spot treatment gel is here to help.

Stop Spot* is our NEW acne spot treatment gel that can target and treat pimples before they surface. This means they never get a chance to break through and show on the skin. It is also formulated to heal and flatten active pimples so they clear faster.

4. Adopt an overall healthy lifestyle.

Taking care of your skin starts with taking care of yourself as a whole!

This means ensuring you sleep well, eat well, stress less, exercise more, and check on your mental health often.

Living healthy overall can help improve your skin, keep it clear, and of course, keep your body and mind functioning at their best. What’s there to lose?

Remember to carve out time every day to do things that make you feel relaxed and happy!

5. Continue with a clear skin maintenance routine.

While the treatments you use are likely to change now that the acne has cleared, you still need a proper skin care routine. With Clearly Basics, all you need is 3 steps.

Step 1: Cleanse twice a day with So Fresh (for all skin types) or Balancing Cleanser (for very oily skin).

Step 2: Treat once every 2 days, at night, with Clear Out.

If you have post-acne scars, apply Lighten Up (for red acne marks) and Dark Mark Defense (for dark marks) twice a day.

If you have emerging or active pimples, use Stop Spot* up to three times a day, as needed.

Step 3: Nourish twice a day with Matte Hydrator (for oily-combination skin) or Protective Moisturizer (for dry-combination skin).

In the morning, make sure to top it all off with your favorite non-comedogenic sunscreen.

Once a week, you can also give your skin a gentle chemical peel to exfoliate it and break down excess sebum. Just leave Balancing Cleanser on for 30 minutes to feel all renewed!

Want a customized clear skin maintenance plan?

We’re here to help! Get in touch with us via Messenger chat or Instagram DM (@clearlybasics).


  1. Deirdre Connolly et al, 2017: Acne Scarring—Pathogenesis, Evaluation, and Treatment Options
  1. Paula Begoun: Postinflammatory Hyperpigmentation
  1. John E Wolf Jr, 2004: Maintenance therapy for acne vulgaris: the fine balance between efficacy, cutaneous tolerability, and adherence
  1. American Academy of Dermatology: Acne Clinical Guideline

*Stop Spot is known as Calm Down outside the US. While the names are different, the formulation is exactly the same.

Calm Down is only available as an add-on product. Shop it here with your Clearly favorites.

Disclaimer: This article should not be interpreted as personal medical advice. For medical-related matters, please consult your dermatologist.

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See what others have to say about Clearly Basics.

Based on 26 reviews
Skin Type: Normal
Comments: Any ideas on how to get rid of brown skin damage
Skin defence

Marks of sun damage are still there they haven't faded much after using twice a day for 60 days. . I will continue until product is finished. I'm a bit disappointed

Skin Type: Combination

I am so happy that I stumbled upon clearly basics on instagram. I was skeptical at first but decided to give it a try and bought clear out clarifying lotion. It's been 2 months and my skin has improved a lot. I can see significant reduction in pores and acne.

Skin Type: Combination

After years of medication and products, I decided to try clearly basics. In just 6 weeks my skin has calmed and I am now able to treat scarring.

So glad to have found these products!

Finding products that helped to control my acne without irritating my sensitive skin has always been a huge challenge. The clearly basics products have been my saviour, I can't recommend them enough ☺️

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️Excellent and actually works

I am so incredibly impressed with the TLC for pore minimising - it 💯 works and has transformed my skin.

I’m in my 50’s and always had hormonal flare ups with larger pores as I age - this is a game changer and have just reordered my 3rd bottle !


not bad but I thought the formula has changed since what it was previously (i had it maybe 2 years ago) and I found it less effective now

Skin Type: Combination
This is the stuff.

So, long time sufferer of acne. Started when I was 12 and I'm 28 now still battling it. I've tried all kinds of different things to try and get it under control and besides birth control, nothing has helped long term. I never want to take birth control ever again and I just happened upon this brand and decided well, why not try? To my amazement, it has helped more than anything else I've tried, I'd say it has improved my skin to the level it was at when I took BC. Of course I still get pimples every now and then, and tiny flare ups during PMS but my skin is nowhere near as bad as it used to be. I highly recommend this company. To those who are considering trying this out, be aware that during the first week or so your skin will go through a purge and your acne will appear to get worse at first. Stick with it! Once that phase is over is when your skin will begin improving. I do need to use it every night for it to be fully effective, but even when I do forget, the pimples don't get too out of control. I just can't say enough good things about this product. It has helped my confidence improve immensely and I definitely recommend trying it to those who have skin as finicky as mine.

Skin Type: Sensitive / Dry
The only moisturiser I trust

I am super sensitive and this is the only moisturiser that I trust honestly incredible.

Skin Type: Combination

I use this product and with the clear out and it has really helped my hormonal acne.

Skin Type: Sensitive / Dry
Here one day, gone the next!

After success with Clearly Basics for my acne scars, I stocked up with all of the active acne products to prepare myself for how angry my acne would get when going off hormonal birth control. I have tried and failed twice as my acne comes back so bad that I just start taking it again. This time I have been using clearly basics without fail every day (lighten up and clear out). I have had 3 pimples start to form and I use ‘Stop Spot’ and the next day instead of a much redder, much angrier pimple with a big white head - the pimple is gone! I have been very happy with this product. I’m one month down (typically when acne gets the worst) - let’s do this!

I love that these products are gentle on my daughter skin.

This skin care routine is the o lay one that has helped clear up my daughters skin.

My daughters skin is really starting to look better!

Skin Type: Oily
So far so good

Bought this for my daughter that has struggled with acne for years. She has seen improvement and less frequent breakouts.

Best moisturizer I have found!

Lighten Up Redness Rescue Cream
Veronica Ilenya Ranieri
Skin Type: Sensitive / Dry

Has changed my skin from acne pro to almost perfect 😍😍

Skin Type: Combination
Obsessed !!

Obsessed with this cleanser!! It left me feeling fresh and prevented break outs. It is incredible . Loved this product so much

My skin feels so soft after using this moisturiser!

My skin feels so soft after using this moisturiser!

Skin Type: Combination
Fresh and clean!

My face is filled with energy and feels so fresh and clean!

Skin Type: Normal
excellent item!

have been using this for years! so good for my skin :)

So Fresh pH Balancing Cleanser
Carmelinda Di Manno
Skin Type: Combination
Fresh Feeling

My skin feels so clean and still hydrated when I use this cleanser. It’s balancing and refreshing. My skin has responded really well to it and at times my skin can be sensitive. I highly recommend this product to anyone with relatively oily t-zone area

Skin Type: Combination
Very happy!

Love the texture, the minty scent and the lather.
I wish the bottles were a bit bigger HOWEVER they are just small enough to fly with.

Skin Type: Normal
Comments: The only thing I now need to use to keep my skin clear.
The holy grail for clearing hormonal acne.

This is the only product that I have needed to keep my skin clear since discovering it about 2 years ago, after suddenly developing cystic hormonal acne at the age of 25. I now only need to use it every second night, so it's incredibly affordable. It has also never irritated my sensitive skin and it has faded previous acne marks to truly clear my skin. After years of trying expensive supplements/products/harsh prescription creams, Clear Out was the only thing that gave me long-lasting results.

Skin Type: Oily
Clearly Basics is the only product that has helped my Adult Acne

I have always struggled with dehydrated acne prone skin. Every month like clockwork I would get a new breakout on my chin or cheek area. These included large cystic acne that by the time they came to a head would take me months to clear. With new breakouts each month this created more & more spots before the first could heal leaving more hyper pigmentation spots that never have time to clear. Clearly basics changed all that for me. It gave my skin a chance to heal and reduced the number of breakouts each month. When I do get a new breakout it resolves itself quickly with less scarring and redness. Now that the acne is under control the products are helping to eliminate the remaining hyper pigmentation spots left from years of acne. I have not been using the product for long but I will continuing relying on this product and look forward to the day I can happily look in the mirror at a smooth clear & even complexion some day soon.

Skin Type: Combination
Comments: Product consistency in terms of smoothness/coarseness/stickiness/ is sometimes a miss, don't believe it affects the result provided.
Great Combo

Have seen great improvements by using these 2 items concurrently, hard to fault and wil continue purchasing.

Individual results may vary

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