Acne Supplements Sold Online

Emily Burns, Milbrey Parke, Ariadna Perez-Sanchez, Dina Zamil, Rajani Katta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: As no centralized database of acne supplements is available, we aimed to provide an ABSTRACT overview of these products, with a focus on safety. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to document the number, formulation, contents, and marketing strategies utilized by acne supplements sold online. Methods: An online search was conducted between March and May 2020. Products were included in the study if they used the terms: “whitehead”, “blackhead”, or “acne”. Data were extracted from the website, box, and Supplement Facts label. Results: 49 products were identified, which contained 146 unique ingredients. These included vitamins, minerals, food extracts, botanical extracts, amino acids, animal products, and distinct microbial strains. Few (4.1%) products were tested by third parties. Conclusions: This survey of acne supplements available online raised concerns regarding lack of warning labels, teratogenicity, exceedingly large levels of vitamins and minerals, and lack of third-party testing. Given the limited regulation and oversight of dietary supplements, it is imperative that physicians educate patients on the potential risks of these products.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2022029
JournalDermatology Practical and Conceptual
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2022


  • Acne supplement
  • Diet
  • Dietary supplement
  • Nutrition
  • Safety

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Oncology
  • Genetics
  • Dermatology


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