Compare benzoyl peroxide vs. Cleocin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Benzac (benzoyl peroxide)

Prescription or OTC

Cleocin (clindamycin)

Prescription only
Treats acne.

Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) is the most effective over-the-counter treatment for mild acne.

3.4/ 5 average rating with 394 reviewsforbenzoyl peroxide
Treats acne.

Cleocin (clindamycin) is proven to be effective at treating acne when combined with another acne medicine and is available in a variety of formulations.

3.5/ 5 average rating with 115 reviewsforCleocin
Upsides
  • Available over-the-counter from many brands.
  • Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) comes in many different forms and combinations with other acne products.
  • Available in generic.
  • Comes in different formulations (gel, solution, lotion, foam) to fit your preferences.
  • Works well for the kind of acne that causes large, red, and swollen pimples.
Downsides
  • Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) increases your skin's sensitivity to the sun and may also cause dryness or stinging.
  • Be careful when applying Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) to large areas since it can bleach hair, clothing, and pillow cases upon contact.
  • Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) needs to be combined with other medications to effectively treat severe acne.
  • Foam formulation can cause headaches.
  • You will likely have to use another acne medicine along with Cleocin (clindamycin) since it is not as effective by itself.
  • Is only preferred for mild to moderate acne. If you have severe acne your doctor will most likely prescribe an oral medication.
  • If you only have comedonal acne (small skin-colored bumps on the skin) without any red, swollen pimples, your doctor may give you an alternative medicine.
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Used for
Dosage forms
  • Cream
  • Lotion
  • Liquid
  • Gel
  • Foam
  • Soap
  • Gel
  • Foam
  • Solution
  • Lotion
Price
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Reviews
394 reviews so far
60%
saidit'sworth it
29%
saiditworked well
9%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Benzac (benzoyl peroxide)?

Leave a review
115 reviews so far
57%
saidit'sworth it
43%
saiditworked well
19%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Cleocin (clindamycin)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Benzac (benzoyl peroxide) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
9possible side effects
  • Dryness
    23%
  • Oiliness/Oily skin
    18%
  • Redness
    16%
  • Burning
    11%
  • Burning/Itching
    11%
  • Peeling
    11%
  • Itching
    11%
  • Burning where applied
    6%
  • Headache
    3%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Bleaching
  • Skin irritation
    • Using other medicines or products that irritate the skin
    • Eczema
    • Extreme temperatures (hot or cold)
  • Allergic reaction
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Skin irritation
    • Using other medicines or products that irritate the skin
    • Eczema
    • Extreme temperatures (hot or cold)
  • Severe diarrhea and stomach cramps
    • Using Cleocin (clindamycin) for a long time
See more detailed risks and warnings