The Next-Gen Pimple Fighter: Azelaic Acid

It's time to send your skin on an acid trip—specifically, azelaic acid—because there's compelling evidence that this ingredient, derived from grains such as wheat and barley, is one solid secret to a smoother, less cranky complexion. "It's a fantastic anti-inflammatory, making it a natural go-to for treating pimples and redness," says Robinson. "It also helps unclog pores and control melanin production, reducing the appearance of dark spots and treating hyperpigmentation." Another reason it's such a top-notch zit zapper? "While the exact mechanism in the skin is unknown, the acid is a potent antibacterial and antioxidant that clears away acne-causing bacteria," says Robinson.

Find it in: Paula's Choice Skincare 10% Azelaic Acid Booster ($36;