Benzac AC® Gel
Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about BENZAC AC. Please read this leaflet carefully before you start using the gel. It does not contain all the information available on this medicine. It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have risks and benefits. If you have any concerns about using this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
Keep this leaflet with your tube. You may wish to read it again later.
What BENZAC AC is used for
BENZAC AC is for EXTERNAL USE ONLY .
BENZAC AC Gel is used as an aid for the treatment of acne.
It contains benzoyl peroxide which
- kills the bacteria on the skin that cause acne
- unplugs blocked pores (blackheads and whiteheads)
BENZAC AC Gel also contains acrylates copolymer beads that absorb excess oils and release glycerol which reduces the risk of irritation.
Before you use BENZAC AC
When you must not use it
Do not use BENZAC AC Gel if:
- you have an allergy to benzoyl peroxide or any ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet.
- the package is torn or shows signs of tampering.
- the expiry date (EXP) printed on the pack has passed.
- you are pregnant or breastfeeding or intend to become pregnant or breastfeed. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
If you are not sure if you should start using BENZAC AC, talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
How to use BENZAC AC
Always begin treatment with either 2.5% or 5% BENZAC AC. Provided your skin tolerates the lower strength gel, your doctor or pharmacist may recommend continued treatment with the higher strength gel. BENZAC AC is a spot treatment and should only be applied to affected areas.
Wash and dry your hands before applying the gel.
Unless your doctor or pharmacist has told you otherwise, follow these three steps:
Wash the affected area with a mild skin cleanser and water and pat skin dry.
Apply a thin film of BENZAC AC to the affected areas once daily, leaving on the skin for 2 hours then washing it off with water then pat skin dry.
Apply a light moisturiser which won’t clog pores.
After three days, if no discomfort is felt, apply BENZAC AC in the evening and leave it on all night.
After 7 days, if there is no redness or peeling and your skin is still not improving, apply BENZAC AC twice a day morning and night.
How long you will need to use BENZAC AC will depend on how quickly your condition improves.
Persevere with your therapy as acne can take time to improve. After you have used it for one month, you should see your doctor or pharmacist again so they can check the improvement in your condition.
While you are using BENZAC AC
Things to avoid
- Avoid contact with the eyes, lips, mouth, angles of the nose and sensitive areas of the neck. If accidental contact should occur, rinse thoroughly with warm water and pat dry. Contact may cause irritation.
- BENZAC AC should not be applied to damaged skin.
- Do not use BENZAC AC with any other acne products that are used on the skin unless your doctor or pharmacist has told you that you can, as this may cause your skin to become red and sore.
- Avoid excessive exposure to sunlight or other sources of ultra-violet light.
Things you can do
- If you forget to apply it use it again as directed, as soon as you remember.
- Apply a non-greasy, broad spectrum, high SPF Factor sunscreen when sun protection is needed.
Things to be careful of
- Keep use of cosmetics to a minimum and avoid oil based cosmetics which can clog the pores.
- Be careful when using BENZAC AC gel because benzoyl peroxide can bleach or discolour clothing, towels or bed linen. Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly after you have used it.
- Fair-skinned individuals are more likely to be susceptible to irritation when using BENZAC AC.
- Do not use harsh skin cleansers, scrubs, medicated soaps or cosmetic products containing alcohol as these may have an additional drying or irritant effect
- BENZAC AC contains propylene glycol which may cause skin irritation.
Possible side effects
If you should accidently use too much gel, you may find that your skin becomes irritated. Wash off as much as you can and when the irritation has gone down; start using it again as directed.
It is normal in the first weeks to experience a feeling of skin tension or a burning, stinging or itching sensation and a small amount of peeling or reddening of the skin. These effects are usually mild and can be relieved by the use of a moisturising cream or lotion. Alternatively, you may reduce the number of times you apply BENZAC AC to once a day or once every two days until your skin adjusts to the product.
If excessive swelling, irritation, redness or peeling occurs, discontinue use. If it persists, consult your doctor.
In case of accidental swallowing
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (Australia 13 11 26, New Zealand 0800 POISON or 0800 764 766) for advice or go to Accident and Emergency at your nearest hospital if you think that you or anyone else may have swallowed BENZAC AC, even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning. You may need urgent medical attention.
After using BENZAC AC
Carefully replace the cap on the tube to avoid spillage or leakage.
Store below 25°C and keep out of reach of children.
Keep BENZAC AC where young children cannot reach it. A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place to store medicines.
What it looks like
BENZAC AC gel is a smooth white gel in a plastic tube with a screw top. It is available in a 50g tube.
Gel base contains docusate sodium, disodium edentate, poloxamer 182, carbomer 940, propylene glycol, acrylates copolymer, glycerol, silicon dioxide, sodium hydroxide and purified water.
BENZAC AC is available in three strengths: 2.5%, 5% or 10% of benzoyl peroxide.
Galderma Australia Pty Ltd
13B Narabang Way
Belrose NSW 2085
Call 1800 800 765 (Australia)
0800 174 104 (New Zealand)
Australian Registration Number:
2.5% AUST R 25270
5.0% AUST R 25271
10% AUST R 25268
Date of leaflet: February 2007
Amended 04 August 2011
Published by MIMS November 2011