If you are fighting acne and have looked into oral supplements, chances are that zinc gluconate sounds familiar to you. It is a zinc salt that has research proving it to be effective against inflammatory acne, though not quite as effective as the antibiotic minocycline (31.2% vs. 63.4% success rate). However, zinc supplements are easily available, have little-to-no side effects, so supplementing them with a 30mg per day dose can still be a good idea.
As for smearing zinc gluconate all over your face, it is also not a bad idea. Zinc has multiple magic abilities: it is antibacterial (including evil, acne-causing P. acnes) and sebum-regulating (5α-reductase inhibitor), great for acne-prone skin types. It also stimulates antioxidant enzyme systems (mainly superoxide dismutase) and has nice wound healing abilities acting mainly in the first, proliferation phase. So great for skin types in need of healing and soothing.
What about the gluconate part? It is there to promote the absorption and bioavailability of zinc and also plays a role in cellular regeneration (involved in the synthesis of ribose sugars, structural components of DNA and RNA).
Show me some proof
- Dreno, B., et al. "Low doses of zinc gluconate for inflammatory acne." Acta Derm Venereol 69.6 (1989): 541-3.
- Dreno, Brigitte, et al. "Multicenter randomized comparative double-blind controlled clinical trial of the safety and efficacy of zinc gluconate versus minocycline hydrochloride in the treatment of inflammatory acne vulgaris." Dermatology 203.2 (2001): 135-140.
- Tenaud, I., et al. "In vitro modulation of keratinocyte wound healing integrins by zinc, copper and manganese." British Journal of Dermatology 140.1 (1999): 26-34.