In my youth I battled acne, even into my college years I was battling acne. I was prescribed antibiotics to treat it and expensive prescription creams. I went through countless acne washes, tried ProActive among other expensive systems, trying to get rid of the acne.
Nothing seemed to work. My acne would go away, but once I stopped the creams, or had been using them for months, my acne would flare up again. I then began studying nutrition, the body, and functional medicine. I soon learned that acne is easily curable, and that the commonly prescribed creams, antibiotics or birth control are actually more harmful to our body.
More than 80% of Americans have been effected by acne between the age of 12-44 at some point in their lives. It’s a fairly common disease, and contrary to popular belief it is easily treated and prevented.
A more natural approach to treating and preventing acne, helps to rid the face and back of acne, as well as prevent any breakouts. I never had a breakout throughout my entire pregnancy, and I haven’t had a breakout since my senior year of my undergrad. Aside form the occasional pimple, my face has remained clear. I wanted to share my secrets to acne free skin, and I guarantee they’ll be less expensive.
Disclaimer: I am not a health care professional, please consult your doctor before taking any supplements in order to prevent drug-herb interactions.
- Try apple cider vinegar – It’s not only great in making dressings and battling the cold, but it’s great for balancing the skin’s pH. Since a pH that is too acidic or alkaline encourages acne-causing bacteria, balancing pH is necessary. Make a tonic with 1 part apple cider vinegar and 4 parts water, and use day and night. Gently wipe on skin, in an upward motion, with a cotton pad or ball. You can gradually increase the apple cider vinegar to water ratio, as your skin adjusts to the mixture. I use 1/2 water and 1/2 apple cider vinegar now.
- Coconut oil with baking soda and/or tea tree oil – Coconut oil is an antifungal and antibacterial, which will help to fight the bacteria causing breakouts. It won’t leave your face oily, and won’t cause future breakouts. I use a mixture of coconut oil (2Tbs) with 1-2 tsp of baking soda, and a few drops of tea tree oil every night to wash my face. Tea Tree Oil is an antibaterial and antiseptic.
- Tea Tree Oil – It can be applied directly to pimples to dry them out. It doesn’t dry your face out, which is common with most prescription and over the counter acne creams. It’s an antibiotic and antiseptic. You can find lotions with tea tree oil in them, or even tea tree oil wipes made for acne prone skin.
- Argan Oil – It’s great for all skin types. It helps to prevent future breakouts. It won’t leave oily skin more oily, contrary to popular believe. I use it as a moisturizer in the morning and sometimes at night. Jojoba oil works great as an moisturizer as well.
- Vitamin A – It has been shown to help prevent breakouts and strengthens the protective skin tissue. Taking up to 25,000 IU until healed has been effective. 5,000 IU daily is recommended.
- Lavender Oil – Can be applied directly to pimples. It is also an antibiotic and antiseptic. It helps to dry out pimples.
- Essential Fatty Acids – These include omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. EFA’s help keep skin smooth and soft, repair tissues, and dissolve fatty deposits that block pores. Sources can be found in fish oil or flaxseed oil. My favorite is Barleans Omega Swirls.
- Vitamin D – The sun vitamin helps to promote healing and tissue repair. It’s needed for healthy skin, and most of us are deficient in this vitamin because of poor sun exposure and our diets. Sunscreen prevents absorption of this vitamin. 15-30 minutes of sun exposure is recommended each day, or supplement with 1,000-2,000 IU daily if you live in the Northern climates.
- Make dietary changes – Increase the amount of fiber in your diet and your intake of fruits and vegetables, especially raw fruits and veggies. Fruits and vegetables have amazing nutritional value, especially dark leafy greens. (I love green superfood) Fiber helps to rid the body of toxins. Limit consumption of fatty, fried foods and sugary foods. Even though most doctors say diet is not related to acne, studies have shown a correlation. Foods high in sugar, saturated fats, and preservatives may cause breakouts.
- Eliminate gluten & dairy – Some have found that gluten and dairy cause flare ups. It may be wise to eliminate these foods if you are acne prone. Acne may develop due to an allergy to dairy.
Making a few dietary changes, and using natural skin care products will help in clearing acne and preventing future breakouts. There’s no need to spend money on the commonly prescribed face washes and creams, when your own kitchen offers the ingredients you need for a healthy complexion.
Until Next Time Be Whole and Be Fit
What’s your favorite natural approach to preventing acne? Do you struggle with acne?