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Our overall health can determine how our skin would look like. Proper care, hydration and eating a nutrient-dense diet will surely give you healthy, beautiful skin. While poor nutrition, hormonal imbalance and the rest can leave you with blackheads, acne etc. It may also interest you to know that even with all the dieting, skincare routine and hydration, some people still struggle with acne because of genes, lack of sleep, stress or for no reason at all (like me) and this makes it all the more important to find the best home remedies for acne.
What is Acne
Acne is basically a skin condition characterized by red pimples on the skin due to inflamed or infected sebaceous glands. It is typically categorized into two main types: non-inflammatory and inflammatory acne. Acne is also described as mild, moderate or severe acne.
A lot of teens experience some type of acne, but even many adults deal with at least occasional breakouts too. Once believed to strike most often during teen years, acne is now affecting millions of adult women, many of which never had a problem with acne in the past. Some women (and men too) will only deal with acne during puberty and their teenage years, but others will suffer well into adulthood, especially during times of stress and hormonal changes. While acne among adult women is usually linked to hormonal shifts and imbalances that occur during the menstrual cycle, or when transitioning into menopause, it’s important to know that elevated stress levels, lack of sleep and a poor diet might also be root causes.
From mild to severe, acne can cause painful and unsightly outbreaks on the face, back, chest and even arms. Left untreated, acne can also lead to diminished self-esteem and even long-term hyperpigmentation or scarring. The good news is that there are many safe home remedies for acne, blackheads, whiteheads, and hyperpigmentation due to acne scars. No need to use potentially dangerous prescription drugs and/or topical medications on your skin.
Types Of Acne
Acne describes all bumps on the skin and has different types. The main types of acne include:
- Non-inflammatory acne is characterized by whiteheads and blackheads, but not cysts/nodules.
- Inflammatory acne is usually caused by small infections due to P. Acnes bacteria.
- Cystic acne (also called nodulocystic acne) is an intense form of acne that results in large, inflamed cysts and nodules that appear on the skin
- Acne fulminans is a severe form of inflammatory acne that usually affects adolescent males on jaw, chest and back.
- Acne mechanica is triggered by excess pressure, heat, and friction. Often affects athletes, causing small bumps and some inflamed lesions.
They also have grades and the different grades of acne include:
- I causes mild whiteheads, blackheads, and small pimples that are not inflamed.
- II Moderate acne that causes frequent breakouts of pustules and papules.
- III large amount of inflammation, numerous papules and pustules, and some nodules.
- IV the most severe form of acne, causing many nodules, cysts, pustules, and papules that often appear on the face, back, chest, neck, and buttocks.
Symptoms Of Acne
Acne signs/symptoms of acne actually depend on the specific type of acne someone has and the underlying cause of the skin irritation/inflammation. The most common symptoms of acne include:
- Blackheads, or small black dots on the skin, usually around the nose, forehead or chin. These are also called “comedones” and result from debris getting trapped inside of a follicle.
- Whiteheads, which can form when pus builds under the skin and forms a “head”. These result from follicles getting plugged with sebum and dead skin cells.
- Papules and pustules (the technical name for pimples) which cause small or medium-sized bumps on the skin that are round, red and don’t always have a visible “head”. These are caused by “moderate” types of acne and are not as severe as cysts or nodules.
- Cysts or nodules, which are severe pimples that are infected and painful. They can form within deeper layers of the skin, become very swollen or tender, and take longer to heal then papules and pustules.
Effects Of Acne
- Dark spots on the skin (hyperpigmentation).
- Scars, most often left behind from nodules or cysts, especially if they have been “popped” or picked.
- Increased sensitivity to products, heat, sweat and sunlight.
- Decreased self-esteem, self-consciousness, anxiety and depression.
Common Causes of Acne
Poor nutrition, hormonal imbalance, menstrual period, weather, poor skincare, stress, lack of sleep etc, can all cause acne in different people Usually, the main causes of acne include:
- Clogged pores, caused by things like excess oil production and dead skin cells. Sebum is the type of oil released into hair follicles that can become trapped beneath the surface of the skin and clog pores.
- Hormone fluctuations or imbalances. For example, when androgen hormones increase oil production rises. This often happens in teens and young adults suffering from acne, especially women experiencing PMS, irregular periods, pregnancy, early menopause, and other hormonal conditions HYPERLINK “https://draxe.com/polycystic-ovarian-s.
- Poor diet, such as the those that include lots of refined grains, sugar and unhealthy fats.
- High amounts of stress and related problems like psychiatric disorders such as depression and anxiety.
- Dirty pillowcase/sheets.
- Sleep deprivation.
- Genetic predisposition.
- Smoking and other causes of inflammation.
Common Acne Treatments
Most people either choose to live with acne, or out of frustration turn to medications or chemical treatments that often have side effects or simply don’t work at all. Dermatologists can prescribe medications to treat acne, including gels, lotions, cleansers and even antibiotics. The harsh chemicals used in over-the-counter and prescription acne products can cause further irritation to already-sensitive or inflamed skin, so using these is not always the best option, or safe for continued use. The common acne treatment which people see as the best medicine for treating acne include benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. Concentrated vitamin A derivatives are also sometimes used, in addition to sulfur or zinc compounds.
- Benzoyl peroxide helps kill bacteria found inside pores, which helps prevent pore-clogging. This can reduce infections, redness and inflammation, but sometimes causes negative reactions like dryness, burning and peeling. Always start with a lower concentration to test your reaction, such as a lotion with 2.5 percent benzoyl peroxide.
- Salicylic acid is another common active ingredient that helps remove excess cells that trap sebum and bacteria inside pores. It can also cause redness and dryness, especially on sensitive skin. Start with a product containing 0.5 percent to 3 percent salicylic acid.
Dermatologists sometimes prescribe antibiotics to help reduce the number of bacteria getting trapped inside pores. Examples of antibiotics prescribed to treat acne include clindamycin, doxycycline, erythromycin, and tetracycline.
The Best And Most Effective Home Remedies For Acne
Acne will sometimes go away on its own with time, especially if you get acne as a teenager or during a stressful period of your life. But if you’re suffering from ongoing cystic acne, it’s best to visit a doctor for help, since this usually points to a bigger problem. Big, inflamed, painful cysts under your skin indicate that an underlying health problem may be to blame. Talk to your doctor about potential causes and ways to treat acne holistically depending on your unique situation.
Everyone’s skin is different, so keep in mind that effectively treating acne at home requires a multi-disciplinary approach. The home remedies for acne described below can also be used in together to provide the best results. However, keep in mind that while you overcome acne it’s also very important to avoid the biggest mistakes that can make skin irritation or scarring worse like:
- Picking on blemishes and other things on your face
- Cleansing too much especially with harsh chemicals
- Using only topical care to fight acne
- Failing to stay properly hydrated
- Failing to treat acne both inside and out
So, here are the best and most effective home remedies you can use in acne treatment at home.
1. Cleanse Gently:
Getting rid of stubborn pimples, blackheads and whiteheads start with a thorough but gentle cleansing of the skin. Try as much as you can to refrain from cleansing too often, as this can irritate the skin and cause an overproduction of oil. Cleanse gently and with cleansers that aren’t harsh. Also, be sure that it’s not what you are using that is causing yours. Some hair products, makeup and skincare products contain ingredients that can cause acne. Common offenders include lanolin, mineral oil, aluminium, retinyl acetate, alcohol, oxybenzone, triclosan, parabens, polyethylene, BHA and BHT, and formaldehyde-based preservatives. Make sure to read ingredient labels to avoid putting these types of chemicals on your skin.
2. Use Toners:
Toning is an important step in any proper skincare routine. It helps to remove any residue after cleansing and helps to restore the skin’s natural pH levels. You can even use pure apple cider vinegar and it would work effectively too. Apple cider vinegar is packed with potassium, magnesium, acetic acid and various enzymes that kill bacteria on the skin. Chronic acne can be the result of bacteria and fungi that continue to spread and grow on the surface of the skin. simply pour a little apple cider vinegar on a cotton ball and smooth over your skin paying particular attention to active breakouts and acne-prone areas.
3. Use Healing Masks:
To hydrate and heal your skin, try applying masks a couple of times per week. Yoghurt, honey, cinnamon, essential oils and other ingredients can be used to create soothing masks that help to hydrate the skin and fight common causes of acne. Here is a post about beauty mask recipes that are easy-to-make home remedies for acne too.
4. Exfoliate Gently Regularly:
Clogged pores and dead skin can contribute to acne. It’s important to exfoliate properly to remove buildup, however, keep in mind that commercially available scrubs are filled with chemicals that can further irritate the skin.
A simple DIY scrub to fight acne and keep skin fresh is quite easy to make and economical. You just need something that is gritty, sea salt, brown sugar and ground oatmeal are good choices. In addition, you need a base. which can be coconut oil or honey which are all good choices. These bases help to fight bacteria, fungi and candida overgrowth on the skin while the textured ingredients help to unplug pores and remove dead skin. Just mix two tablespoons of the dry ingredient of choice with 1–2 tablespoons of the base of choice. Rub into skin in a circular motion. Start at the forehead and work your way down, paying particular attention to acne areas. After a while, remove with a damp cloth, and rinse well.
5. Treat Spot With Tea Tree Oil:
Acne responds well to tea tree oil. It’s used almost everywhere as an antiseptic and to treat wounds. Like coconut oil, honey and cultured milk products, it fights bacteria and fungi. According to medical research, tea tree oil gels containing 5 percent tea tree oil may be as effective as medications containing 5 percent benzoyl peroxide. Here’s one from Amazon I recommend (Art Naturals Tea Tree Essential Oil, Best for Acne, Skin, Hair, Nail Fungus, Healing Solution). To make a simple home remedy for acne using tea tree oil, mix 4–8 drops of tea tree oil and one teaspoon of coconut or jojoba oil and dab lightly onto the problem areas. Slight tingling is normal, but if the application causes lots of burning then discontinue use immediately.
Always use a carrier oil, as tea tree oil can be too harsh when applied directly to the skin alone. Chamomile oil and aloe vera can also be beneficial if your skin is irritated due to using products containing salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or both.
6. Use Sweet/Holy Basil:
Holy basil and sweet basil essential oils have been found to fight acne caused by bacteria effectively. Holy basil oil tea supports healthy blood sugar and hormone levels. As these two conditions are linked with acne, consuming herbal tea daily will help to balance hormones naturally, thereby fighting acne from the inside out, making this one of the best cross-over home remedies for acne. Additionally, Holy basil tea can be applied topically to the skin as a toner, serving as another of the many home remedies for acne. Either sweet basil or holy basil essential oils can also be added to your regular masks, cleansers or exfoliating recipes.
7. Always Moisturize:
Using topical products that focus on drying out the skin tricks it into producing even more oil, thereby contributing to clogging the pores and further breakout more acne. Coconut oil is one of the most versatile and healthy oils on earth and is generally an excellent moisturizer. A study published in Biomaterials found that lauric acid found in coconut oil demonstrates the strongest bacterial activity against acne caused by bacteria. This is why there is an increasing demand for coconut oil beauty products because the lauric acid, antioxidants and medium-chain fatty acids hydrate and restore the skin effectively.
All you need to do is to warm 1/4 teaspoon of coconut oil in your palm, smooth over your cleansed face and neck. Allow it to soak into the skin for five minutes. Gently wipe off excess oil with a dry cloth. The amount that has been absorbed is all your skin needs.
8. Avoid Too Much Sun Exposure:
For acne-prone skin during breakouts, it’s important to protect against sun exposure. Ultraviolet rays stimulate pigment-producing cells, increasing the risk of acne scarring. The best option is to use natural sunscreens as commercial sunscreens are packed with harmful chemicals that can irritate sensitive skin and acne-prone skin. Research shows that coconut oil has an SPF value of 8, as does olive oil. To use as sun protection, apply a moderate amount to exposed skin every couple of hours and try to avoid spending too much time in direct sunlight from 10 am-3 pm each day.
9. Eat A Healthy Diet:
There’s evidence that eating foods that don’t include lots of processed grains/flour products and added sugar, is one the best home remedies for acne because it can help prevent it. As part of the protocol to treat acne from the inside out, it’s important to eat foods that don’t cause blood sugar spikes or increased inflammation.
10. Use Essential Oils To Reduce Appearance Of Acne Scars:
If you’ve ever suffered from acne in the past, then you’re probably wondering how to get rid of acne scars that can remain for months or even years. Treating acne scars takes patience and perseverance. The sooner you start treating a scar, the better you will see results. The vast majority of individuals who get acne will experience some degree of scarring. The most important thing you can do to prevent scarring is to never pick or pop pimples, whiteheads or blackheads during a breakout! Also, stay out of the sun as much as possible to avoid making dark spots and scars worse. When you are in the sun, use an all-natural sunscreen to protect the skin.
If scars do develop, dot a drop of rosehip seed oil or carrot seed oil on the scars twice per day until you notice a difference in the scar. Coconut oil, lavender essential oil, honey and gentle exfoliation can also help prevent scars, depending on your skin tone and texture. To naturally help treat acne scars you can make a paste of raw honey, lavender essential oil, tea tree oil and frankincense oil. This is the perfect homemade acne scar removal face mask you will enjoy.
Best Diet To Aid Home Remedies For Acne
After you have gotten rid of acne using home remedies for acne, it’s important to stick with a healthy diet and also to drink plenty of water. Try to include these in your daily diet:
- Focus on eating lots of leafy green vegetables, berries and clean protein.
- Increase consumption of wild fish, grass-fed meat and cage-free chickens.
- Healthy fats are essential to good skin health and treating acne breakouts at home, so include foods rich in omega-3s like wild-caught salmon.
- Add zinc-rich foods such as kefir, yoghurt, lamb, pumpkin seeds and chicken. According to a recent study published in BioMed Research International, there is a correlation between low zinc levels and the severity of acne.
- Eat more high fibre foods since fibre found in vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds supports cleansing the colon and growth of good bacteria in the gut.
- Add vitamin A-rich foods to your diet, including spinach, carrots and beef liver.
Foods To Avoid For Acne-Free Skin
Some foods aren’t really worth it especially if your skin is acne-prone. Avoid hydrogenated oils, gluten, wheat, sugar and conventional cow’s milk dairy products as much as you can.
- If you must have your dairy milk, consume goat’s milk or raw milk, as researchers have found that conventional milk products can contribute to acne. In addition to conventional dairy, it’s important to exclude known allergens or foods you have a sensitivity to. Common food allergens include gluten, tree nuts, soy, peanuts and shellfish.
- Avoid sugar and carbohydrate-rich foods. Consuming excess amounts of sugar and grain products can feed yeast and candida in the body increasing acne.
- Gluten and wheat are foods that can cause inflammation of the gut, which also affects the skin.
- Chocolate is high in compounds that can trigger acne. Eliminate chocolate completely if possible but if you consume it then make sure it’s pure dark chocolate.
- Fried and fast foods contain a number of ingredients that cause inflammation including hydrogenated oils, sodium, chemicals, flavourings and sugar, which are totally not good for you.
- Hydrogenated oils cause oily skin and are one of the main causes of acne. Hydrogenated oils can be found in foods like pizza and in packaged foods that contain soybean oil, corn oil, canola oil, and vegetable oil.
Managing acne at home shouldn’t be a huge task. As long as you follow these consistently, you are sure to record great success with your acne. So, have you ever done anything at home that contributed to getting rid of your acne effectively? Let’s hear it below.