Adults and teens alike can suffer from the vexing problem of acne.
Sometimes simple natural remedies for acne like apple cider vinegar will solve the problem easily. Other times the answer is more complicated depending on the cause of acne.
Even so, home treatments including vitamin supplements, dietary changes, and hormone balancing can be combined to bring long-awaited relief to those with acne.
Top Natural Remedies for Acne
Below are the most popular remedies for acne, based on feedback we have received on Earth Clinic for the past 15 years.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a simple and inexpensive remedy for acne that works very well for many people. It can be used internally and externally for acne.
When used topically, apple cider vinegar fights bacteria, supports the natural acidic nature of the skin and can shrink pores. Used internally, apple cider vinegar helps to alkalize the body and supply probiotics to the system.
Turmeric is a blood purifying herb that is also anti-inflammatory and antibacterial. If antibiotics have worked to relieve your acne, it is possible that turmeric would as well. Turmeric is taken internally for acne. 1-3 capsules can be taken twice a day, or ½ teaspoon can be added to some milk and taken as “golden milk.” Turmeric should be taken with plenty of water to avoid constipation. Turmeric is especially helpful when used with vitamin C.
Used alone or alongside turmeric, vitamin C supports the immune system, helps to fight infection, and is needed for skin regeneration. Sodium ascorbate is a good form of vitamin C to use and is easier on the system than ascorbic acid. 500-1,000 mg is taken 1-3 times a day. If your body is getting too much vitamin C, it will let you know. Too much vitamin C will cause loose stools, in which case you should reduce the dose.
Vitamin A supplements help some who suffer from acne. Because vitamin A is fat soluble and stored in the body, do not use excessive amounts of vitamin A. An alternative is to eat foods rich in vitamin A, like carrots. Carrot juice is even sometimes used topically to treat acne, and carrot essential oil is included in many face care products for its benefit to the skin.
The food you consume is what your body uses to heal and repair itself. You do not need to have a perfect diet, but often improving your diet and reducing empty calories will go a long way to healing acne and other chronic health problems. Processed foods do not give your body much to work with. Consume processed foods and fast foods less. Use more whole foods. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Variety in your diet will help your body to get the assortment of nutrients that it needs.
For some people, certain foods will cause acne outbreaks. Sugar, fried foods, chocolate, dairy products and wheat products can be an issue for some. Try eliminating some of these foods for a time to see if you notice an improvement, especially anything which makes up a large part of your diet. (Hopefully sugar, fried foods, and chocolate do not make up a large part of your diet!)
Adding probiotic foods like sauerkraut, milk kefir or kombucha can improve your digestion and help your immune system to work more effectively, which is often a benefit to the skin, especially skin that needs healing.
Drinking quality liquids also can help with acne. Consume less soda pop, coffee, energy drinks and artificially sweetened drinks. Drink more water, green tea, and herbal tea. Water helps your body to flush out toxins. Keeping well hydrated with water will help your body to keep the toxins moving out!
Acne can be a symptom of toxic overload in your system. Your skin eliminates toxins and acne is one way your body releases toxins. You can do things to help your body eliminate toxins in other ways, which will reduce the acne outbreaks.
As aforementioned, plenty of water is a simple way to help your body flush out toxins.
Simple detox baths with Epsom salt or baking soda a few times a week can help your body eliminate toxins. Start with 1 cup of Epsom salt or baking soda per bath. For more information, see our page on detox baths or you can make your own bath bombs to use for detox.
If you do not have regular bowel movements (another way your body eliminates waste) your body will find alternatives to eliminate waste which can result in acne as toxins are eliminated through the skin. If constipation is an issue, find some simple remedies to get your body regular.
Liquid chlorophyll is a supplement you can use to help your body to remove toxins.
Many of the above-listed remedies will help your body to naturally balance hormones, which can reduce acne symptoms.
Adults can consider Ted’s borax solution as a hormone balancing remedy.
Red raspberry leaf tea is a simple and tasty tea that can be taken daily by girls and women to balance hormones. Two or three cups of red raspberry leaf tea will supply minerals and nutrients needed for good hormone balance.
How to Clean Your Face if You Have Acne
It is tempting to use harsh soaps and chemicals if you have acne, to make sure that your face is very clean. However, these things can contribute to the problem. Removing all the oil from your face encourages your body to produce more oil for your face. Harsh products can damage skin instead of helping it to move towards a more healthy state. Simple natural items can effectively clean and nourish the skin while healing acne.
You can use honey to clean your face! Honey is gentle and nourishing. Use raw honey and gently massage some into your face and rinse with warm water.
Oatmeal is soothing to the skin and can be used as a gentle exfoliant. Grind up some oats in your blender for this purpose. Moisten the oats with some buttermilk, yogurt or just plain water and gently massage the face. Rinse with warm water.
Yes, oil! Castor oil, almond oil or argan oil can be used to gently remove makeup and cleanse the face. Gently remove the oil with warm water.
French Green Clay
Treat yourself to a mask of French Green Clay to remove toxins from the skin every week or two. (Too often can dry out the skin.) Mix equal parts of French Green Clay with water. Massage onto the face. Don’t allow it to completely dry on the face. Rinse off with warm water after 10 minutes or so.
You can make your own Calendula face toner with calendula flowers and witch hazel.
- Place dried calendula flowers into a glass jar.
- Cover with witch hazel.
- Strain flowers out in one week.
Use a cotton ball to apply the calendula infused witch hazel to your face as a toner.
What Causes Acne?
Acne can be caused by hormonal changes and imbalances, bacteria, fungus, toxin build-up, and other health problems. Figuring out the root of the acne problem can help to find the appropriate remedy. Acne is not generally caused by a lack of cleanliness. In fact, many acne sufferers tend to overclean their faces!
Continue reading for amazing tips from Earth Clinic readers who have successfully treated their acne with natural remedies.