Natural Skincare for Acne
For those who prefer a natural alternative to commercial acne preparations, try inexpensive home remedies or gentler store products. Natural products lack the sometimes-irritating ingredients found in acne treatments, such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Solid science backs up several natural acne treatments. Consult your doctor before trying herbal remedies for acne.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a natural antiseptic derived from an Australian plant. A study at Isfahan University of Medical Sciences in Iran found that a tea tree gel was comparable to benzoyl peroxide in treating acne pimples. Do not use tea tree oil undiluted, as it can cause skin irritation. Purchase natural spot treatments and cleansers containing tea tree oil in the health and beauty section of natural food stores.
The citric acid in limes, lemons and tomatoes is an effective astringent for acne-prone skin. Healthguide.org suggests mixing lemon juice with rose water and using it as a toner. Scoop the pulp from a fresh tomato and spread it over your face as an acne mask. This is a traditional home remedy for blackheads, as it can help draw them to the surface of the skin and make them easier to remove.
Green tea makes an effective acne-fighting astringent. Medpagetoday.com reports that it contains polyphenols, which can help reduce pimples and skin redness. Look for fresh green sencha tea leaves and boil your own, or try an acne lotion or gel formulated with green tea for a spot treatment. The antiseptic properties of green tea can help fight the bacteria on your skin that combines with dirt, oil and dead skin cells to cause whiteheads.
Make a cheap spot treatment for existing or emerging pimples by crushing uncoated aspirin tablets and adding a few drops of water to make a thick paste. The salicylates in aspirin are the same compounds in salicylic acid, a common ingredient in acne cleansers and creams. Use aspirin paste as a spot treatment or as a mask. Salicylic acid is a beta-hydroxy acid that works by causing the dead surface layer of skin to peel.
Calamine lotion, a thick pink astringent made from zinc carbonate or zinc oxide, is often used to stop the itching associated with fresh bug bites and poisonous plants. Calamine lotion and a similar medication, milk of magnesia, can also help to dry pimples. Always shake calamine lotion well before using, as the zinc compounds separate from the liquid when it sits on a shelf for a while.
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