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Herbal and Natural Remedies for Acne

Updated on February 11, 2013
Marye Audet profile image

Marye Audet-White is an internationally known food writer, food editor for Texas Living, cookbook author, and food blogger.

Many vitamins help to heal acne and promote healthy skin.
Many vitamins help to heal acne and promote healthy skin. | Source

Natural remedies for acne are a great alternative to the over the counter soaps and creams that contain harsh chemicals such as sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) or Diethanolamine (DEA). These chemicals can irritate and dry out the skin and in some cases make the acne condition worse. Beyond just drying out your skin they have many long term side effects that are harmful to your body and sometimes fatal. Many natural remedies for acne can heal your skin and make it healthy while bypassing the use of harmful chemicals.

Acne is a condition that can affect both teenagers and grown men and women up through fifty years of age. It is not uncommon for people to develop an acne problem when they are well past twenty years of age, even if they had not had an acne break out for years prior to or ever. Acne can happen wherever there are a lot of oil glands, particularly on the face, back and even on the chest.

Common Misconceptions about the Cause of Acne

Food - recent studies have concluded that milk and other dairy products may aggravate acne. However, this has yet to be effectively proven. Pizza, chocolate and fried/greasy foods have not been proven to aggravate it either. Maintaining a healthy diet can help reduce the amount of acne that develops or help prevent it entirely.
Dirt - black heads are oxidized oil, not dirt. Sweat does not block the pores either. These are common misconceptions. So there should be no reason to shower immediately after exercising in fear of clogging the pores. Over washing your skin can dry out the skin, causing irritation and acne to develop.

Symptoms of Acne

  Acne can appear in a few different ways:

  • Whiteheads
  • Pimples, also known as zits or spots
  • Blackheads
  • Pustules
  • Cysts
  • Boils

There are many ways to treat acne naturally with out the use of prescription or over the counter medicines and products.

Herbal and Natural Remedies for Acne

Tea tree oil - is collected from the melaleuca alternifoliais tree that is found in Australia. It contains anti bacterial substances called terpenes. When used on acne tea tree oil will either kill the bacteria or weaken it enough that your body’s natural protective antibodies can destroy them. There are very few side effects from using tea tree oil. However if too much is applied too frequently it can dry out your skin and cause it to be irritated.

Aloe vera - The leaves of the aloe vera plant work similar to an exoskeleton. The outside of the leaf is hard and sturdy. When you break it open it contains a watery gel. This watery gel is highly rich in enzymes that have very soothing, anti inflammatory and anti bacterial properties.

Zinc - promotes protein synthesis and the formation of collagen in the body. Both of which are very important to maintain healthy skin and a normal level of oil production in the skin. Zinc can also aid in healing the acne and reduces the inflammation on your skin. Zinc can be taken in a capsule form.

Vitamins - are essential in maintaining healthy skin. Vitamin A helps in promoting healthy skin. It strengthens the skin’s protective tissues. Vitamin A is also a very powerful antioxidant. Vitamin E helps to counter act acne, it is a natural antioxidant. Vitamin B helps to maintain skin tone. Vitamin B should be taken all together in what is called “vitamin B Complex” it consists of:

  • Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) - acts as an antioxidant that gets rid of toxins in your body
  • Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) - Acne can be a symptom of riboflavin deficiency
  • Vitamin B3 (Niacinamide) - helps promote healthy skin by improving circulation. A deficiency can cause acne.
  • Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) - is important for proper functioning adrenal glands.
  • Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine) - is important for the production of antibodies that fight bacteria in acne. A deficiency in Vitamin B6 will cause acne.

Adding vitamin C to this combination of vitamins makes it more readily absorbed by the body.

Lifestyle Changes

There are some changes you can make to your lifestyle that will also aid in the fight against acne.

  • Reduce the amount of caffeine and soda you drink replacing it with water. Drinking at least 4 pints of water every day can improve your complexion.
  • Try to avoid touching your face a lot and keep your hair out of your face. This will help reduce the amount of oil on your skin.
  • Maintain a healthy diet that includes a lot of fruits and vegetables.
  • Take a walk, get plenty of exercise out doors.
  • Lower your stress levels
  • Limit use of additives and preservatives. Try to use organic products to cut out toxins.
  • Some severe cases of acne can be hereditary and not easily cured; in this case it may be beneficial to seek medical advice.


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    • Hubbswriter profile image

      Hubbswriter 6 years ago

      I've practiced many of these methods myself to help my acne, so I can vouch for their effectiveness!

    • avidblogger09 profile image

      avidblogger09 8 years ago from Illinois

      Great site, and I also want to comment that Turpentine Oil works get it at osco. Azufre by De La Cruz products work!

    • deestew profile image

      deestew 8 years ago from Kentucky

      Very good information on natural rememdies for acne. I have fought acne off and on throughout adulthood. Thankfully did not really struggle with it in teen years.