When you have acne, you may want to consider natural acne treatments as an option. Very often, it is a combination of acne treatments which seems to produce the most beneficial effects when treating acne. The treatment option you choose will be largely determined by the type of acne you have.
As a general rule, retinoids, salicyclic acid, azelaic acid and benzoyl peroxide are thought to be the most effective for comedones, while benzoyl peroxide, azelaic acid and topical antibiotics are considered the most effective treatments for inflammatory lesions. Retinoids, and a combination of topical antibiotics and benzoyl peroxide are considered effective for both non-inflammatory and inflammatory lesions.
Natural acne treatments can be used at the same time to help fight acne, both internally and externally, to speed up your results. They are gentle on the skin, and pose little risk of unwanted side effects. Best of all, the best natural acne treatments are generally inexpensive.
Go on a low glycemic index (GI) diet. The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly a food breaks down into sugar in your body. White sugar has a GI value of 100, the highest possible value.
Foods with high GI values causes a spike in blood sugar levels and a peak in insulin. The high blood sugar levels increase the levels of insulin and IGF-1, which increases the production of male hormones and androgens which in turn increase sebum production. The rise in hormones also encourages keratinocytes – the specialist skin cells implicated in acne to increase.
Include instead high fiber foods such as wholegrains, fresh fruit and vegetables with low GI values in your diet. Get your protein from healthy sources such as lean meat, eggs, poultry and soy products.
Drink plenty of water throughout the day, and eliminate sugary drinks as much as you can.
2) Use Gentle Cleansers With Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil or melaleuca oil is an excellent natural acne treatment. It is a clear to very pale golden hydrophobic essential oil with a fresh camphoraceous odor. It is taken from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia which is native to the northeast coast of New South Wales, Australia. The oil has antiseptic, antifungal, and antibacterial properties and works well in controlling the population of the acne-causing P. acnes bacteria on your skin.
Exercise and sport can help improve the skin and well-being. Exercise boosts oxygen to the cells and increases blood flow to the skin, making it an ideal natural treatment for acne. It also aids the digestive system, helping to expel toxins from the body. Regular exercise strengthens the immune system, and helps to reduce stress and rebalances hormones, both of which are major contributors to acne.
Exercise helps to promote sleep, helping to reduce stress further. Moderate to vigorous exercise, three to four times a week, for at least 20 to 30 minutes, helps to promote good-quality sleep.
When exercising, make sure the clothes you wear for exercise don’t cause friction or rub against the skin. Natural fibres are usually best, and sportswear manufacturers now produce clothing that removes sweat from the skin. Helmets are generally the worst culprits for causing spots and acne. Remove them as soon as you have finished your activity.
Shower and cleanse your skin as soon as possible after exercise, particularly if you have become hot and sweaty. This will help reduce bacteria from the skin’s surface. Remove make-up before exercise. This is because if you do get hot and sweaty you can plug the pores with foundation or make-up.
Stay hydrated by drinking water before, during and after exercise. Use a sunscreen when you exercise outdoors. You can also try taking up yoga and tai chi, both of which are excellent stress relievers.
4) Olive Leaf Extract
Olive leaf extract is a natural acne treatment product which is extracted from the actual leaf of the olive tree (Olea Europaea). Oleuropein, the most important active ingredient in olive oil, works with the other phytochemicals as a very wide spectrum natural antibiotic. Oleuropein is a powerful antioxidant which boosts the immune system, allowing the body to destroy free radicals and harmful viruses, bacteria and other potentially dangerous cells.
Taken internally, olive leaf extract can help your liver eliminate harmful toxins, regulate hormones and kill molds that can cause acne from the inside. Olive leaf extract also has very powerful anti-bacterial, antiviral and anti fungal properties and when used topically is extraordinarily effective in eradicating acne bacteria.
Although olive leaf extract has very few side effects, some individuals might experience symptoms such as headaches, muscle aches, nausea and flu-like symptoms. Mostly, this is a detoxification reaction and signals that the body is eliminating excessive toxins. When this happens, temporarily discontinue use or reduce the amount taken until the symptoms subside.
5) Aloe Vera
Aloe is a natural acne treatment which can be taken orally or used topically. Aloe vera juice and lotions are inexpensive and readily available from health food stores. Aloe Vera contains 6 antiseptic agents and provides strong anti microbial activity to eliminate many internal and external infections.
When applied externally aloe vera is a good acne moisturizer as it has the ability to penetrate seven layers of skin four times faster than water. Apply aloe vera twice a day on the affected area to soothe the irritation and accelerate the healing of acne scars.
Do you wish to have instant access to this natural treatment for acne as and when you want it? Just have a pot of aloe vera plant in your home. Aloe vera plants are fairly easy to grow in moderate to warm climates and you can find them in many nurseries and garden stores.
6) Licorice Root
Licorice Root has a history of medicinal use that stretches over thousands of years. Its healing and vitality-promoting properties are well known to the Greeks, Egyptians and Chinese. With its strong anti-inflammatory properties, licorice root is commonly used to relieve stomach pains and cramps. Applying licorice topically will soothe the skin and inhibit the production of irritants which contribute to acne.
Avoid taking licorice root orally in large amounts or for an extended period of time, to minimize risks of mild to severe side effects. Licorice root is not recommended to be taken orally by breastfeeding mothers or during pregnancy as some research has indicated the increased risk of premature birth.
7) Green Tea
Green tea may well be the best natural acne treatment. It has become one of the world’s most popular beverages. Green tea is among the top ten most antioxidant-rich foods on earth, preventing free radicals from damaging collagen, elastin and skin cells.
A blend of green tea and honeysuckle called “Pimple Tea” is popular in many Asian countries for treating skin infections and disorders like acne. People aren’t just drinking green tea. Green tea extracts are now present in food, cosmetics, dietary supplements, snack bars and skin care products.
The active component in green tea is Epigallocatechin-3 gallate (EGCG). EGCG prevents the movement of white blood cells into the skin, thereby preventing the skin from the damaging oxidizing products that white blood cells release and thus prevent acne and wrinkle formation.
As you can see, the best natural acne treatments are easily available and very inexpensive. You can try them out with little risk. Just be sure to inform your dermatologist before starting your very own natural acne treatment program.