Acne is a skin condition that often doesn’t go away in adolescence like we want it to. It often persists into adulthood, and occurs in women before their period comes because of the hormone fluctuations. Acne happens when dead skin cells and oil clog up your pores. The result can be swelling, pus, or redness if germs get into the pores. Acne can run in families, if your mother or father had severe acne then you are more likely to get it.
Acne treatment and maintenance can be expensive. For example, prescription benzoyl peroxide creams can really add up - they can cost $40 and up for a small tube. The maintenance of facial cleansers, toners, and moisturizers in programs to keep acne at bay like Proactive can add up to hundreds of dollars at the end of the year. That being said, it can be a small price to pay for better self esteem and improved confidence.
If your acne flares are mild (meaning a few spots without scarring, cystic acne, or huge inflammation) you might be able to keep your acne controlled with natural and do it yourself acne treatments. Here are three cheap, natural, and easy to make acne treatments you can try at home.
Tea Tree Oil
Forget the expensive Body Shop line of tea-tree oil infused acne spot treatments. Just buy tea tree oil yourself at the local natural drug store or grocery store. According to Reader’s Digest, a 5% tea tree oil solution used as spot treatment is just as effective as a 5% benzoyl peroxide treatment for acne. According to the study as written by About.com , the participants who used tea tree oil had less side effects than those that used benzoyl peroxide but it did take longer to work. Tea tree oil speeds healing and is a natural antiseptic, which keeps the bacteria that causes acne, P. acnes at bay.
It is important not to use undiluted tea tree oil to your skin because this can be really strong stuff and can irritate your skin, cause drying, itching, and even blistering when applied directly.
Do It Yourself Acne Spot Treatment
Make your own acne spot treatment for pennies instead. All you need are two ingredients that you’ll likely have at home anyway. This recipe is also from Dr. Orden, a plastic surgeon, for Readers Digest.
- Brewer’s yeast
- Lemon juice
- Make a paste with a little bit of Brewer’s yeast with enough water added to make it a paste-like consistency.
- Then add a squeeze of lemon juice
- Spot treat the acne and cover with a dressing to keep it moist
Brewer’s yeast is normally used for baking and for fermenting beer, but it can be used for acne too. The Brewer’s yeast fights the bacteria and the lemon juice acts to dry out the blemish.
Honey is pretty amazing. Not only does it taste delicious but it’s great for your skin too if you are prone to acne. We use it for sore throats and sore stomachs. Honey has natural anti-bacterial properties. It is even used (Manuka honey) for treatment of wounds and difficult to heal ulcers.
According to Wikipedia, honey exerts its antibacterial effects because of its pH (its highly acidic) and its natural osmotic effect. It draws water away so that bacteria can’t feed on it.
This tip is from one of my favourite girly sites, All Women Stalk:
To make a natural honey mask, basically all you need is natural honey. Massage it into your skin, let it sit for 15 to 30 minutes and rinse off with warm water. The honey will moisturize your skin in addition to fighting bacteria while you relax.
If after trying nonprescription medications for three months with no success, talk to your primary care provider about prescription acne treatments. Some effective treatments like birth control pills (not really natural, I know) or long term antibiotics taken for a few months like tetracycline can easily keep acne from coming back for a long time.
Keep in mind that acne treatment of all sorts takes a long time (think weeks, like 12 weeks) to work, even if it’s amazing. This is because of the process with the bacteria P. acnes and the skin cell build up that causes acne takes a lot of time to develop.
Bargainmoosers, do you have natural and effective acne treatments that work well for you?