Pimple. Zit. Blemish. Spot. Whatever name you choose to use in reference to your acne, you still want the same thing as everyone else who battles their complexion: Get rid of it.
Acne is an inflammatory skin condition, caused by the production of excess sebum, which clogs the pores and leads to pimples. Breakouts can occur all over the body, but are most commonly found on the face, back and chest. Prescription and over-the-counter products can deliver results, but with harsh chemicals that can strip the skin of all moisture and lead to irritation and dryness.
If you're ready to ditch the zits in a more organic, natural way, here are 10 items/tips to try out for a clear, glowing complexion:
1. Add some tea tree oil.
Tea tree oil, taken from the leaves of the Melaleuca alternifolia plant, has both antifungal and antiseptic properties that help fright acne by killing bacteria that can lead to breakouts. You can find tea tree oil in natural skincare products or you can purchase the oil itself, just be sure to follow dilution instructions carefully before using.
2. Use a mask weekly.
A natural facial mask containing bentonite or English clay is a great way to clean up your complexion. These masks absorb excess dirt and oil and can help clean out your pores, making them look smaller (Contrary to common belief, you can't actually make them smaller.).
3. Tone with witch hazel or apple cider vinegar.
Witch hazel (Hamammelis virginiana) is considered a natural astringent, which helps to reduce the size of the mucus membranes, preventing excessive oil production, cleaning out the pores and evening the complexion. Witch hazel is more gentle than alcohol, salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide, which can reduce irritation. While you can see some benefits in your skin by drinking apple cider vinegar, you can also use it as a topical treatment, which works just like witch hazel. Just apply to a cotton ball and swipe it gently onto the skin twice a day.
4. Always remove makeup.
Even if you're using all-natural makeup (we'll get to that in a minute), it needs to come off before you go to bed so your skin can breathe. Most makeup can be removed with just soap and water, but using a gentle remover can help get it all. If you're sweating, it's also important to gently wash your face when you can, even between the yoga class and the subsequent run to the smoothie shop.
5. Keep fabrics clean and light..
What you wear can also impact your skin. Light, breathable fabrics are always best, to prevent the accumulation of sweat, dirt and oil. You should also change your pillow cases and wash sheets and comforters weekly, as they also collect dirt and oil from your face throughout the night, as well as residue from hair care products, which can also cause breakouts.
6. Be gentle.
Everyone has heard you shouldn't pick or pop acne, and you shouldn't, but you have to recognize your skin is sensitive when it comes to cleaning it as well. That means not using harsh exfoliants or scrubs on a daily basis, which can irritate the skin and actually lead to more frequent breakouts. Start slowly and pay attention to how your skin reacts to treatments -- while tingling can be normal, painful burning and redness shouldn't occur.
7. Stay hydrated.
Pick better options when you're thirsty. The best option, of course, is water. If you want to support the health of your skin and jazz up your water at the same time, try adding slices of citrus fruits and herbs to a pitcher of water. Let the flavors infuse overnight and you'll have a drink packed with antioxidants and vitamins, without the added sugar. Staying hydrated also means moisturizing your skin twice a day. Choose oil-free products and apply after your topical treatment (if you're using one) and before your makeup. Hydrated skin actually takes makeup better.
8. Choose better makeup.
If you like to highlight and correct your complexion with makeup, going natural is always best, especially with sensitive, acne-prone skin. Mineral makeup is a great option. Look for products free of artificial colors, preservatives or fragrances, talc or other chemicals and avoid oil when you can. Bonus Tip: Clean your makeup brushes weekly to avoid rubbing dirt and oil directly into your skin.
9. Check your diet.
As previously stated, acne is a reflection of what is happening inside your body, so make sure everything you're taking in is helpful. Eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables will help you get the vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants your skin needs to stay clear and healthy. Herbs like turmeric and ginger are great for inflammation.
10. Take your vitamins.
Two of the best vitamins for healthy skin are vitamin A and vitamin E. If you're not getting enough of them in your diet (foods like carrots, spinach and almonds), make sure they're in your multivitamin or try a supplement. These vitamins, and others, promote cellular turnover and healing. They also support healthy collagen, which keeps the skin firm and smooth. Retinol is also a form of vitamin A commonly used to treat acne.
Clear skin doesn't have to elude you any longer. Take care of your skin on the outside of your body while nourishing it from within and you'll get the results you're after. Shop eVitamins for all your natural acne remedies and let us know your favorite tips!
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