Safe and Natural Herbal Acne Remedies
What causes acne?
Acne is caused by clogged pores which results when the oil our skin naturally produces (called sebum) combines with excess dead skin cells. When the mixture of dead skin cells completely clogs a pore it is called a whitehead, if it partially clogs a pore it is called a blackhead.
Acne is caused primarily by hormonal swings such as puberty or during menopause, but can also be a result of ecological factors like extreme temperatures.
What's the difference between clogged pores and acne?
Acne and blocked pores are not different things, they are actually just difference stages of the same thing. A clogged pore is a result of the mixture of sebum and dead skin cells described above. Acne is simply the manifestation of multiple clogged pores in the form of blackheads and whiteheads in one particular area.
What are the chemical treatments for acne?
There are a number of effective treatments for acne both over the counter and by prescription. However some people are bothered by the fact that there they are mostly comprised of harsh chemicals and acids that "burn" off the excess dead skin cells. While treatment is usually safe and effective there have been some cases of severe inflammation and worsening of symptoms when using these types of products.
What types of herbal acne remedies are available?
Most herbal acne remedies come in pill form. You can get them from your local natural foods store. However there are a few herbs and can be drank in teas (like Lemongrass) that has been shown to reduce the effects of acne.
Most natural acne pills contain many of the following herbs: Neem, Chaste tree, Forsythia, Gardenia, Honeysuckle, Yellow dock, Red Delilah, Chamomile and Dandelion. When looking for an acne solution be sure to carefully read the ingredients of each product and make sure it contains at least some of these herbs.
If you would like to make your own naturally acne reducing tea at home, bring to boil: Dandelion root, Red clover, echinacea root, and alfalfa leaf. The herbs can be fresh or dried. Another great herbal remedy is olive leaf extract, which helps kill the acne bacteria.
There is some concern that herbal acne remedies cannot alleviate symptoms forever. Because the herbs carry the vitamins that your body is lacking naturally if you quit taking the supplements or teas, then your acne will reappear. In some cases, natural treatment is only effective in cycles. Some people suggest using a 4 week on, 4 week off system to achieve results over the long term. It is best however, to see your dermatologist or nutritionist if you have questions or concerns about your acne, and to let them know you are not interested in traditional treatment.