As an adult, you likely assumed you’d get a free pass when it comes to acne, those ugly nose blackheads and pimples. Isn’t acne just for tweens and teenagers? Their bodies are going through all kinds of hormonal changes as they grow and develop, and acne is the more prevalent skin complaint in adolescence. No one wants to go to prom with red dots on their face.
But the truth is, acne can strike at any age – and adult acne is more common than you realize. There are prescription medications and drugstore cleansers and creams for adult acne, but you can try a natural approach for natural remedies for acne scar cheeks, for example, or herbal remedies for acne to get rid of whiteheads.
We’ll take a look at herbal remedies for acne and natural acne treatment in a moment, but first some basic facts on the acne you’re likely to experience as an adult.
Causes of adult acne
Acne may not be a serious health threat, but it can cause scarring. How does acne happen? The small holes or pores in your skin connect to oil glands under the skin. These glands make an oily substance called sebum.
The pores connect to the glands by a canal called a follicle. Inside the follicles, oil carries dead skin cells to the surface of the skin. A thin hair also grows through the follicle and out to the skin. When the follicle of a skin gland clogs up, a pimple grows.
Types of acne
There are many types to be concerned about, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Even hormonal acne can happen with hormone changes during pregnancy or for women the week before their menstrual cycle. Certain medications, stress and diet can also be triggers. The most common types include the following:
Whiteheads. These are pimples that stay under the surface of the skin.
Blackheads. These pimples rise to the skin’s surface and look black. The black color is not from dirt.
Papules. These are small pink bumps that can be tender.
Pustules. These pimples are red at the bottom and have pus on top.
Nodules. These are large, painful, solid pimples that are deep in the skin.
Cysts. These deep, painful, pus-filled pimples can cause scars.
Natural remedies to treat adult acne
You may have these natural remedies to get rid of acne and clear your complexion in your home already. Here are some to try:
Apple cider vinegar: Noted for promoting energy and good digestion, consider apple cider vinegar also has potent antibacterial and antifungal properties, helping to kill off acne-causing bacteria. It also balances pH levels in the skin, making it more difficult for bacteria to come back. Simply dilute a little with fresh water, pour onto a cloth and apply. Use once a day.
Green tea extract: Green tea is an all-round health hero. As the Mayo Clinic reports, a lotion of 2 percent green tea extract helped reduce acne in two studies of adolescents and young adults with mild to moderate acne. While no studies have been done with older adults, this could be an excellent addition to your natural remedies for acne.
Coconut oil: This healthy superfood is also soft and gentle on the skin. It can bring down acne redness and fight bacteria. Use just a little and see how your skin improves.
Zinc. This nutrient helps the immune system fight off invading bacteria and viruses. Zinc in natural lotions and creams may reduce acne breakouts.
Herbal remedies for acne
Herbs are also a simple at-home remedy for acne that can be effective. We’d recommend trying these herbal remedies:
Aloe vera. The popular spiky green plant is one of the most commonly used herbs in America today. It’s used for soothing and healing burns, wounds and skin irritations, so include it in your herbal remedies for acne. Use aloe as a spot treatment on the infected areas to help bring down swelling and redness.
Tea tree oil: Tea tree oil is excellent for adult acne. Its antibacterial properties help to remove dead skin, cleanse pores and kill acne-causing bacteria. Combine a little with water to dilute it, or mix it with some aloe vera gel and apply on your skin. A word of caution: Never ingest it or get it in your eyes or nose.
Chasteberry, also known as vitex or monk’s pepper, was used by Hippocrates to treat injuries and inflammation. American Family Physician highlights a 2001 German study showing that chasteberry’s active ingredients can influence particular hormones, including those associated with hormonal acne. You can drink chasteberry tea or try the herb in capsule form.
Don’t let those red spots and nose blackheads ruin your days! Adult acne can happen long after puberty, so follow these tips for natural remedies for acne treatment – and give your skin the help it needs.