Acne is a condition whereby the natural oils produced by skin (sebum) glands mix with dead cells and clogs the pores. When bacteria grows inside those pores, it can cause pimples. When there is too much sebum buildup on a consistent basis then it can cause acne.1,2
While teenagers can be prone to acne, it can affect people of all ages.1 Statistically, about 75% of people aged 11 to 30 will experience acne at some point.3 While acne isn’t dangerous, it can result in acne scars.3
What Causes Acne?
There are multiple acne causes resulting from several different contributing factors.5 These factors that contribute to acne causes include:
- Hormones: Researchers believe that the most common immediate cause of acne is a rise in levels of the hormone androgen. During puberty or pregnancy, the production of androgen increases, which is why teenagers or pregnant women are prone to acne. 2,3
- Medications: Some medications increase the risk of acne as a side effect. These medications include corticosteroids, lithium, or medications containing the hormone androgen.1,2
- Medical Conditions: Certain health conditions that affect the endocrine system, including polycystic ovary syndrome and Cushing's syndrome, can cause acne outbreaks. They also work by increasing the amount of androgen and other related hormones that can cause acne.1
- Diet: It’s likely that your overall nutrition and health can have an affect on acne, but not any specific type of food in particular. Contrary to popular belief, greasy foods, chocolate, or carbohydrates don’t directly cause acne.2, 4
- Stress: Scientists aren’t sure exactly how, but they have found that stress can exacerbate acne.5
Acne symptoms include:
- Pimples (pustules)
- Whiteheads (closed clogged pores)
- Blackheads (open clogged pores)
- Cystic lesions (pus-filled lumps)
- Papules (small red tender bumps)
- Nodules (solid raised bumps)
Acne symptoms commonly appears on the face and neck, as well as chest, back, and shoulders, where your skin has the most sebaceous glands to produce oil.2
Natural Remedies and Herbs for Acne
These acne natural treatments are some of the most effective home remedies to help eliminate acne symptoms:
- Honey - Honey has been used since centuries as an effective home remedy to treat acne, acne scars, and others skin infections. Honey has powerful antibacterial properties which helps to treat acne as well as pimples.
- Lemon - The ascorbic acid in lemon is known to be beneficial for skin infections. Rich in vitamin C, lemon work wonders for healing acne.
- Baking Soda - Baking soda is a popular acne natural treatment used in making face masks to help heal acne scars and pimples.
- Coconut Oil - Coconut oil is a natural anti-inflammatory and antibacterial acne treatment to help kill germs and bacteria that lead to acne symptoms.
- Manuka Honey - The health benefits of manuka honey are well known because of its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. When applied topically, manuka honey decreases redness and inflammation of the skin, draws out bacteria and drastically improves affected areas.
- Olive Oil - Olive oil is an exceptional skin cleanser that improves the condition of your skin, promotes the healing of affected areas and treats pimples, blackheads, and acne scars effectively. Olive oil has antioxidants that help repair damaged skin.