Guest blog by Suyud Issa, a licensed aesthetician and the co-founder of All Skin Care Talk, a platform focused on providing quality skin care content.
Acne is a skin condition that affects an estimated 85% of people at some point in their lives, and it’s caused by a combination of factors, including genetics, overactive sebaceous glands, bacteria and inflammation.
Acne is characterized by blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, and cysts on the face, neck, chest, back, and shoulders, and for many people, acne is a source of insecurity and self-consciousness.
There is no one-size-fits-all cure for acne, but there are many treatments that can help clear up the skin, which can take time, patience, and a bit of trial and error to find the right combination that works for you.
Which is why incorporating gentle ingredients into your skincare routine that will soothe your skin without causing further irritation is key. Here are six gentle ingredients that can help to soothe acne and improve the overall visible health of your skin:
1. Aloe Vera
For millennia, Aloe vera was traditionally used for medicinal purposes in the Roman, Greek, Egyptian, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, and Mexican cultures. Aloe vera is a succulent plant native to Northern Africa but can now be found in warm climates all over the world.
The gel-like substance inside the Aloe Vera leaves has been used for centuries to treat various skin conditions because it contains sulfur and salicylic acid, which help address redness and moisturize skin.
It has natural anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-bacterial properties; it soothes breakouts because it helps reduce redness, helps inhibit the growth of bacteria that can causes breakouts in the first place.
It also contains magnesium lactate to help reduce sensitivity from painful pimples, and it contains saponin to help with bacteria that can lead to breakouts.
You can remove the gel directly from the plant leaves and apply to your face or find it in gels, creams and lotions.
Our Oceanene Youth-Boost Gel-Cream provides a burst of age-defying hydration for a healthy-looking glow. Don’t stick your fingers into the product; instead, make sure you use a skincare spatula to avoid introducing bacteria and contaminating the moisturizer.
Chamomile dates back to Eber’s Papyrus, when this herb was used to develop a range of remedies in ancient Egypt. It’s also known to have been used as a herbal medicine in central and southern Europe, India and North Africa.
Chamomile is a plant in the daisy family that has been used medicinally for centuries to treat various health and skin conditions.
It also has natural anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, making it an effective treatment to help reduce redness, and soothe breakouts by helping to address the chemicals and micro-organisms that can cause breakouts.
Chamomile tea is brewed using only the flower heads of the plant Camellia Sinensis. You can drink chamomile tea to boost your skin’s health from the inside out or apply it topically to your skin in the form of a toner, serum, cream, lotion, oil or face mask; it’s gentle enough to be used on all skin types. Chamomile is in the formula for our Hibiscus Unspottable Correcting Oil.
3. Green Tea
Green Tea is made from the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant, which is native to China and India and has been used for centuries in traditional medicine because it has many health benefits, such as helping to reduce redness, promote skin health, and helping address bacteria.
Green tea contains anti-inflammatory compounds known as catechins, which are believed to help reduce irritation, redness, and itchiness that is often associated with breakouts. Also, it contains anti-bacterial and antioxidants properties to address the bacteria that cause breakouts while helping to protect the skin from free radicals.
Just like Chamomile, you can either drink green tea or apply it topically to help improve the overall health of your skin. We use green tea in our Celery Green Cream, Baobab Toning Essence and Yaupon Tea Glow-Awakening Moisturizer.
4. Witch Hazel
Witch Hazel is a shrub native to North America and has been used medicinally by Native Americans for centuries. The bark and leaves of the witch hazel plant contain tannins and gallic acid, which are astringent compounds that help calm redness and irritation.
Witch Hazel is often used as a natural treatment for breakouts because it helps unclog pores, neutralize free radicals, help soothe redness, and calm irritated skin.
To use witch hazel for breakouts, apply a small amount of witch hazel to a cotton ball or pad and wipe it over the affected area. You can try our Apple Cider Vinegar Resurfacing Peel Pads, which deliver gentle chemicals exfoliation from fruit & glycolic acids for radiant, refreshed looking skin. Use witch hazel once or twice a day after cleansing your skin for best results.
5. Licorice Root
Licorice Root is a perennial plant that’s considered one of the world’s oldest herbal remedies because it dates back to ancient Egypt. It grows in parts of Europe, Asia, and the Mediterranean, and the roots and underground stems are used to make medicine.
It has been used in traditional Chinese, Middle Eastern, and Greek medicines to soothe an upset stomach, help reduce inflammation, and treat upper respiratory problems.
Licorice root is a natural sweetener that contains hundreds of plant compounds, but its primary active compound is called glycyrrhizin, which has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and skin-brightening properties. As a result, it can visibly reduce redness and swelling, soothe breakouts and uneven skin tone, visibly brighten the skin, and provide anti-aging properties.
Licorice root can either be added to food or drinks as a sweetener or be found in capsules, tinctures, and creams.
To use licorice root for acne, you can either drink tea or apply it topically as a treatment.
To make a tea, steep one teaspoon of licorice root in boiling water for 10 minutes; allow the tea to cool before applying it to the skin with a cotton ball. On the other hand, you can use our Hibiscus Unspottable Correcting Oil to visibly correct, brighten and even uneven skin tone.
6. Kakadu Plum
Kakadu Plum is, also known as Billygoat Plum, Gubinge, Gurumal or Murunga small pale green-colored fruit that grows in Australia, has been used for centuries by the Aboriginal people for its medicinal properties.
Kakadu Plum is high in vitamin C, which is essential for natural collagen production and protecting the skin by helping to counteract free radicals.
The acid in the fruit helps dissolve dead skin cells and unclog pores, and its anti-inflammatory properties help soothe redness. It also has natural anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, which means it helps treat and clear up breakouts.
You can find Kakadu Plum extract by juicing the fruit or in skincare products like our Strawberry-C™ Brightening Serum to boost luminosity and help soothe redness.
If you’re an acne sufferer, a skincare fridge is necessary as part of your arsenal; using cold skincare products on your skin feels refreshing and helps reduce redness and sensitivity. Not convinced yet? They also preserve the effectiveness and shelf life of your skincare products.
Acne is a common skin condition that affects millions of people around the world. While there is no one-size-fits-all cure, there are plenty of natural ingredients that can help soothe acne and improve the appearance of your skin.
By adding any of the 6 gentle ingredients to your skincare routine, you can help with sensitivity, visibly reduce redness, and improve the overall visible health of your skin.
Have you tried any of these ingredients before? What was your experience?