youthful skin is a hallmark of health and vitality as well as defines our standard of beauty.
Unfortunately, not all of us are blessed with smooth and clear complexion.
For as long as I could remember, I have been dealing with a mild form of acne that cripples
my self-esteem.I have tried a lot of over-the counter acne treatment available in the market
but show little or no success. To hide my imperfections, I wear tons of make up just to give me
confidence to go out and face the world- but that didn't help. Applying more make up irritated
my skin thus causes inflammation and acne. I found out that many cosmetics contain mineral
oil that clog pores and lead to more breakouts. But make up is not the only cause of acne.
Medical doctors and Naturopaths believe acne results from several related factors including:
1. Changing hormone level before menstrual period
2. Skin irritant ingredients from skin products such as oil and fragrances.
3. Environmental irritants such as pollution and air conditioning
5. Squeezing or picking blemishes and hard scrubbing of the skin.
6. Some foods can breed breakouts such as vegetable oil, dairy, alcohol and acidic foods such
as tomatoes and chilli.
7. Excess sugar consumption may contribute to the increase in prevalence of acne but this issue is
still subject for debate.
Treatment and Prevention
After searching high and low for the last 8 years on the best and natural way to treat my
breakout-prone skin, I have finally found the secrets to a clear and younger looking skin. By
changing my food choices, lifestyle and using chemical-free skin care products. I have finally
managed to say goodbye to acne.
My Anti-Acne routine
It is a common fact that skin is the largest organ of a human body and absorbs 60% of what touches it.
What we put on our skin goes to our bloodstream and delivered to other parts of our body. For this
reason, it is important to remember that what we put on our skin is just as important as the food we
eat. So, be kind to yourself and treat your skin right.
Since every skin is different, choosing a facial cleanser that will work for your skin is quite a journey. For
my skin, I stay away from harsh cleansers and stick to the ones that have tea tree or sandalwood for
antibacterial action. The Sodashi Clay Cleanser with Sandalwood is a great cleanser that contains
sandalwood oil that promotes cell regeneration and jojoba oil that reduces redness and inflammation.
I wasn’t a fan of exfoliation due to the fact that it irritated my skin and caused me to breakout even more.
After several attempts, I realized that I am doing everything wrong! Hard scrubbing is a big no-no and
exfoliation should be done once a week to keep dead skin from building up in pores that trap bacteria and
oil beneath them that causes breakouts. I’ve now learned my lesson and choose a gentle and non-irritating exfoliant for sensitive skin that contains micro beads. The one that works best for my skin is
Kora Organics Exfoliating Cream. The organic oat flour and bamboo ingredients gently remove dead skin
cells resulting for smoother and squeaky clean skin.
I use green clay mask because it aids in controlling sebum production as well as for its anti-inflammatory and
antimicrobial properties. It is also good for spot treatment. I recommend Apivita Express Deep Cleansing
Face Mask with Green clay. It draws out impurities and doesn't dry my skin leaving it soft and refreshed.
Jojoba oil is great for spot treatment because it has a natural antibacterial, anti-fungal, highly anti-inflammatory
and hypo-allergenic properties. My personal recommendation is The Jojoba Company's 100% pure Australian
Toners that contain irritants such as alcohol or witch hazel can make blemishes even worse and stimulate more
oil production. To avoid this problem, look for toners that contain rose water or colloidal silver. My personal
favourite is Sukin Hydrating Mist Toner. It is alcohol free and contains rose water and chamomile - a perfect
refresher for those hot summer days, long flights and long days in an air-conditioned environment. Just a
couple of spritz is enough to hydrate my face and beautifully set my mineral make-up.
Hydrating your skin is very important especially if you are working in an air conditioned environment which
tends to dry your skin causing it to produce more sebum. To combat this, I use Trilogy’s Rosehip Oil to regulate
oil production and boost hydration. I mix it with a tiny shake of Skinstitut 100% Vitamin C powder to lighten
my skin and stimulate collagen growth.
Mineral Make up
When choosing your mineral make up, look for the ones with no bismuth oxychloride and free from fragrance,
parabens, and mineral oils. My favourite is the certified organic Inika mineral foundation. It is packed of organic
antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that your skin will love.
Heat can actually flare up acne so sun protection is a must. Unfortunately, most of the sunscreens
available in the market are heavy and greasy that can cause more pimples. So how do I get my daily dose of SPF?
My mineral foundation has SPF 15 that filters out approximately 93 percent of UVB rays and allows me to stay in
the sun 15 times longer than I could without protection. I also wear sun protective clothing that blocks out both
UVA and UVB rays and wear wide brim hat to protect my skin from premature ageing and sun damage.
How about you? What are your thoughts and experience dealing with acne?
Aravind G., Bhowmik Debjit, Duraivel S., Harish G., 2013, ‘Traditional and Medicinal Uses of Carica Papaya’,
Journal of Medicinal Plants Studies, vol.1, no.1, pp.13.
Plants Journal < http://www.plantsjournal.com/vol1Issue1/Issue_jan_2013/2.pdf>
American Academy of Dermatology 2015, Diseases and Treatments- Acne,
Johnson EJ, Russell RM, 2010,’BetaCarotene’, in Coates, PM, Betz JM, Blackman MR, et al., eds. Encyclopedia of
Dietary Supplements, 2nd edn, Informa Healthcare, London and New York retrieved from National Institutes
of Health – Office of Dietary Supplements,
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases 2013, Health Information- Question and
Answers about Acne, <http://www.niams.nih.gov/health_info/acne/>
Robertson, Caroline 2015, ‘Acne Solutions’, Go Vita – The Good Health News Magazine, Issue 37, p.8.