Mainstream skin treatments promise a future of blemish-free, wrinkle-reduced, perfectly balanced skin, but often, the price tag associated with these products outweighs the truth of these statements. Fortunately, there are effective natural ways to clear up problem skin at home without breaking the bank.
You can make your own facial cleanser at home by combining oats and lavender buds in a food processor and mixing the resulting powder with honey as needed. Ground oats contain soothing properties that reduce and smooth irritated facial skin, while lavender buds offer the skin healing through their antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory elements. Combining the moisturizing and antibacterial power of honey with this dried mixture creates a smooth, healing paste that offers gentle exfoliation to problem skin. For children with skin problems who are under the age of 2, substitute identical amounts of whole milk for the honey; honey can cause botulism in this age group when ingested.
An imbalance in the moisture levels of facial skin can contribute to irritated skin. Correcting the imbalance can reduce inflammation and acne outbreaks. A weekly moisturizing mask made of pureed avocado, plain yogurt and pineapple pulp can increase hydration, exfoliate dead skin and cleanse pores for a brighter complexion. This mask may be irritating to eyes and delicate eye tissue, so take care to avoid these areas. Rinse the mask off well after 15 minutes.
Daily Balancing Tonic
Overactive pores can increase breakouts and uneven skin problems. After cleansing your skin, natural oils are reduced significantly, which can cause your pores to produce oil in excessive quantities. Excessive oil production clogs and irritates the pores, resulting in pimples, boils and blackheads. To teach clean skin to relax, press three to four drops of lavender and rose-infused extra virgin olive oil into your facial skin after gently washing twice a day. According to master herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, this simple technique is effective for reducing, and even eliminating, acne woes of all kinds.
Peggy O'Mara, editor and consultant of "Mothering Magazine" and author of "Natural Family Living," advises using natural sunscreens like shea butter, which provide an SPF of about 5 -- offering minimal protection without the use of chemicals. Vitamin E is thought to aide damaged skin's innate ability to repair itself and should be applied nightly to problem areas. Moderate sun exposure is important for vitamin D production while being beneficial for some skin conditions.
According to aromatherapist and author Valerie Ann Worwood, acne can be spot treated with pure tea tree or lavender essential oil. Tea tree and lavender essential oils are among the few pure essential oils that may be applied to skin without a carrier oil. These volatile oils contain anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that are effective for combating acne and other irritated skin conditions. Store essential oils away from pets and small children, as they can be toxic if ingested.
Some types of eczema or chronic skin conditions may be associated with liver, kidney, adrenal gland or circulatory problems. Bacterial conditions may become weepy and infected, requiring medical care. If your condition does not clear up with natural treatment, consult with your doctor to rule out health conditions.
- The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy; Valerie Ann Worwood
- The Book of Herbal Wisdom: Using Plants as Medicines; Matthew Wood
- Natural Family Living: The Mothering Magazine Guide to Parenting; Peggy O'Mara
- Rosemary Gladstar's Family Herbal: A Guide to Living Life With Energy, Health, and Vitality; Rosemary Gladstar
- The Clinician's Handbook of Natural Medicine, 2nd Edition; Joe Pizzorno et al.