There’s nothing more frustrating than waking up the day before your big annual holiday party to a brand new blemish, no doubt brought on by the holiday office goodies (candy canes, tempting hot chocolate drinks at every coffee shop, snowman cookies – who can resist?) that seem to be around every corner. Many people with acne and blemish-prone skin turn to their concentrated Benzoyl Peroxide treatment, or wash their face extra hard that morning (which can actually make a breakout worse, as it breaks and irritates the skin, spreading bacteria around the face).
While Benzyl Peroxide can be an effective last-minute zip zapper, as it parches the affected area of the skin, its intensity and harsh nature can cause over-drying, scaly skin, itchiness and redness, none of which help accomplish the goal of discretion. Here are a few all-natural alternatives that help stop blemishes in their path, that don’t involve drying chemicals:
1: Tea Tree Oil has natural antiviral, antiseptic and antibacterial qualities, meaning it helps kill acne-causing bacteria on the skin, reducing the chance for the breakout to spread, and killing the root source of the pimple. While it can have a drying effect when used generously, a small dab with a Q-tip on the affected area in the morning and at night will help treat it and keep it from getting worse. In studies, tea tree oil’s effectiveness in battling acne breakouts is compared to that of Benzoyl Peroxide, though without the stinging, burning and intense dryness.
2: Lemongrass Oil has oil-fighting astringent qualities that help the skin’s sebum production stay balanced. It’s very intense stuff, but diluting a few drops with water and spreading on the face as an astringent toner after cleansing can be very effective for reducing the appearance of a breakout and keeping it from spreading. Lemongrass oil also has a strong and soothing scent, which can help keep stress at bay – and we all know that stress is one of the major causes of breakouts! Breathe deep as you apply to your face to get this extra vbenefit.
3: Aloe Vera seems to be a skincare panacea, helping with everything from dryness to scars to inflammation. For acne, aloe vera is effective at reducing redness, inflammation and size – ideally, you want to use a fresh dab of Aloe Vera gel straight from the plant. If you don’t have a plant, try to find the most natural gel available at the store, as Aloe Vera gels often have synthetic colorants to make them appear bright green. Fresh is always the best!
4: Calendula Oil is especially helpful for fighting cystic pimples and those that involve pus, which are really just the worst. Mixing a few drops of this soothing, highly antiseptic oil into your daily moisturizer will help keep your skin balanced and keep blemishes at bay – plus, using it throughout the day on a pimple will help reduce it.
5: Last but not least, Raspberry Seed Oil is a super effective blemish treatment as it constricts blood vessels to instantly reduce the redness and size of the pimple, plus it is loaded with beneficial vitamins like E and A to nourish the damaged area. Be sure to opt for Organic raspberry seed oil, as conventional raspberries are some of the most heavily contaminated fruits when it comes to residual agricultural chemicals!
Our Resurfacing Mask is another great spot treatment, as it contains Willow Bark, a natural source of salicylic acid to reduce the size and appearance of blemishes overnight. Used on the whole face once a week, it’s wonderful for keeping skin balanced, treating texture issues, exfoliating the skin to keep it smooth and keeping blemishes at bay by controlling oil production. Check it out here!