As hormonal changes that happen during puberty are one of the most common causes of acne, many teenagers are affected by this unsightly but uncomfortable skin condition. There are of course, other causes of acne, including genetic predisposition and infectious causes.
While the debate is still ongoing, there’s no solid proof that stress and diet cause acne, but the findings do suggest these factors may worsen it. You should also consider what substances to look for when you’re buying or making a treatment at home. There’s no complete cure for acne without finding the underlying cause, but as far as treating it from the outside goes, there are a few very easy homemade face masks you can try to reduce acne and improve your complexion.
Sea Salt Mask
Salt and saline solutions are used to treat many illnesses, some of the most common ones being sore throat and gum problems. That is because salt is naturally antibacterial, but it’s also astringent, so using a saline solution made from plain water and sea salt on acne-affected areas of your skin will not just act as a disinfectant, it also shrinks pores and decreases skin inflammation.
You can use the saline solution by itself or combine it with other natural ingredients beneficial for skin affected by acne. From my personal experience, I recommend mixing the saline with Aloe Vera gel. Aloe Vera will speed up the skin’s healing process, working in synergy with the salty water.
Baking Soda Mask
The popular toothpaste alternative is a potential acne treatment that you can use once a week. I say potential because, just like with any other remedy, results may vary from one individual to another. Baking soda is a mild anti-inflammatory and antiseptic. As it comes in powdered form, it’s also slightly abrasive, gently removing dead skin cells, thus contributing to uniform-colored skin and reduced acne scars.
Mix 4 teaspoons of water with 8 teaspoons of baking soda to form a creamy paste. You can add more baking soda or water as needed to reach the desired consistency. After thoroughly cleaning your skin, apply the paste only on the affected areas and leave it on for 10-15 minutes, then rinse it off with warm water. Discontinue the treatment if results fail to appear or if acne worsens.
Egg White Mask
As simple as it may sound, applying egg whites as a mask on your face can bring great results in reducing both acne and acne scars. Egg whites are mildly antibacterial, and they can shrink pores, preventing the formation of new acne. This is one of those controversial natural DIY treatments that works great for some and not at all for others.
You have to wait until the egg white dries on your face. It may be uncomfortable as the mask tightens, and you can also experience itchiness.
Lots of store-bought masks enumerate an impressive list of ingredients so you’d feel delighted knowing you have a bunch of remedies thrown in together in a single product. But sometimes, one ingredient is a powerhouse of skin-friendly nutrients, like yogurt is.
Yogurt contains zinc, a natural anti-inflammatory that supports skin renewal and also regulates sebum production. It also contains B vitamins, calcium – one of the minerals the skin needs, and lactic acid, which will gently exfoliate your skin, reducing wrinkles, pimples and acne scars.
You get all of this just by applying plain yogurt on your face. Creamy yogurt works best since it’s thicker and, thus easier to apply.
Oatmeal is a powerful home remedy for sensitive, acne-prone skin. It soothes the skin, reducing redness and inflammation, but only if you cook it first. For an oatmeal mask, cook the oatmeal as you would for breakfast (one serving is enough) and apply it on your face and other areas affected by acne when it’s warm.
You can also add 2 tablespoons of honey to the cooked oatmeal as honey’s antiseptic properties will complement the soothing, anti-inflammatory effect of the oatmeal.