If you're someone who cares a lot about the appearance of your skin, acne is likely your worst nightmare. You might have tried all of the creams, balms, and remedies at your local drugstore, but have you tried weird acne treatments that actually work? You've likely heard of the acne toothpaste treatment, along with a whole host of other bizarre zit-banishing tricks too. But, are these just old wives' tales or do they actually work IRL?
Acne, oily skin, and pimple breakouts are common in adolescence, but you might be suffering with adult acne which comes with its own set of problems. Chances are, if you're suffering with acne, you won't want to risk making it worse by trialling some hodge-podge creation you cooked up in your kitchen.
Unfortunately, we don't yet live in a utopian society where people would never dream of shaming people for their appearance – or shaming people in any shape or form, for that matter – so sadly, some people are shamed or bullied for having acne. In an ideal world, acne sufferers would be able to show their bare faces and not have to worry about any hate they might receive, but as society isn't quite there yet, it's more than understandable that not everybody feels strong enough or confident enough to do so. In the meantime, while society evolves, you can experiment with some weird acne treatments that actually work, in an attempt to rid yourself of acne once and for all!
1. Banana Peels
Fellow Bustler Kristin Collins Jackson tried a bunch of home remedies for pimples and discovered that banana peels worked for her. Collins Jackson reported, "According to Positive Med, all the rich nutrients and vitamins that we eat in bananas are rich in the peel, make a banana peel a quick, effective methods to clear up a blemish. I happen to agree." She told readers, "Let me be the one, without a medical degree, to say that I wholeheartedly stand by using a banana peel for acne."
2. Coconut Oil
From cooking with coconut oil, to using it in your dental routine, there seems to be no end to the uses of this wonder substance. Thus, it makes sense that it would work well as a skincare treatment. According to One Green Planet, coconut oil is an effective acne remedy, "Coconut oil is a miracle beauty treatment for many reasons. Though the idea of oil sounds scary for treating acne, coconut oil is one of the most beneficial skin treatments out there. Because it’s anti-bacterial and anti-viral, it fights bacteria naturally." If you're wondering which type to buy, One Green Planet suggests, "...coconut oil should be bought extra virgin and cold-pressed as the best option possible."
On speaking of the benefits of coconut oil cleansing for acne, Liz Taw, Vita Coco Coconut Oil Ambassador, told Cosmopolitan, "The antibacterial qualities of coconut oil help make it a gentle and effective way to treat and balance acne-prone skin, unlike aggressive foaming cleansers that can aggravate the delicate skin on your face, encouraging production of excess sebum to protect and replace the oil you've stripped away." We're sold!
You're probably familiar with using ice in your beverages and pressed on injuries, but have you tried it on your acne? Rachel Nazarian, a dermatologist with the Schweiger Dermatology Group in NYC, told Allure, "Applying an ice cube directly to your pimple for several seconds will constrict small blood vessels feeding the cyst and immediately decrease redness and size." Kristin Collins Jackson said ice is a great acne treatment when you're away for the weekend, as it's super easy to get hold of in a jiffy!
4. An Acne Treatment Concoction
Max Strength Cortizone 10 Creme 2 Ounce Box, $8.40, amazon.com
So you've tried every acne cream in existence, but have you ever tried them together? Allure recommended readers to, "Mix this cocktail of three acne products." Allure spoke with Leyda Bowes, the medical director at Bowes Aesthetics in Miami, who advised this concoction of acne products, "The combination of these three over-the-counter products—a sulfur-containing cream (try Olay Professional Pro-X Clear Intensive Refining Sulfur Mask), a benzoyl peroxide cream (try Arithmetic Acne Control Complex), and a mild cortisone cream (try Cortizone-10)—usually proves very effective when mixed and applied two to three times a day over the cyst for seven to ten days." You might feel like you're in an apothecary or in a Hogwarts Potions Class, but the results should be worth it!
5. Sea Salt Water
According to One Green Planet, "Sea salt is an incredibly powerful acne medication that works by cleansing the cells and killing bacteria while also promoting healthy pH levels in the skin." Of course, sea salt water is best from the source, but One Green Planet features a tutorial on how to create and use sea salt water for acne for those who find themselves landlocked.
Silver Serum, Approx. $17, skinshop.co.uk
According to Cosmopolitan, silver skin treatments make for fantastic alternative acne treatments, "The Silver Serum from Skin Shop contains a patented form of silver called MicroSilver, which is hailed as a serious alternative to medicated treatments." Cosmopolitan reported on the use of silver in the health industry, "Recent research from Boston University found that adding silver to antibiotics boosts their effectiveness by up to 1000 times, while the NHS sometimes use bandages infused with silver to help fight prolonged skin infections, severe burns or infected skin ulcers." The article featured the story of former acne sufferer Charlotte Hall, who had previously tried many different acne treatments. Cosmopolitan reported her experience after swapping to the Silver Serum, "In combination with a weak retinol cream she says her skin is now 95% better..." Guess it turns out that silver is a precious metal in more ways than one!
Although it seems the media is portraying that meditation is the cure for literally everything nowadays, there's proof out there that relaxation techniques can help improve skin conditions. According to Harvard Medical School's Harvard Health Publications, "Some skin conditions have a psychological dimension that may need to be addressed, too." Harvard Health Publications reported, "Relaxation techniques have been used along with conventional medical care in treating acne, eczema, hives, hyperhidrosis, and psoriasis."
According to experts at the University of Sheffield, as reported by The Telegraph, "Relaxation sessions, meditation and cognitive behaviour therapy were among the techniques found to help sufferers of psoriasis, eczema, acne and the pigment disorder vitiligo..." It's basically down to stress – The Telegraph reported that in a 2012 snapshot survey, dermatology doctors and nurses discovered that, "...stress was a significant factor for eczema sufferers, as well as those with acne..." So if your acne is usually brought on by stress, it might be worthwhile adopting meditation and other relaxation techniques into your routine.
Don't be put off by some of these more unusual treatments. They've worked for other acne sufferers, so fingers crossed they'll do the trick for you too – there's only one way to find out!