Author Archives: Nicole Leon

About Nicole Leon

Nicole Leon is a prolific freelance writer, and pro-blogger. Nicole has recently completed her Bachelor's degree in Human Services/Management. She writes about her expertise in general health, alternative health, sociology, psychology, business, self-help, relationships, personal finance, social media, technology, arts & entertainment, and other topics of interest. Please visit http://nicoleleon.com and she can also be reached at nicolelwriting@gmail.com.

Homeopathic Medicines for Acne

Acne is a force to be reckoned with and a continuous battle for teenagers and adults. Acne is known to occur for three out of four teenagers which is a large amount of the population.  The acne process brings on blemishes, consistent eruptions of pimples, blackheads, whiteheads, and deep lesions. Acne happens when bacteria clogs the pores and causes inflammation.  Acne can not only appear on the face but also on the chest, and back. Searching for the best medicine for acne is a daunting task but there are other alternatives such as homeopathic medicines and remedies. Several acne homeopathic remedies:

  • Aloe

Using aloe vera juice or gel to fight the acne infection and encourage healing of the skin.  This ointment on the sores and pimples will help the skin to continue to heal.  The pulp of the aloe vera plant is also a good idea for a skin cleanser by rubbing it directly on the skin. For the best results, use the aloe vera juice twice a day, preferably in the morning and at night.  Use the aloe vera juice for at least six months or more.  Keep in mind the aloe vera can dry out the skin, so using an aloe vera based moisturizer while using the aloe vera juice or gel.

  • Apple cider vinegar and lemon juice

Apply apple cider vinegar or lemon juice with a cotton ball, the acidity from the juices will drain the toxins out of the pores.  This helps to keep the skin clean, clear, and healthy. The apple cider vinegar is an astringent, helps to kill bacteria, remove excess oil and balances the pH levels in the skin.  Another good use with apple cider vinegar is to use hot steam by using a pan of boiling water and place a towel over the head which helps to trap the steam. It will help to clean the face by loosening up the oil and dirt.  Reapply the apple cider vinegar with a clean cotton ball and do this twice which helps the pores to close.   At least once a week apply these steam methods as it will help to promote healing of the scars.

  • Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a popular home remedy for itchiness and other skin irritations. It acts as an astringent, drawing out oil, and other toxins out of the skin. The oatmeal does this it helps to keep the skin clean and less blemishes. Oatmeal is also a good option for treating acne and reducing the amount of flare-ups and cleansing the skin.  Cook the oatmeal and then allow it cool, and apply the cooked oatmeal all over the face, let it stay for a minimum of 15 minutes and then wash off the oatmeal.

  • Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is a homeopathic liquid easily found in drugstores and supermarkets. The witch hazel helps to shrink pimples and reduce acne inflammation. It is an astringent and a cleanser by rubbing a cotton ball all over the face and allows it to dry on the skin. Keep in mind to use a product containing salicylic acid such as Clearasil Ultra Acne Clearing Scrub that contains 2% salicylic acid. Apply the acne clearing scrub all over the face and it will penetrate the skin deeply and unplug the pores.

Top Over-the-Counter Acne Skin Treatments

There are literally hundreds of over-the-counter acne treatment products available in drugstores and pharmacies. These products are available for mild to moderate acne breakouts to treat and prevent acne.  Figuring which acne fighting product is a difficult decision at the same time.  Reading through the ingredients and figure out how the products work along with how long it takes to treat and prevent acne inflammation. Avoid trying out too many over-the-counter acne treatments as it could cause additional irritation including dryness, redness, itchiness, and peeling. Starting with a single acne treatment is the best way to go in determining which product works best.  Acne products work differently depending on the active ingredients in the solution that can kill P.acnes (Propionibacterium) which is the bacteria that causes acne inflammation and buildup within the hair follicles.

Over-the-counter acne treatments come in different topical forms such as medicated pads used to clean the skin, specially formulated soaps and cleansers, creams, lotions and gels.  Several main acne over-the-counter acne ingredients to fight periodic to moderate acne are salicylic acid, sulfur, benzoyl peroxide and resorcinol. These both help to get rid of excess oil along with bacteria. The prescription acne medications are stronger and had more effective ingredients than over-the-counter medications. Several side-effects from using over-the-counter acne treatments are irritation, burning sensation and reddened skin.

Several popular over-the-counter acne medications:

  • Clearasil Ultra Acne Clearing Scrub

This product has about 2% of salicylic acid acne medication, fights pimples quickly, gentle acne scrub, and clears skin in approximately 3 days. Clearasil Ultra Acne Clearing Scrub is also good for preventing future acne breakouts. The directions for using the product is easy to use by wetting the affected area, then apply the product generously and massage over the area. Use the product twice a day for the best results.  The product doesn’t dry out the skin and keeps it hydrated.

  • pHisoderm pH Anti-Blemish Gel Facial Wash, pH Balanced

The primary feature of this product is that it is an anti-blemish gel facial wash with salicylic acid acne treatment. Use this product until a majority of the acne has cleared up.  Using these acne products on a long-term usage isn’t always recommended. It’s best to use the product while the acne outbreak is present.  pHisoderm pH will also help with balancing the overall pH of the skin.

  • Oil of Olay Regenerist MicroDermabrasion and Peel Kit

This product contains microdermabrasion and peel system set with a two-step easy system and mini-peel treatment.  The kit will not block pores and will reduce pimples from appearing.  To obtain the best results in using this product, it must be used up to 2 times a week for best results.  Several ingredients in this product include: Derma-Crystals, Peg-8, Sodium Bicarbonate, Silica Silylate, Polysorbate 20, and Tocopheryl Acetate. The two treatment systems provide a gentle combination helping to smooth out the skin, improve skin tone, reducing wrinkles and fine lines.  The microdermabrasian crystals are a scrub which helps to unclog the pores, remove dirt and oil, along with reducing inflammation.

A Little Information About Back Acne

Acne can occur all over the body not just the face but on the back too. Back acne also known as “bacne” can come in mild and moderate cases of inflammation. Back acne forms deep under the skin causing pain, irritation, scars, and inflammation.  There are many different types of treatment to treat back acne and prevention tools to reduce overall inflammation and scars.  Back acne can come in several forms such as blackheads, whiteheads, cysts, and pimples.

Causes

The cause of back acne occurs mainly during puberty when too much sebum is made and the pores along with the hair follicles can contain bacteria and clogged. Surprisingly many media outlet sources believe that oily, fatty foods such as junk foods, along with stress and excessive sweating can create acne. However, there hasn’t been any medical evidence proving that these aspects have any truth to them. Tight clothing, heavy backpacks also do not cause acne but they can make back acne worse and cause more symptoms of acne.

Treatments

With milder back acne the best way to treat the symptoms is to wash with an anti-bacterial cleaner such as the product Cetaphil, as it is formulated for the face but it is also good for other areas of the body where acne currently resides.  Another option is to use a cream, ointment or gel with at least 10% of benzoyl peroxide acne product.  Avoid using regular soap as it will completely dry out the skin and cause clogged hair follicles to occur. Dual treatments of using both the benzoyl peroxide and Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA) which is a facial cleanser but can be used all over the body.  It’s great for removing dead skin cells and excessive oil, it softens and conditions the skin, and it contain natural acids such as fruit, milk, and sugarcane.  Alpha Hydroxy Acids mixture also includes glycolic, lactic, citric, malic, tartaric acids, super maple extract and organic black willowbark.  This type of product should be used daily as a cleansing agent.  However, using Alpha Hydroxy Acids does cause some sensitivity to the skin when it’s exposed to the sun.  Use sunscreen protection while using AHA and still use the sunscreen for at least a minimum of a week after discontinued use of the Alpha Hydroxy Acids cleanser product.

Prevention

Exfoliating the skin is one of the best ways to remove dead skin cells that can build up on the back, and other areas of the body. Some of the better exfoliating scrubbers are to use sugar scrubs instead of salt scrubs as they are milder for the body.  Shower or bathe at least one to two times a day with a mild cleanser and water. Soaking in the tub filled with warm water can help with loosening up the dead skin cells and keeping the pores clean. Get rid of body brushes and loofahs as these may cause more harm than good. Scrubbing vigorously may cause more inflammation of the hair follicles and the breakouts could worsen.  The best way to wash the affected skin is to use their hands or a soft washcloth, warm water and an acne cleanser.

Top Facts about Acne

Acne is a known problem for both teens and adults. Based on research completed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), 80% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 experience acne outbreaks at the some point of their lives. Acne is normally suppose to go away after the age of 30 but it is found that acne continues into their 40s and 50s, so this can be an almost lifetime experience for many adults. Acne occurs on not only the face but on other parts of the body such as back, neck, chest, and shoulders per the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and CDER (Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.

Acne is not considered a major health condition but it is an embarrassing experience and can cause permanent scarring to the skin. It can also cause emotional distress to the individual as their face is the first thing many people see when they look at them. So the emotional distress is a big challenge for many to endure and fight through at the same time.

The formation of acne causes:

  • Androgens which are increase in sex hormones occurring for both boys and girls during the puberty stage. The sebaceous glands enlarge and generate more sebum in hair follicles.
  • Genetics carried from one generation to the next.
  • Pregnancy that causes hormonal changes
  • Starting or stopping the usage of birth control pillsTop Myths of Acne:
  • No way to prevent the development of acne.
  • Medicated washes such as benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, resorcinol, and sulfur treat one type of treatment for acne.
  • Using basic soap and water will not treat acne.
  • Acne can be treated and doesn’t have to continue with hopes it will run it’s course. The acne can easily be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) products or through a dermatologist who can prescribe prescription medications.
  • There is no scientific evidence relating that acne is caused by diet intake. No particular food has been linked to the cause of acne such junk foods and greasy foods.

There are several acne types of lesions. The mildest cases of acne are whiteheads and blackheads.

Four severe acne lesions:

  • Cysts which are pus-filled, deep, painful, and can cause scarring on the skin.
  • Papules – small lesions, tender to touch, pink in color, and inflamed.
  • Nodules – larger and solid lesions, painful and are deep indentation into the skin.
  • Pustules – pimples, pus-filled lesions yellow or white in color but they can turn red at the base of the pimples.

Reading the labels of acne products or discussing them with a health care physician to find out which products are the best.  Looking at the possible side effects of the products and then making a final decision of which product to choose.

Topical prescription medications contain such as Vitamin A derivatives also known as retinoids, dapsone, benzoyl peroxide, and azelaic acid.  Those who have moderate to severe acne may be treated with topical or oral medicines or used in a combination.  People who have cysts need to be treated by a dermatologist specialist as the basic treatments may not work as well.

Two Popular As Seen on TV Acne Treatments

As seen on TV acne products have dominated the daytime and nighttime infomercial era. There are many different acne products currently available everywhere and now featured for a limited time in some retail stores too for a special price.

Proactiv

Proactiv is known to be the best top selling acne treatment solution in the Unites States. The formula has been improved on a regular basis to provide the best results for its consumers.

Proactiv has had many spokespersons representing the company such as Justin Bieber, Kelly Clarkson, Jessica Simpson, Julianne Hough and most recently Katy Perry has joined in the cast representing Proactiv products.

Proactiv is a three step system a dermatologist developed to help with clearing acne and preventing future breakouts. Their three step system consists of a Renewing Cleanser, Revitalizing Toner and Repairing Lotion Treatment. All three of these acne fighting products work together to fight acne, and prevent future breakouts.

Proactiv has released several new products such as their micro-crystal acne medication which helps to quickly penetrate pores with a focus of eliminating acne at a faster rate. Several other products Proactiv has come out with are the Green Tea Moisturizer, Refining Mask, a book of a doctor’s guide to clear skin called, “The Doctor’s Secret to a Lifetime of Clear Skin”.  Additional products consist of Oil Free Moisture with SPF 15, Daily Oil Control, and Deep Cleansing Wash.  The product is easy to use only requiring to be used twice a day, preferable morning and night.

SkinID Acne Solution

SkinID acne treatment solution by Neutrogena Dermatologics which through their clinical results were found to be twice as fast as Proactiv’s acne three step treatment system. SkinID’s current spokesperson is actress and environment activist Hayden Panettierre

SkinID is more of a personalized acne solution to pinpoint the consumer’s acne problem and their needs at a faster rate with better results. Neutrogena Dermatologics has created a questionairre that is evaluated and is then used to figure out the best 3-product acne kit.  This acne solution has been clinically proven and is said to be guaranteed to work with all different acne problems and skin types. The SkinID acne treatment kits includes a Gel Cleanser, Anti-Acne Treatment and a Moisturizer.  Neutrogena has said they have the largest clinical trial to date and that 100% of their SkinID patients showed healthier and clearer skin within approximately two weeks of using the product.

The primary goal of using any acne treatment to relieve the inflammation, clogged pores, bacteria buildup, and remove dead skin cells. The duration of acne treatment normally would take about six to eight weeks to improve the skin and prevent future breakouts from occurring in the future.

Natural Acne Treatments

Each day teens and adults alike deal with the embarrassing experience with acne in their lives.  Acne also known as zits, pimples, blemishes, or marks, however no matter what they are also widely known as the ultimate nuisance. Acne comes in two forms of common acne, and more serious cystic acne.  Common acne appears in the clogged hair follicles that are blocked with oil and dead skin cells.  When pores get clogged it becomes infected with inflammation and bacteria.  Acne blemishes take time to heal however there’s more acne blemishes cropping up at the same time so the problem will appear to be never-ending.  There are several natural acne treatments and prevention options to reduce the possibility of new acne breakouts and reducing inflammation in the entire process.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea Tree Oil is a powerful antibacterial, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, and antiviral essential natural oil. The oil is used for first aid, various skin ailments, cuts, scrapes, burns, infections, skin spots, insect bites and more. It’s also good for acne, nail fungus, athlete’s foot, dandruff, nail fungus, lice, mites, bites, mosquitoes, scabies, etc. Try skincare products that use at least 5% of the tea tree oil such as gels, soaps, ointments, lotions, and creams. Combining 5% of tea tree oil with at least 5% benzoyl peroxide lotion help with reducing acne inflammation and cleansing bacteria in individuals with mild to moderate acne.  There are fewer side effects compared to other treatments for acne using the tea tree oil.  Individuals who only used the benzoyl peroxide found more side effects including dryness, itching, burning and stinging.

It’s important to dilute the tea tree oil before usage otherwise there is a possibility of skin irritation, redness, itching, and blistering. Avoid taking tea tree oil internally even if it is in small amounts as it can be deadly.  Some of the side effects are a compromised immune function, fatal central nervous system failure including confusion, sleepiness, coma, and excessive drowsiness.

Zinc

Take natural supplements such as Zinc, and Guggul for treatment of acne.  Zinc is very effective treatment of acne based on scientific research done by the National Library of Science. Zinc is a mineral that helps with healing wounds and blemishes. Zinc comes in different forms such as cold lozenges, and over-the-counter cold remedies.  Zinc also comes in natural form foods such as roasted pumpkin seeds and squash seeds contain about 10mg of zinc per serving. Additional excellent resources of zinc such as fish, red meat, poultry, eggs, beans, whole grains, etc.

Guggul

Guggul is a good natural treatment for severe acne per scientific research by the Alternative Therapy Health Med.  Guggul is a gum resin type of sap from the Commiphora mukul tree from India. This sap is used in Ayurvedic medicine for many centuries and helps to treat arthritis, lowering high cholesterol, weight loss, acne, and additional skin diseases. The acne treatments will assist with decreasing redness, inflammation, pain, swelling, and outbreaks.  Keep in mind there are several side effects related to using Guggul such as skin rashes, itching, upset stomach, headaches, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, belching and hiccups. Trying any one of these acne treatments will overall help to reduce outbreaks, inflammation, blemishes, pain and the embarrassment associated with acne breakouts.