Keeping your skin healthy can feel like a full-time job. Stress, allergies, diet, genetics, weather changes, and just bad luck can all lead to breakouts. Whether you suffer occasional breakouts or a chronic and serious skin condition, here’s how to treat your skin symptoms holistically.
Acne is a common condition, affecting more than 90% of the population at some point in their lives. While some acne during puberty is normal, severe or persistent acne can be painful and lead to scarring.
Acne flares up when your skin pores get blocked. The blocked pores fill up with sebum, a natural oil your body secretes to moisturize your skin. That leads to the growth of bacteria, which leads to inflammation as your body sends red blood cells to fight it. Acne is essentially a nasty side effect of your immune system doing its job.
Holistic Acne Treatment
One major cause of acne is diet. Eating a highly-processed diet, rich in refined carbs and sugars can worsen acne. Cut down on products made with white flour, white rice, and other refined grains. You should also avoid eating products that contain a lot of sugar — both processed sweeteners like cane sugar and corn syrup, and natural sugars like maple syrup and honey. Eating a low-fat diet, rich in natural fruits and vegetables is likely to help alleviate your acne symptoms.
As a topical treatment, try using one part apple cider vinegar, mixed with three parts water. Clean your skin as normal, and apply it to your face (or any other areas with acne breakout). Then, wash it off and dry your face. Apple cider vinegar is a natural antibiotic, which can help kill the bacteria responsible for acne.
Rosacea is a condition that causes red, blotchy skin on the face. Mild rosacea can look like natural ruddy skin, while more severe conditions can produce unsightly swollen bumps, along with eye irritation. When rosacea affects the nose, it can progressively thicken the skin, giving it a bulbous appearance. Rosacea can affect anyone but is most common in women with light skin over thirty.
Holistic Treatments for Rosacea
The causes of rosacea aren’t completely understood, but both heredity and environment likely play a role. Although it can’t be cured, holistic skin treatment can help prevent flare-ups and mitigate symptoms.
The most important factor in rosacea treatment is to recognize what triggers your rosacea. Rosacea flare-ups can be triggered by several things, including:
- Hot beverages
- Spicy food
- Very hot or cold temperatures
- Certain cosmetics
- Physical exertion
Keep a log of your flare-ups so you can look for patterns. Do you get outbreaks in the summer, winter, or all year long? Does it get worse when you eat certain foods? Does your skin get worse after you apply makeup in the morning? Do you tend to break out on days when you spend a lot of time in the sun? When you start to see patterns, try eliminating factors that cause breakouts, or when that isn’t possible, mitigating them.
Rosacea sufferers can also benefit from sunblock. Too much sun can damage your skin, and exacerbate your condition.
Psoriasis is a fairly common skin condition, affecting around 2-3% of the population. It is an immune condition known for creating patches of scaly, dry skin, but certain forms can also create lesions, raised pustules, and other skin damage. Psoriasis can vary from a relatively mild and localized phenomenon to an extremely widespread and painful condition and can lead to psoriatic arthritis, which can be debilitating.
Holistic Treatment of Psoriasis
Because psoriasis varies so dramatically, treatments may vary from case to case, and your treatment may require biologic drugs — IV medicines that target parts of the immune system that are malfunctioning in psoriatic patients – or other pharmaceuticals.
However, several holistic treatments can be effective for certain cases of psoriasis. Stress is a common trigger for outbreaks, so many psoriatic patients benefit from modalities like meditation, aromatherapy, and yoga, which calm the mind and body.
A healthy diet can also be a factor. Psoriatics can benefit from a healthy diet in general, and especially by eliminating foods, they are sensitive to or allergic to. Exercise is also helpful, both with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. If you are overweight, your doctor may also prescribe a calorie-restricted diet, which can improve symptoms in some cases
As far as supplements go, psoriasis may benefit from a range of herbal treatments that target skin inflammation. These treatments are useful for a wide range of skin conditions and will be discussed below.
Herbal and Holistic Treatments for Skin Conditions
Several holistic treatments and supplements are widely used to relieve inflammation and may help with multiple skin conditions. These include:
- Aloe vera
- Natural antiseptics like tea tree oil and apple cider vinegar
- Honey masks (particularly useful for psoriasis)
- Oatmeal face masks (just cook plain, unflavored oatmeal, allow it to cool, and apply)
- Oils with anti-inflammatory properties, such as jojoba oil
- Probiotic skin cleansers
Because skin conditions are commonly linked to inflammation, anti-inflammatory supplements and diets may also help. Curcumin, a substance extracted from turmeric, ginger, fish oil, and other commonly used natural anti-inflammatory substances can all play a role in treating skin conditions.
CBD Skin Treatment
CBD is a relatively new skin treatment, with many promising properties for treating common skin conditions holistically. According to Doctor Tina Alster, professor of dermatology at Georgetown University Medical Center, CBD can help moisturize and heal the skin, and relieve itchy or painful conditions. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, CBD can treat a range of specific skin conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne. It may also be able to boost the production of collagen for anti-aging effects.
Products for Healthy Skin
Humble Flower Co Arnica + Clary Sage Relief Balm – 200mg (2oz)
This natural skin balm combines powerful full-spectrum CBD extract with anti-inflammatory agents, calming herbs, and nourishing natural oils. A natural base including shea butter, jojoba oils, and beeswax carries essential oils of the traditional healing herbs lavender, clary sage, and rosemary, for a skin treatment that smells as good as it feels.
Seven Minerals Magnesium Oil with Aloe Vera (12fl oz)
Combining natural magnesium oil with soothing aloe vera, this is a great treatment for all skin types. In addition to treating psoriasis, eczema, and other skin conditions, it can also help relieve cramps, restless leg syndrome, migraines, insomnia, and anxiety!
Papa & Barkley CBD Hemp Drops – 900mg (30ml)
As a powerful anti-inflammatory, taking CBD internally can help relieve a range of skin conditions. This pure and potent extract will benefit your skin, body, and state of mind.
Elixinol Extra Strength CBD Hemp Balm
Soothe your skin with this double-strength CBD balm. This all-natural formula is completely free of the artificial scents, parabens, and phthalates that can irritate sensitive skin, ensuring you’ll enjoy a healing experience.
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