Like all forms of acne, cystic acne also develops as a result of skin pores blocked by either dead skin cells or bacteria accumulation, usually due to a digestive system imbalance. However, unlike its kin, the blockage is much deeper, meaning that the condition can manifest itself as both inflamed pustules, or seemingly invisible bumps underneath the skin. Whatever the case, here are some widely used natural treatments to get rid of these pesky yet painful bumps:
1- Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV):
This all-purpose natural remedy with its antibacterial and exfoliating properties is the common go-to option for cystic acne treatment; provided that it is organic and unfiltered-identifiable via floating brownish strands. Simply apply a cotton ball doused in ACV over the affected area(s), wait 10-15 minutes, wash with warm water, and pat dry. Repeat twice daily until the breakout is reduced. Sensitive-skinned individuals may choose to dilute ACV with warm water before applying. For thorough internal cleansing, drink a twice daily mixture of 1 teaspoon ACV and ½ teaspoon honey in warm water.
To take advantage of the strong anti-inflammatory properties of this common kitchen ingredient, apply a paste of 1-2 teaspoons turmeric powder and water over acne spots once daily and rinse with warm water after 1 hour. You can also multiply its acne-clearing benefits by applying a thrice daily mixture of 1 tablespoon turmeric and coconut oil each after cleansing the affected area and washing with cold water 10 minutes post-application. Note that pregnant and breastfeeding women, and people with gallbladder issues or diabetes should avoid this remedy.
3- Indian Lilac (Neem):
This common herb not only reduces pain and inflammation, and eliminates toxic chemicals and bacteria accumulated in the body due to its antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. You can either apply a paste of ground neem leaves over the affected area and rinse with warm water after allowing it to dry or rub a cotton ball wetted by a few drops of neem oil and wash with warm water after 10 minutes twice daily until the acne fades.
4- Natural Honey (Without Artificial Additives):
Honey kills acne-causing bacteria and heals cystic acne scars and wounds, while also moisturizing the skin. Simply apply daily for a week over the affected area on its own, or mix 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder into a ½ teaspoon of honey, apply the paste and rinse with warm water after 10 minutes.
Along with relieving other bodily pains, a thin paste of 1-2 crushed aspirin tablets and 1 teaspoon of lukewarm water applied daily and rinsed after 15 minutes post-application greatly reduces acne-caused pain and inflammation. Moreover, aspirin also acts as a gentle exfoliant by removing dirt, oil, and dead skin cells.
Both a treatment and preventative measure, exposing affected skin to steam from hot water for 10 minutes thrice a week can aid in instant acne-reduction by opening blocked skin pores and releasing the accumulated dirt and dead skin cells.
For individual cysts, firmly rub ice-cubes over the affected area. This constricts blood vessels and freezes skin pores, hence reducing inflammation and removing the accumulated dirt and oil.
Along with being anti-inflammatory, potatoes also accelerate healing by absorbing impurities such as dirt and oil from the skin. Blend a few peeled potatoes to a paste, apply over acne-affected areas, wash with warm water after 10 minutes, and repeat twice a day until the acne is reduced. Make sure to apply moisturizing cream post-rinse as potatoes tend to dry out the skin.
Remember to regularly cleanse and moisturize your skin, and avoid excessive washing of the affected skin, as well as popping or touching the cysts to reduce risk of inflammation and further spreading; and always consult with your doctor before trying out any of the above solutions. You can book an appointment with a top Dermatologist in Multan, Karachi and Islamabad through oladoc.com, or call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT Doctor for your acne-related concerns.
About the Writer:
Yashfa Marrium is a freelance writer and health enthusiast. You can reach her at [email protected]