I started researching some natural remedies for this type of acne and implemented a few strategies on a trial and error bases to see what worked for me. It took a few months but I have finally had a month cystic acne free which is amazing for me, I do still get an occasional breakout but it is not a cystic bump and is easily taken care of and concealed.
Here is what worked for me to help stabilize my acne issue;
I increased my intake of clean water daily to help remove toxins and get my skin hydrated. I aim for 1.5-2 litres daily I ditched my chemical laden anti -acne treatments and went to a more natural skin care regime, less chemicals, less clogging of the skin. Many traditional acne medications work on the principle of stripping your skin of oil, which in my case only worsened the acne as my skin produced more oil to compensate for the lack of oil, and pores became congested. The skincare brand I am having success with is REN skincare and their Clearcalm range. I am going to post a review on these products soon.
I started a daily probiotic, not sure if this helped the acne clear up but it couldn’t have hurt as keeping your intestinal flora healthy allows many body systems to function more effectively. I added a daily zinc supplement as zinc deficiency in women is common, and zinc supports skin health.
I cut down my dairy intake. The research I did found that diary can trigger cystic acne in some people. I did not cut out dairy completely as recommended (I like my latte’s too much!) just reduced it, so I can’t say for sure if this actually helped or not. The biggest difference I noticed was when I started taking chaste berry. This herb has anecdotal evidence promoting its use with “women’s issues” such as PMS, breast tenderness, reducing heavy periods, helping with fertility and clearing up hormonal acne. For me this really worked!! The first few weeks on a daily chaste berry (or vitex as it is also known) supplement my skin did not improve at all I was ready to give up but decided to persist for a while longer. I have been taking it for nearly 2 months now. Here is what I noticed within the first month; my PMS symptoms GREATLY reduced, no breast tenderness, less mood swings and most importantly to me an entire cycle with NO cystic acne, at all! Which is a major accomplishment for me after years of suffering with this problem. The key with chaste berry is to take it daily and try to take it about the same time each day, it is a slow acting herb and takes time to work. For me finding a natural way to manage my cystic acne was important as I did not want to have to go to more traditional harsh medications or birth control to gain control of my skin.
I hope these suggestions help you if you are struuggling with hormonal acne!
Let me know what has worked for you!
photos courtesy of P.Hellberg, Theilr, T.Gerus