We all know that beauty is more than skin deep, but the state of our skin can speak to a lot more than beauty—it’s a reflection of our health. As the largest organ, our skin requires constant care and attention to remain healthy. Problems such as blemishes, acne, warts and even dandruff can signal that something is out balance. Suffering from one of these common skin problems? Check out the remedies below to set things right!
Although most often associated with teenage hormones, acne can strike at any age and can be caused by more than hormones. Poor nutrition can contribute to poor complexion, so stay away from sugary, fatty foods that can provide fuel for acne bacteria or contribute to skin inflammation. As the skin is a major detox organ, a buildup of toxins in the body can contribute to clogged pores and unsightly blemishes. Try a natural cleanse, and give your liver and other detox organs the support they need. For spot treatment, many natural topical remedies will work. Try a drop or two of diluted tea tree oil, or use facial products containing tea tree oil. (I personally have found Purple Prairie Organics Orange & Tea Tree bar to work wonders!) Witch hazel can tighten and minimize pores and reduce inflammation, without overdrying the skin. Chamomile is also anti-inflammatory and anti-septic, making it a great natural treatment. Make a cup of chamomile tea, let it cool to room temperature, then spritz on your face. (Discover more natural remedies for treating acne.)
Unsightly and sometimes painful, warts are caused by a strain of the human papillomavirus (HPV) and are passed on like an infection through skin that is broken or weakened (from either moisture or injury). Although most warts will disappear with time, you can speed up the process by trying various natural remedies. Garlic, oregano and tea tree oil all have antiviral properties that can help fight off the virus and make your wart disappear faster. Apply a few drops of the oils to the wart and cover with a bandage. Tea tree oil is powerful stuff, so unless you’re using it on the bottom of your foot, dilute it first before using. If you don’t have garlic oil, a freshly cut piece of garlic also works. An old wives’ tale (that many have reported to work!) is to secure a piece of banana peel, pulp side down, over the wart. (Discover more natural remedies for getting rid of warts.)
Although dandruff is generally thought of as a hair problem, those little white flakes actually come from the skin on your head. Dandruff can be caused by both overly oily and overly dry skin, as well as poor hygiene and even a yeast-like fungus that feeds on hair oils. Massaging jojoba and coconut oil into the scalp can help balance out issues of dryness or even oiliness. Rinsing with vinegar can help kill bacteria causing dandruff, as can adding 10 drops of tea tree oil to your shampoo. (Discover more natural remedies for treating dandruff.)
Age spots aren’t necessarily a sign of unhealthy skin—just of aging skin—but if you want to reduce the appearance of yours, there are a few steps you can take. The natural bleaching powers of lemon can help lighten age spots, as can the lactic acid in yogurt. Try rubbing freshly squeezed lemon juice onto age spots twice daily (watch out for cuts!), or applying a paste of yogurt to affected areas for 20 to 30 minutes once daily. (Read more about how to naturally lighten age spots.)
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