Skin as Clear as the Clear Blue Sky
When I was in high school, I had problems with breakouts the way almost every kid does. While I didn’t have terrible, on-going battles with acne, stress and very little sleep contributed to an ambush of cystic pimples. I didn’t get a ton all at once. Rather, I was the victim of an almost monthly zit that would turn red, hurt like the dickens, balloon to the size of a small planet, and make it’s home somewhere conspicuous, like my upper lip, or between my eyes. And then it would squat there for as long as possible–once, for over a month. This continued into college and as my love of natural remedies took root, I sought solutions. Some of these things have been add-ons over the years, but this is what I do to keep my skin clear, and I have to say, it has worked pretty darn well over the years.
Note: I am not a doctor or a trained health professional. I am simply sharing what has worked for me. If you have health concerns regarding any of the following, especially regarding medications and supplements, please confer with your medical team.
Drink lots of water. Like, a gallon a day. Okay? Check? Moving on…
Allium is a genus of flowering plants that includes both onion and garlic…And I want you to eat them both! Read on…
Eat onion. Drink onion. Put it on your skin. I occasionally went through phases of including lots of sautéed onion in my diet, and I noticed that whenever I was on an onion kick, I got a ton of complements on my skin, so I started paying attention. And I found that, yes, when I ate onion, my skin stayed super clear. Onion’s concentration of quercetin rises when it is cooked; it is also not hard on your stomach the way it is when consumed raw. It is high in sulphur which is needed for collagen synthesis and will detoxify cells. In the middle of a breakout, I will slice an onion and stick a juicy piece directly on the affected area. I will boil an onion and drink the broth or wash my face with it and consume the boiled veggie. It really is a miracle food. And it still happens, actually. Whenever I’m on an onion kick, people still comment. No joke.
Raw, pressed garlic. There are immuno benefits to eating raw garlic (it’s part of my cold prevention ritual), and I find that my skin is clearer no matter what way I decide to ingest it (boiled, roasted, raw, pickled). My personal experience has proven it to be very effective.
Zinc and chromium picolinate supplements. In college, I began taking both these supplements as soon as I felt something nasty beginning to form under my skin, and the majority of the time, I would head a breakout off at the pass. Usually, this was enough to curb it completely and resolve any kind of “oweeee” that was beginning to form. Take zinc with a meal as it will upset your stomach in the most terrible way if taken without food. Zinc aids in tissue healing and prevents scarring, and chromium picolinate reduces skin infection. Zinc and iron are at odds with each other, so if you are taking an iron supplement, take them at different times. Zinc may also decrease copper absorption, so do you research on what is appropriate for your body. Chromium has an effect on insulin, so if this is a concern of yours, please make yourself aware. It also can inhibit zinc absorption, and has an effect on certain medications as well as iron absorption, so again, do what is best for you.
Mix salt or baking soda (also a salt) in with your facewash. Salt is antimicrobial and aids in wound healing. It also soothes inflammation. I began to notice how clear my skin was when I spent time in the ocean, and began using it to ensure my skin remained clear when I was out of the ocean. I use fine sea salt or baking soda and mix it in my hand after I pump my facewash. I either exfoliate with it (the cheapest most effective exfoliant I’ve ever used), or let it sit on my skin for a minute to do its work. Don’t let the salt sit too long though, because it will burn you. Then wash away. Clean and clear.
Oil. Yes, oil.
Moisturize at night with grapeseed oil. Yep. Pure unadulterated oil. I have not experienced a clogged pore yet due to using oil as a moisturizer and I’ve used grapeseed, olive, and coconut oils directly on my skin with no adverse effects. I use grapeseed though, because in one tablespoon alone you will find 46% Vitamin E. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant and aids in wound healing and scar reduction. I have found it to be very effective–especially if I’m post breakout (which occurs usually post too much coffee and chocolate), and I’m trying to get rid of the red left in its wake. It does happen.
Tell Me About It!
Those are the big things I do to keep my skin clear, and they have worked for me for years. If you try any of these suggestions, please let us know how they worked for you! <3