The 101 on approaching acne the au natural-route.

1b8e30cc294c40991b52be937ed755f4Acne and I have been acquainted for most of my teenage years. It is a bit like that friend you feel like you have outgrown but they do not really catch onto it and still cling on to what you once had. Acne has made me stuff my face with vitamin B5-capsules, take birth control and in desperation use milder antibiotics like tetralysal, and of course spend endless amounts of money on  face creams and serums.

I do find it rather disheartening to stumble upon posts written by girls with airbrush finish skin saying like “just wash your face a little more carefully”… Actually, I believe it is quite the contrary and has SO MUCH to do with your gut and hormones, aka internal procedures, rather than external, such as what bloody high end soap you are using. So today I thought I would share with you what has helped me get rid of my acne, without any harsh chemicals or spending a fortune.
Man, the amount of time I have wished I was one of those girls who can live of candy bars and sleep in their make-up and still look like a darn delight, but in recent years I rather call it a blessing. At the end of the day, your acne is simply your body trying to communicate with you – and in that sense it is really quite a blessing – even if it feels super frustrating that you do not always seem to speak the same language…
Let us start about two years ago,  I was back from my 13-month backpacking trip and my skin was a hot mess, as you can see from the photos on the left. I was very strict about my diet at the time, and kept running from one thesis to the next (is it dairy, is it gluten?) that could be the reason behind my breakouts. My self-esteem had definitely reached an all-time low and I was so stressed out, but I was still reluctant to the idea of taking harsh antibiotics that would merely kill the symptoms but not the cause.

I needed a change, and I knew it had to be down the all natural-route. The following list is 8 things that I incorporated to heal my face, literally. Some of them I still practice.

Screen Captures

→ Face Mapping.
First off, I would head off to skinacea that has a great post on the Chinese medicine approach to mapping out your acne, she writes: “Your skin often reflects your internal health, so by analyzing where you get pimples and “mapping” where acne pops up on your face, you can understand what’s causing your acne and prevent the zits from forming!”

→ Food intolerance test.
In December 2014, I visited a local homeopath. Both for my skin, but also for my severe period cramps. To make a long story short, we did a food tolerance test and there were plenty of items that I was reacting to (among them like all legumes, eggs and wheat). I also had a leaky gut, which means that no matter what I ate the nutrition sort of passed right through. In order to let my gut restore itself, I needed to stay away from these foods for a minimum of 3 months. So that is what I did. I still avoid wheat, as I can literally feel it constipating me and I have found that happy poo = happy person.

→ Hot Lemon Water.  
I start each day, more or less, by downing a pint of hot lemon water. My homeopath recommends this to Everyone. This is to aid digestion and boost your immune system; lemons are stuffed with vitamin C which are great for your skin. It also helps to get you well on your way of reaching your daily h20 quota.

→ Eat and Sleep regularly. 
I can tell on my skin immediately when I have not gotten a proper night’s sleep, I tend to look and feel gloomy. Plus, I get way more hungry than usual. Hungry Linnea = grumpy Linnea. So it may sound really boring, but I try to keep a sleep routine of 10pm-6am, making sure I catch the sleep train on time each night. I also have a night time routine of drinking a cup of relaxing tea and listening to an audio book to tell my body it is time to rewind.

→ Limit caffeine. 
This one is quite dull for a coffee lover like myself, but it goes well with the former point of getting enough sleep. Personally, I try to avoid coffee after 1pm as it takes about 7hrs for the caffeine to pass through your system. Further more, caffeine stimulates your intestines (you know how a visit to the toilet goes a lot smoother after a cuppa?) and so they get emptied too quickly and there is not enough time for the body to absorb the nutrients from the food you are consuming… In a sense, you could live off kale but it would not show. See how things are sort of coming together here, with digestion and sleep?

→ Wash less. 
It is a big myth that us with acne-prone skin would be less hygienic than those with just naturally smooth faces. When you wash off the sebum from your face, your body will simply react by producing more sebum as to not get dried out. I recommend reading more on “The Caveman Regimen” on the Love Vitamin. Myself, I only wash my face once a day, and that is in the evening.

→ Stop picking.
I seriously did not hear of this until I was 20 years old (!!!). It may sound like an easy solution, I will just pick the zit now and it will be gone… In fact, if you keep a journal to track down where you are getting your breakouts, you will find that most likely a spot will return in the exact same place where you plucked it a few days earlier. So – hands off! I have learnt to become friends with my zits. On occasion, I will have a volcano glorifying my face for a few days… I simply go with it, who cares in a hundred years? Or even the next day…

→ Self love.
Perhaps most importantly, give yourself a break. Acne can be so blooming stressful, but please please remember, there is so much more to you than your skin! Do what you love and good things will come your way. You don’t want to sit on your deathbed and regret the things you did not do because of corrupted ideas of beauty – fuck that!

Of course I appreciate that everyone’s skin is different, this is simply what has worked for me – even if I am far from airbrush finish skin, these days I confidently leave the house without an ounce of make-up and it feels like such freedom.

What are your experiences with acne? Do you have any advice or expertise to share, it would be delightful to read about! Lots of love! x 


5 thoughts on “The 101 on approaching acne the au natural-route.

  1. Love your post. I am a Rosacea sufferer and I know what it is like to have everyone give you advice about your skin when they have no idea what it is like to have a skin condition. I am focusing right now on figuring out what foods seem to trigger flare ups. Glad you got your skin under control naturally. Cheers, Michele

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your comment Michele! Yes it is really a drag when people want to give their notion on what soap you should use or how you should get more fresh air or whatever else they come up with. I appreciate they mean well, but they need to realise skin is a rather complex AND INDIVIDUAL thing! Good luck with the food mapping thing, it can be such a stressful process… All the best! xx


  2. Åh känner verkligen igen mig! Under tonåren hade jag faktiskt väldigt bra hy, vilket jag inte lärde mig att uppskatta förrän den blev sämre. Under hela gymnasiet var den fine, knappt ens en enstaka finne, men sen när jag blev runt 20 så sa det plötsligt bara pang! Jag fick inga stora bölder, men det blev många, många finnar – samtidigt som jag utvecklade hudsjukdomen perioral dermatit (men det visste jag inte då). Jag mådde väldigt dåligt av många anledningar under den här perioden och det blev givetvis inte bättre av en rödfläckig och knottrig hud.

    Acnen växte sen bort med åldern, så som den ofta gör. Tror du inte det var det som hände för dig? Jag själv ställer mig skeptisk till sk naturliga behandlingar, då det inte finns något vetenskapligt stöd för dessa. Sen är det givetvis att hud reagerar på olika saker, så man får testa sig fram med saker som kan få ens hy att reagera. Men generellt tror jag väldigt starkt på läkemedel! Läkares utbildning är 5,5 år och dom måste föreslå vård som är evidensbaserad, till skillnad från homeopather.

    Min periorala dermatit höll sig fast i flera år eftersom jag inte visste vad det var, men sen för något år sedan gjorde jag en kraftanstränging och gick till en dermatolog som skrev ut antibiotika. Mina bekymmer var borta på två veckor! Nu är min hy bra, om än ganska torr på vintern, samt att jag lätt får finnar av feta krämer. Men det är så skönt!

    Lycka till för dig och ta hand om dig ❤


    • Tack för att du tog tiden att dela med dig av dina erfarenheter Annie! Funkar antibiotika för en så är ju det sannerligen fantastiskt; för min del har det dock inte hjälpt utan snarare backfired och kommit tillbaka mer aggressivt. Så jag tror absolut på sambandet mellan kost och att kunna gå till roten av problemet, snarare än symptomen som är den bild jag fått av sjukvården på senare år. Med det sagt bör en såklart inte livnära sig enbart på typ mungbönor för att slippa utslag för det vore råtrist, men att se över om någonting en äter i stor kvantitet påverkar kroppen, som t ex ett matintoleranstest då. För min del ser ekvationen ut ungefär som desto mindre vetebröd = happy poo = happy me och det har hjälpt så himlarns mycket att ha den vetskapen. Bara från den senaste veckans brödätarfest (aka en vecka i Frankrike, brödomanernas mekka!) har ett gäng finnar storlek störe uppstått på ryggtavlan.

      Ps – så klurigt det här kommentarsvararfältet på wordpress egentligen, så smalt att en inte kan se vad en skrivit när det blitt lite längre så ursäkta om det vart superrörigt och osammanhängande! Stora kramar ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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