When I turned 10 years old, a curious thing started happening to me. My face, chest and back became overrun with painful cystic acne. A normal teenage phase for some became a 17 year long nightmare for me. Not only did I look awful, but I felt awful and kids are really cruel. You can use your imagination for that part. Countless home remedies, over the counter drugs, various prescriptions from disinterested dermatologists and even the LITHA method were of no use. Once I was well into my twenties I had resigned myself to the fact that it was never going to get any better. And really, life was pretty good. I was living in a city I loved, in a wonderful relationship and enjoyed my work, a minor problem like acne hardly concerned me at all. Except that it did.
As my study of yoga progressed, I made several changes to my lifestyle. None of them were completely conscious, just steps along the way as I started to move closer to my own nature. One day I had an “ah-ha” kind of moment. In yoga, we’re taught to work with nature rather than against it, and I decided to take the same approach in trying to heal my skin. I figured if I took care of my skin rather than trying to beat it into submission with chemicals, my skin would take care of me. It turns out I was right. After 17 years, when I started caring for my skin rather than trying to destroy my acne, I was able to do just that. I’ll share with you the methods that have worked for me, if you give them a go please let me know how they work out for you.
Tools of the trade: Dr. Bronner’s unscented castile soap, Thayer’s unscented alcohol-free witch hazel, baking soda, jojoba oil and organic apple cider vinegar (diluted with water 50/50)
- wash face with a small amount of castile soap, pat dry
- soak a cotton pad with apple cider vinegar solution, apply to face and throat
- while skin is still damp, rub 2-3 drops of jojoba oil between your hands and then rub well into your face and throat
- wash face with a small amount of castile soap*
- soak a cotton pad with witch hazel, apply to face and throat
- while skin is still damp, rub 3-5 drops of jojoba oil between your hands and then rub well into your face and throat
- *every other day/every third day wash with the following method: put a quarter sized pile of dry baking soda in the palm of your hand, add a few drops of water, add a small amount of castile soap and mix well in your hands to make a paste. Apply paste to a damp face and rub in a circular motion for about 1 minute, then rinse well and pat dry