8 Essential Herbs to Treat Acne

Updated on December 10th, 2019
herbs for acne

Roots cause of acne is bacteria and clogged pores, and it becomes very difficult to deal with it. There are several over the counter medicines and treatments for acne but you may get skin ailments by using them. You can always rely on natural treatments for acne as they will not have any adverse effect on your skin.

There are several herbs for acne which give results in no time and are very convenient to use. Most of these herbs have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiseptic properties. These properties help in reducing bacteria which causes acne and heal blemishes on the skin if any.

People of any age can get acne and this condition continues till a person has reached 30-40 years of age. More than $1.2 billion were spent on the treatment of acne in the year 2013.

Herbs Supplement  for Acne

1. Aloe Vera

benefits of aloe vera

How to Use?

Clean the affected area with water and then apply fresh Aloe Vera for acne. You can slit open Aloe Vera leaf and squeeze out the gel easy to apply topically. By doing this harmful bacteria on skin will be killed and your blood flow will be boosted. If you have breakout spots on your skin then apply Aloe Vera gel on such spots and leave it overnight. Wash your face with water when you wake up in the morning.

Why to Use?

This is the best herb for those who have a problem with dry skin after using products for acne(1). Aloe Vera is an exceptional moisturizer as it has a lot of water. Researchers have proved that Aloe Vera gel has given better results for acne as compared to over the counter tretinoin creams.

How Much to Use?

It is safe to keep Aloe Vera gel on your face overnight, but if you find dryness or itchiness then wash it off after 15-20 minutes of application.

[Also Read: Natural Treatments for Acne]

2. Echinacea

Echinacea Benefits

How to Use?

You can use Echinacea in natural form also by tincture 2-3 times a day on the affected area. You will see the blemishes disappear in a few days. Have 1-2 cups of infused Echinacea every day to reduce inflammation and infection. If your breakout has become severe, then increase the dosage of the tincture.

Why to Use?

Along with treating colds, Echinacea is one of the best treatments for curing inflammation. Any kind of inflammation or clogging caused by acne gets subsided by applying Echinacea. Also known as the purple coneflower, Echinacea contains compounds that help in killing bacteria and viruses including P. acnes.

This herb can also be used as a preventive measure against acne as it won’t give any side effect.  Some properties of Echinacea are the elimination of lymph, anti-inflammation, cooling, increases immunity, encourages blood circulation and antifungal. Many people use Echinacea in forms of creams and supplements available over the counter.

How Much to Use?

If using Echinacea in dry powder form then 300-500mg thrice a day should be enough. Do not go beyond 10 ml a day if using liquid tinctures.

3. Manjistha

Manjistha Benefits

How to Use?

Roots of this herb contain all the power we need for healthy skin. Cut a part of the root and boil it for 15 minutes. You can have it as tea or apply it over the affected area. Manjistha root is also available in powder form but be sure to buy a pure and organic product from well-known stores.

Why to Use?

Manjistha is a powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and anti-microbial herb. It has properties to relax muscles, reduce stress, depression, and anxiety. It has the best effect on all types of skin allergies such as inflammation, acne, breakout, etc. Manjistha increases blood circulation and eliminates toxins from the blood.

How Much to Use?

1-3 grams of Manjistha powder can be taken with water twice a day. If you are taking Manjistha as a decoction then take 20-50 ml through the day.

4. Neem

Neem Leaves

How to Use?

You can take neem orally or apply it topically. Neem product for acne can be easily made at home. Find neem leaves(2) and boil them in half a litre of water till the time you see green colour in water. Wait for the water to cool down then strain the liquid and store it in an airtight glass bottle.

Apply this liquid twice a day all over your face or on the affected area with the help of a clean cotton ball. You can take ayurvedic neem tablets that are available in the market, they are a very good blood purifier for acne prone skin.

Why to Use?

It’s been more than thousands of years since neem is being used as natural medicine. Apart from strengthening the immune system it also helps in removing acne. Neem acts as blood puffier and detox’s the entire system from within. Antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic properties of neem work perfectly on hard to go pimples and acne.

How Much to Use?

If you are using neem toner as mentioned above then it is safe to leave it overnight. In case you are making a paste of crushed neem leaves and water then do not apply this paste for more than 15 minutes on your face.

[Also Read: Neem Oil for Acne]

5. Witch Hazel

benefits of witch hazel

How to Use?

Wash your face with cold water and pat dry. Do patch test to see if witch hazel is reactive. Apply witch hazel extract all over your face with cotton ball.

 Why to Use?

Witch hazel is a shrub mostly found in North America. It is very useful in case of skin and scalp problems as it cools down inflammation for sensitive skin.  Gallic acid and tannins are components found in witch hazel which give antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties to this shrub.

Sensitive skin is very prone to redness and irritation, witch hazel acts as a natural medicine to heal such skin abnormalities. Studies have shown that witch hazel is very effective on itchiness and swelling on the skin. This shrub can act as astringent and close open pores on the skin hence reducing the chances of acne.

How Much to Use?

There are no or minimal side effects of witch hazel. Take 3-4 teaspoons of witch hazel every day if you are facing acne issues. Do not overdo this intake as it may cause vomiting and stomach congestion. In case of any side effects, consult your doctor.

[Also Read: Benefit of Turmeric (Haldi) DIYs for Acne]

6. Basil

basil lefs

How to Use?

Crush fresh basil leaves and squeeze their juice out. Apply this juice with the help of a cotton swab all over the face or only on the affected area. Do this for 1-2 times a day till the time your skin is free from acne. You can also steam your face with basil. Boil basil leaves and take steam which comes out. This will help in opening blocked pores on the face. Basil tea is also a good option to purify the blood.

Why to Use?

Basil works well on acne, pimple, and breakouts but not many know this property of basil. Natural oils present in basil can clean the skin to unclog the pores by removing dirt, sebum and other impurities on the skin. Toxins are removed from the blood by consuming basil as it has antibacterial and antifungal properties.

How Much to Use?

Exact dosage of basil is not known but keep in mind not to overuse any kind of herb. If you see any rash after using basil then immediately stop the treatment.

7. Chamomile

chamomile flowers

How to Use?

Chamomile tea is a natural and inexpensive way to cure acne and scars on the skin. Pluck chamomile flowers from your garden or buy dried chamomile leaves from a drug store near you. Boil these leaves in at least half a liter of water for 15 minutes. After this solution cools down, dip a clean cotton swab or washcloth in this tea and wipe on your face. You can also make another batch of this tea to have it as a drink.

[Also Read: Green Tea for Acne]

Why to Use?

It has been proved in many types of research that Romans, Greeks, and Egyptians have all cured inflammation and wounds with chamomile hence it is a wonder herb for all skin problems.

How Much to Use?

Soak chamomile leaves for not more than 10 minutes in hot water if you are making tea out of it. Have this tea 30 minutes before going to bed.

It is safe to use herbal remedies mostly on all skin types but these solutions are fairly strong, when used in concentrated forms hence take precaution by not using any concentrates. If you have sensitive skins then first do a patch test to confirm if herbs are suiting your skin. In addition to using herbs for perfect skin, drink plenty of water and keep your diet healthy.

[Also Read: Natural Teas for Acne]


1. What Are the Risks Associated with Using Herbs for Acne?

Some people may have rashes, skin allergies and inflammation by using herbs on skin. People with skin allergies and plant allergies should avoid using herbs to treat acne. Children and pregnant women should use herbs for skin treatments only under the guidance of a skin specialist.

2. What Are the Other Ways to Treat Acne?

If you are allergic to herbs or your acne has gone severe then you can treat skin with oral antibiotics, laser treatments, chemical peels, prescribed topical creams, etc.

3. How Can You Prevent Acne?

You can prevent acne by keeping your skin clean, keeping the skin away from hair products, removing makeup before going to bed, avoid touching pimples, washing away sweat and so on.

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