Articles

13 Home Remedies For Pimples

Over 645 million people in the world have acne. You don't have to be one among them if you follow these home remedies. *

Medically reviewed by Dr. Hari Hara Sudhan, MD, Dermatologist
by
13 Home Remedies For Pimples Hyderabd040-395603080 November 13, 2019

At some point in your life, you have stood in front of a mirror, whining over an ugly, red pimple on your face. You end up either covering it up with makeup or popping it.

But this never brings a definitive end to the pimple problem. In fact, this does more harm to your skin than you can imagine. It seems like no matter how hard you try, you cannot seem to get rid of pimples or blemishes.

This is where we can help. In this post, we will tell you how you can treat pimples by using some simple home remedies.

What Causes Pimples?

Our skin has sebaceous glands (oil glands). These glands, when clogged, can cause lesions filled with pus. These eventually become inflamed as red boils, turning into pimples.

Pimples, like zits and spots, are a form of acne. Acne is known to occur in roughly 80% of teenagers but can occur in older adults as well (1).

Pimples can occur at any age but are the most prominent during puberty due to hormonal changes. This is because all through puberty, there are changes in hormone production. This causes the sebaceous glands to work overtime and produce sebum excessively.

Pimples can also appear when the level of hormones in your body increase, like around your period or when you are pregnant.

Pimples usually occur on the face, back, shoulders, and chest due to the presence of sebaceous glands in these areas.

In the next section, we will discuss the medical options available for treating pimples.

Medical Treatment For Pimples

It includes:

  • Over-the-counter products like facial soaps and cleansers
  • Medicated cleansers that contain salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide

We suggest you try medications only after consulting your doctor.

When To See A Doctor

Mild or moderate cases of pimples will take about 4-6 weeks to subside. But if the pimples persist, consult your dermatologist. They will be able to determine why over-the-counter options may not have worked. This could have happened due to underlying issues, such as hormonal changes, or nodules or cystic acne.

For moderate cases of pimples, these easy-to-follow home remedies can help.

Natural Ways To Treat Pimples At Home

1. Argan Oil

Argan Oil Pinit

Shutterstock

Argan oil contains various bioactive groups of compounds like carotenes, xanthophylls, and tocopherols that possess antimicrobial properties (2). These may help treat pimples and acne.

You Will Need
  • A sterile cotton ball
  • 2-3 drops of argan oil
  • 1-2 drops of carrier oil (coconut or olive oil)
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix argan oil with the carrier oil and add two to three drops to the cotton ball.
  2. Apply it to the pimple and let it stay.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat 3-4 times daily.

2. Jojoba Oil

Jojoba Oil Pinit

iStock

Jojoba oil is used for its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties (3). In a study, clay jojoba oil facial masks were found to heal the inflamed lesions associated with pimples and acne (4).

You Will Need
  • A cotton ball
  • 2-3 drops of jojoba oil
  • 1-2 drops of carrier oil (coconut or olive oil)
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix jojoba oil with the carrier oil and dip the cotton ball into this mixture.
  2. Apply it to the pimple and leave it on.
How Often You Should Do This

You can apply this oil 3-4 times daily until the pimple subsides.

3. Castor Oil

Castor Oil Pinit

iStock

The ricinoleic acid in castor oil exhibits anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties (5). These properties might help mitigate the inflammation and infection accompanying a pimple.

You Will Need
  • 2-3 drops of castor oil
  • 1-2 drops of olive oil
  • A bowl of boiled water
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix a few drops of castor oil with a few drops of olive oil.
  2. Boil some water and use it to steam your face for about 5-6 minutes.
  3. Apply the oil to your face after you have patted it dry.
  4. Leave it on overnight and rinse your face thoroughly in the morning.
How Often You Should Do This

You can use this remedy two times a week.

4. Epsom Salt

Epsom Salt Pinit

iStock

Epsom salt is commonly known as magnesium sulfate. The magnesium in the salt can alleviate the inflammation caused by pimples (6).

You Will Need
  • 2 cups of warm water
  • 2-3 teaspoons of Epsom salt
  • A sterile washcloth
What You Have To Do
  1. Add two to three teaspoons of Epsom salt to a bowl of warm water.
  2. Soak a washcloth in this water and place it on your face until it cools down. Ensure the water doesn’t enter your eyes.
  3. Rinse thoroughly with warm water.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat two times a week.

Caution: Some people can have an allergic reaction to Epsom salt. If you experience skin irritation, swelling of the lips, or shortness of breath, seek immediate medical help.

5. Fish Oil

Fish Oil Pinit

iStock

Fish oil supplementation was shown to improve the severity in moderate and severe cases of acne due to the presence of omega-3 fatty acids (7). Hence, these supplements may also reduce pimples.

Caution: We advise you to consult your dermatologist/nutritionist before you take these supplements.

6. Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil Pinit

iStock

Coconut oil has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties (8). It can reduce the pain and inflammation in and around the affected area. Lauric acid, the major component of coconut oil, exhibits antimicrobial properties (9). This may help reduce the infection around the pimple.

You Will Need

A teaspoon of virgin coconut oil

What You Have To Do
  1. Apply a teaspoon of virgin coconut oil to the affected area.
  2. Leave it on for a few hours and wash with cold water.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat twice daily until the pimple subsides.

7. Garlic

Garlic Pinit

iStock

Garlic contains allicin that exhibits antimicrobial properties (10). This might reduce the infection caused by the pimple and even prevent frequent breakouts.

You Will Need
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic
  • 100 ml of olive oil
What You Have To Do
  1. Peel the cloves of garlic and crush them.
  2. Heat a saucepan and add the crushed garlic along with the olive oil.
  3. Heat the oil on medium to low heat for about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Let the oil cool down. Strain it.
  5. Apply this oil to the pimple and cover the area with sterile gauze.
  6. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes before rinsing it thoroughly with water.
How Often You Should Do This

You can use this remedy 2-3 times a day until the pimple heals.

8. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera Pinit

iStock

Aloe vera possesses antimicrobial and wound healing properties, which can promote faster healing of pimples (11).

You Will Need

½ teaspoon of aloe vera gel

What You Have To Do
  1. Apply the aloe vera gel to the pimple.
  2. Leave it on overnight and rinse with plain water in the morning.
How Often You Should Do This

You can repeat this daily.

9. Honey

Honey Pinit

iStock

Honey’s antibacterial properties may help fight the infection that causes pimples (12).

You Will Need
  • A sterile cotton ball or gauze
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Dip the cotton ball in a tablespoon of honey.
  2. Apply it to the pimple.
  3. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and rinse.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat 3-4 times daily.

10. Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice Pinit

iStock

Lemon juice is rich in vitamin C that exhibits antibacterial property (13). This may fight the infection that causes pimples and even prevent further breakouts.

You Will Need
  • A sterile cotton ball or gauze
  • 1 teaspoon of lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix lemon juice and honey and dip the cotton ball into the mixture.
  2. Apply the mixture to the pimple.
  3. Rinse with water after 5-6 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Repeat daily.

11. Turmeric

Turmeric Pinit

iStock

Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin that has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties (14). Curcumin shows potential in providing therapeutic benefits for the skin, including treating pimples (15).

You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • A few drops of water
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix a teaspoon of turmeric powder with a few drops of water to make a thick paste.
  2. Apply this paste generously on the pimple and wait for it to dry.
  3. Wash off thoroughly with plain water.
How Often You Should Do This

You can apply this paste two times daily.

12. Green Tea

Green Tea Pinit

iStock

Green tea is rich in polyphenols that may help in regulating the secretion of sebum by the oil glands in your skin (16). This can reduce the occurrence of pimples. Also, green tea is known to possess anti-inflammatory properties that may reduce the swelling caused by pimples.

You Will Need
  • 2 green tea bags
  • 1 bowl of warm water
  • Aloe vera gel (as required)
What You Have To Do
  1. Take the tea leaves from two tea bags and moisten them in warm water.
  2. Mix these leaves with the aloe vera gel.
  3. Apply this mask to the affected areas of your skin.
  4. Leave on for 10-15 minutes and wash thoroughly.
How Often You Should Do This

You can apply this paste two times a week.

13. Neem

Neem Pinit

iStock

Neem has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties that can alleviate the bacterial infection and inflammation around the pimple (17).

You Will Need
  • A handful of neem leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of sandalwood powder
What You Have To Do
  1. Boil the neem leaves in water and strain the solution once it cools down.
  2. Add a teaspoon of sandalwood powder to this solution and mix well to form a fine paste.
  3. Apply this paste to the affected areas on your face and neck. Let it dry.
  4. Rinse with water.
How Often You Should Do This

You can apply the paste two times a week.

These simple and effective home remedies can help treat pimples. Now, let’s see how you can prevent their occurrence.

How Can I Prevent Pimples?

The following measures can help prevent the occurrence of pimples:

1. Wash Your Face Diligently

Your face can gather dirt and grime over the day. This can clog your pores and lead to pimples. Washing your face well can ensure the pores don’t remain clogged.

2. Don’t Pop Your Pimples

You must never touch or pop your pimples as this can cause the infection to spread and lead to further breakouts.

3. Stay Hydrated

Staying hydrated ensures your skin is replenished and the pores don’t remain clogged by the excess production of sebum.

4. Limit The Use Of Makeup

If you have pimple-prone skin, do not use makeup too frequently. This can aggravate the issue as it can lead to further clogging of your pores and trigger pimples.

5. Make Some Lifestyle Changes

Avoid processed foods and dairy products as these can cause pimples. Make sure you exercise regularly as this can help replenish your skin. Also, get adequate rest as stress can also lead to breakouts.

Let us now explore the diet you must follow to ensure that you do not have frequent breakouts.

What Foods Should I Eat To Prevent Pimples?

As discussed earlier, pimples develop on your skin if the pores are clogged. This happens due to excess sebum production.

Certain foods, such as dairy products, pasta, sweetened cereal, bread, and instant foods, have a high glycemic index. They can increase the levels of insulin growth factor 1 (IGF-1) hormone, resulting in excess sebum production (19). This can ultimately lead to pimples.

Replace such foods with healthier alternatives, including:

  • Nuts and dry fruits
  • Omega-3 fatty acids from fatty fish like salmon and mackerel
  • Antioxidants in the form of fruits like strawberries, blueberries, etc.
  • Unprocessed vegetables, such as tomatoes, carrots, apricots, sweet potatoes, spinach, and other green leafy vegetables
  • Whole wheat bread
  • Brown rice
  • Quinoa

These foods have a comparatively low glycemic index. They also contain complex carbohydrates and other essential nutrients like vitamins A and E and zinc.

We hope this post has given you enough information to treat and prevent pimples. A proper diet and lifestyle can go a long way in reducing the incidence of pimples.

How do you deal with pimples? Are there any specific treatment methods you use? Share them with us in the box below.

Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

Is it better to pop a pimple or leave it?

Do not pop your pimples as it can spread the infection and aggravate the problem.

What is the white fluid in a pimple called?

The white fluid in the pimple is called pus, which is formed by sebum, bacteria, and dead skin cells.

What is the difference between acne and pimples?

Acne is a disease, and pimples are one of its symptoms. Acne occurs when the pores of your skin get clogged with excessive sebum or dead skin cells. This can lead to whiteheads, blackheads, or pimples.

Why are some pimples hard?

Sometimes, sebum, dead skin cells, and bacteria can enter the skin surface. This causes the pimple to harden, making it a little more challenging to treat.

References

  1. Acne vulgaris‘ BMJ Clinical Evidence, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  2. The Anti-proliferative and Anti-bacterial Activity of Argan oil and Crude Saponin Extract from Argania spinosa (L.) Skeels‘ Pharmacognosy Journal
  3. Jojoba in dermatology: a succinct review.‘ Giornale Italiano Di Dermatologia E Venereologia, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  4. Clay jojoba oil facial mask for lesioned skin and mild acne–results of a prospective, observational pilot study.‘ Complementary Medicine Research, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  5. Therapeutic role of Ricinus communis L. and its bioactive compounds in disease prevention and treatment‘ APJTM
  6. The use of Epsom salts, historically considered‘ CMAJ, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  7. Effects of fish oil supplementation on inflammatory acne.‘ Marine Drugs, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  8. Anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and antipyretic activities of virgin coconut oil.‘ Pharmaceutical Biology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  9. The Properties of Lauric Acid and Their Significance in Coconut Oil‘ Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society.
  10. Garlic: a review of potential therapeutic effects‘ Avicenna Journal of Phytomedicine, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  11. Evidence based medical use of aloe vera extracts, short review of literature‘ International Journal of Research in Medicine, ResearchGate.
  12. A Honey Trap for the Treatment of Acne: Manipulating the Follicular Microenvironment to Control Propionibacterium acnes‘ National Journal of Maxillofacial Surgery, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  13. Biological Activities and Safety of Citrus spp. Essential Oils‘ MDPI, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  14. Evidence of curcumin and curcumin analogue effects in skin diseases: A narrative review.‘ Journal of Cellular Physiology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  15. Effects of Turmeric (Curcuma longa) on Skin Health: A Systematic Review of the Clinical Evidence.‘ Phytotherapy Research, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  16. Green Tea and Other Tea Polyphenols: Effects on Sebum Production and Acne Vulgaris‘ MDPI, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  17. Azadirachta indica in treatment of acne vulgaris-an open-label observational study‘ Indian Journal of Research in Homoeopathy.
  18. Insulin-Like Growth Factor-1 Increases the Expression of Inflammatory Biomarkers and Sebum Production in Cultured Sebocytes‘ Annals of Dermatology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.

Recommended Articles

The following two tabs change content below.

Atulya Satishkumar