My teenage years came and went, leaving me miraculously unscathed in terms of acne. I was lucky enough to never have a problem with breakouts. Recently though, as an adult, it seems my luck has run out. Around the same time every month, like clockwork, a few painful, underground breakouts crop up around my nose and chin. What's worse? They leave annoying red scars even after the pimple has cleared up. I don't understand, I'd think each morning when I noticed another red one appear as if out of nowhere.
I have a bathroom brimming with beauty products for every ailment I could possibly imagine. That is, besides acne. I've dealt with dry skin, anti-aging treatments, issues with fine lines, dark circles—the works. But somehow, never breakouts of this magnitude. So, I needed some help. I reached out to natural skincare founder (and former emergency physician) Sarah Villafranco, and she gave me a product that vanished my breakouts in less than 24 hours.
The Miracle Spot Treatment
A few weeks ago I woke up with an especially harrowing underground blemish around my nose. It hurt to talk or move my face, it was that bad.
At Villafranco's suggestion, I started applying this blend of essential oils every few hours while I sat at my desk—each one meant to combat bacteria and diminish blemishes, while also working to prevent over-drying as it heals the skin. "Spotless Blemish Oil has a high concentration of essential oils chosen specifically to address the inflammation that happens with cystic acne," says Villafranco. "Lavender and cajeput are anti-inflammatory and can help reduce redness and discomfort around cystic breakouts. Also, lavender and thyme both pack a powerful antimicrobial punch, which can help keep infection at bay." Villafranco adds that the treatment also contains evening primrose oil, which can help keep the top layer of skin intact as a blemish heals, both decreasing the chance of infection and supporting optimal skin function.
Evening primrose oil, or EPO, is an oil derived from the seeds of the evening primrose plant, oenothera biennis, that moisturizes and softens the skin and has anti-inflammatory properties.
The treatment won't strip the skin of its oil or leave your skin flaky and crusted as it heals. Instead, the scent of evening primrose, lavender, lemon, parsley, thyme, cypress, and rosemary essential oils fills my nose to promote relaxation, as it zaps my pimples away.
Villafranco notes that Spotless is great for most skin types unless you're allergic to one of the essential oils or have a history of reacting to essential oils. The best way to test is to use it on the skin on the side of your neck, which is almost as thin and sensitive as your facial skin.
By the end of the day, I was expecting to see that my acne had come to a head, but each blemish had remained dormant, and the spot treatment had prevented them from surfacing at all. I was pleased but still curious to see if they'd actually disappear. I rolled on a generous amount before bed and drifted off to sleep. When I woke up, I was finally free. The pain had subsided, the cystic breakouts were gone, and I had just discovered a 100 percent natural, organic miracle-worker.
Best way to apply the treatment? According to Villafranco, the treatment should be used as the last layer in your routine. "It's very concentrated, so you don't want to spread it all over your face—it's formulated for focused use on blemishes," she says. "The best way to use Spotless is to finish all other steps of your routine, and then roll a tiny bit of product onto a Q-tip or a clean pinky, and dab it gently onto the blemish. It will look oily for a few minutes but will sink in quickly and do its work over the next few hours." It's most effective when used three to four times per day, but using it overnight is a great way to let it work on clean skin. You can leave it on until the next time you wash your face. (Note: Because it contains lemon essential oil, it should not be worn when you're going to be exposed to significant direct sunlight.)
I've been applying it to any redness and scars daily ever since, and I have yet to suffer from another breakout.