Figuring out how to get rid of pimples is a skincare struggle as old as time—and the market for acne-fighting products is massive. From strong prescription medication like Accutane to over-the-counter spot treatments, there is a lot of money to be made off our struggle for clear skin.
But let's say you don't want to shell out hundreds of dollars and weeks of your time on trying out the industry's newest and most intense acne products. Let's say you want to treat your acne the natural (and affordable) way, just like our foremothers did.
Enter the world of home remedies for acne—breakout-banishing concoctions that harness the power of cheap plant ingredients you either already have in your kitchen or can easily pick up on Amazon. We've already consulted dermatologists and estheticians for their favorite DIY acne cures. But this time, we decided to put our trust in you all—our delightful Byrdie readers. Our readers are some of the savviest skincare gurus on the internet and have zero tolerance for acne treatments that don't work, so you can have faith that these treatments really work. Keep scrolling to find seven genius home remedies for acne we learned from our readers!
1. Ice Cube Trick
"I'm a big fan of the ice cube trick. In the morning, if there's a lot of swelling, I hold an ice cube (wrapped in a washcloth) on the breakout to just bring the swelling down and make it easier to cover." — Helena Wilcox
2. Turmeric Milk Mask
"Turmeric, rice flour, and milk. The rice flour battles redness while the physical exfoliation of the turmeric helps with the scarring and uneven texture. And of course, good old lactic acid from the milk. [It] works like a charm but … it will stain the skin for a day if not rinsed properly." — Lauren Elise Carlson
3. Indian Clay Treatment
"Masks with Aztec clay and apple cider vinegar or Thayer's toner! I get them from Amazon and use a teaspoon of each. If it's too thick, I put a sprinkle of water in there. I did this two times a week when my cystic acne was at its worse. It was a freaking miracle worker (just be patient). Now I do it once a week to maintain my clear skin." — Marisa Leuzzi
4. Tea Tree Oil
"Tea tree oil: no specific brand. It's very strong, so if you have sensitive skin, I suggest every other day, and if you don't, you can use it as an everyday spot treatment until your skin starts to get dry—then you start using it every other day. You'll love it—trust me. Within three days, you will see results. It brings down redness and inflammation pretty much a few hours after use." — Paola Gn
Egg Yolk Mask
"When I was younger, I used egg yolk masks often—worked great. Just straight-up egg yolk is usually good for a full mask." — Nicole Michelle
6. Cool-Water Rinse
"When I'm having a breakout, I find it helps some with the redness if I wash my face with cool or lukewarm water instead of warm!" — Katy Cox
7. Apple Cider Vinegar Spot Treatment
"Apple cider vinegar. Put it on a Q-tip, let the Q-tip run underwater to dilute, and then apply it to your acne." — Alex No