In search of more gentle and natural alternatives to Benzoyl Peroxide to add to your skincare routine? We’ve got you and your skin covered.
What is Benzoyl Peroxide?
For skin issues and acne treatments, Benzoyl Peroxide has become a go-to for many and a quick recommendation from many dermatologists to treat breakouts. And it is often found in the most popular prescription-strength retinoids.
In a less complicated explanation, it works by releasing oxygen when it comes into contact with the skin, oxygenating bacteria and killing it off while preventing acne-causing bacteria from repopulating. Yet, this effectiveness comes with caveats.
What are the Side-Effects of Benzoyl Peroxide?
Though Benzoyl Peroxide is quick and mostly effective at battling back acne of different types and severity, it also has some not-so-nice side effects. Many of the side effects from treating acne with Benzoyl Peroxide include inflammation, severely dry skin, peeling and flaking. So essentially, while you are attempting to conquer one skin issue, you are causing a whole new one. Or many. And that doesn’t work for us, does it?
Because it can be so harsh, especially with sensitive skin, many give up the treatment and acne returns in force.
Luckily, there are some phenomenal and effective skincare treatments to utilise if you want to avoid the potentially harsh side effects of Benzoyl Peroxide to fight acne better, naturally.
Thyme Extract for Acne
Thyme has been a go-to oil throughout time for naturally addressing inflammation, and this evergreen herb is now proving its power against acne. A study at Leeds University even showed thyme was more effective than Benzoyl Peroxide at killing off bacteria.
So where does thyme get its power? Thyme oil (Thymus Vulgaris) is loaded with pinene, a compound that kills off bacteria and can have soothing properties. Along with that, it is considered a cicatrizant which is a fancy name for the ability to help reduce appearance of scars.
Thyme has been an amazing addition for cooking recipes and natural benefits for the body, and now it’s showing its potential for fighting acne.
Manuka Honey for Acne
One of the most prized products of nature in New Zealand, mānuka honey has become a leading contender for one of the best options for natural skincare and is considered a “super honey”.
Its phenomenal anti-inflammatory properties help soothe irritated skin and has even been used to help treat cuts and severe burns. The naturally rich hydrogen peroxide make-up can kill harmful bacteria that can damage skin defences and cause severe acne breakouts and infections. All of this combined helps to make for a gentler acne-fighting companion.
Tea Tree Oil for Acne
Australian tea tree oil (melaleuca oil) is the darling of the skin and haircare world because it smells great, and has antibacterial fighting abilities that are useful in tackling acne issues.
Because it is rich with terpinen-4-ol, it is known to be a great natural antifungal and antibacterial ingredient making it a powerful additive for products and a great ally for natural skincare.
It has the ability to kill off bacteria that causes acne and is gentle when diluted for spot treatments on severe acne.
Apple Cider Vinegar for Acne
It’s not just great for the gut, diluted apple cider vinegar can be a great addition to your au naturale skincare regime. Studies have shown it’s known to kill off acne-causing bacteria due to its concentration of citric acid. On top of that, it contains lactic acid which can help with reducing the appearance of acne scars.
It’s very important to remember to dilute apple cider vinegar because it can irritate or burn sensitive skin and is better used as a spot treatment.
- Mix 1 part organic unfiltered apple cider vinegar (with the “Mother” or good bacteria inside)
- Wash your skin with a gentle soap (like this natural antibacterial soap!) to cleanse.
- Apply the mixture to your skin with a cotton ball and let it sit for about 10-20 seconds.
- Rinse with water and pat dry, repeating these steps twice a day.
Manuka Oil -- The Most Effective Antibacterial Acne Oil
Though many of the above ingredients of nature can help fight acne and bacteria, East Cape Mānuka oil is the most powerful natural alternative to Benzoyl Peroxide and an unparalleled acne-fighting option.
Compared to many of the other treatments out there, it’s incredibly effective at helping to fight off acne while still being super gentle boasting no known allergies or harsh side effects! And an important addition when trying to avoid antibiotic skin treatments that are causing antimicrobial resistance.
Manuka Oil is a Notch (and More) Above the Rest
Manuka (leptospermum scoparium) harvested on the East Cape of New Zealand has the highest concentration of beta-triketones found in nature which give it the antibacterial and antimicrobial superpowers. This unique trait makes it 20-30 times more powerful than Australian tea tree for killing bacteria, and when compared to mānuka honey, it’s up to 1,000 times more effective.
This is super important because it kills off bacteria-causing acne and even harmful skin bacteria like Staph, while leaving the good skin bacteria intact. Unlike many of the other ingredients, mānuka oil is synergistic which helps it to boost the effectiveness of other natural ingredients to create essential oil blends like mānuka oil with jojoba and turmeric are able to tackle the toughest skin challenges.
We can all agree that treatments meant to help with one skin issue shouldn’t be causing even more to arise after. The path to natural acne-free skin is clear, and mānuka oil is the best way forward.
If you’re looking for the best ally in the fight against acne and the most effective natural alternative to Benzoyl Peroxide -- East Cape mānuka oil is here to help. Shop our Mānuka Oil for Blemishes line today!