Oh, my achy breaky skin!

You know how sometimes we girls just erupt for no good reason? No, no, I’m not talking about our tempers. As good Muslim women, we are pretty even-keeled in that department ๐Ÿ˜› I’m talking about our skin: eat one bite of chocolate more than necessary, and although they tell us that what we eat doesn’t affect acne, that’s not my reality. Or eat French fries for a week, and see what happens! And how about using the wrong soap, that one that your friend, knowing you’ve got a bit of a makeup/skin obsession, swears is the best thing since we discovered that the Earth is round? Oh my God, that is a sure-fire way to turn my face red and fussy.

So, what’s a girl to do? All these experiments with products, and all this happy fatty food I just can’t say no to, means some amount of damage control is in order. Of course, keeping up my water intake usually keeps the zitty monsters at bay…but sometimes, I fill up my bottle, and sip only a little from it by the time the day is gone. Water is a pretty good acne defense…and what about the scars that are left behind from when you’re not so careful? Of course, for those, there are tons of home remedies, ones that many people swear to.

  • My mom swears by aloe vera as a great repairer of all kinds of skin troubles. The one that is fresh from the garden makes my facial skin itch unbearably, although it really does work when I can stand it.
  • A friend of mine likes to soak her face with a milk/lemon juice concoction to keep her face acne- and scar-free. Takes way too much time for me, and I easily forget to do it.
  • There is also a honey/aspirin mask one could whip up and plaster all over your face regularly to keep the nasties away–again, too much work for me to commit to.
  • My sister says to use honey and cinnamon to banish the zit before it can become nasty. Does nothing for me. Nothing.
  • My brother used to shove Vitamin E oil at me, and demand that I use it. I saw no difference. However, I tried it again recently, and voila–success. Who knows why it didn’t work a decade ago (or whenever) and does work now? However, the fact that it is working on pitted scars (thank God I don’t have many of those!) leaves me eternally grateful.
  • There is this turmeric skin creme that does a pretty amazing job of fading scars quickly and effectively.
  • And then there is neem oil, which does a pretty good job of not letting the zits come to the surface. Sometimes, though, it really could work better!

Are there any better solutions to the Attack of the Zit Zombies? What have you tried that worked…or didn’t?

(This was lurking in my brain for a few weeks, and Alisha inspired me to let it all out.)


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16 Responses to Oh, my achy breaky skin!

  1. Candace says:

    I’ve tried everything. When I was in high school, I had minor acne and tried Clearasol, Oxy, Neutrogena, Phisoderm, Aveda skin wash, etc. Nothing really helped. My first year of university, I broke out…huge red pimples on my face. The only thing that worked for me was Pro-Activ. I swear by that stuff. I am back to only having minor breakouts once in a while.

  2. yummymummy says:

    i’ve tried nearly all the products ever created to treat acne and nothing(absoulutely none) has ever worked for me. but my first pregnancy did the trick which didnt last long because the second one brought it all back!

    and may i please know what that turmeric skin creme is? even though nothing works for me i cant seem to give up trying!

  3. realistic bird says:


    I had an acne problem a few years back and they didn’t go no matter what until I went to the dermatologist and he gave me medicine which I took for 7 months, it peeled my face because the doctor told me I had excess oil problem after I did a blood test. Even though I get an occasional one every now and then alhamdulilah I don’t have the same problems I used to have and he gave me a face wash to use in the morning and evening called bi solution and then I couldn’t find it and now I use another one (can’t remember the name) though it is not as good as the first one. If anyone gets a zit we use fucidin, you put it on the zit for a few hours and it is gone, no scar or anything.


    the red one because there are other times, I don’t know if it is over the counter medicine in the US

  4. Candace, yeah, university is what did it for me too. Stress definitely does play a role in how bad they get ๐Ÿ˜ฆ And welcome to our blog! ๐Ÿ™‚

    yummymummy, welcome, to you too! ๐Ÿ™‚ You know, I’ve heard that women on birth control pills don’t get the whole pimple-routine either. How sad that the second pregnancy didn’t have the same magical effect ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    That turmeric cream is by Vicco; I’ve also used one by Nomarks, and it’s just as good. Then, there was this one by Emami, which seems to work a touch faster. I like to get the smallest tube they have, because it seems like when I get to like the last third of a larger tube, it’s not as effective–maybe because it’s not as fresh, and has been opened so many times? I really hope it works for you!

    realistic bird, Wa ‘Alaykum salam ๐Ÿ™‚ Glad the dermatologist worked out! When they’re persistently red, huge, and painful, I think a visit to a doctor is necessary.

    No, I don’t think we do get that ointment here…I’ll look around though. I did try using another anti-bacterial which we get, Neosporin, and it did nothing for me. The neem oil worked better as an antibacterial that works. Oh, and I remember reading about tea tree oil being effective to kill it at the beginning–nothing doing for me!

  5. Najla says:

    This should be helpful for my sis, I’ll let her check this post out.

    Btw Digital nomad you and ur sis are tagged, check out my blog. And i want a post each, if you!

    wasalamu alaykum

  6. Alisha says:

    I guess this is a universal problem! ๐Ÿ˜€ Thanks a lot for sharing your tips with us DN. I have heard of Vicco- some of my cousins used it and claimed it didn’t work for them. Sigh. I am going to try it- let’s see whether it works for me! *gets all excited*

    My tip: My pimples usually reduce when I use acneaid soap (http://www.medshopexpress.com/243923.html%5D , drink lots of water and keep my nails short. One of my cousins said that applying an icepack [10 mins a day] onto your face also reduces tiny pimples [I usually stop doing it after just 2 days- no patience].

  7. Desert Shark says:

    I have been fighting acne since I was 13, and I can tell you what you eat does affect your skin. I’ve also spent years using those acne products they keep advertising. What works for me is watching what I eat, washing my face regularly and using acne daily face wash lotions a couple of times a week works. Some of those other things that are mentioned sounds more like old-wives tales than anything realistic. But I have heard wonders about aloe vera and vitamin E.

  8. AD says:

    i m such a lazy daisy when it comes to doing home remedies…
    it is no good for me.. though they all sound temptin in their own capacity!

  9. realistic bird says:

    Yes alhamdulilah it worked. When I was over there the Dr. showed me diverse types of acne so each react to something and have a different reason. Mine were not due to certain foods.

    Insha’Allah everyone gets rid of the pesky things, ameen.

  10. Ajla says:

    Selam aleykum, gurl

    Depends really what kind of acne we’re talkin’ of. I suffered from difficult acne at age 16-17 and I had “isotretinoin Actavis” and never looked back. โค Love at first sight and it truly worked wonders, it awoke the pill-popping junkie in me.

  11. mems says:

    It’s not so much the acne than dry skin which gets to me. I wish someone would wave a magic wand and make all the discoloration go away.

  12. I actually use plain yoghurt mixed with honey and rose water, that seems to work. Its also good for dry skin ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. queenie says:

    Alhamdulilah, I’ve never had to deal with acne breakouts, but I imagine it would drive me crazy as I can never leave a zit unpopped (gross, I know, but it’s almost like this OCD-ish thing I have about zits). I would go with aloe though, there’s nothing I have seen that hasn’t been solved by it!

  14. Noor says:

    Salaam alykom,
    Hi there ๐Ÿ™‚

    So a lot of the ideas you posted would work on different skin types for different reasons. For example, the honey/aspirin mask is just a salicylic acid/spreader mask ๐Ÿ™‚

    What anti-inflammatories and antioxidants are you using? Vitamin C is a big favorite, aloe is another one. Look for ingredients such as bisabolol, panthenol, Licorice Extract, Boldine extract, resveratrol, or EGCG (green tea) in products as well. They work because they calm the skin down, reducing redness and sebum production.

    For scarring and hyperpigmentation (the dots or scar marks), hydroquinone is good if you’ve got light skin; otherwise, it’s not usually advised. However, kojic acid, lactic acid, ascorbic acid, retinol, azelaic acid, arbutin, rumex extracts, Morus Bombycis root extract (mulberry root), Licorice root (glycyrrhiza glabra root extract), phenylethyl resorcinol, and undecylenoyl phenylalanine are all good things to look for in products. They all work as melanogenesis inhibitors at different points in the reaction chain; combination do wonders. If you’re having a lot of trouble, PCA Skin has really amazing serums and kits specifically for different kinds of acne and pigmentation.

    Hope this helps!!!!


  15. Does acne need to be cured? Perhaps it is a natural process during the teen+ years and is just another big revenue generator for the drug/ chemical companies.

    • I know you’re probably not coming back here, but yes, acne does need to be cured! Non-chemical means can be effective, so cure is not all about generating revenue for the drug companies. Now, if one were to say that the drug companies were causing our acne, then you’d have a case for your revenue generator idea. ๐Ÿ™‚

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