Acne is a skin infection that occurs when the pores on your skin become blocked with excess oil and dead skin. The clogged pores appear as blackheads or white heads that with bacteria can later develop into swollen, red bumps or pimples. Some develop into deep lumps or nodules that are not easily visible but painful.
Acne is found not only on the face but also at the back, neck, upper arms, shoulders and chest. It is common among teenagers as a result of hormonal changes during puberty, some of which cause production of more oil (sebum) from the hair follicles. Sebum is the natural oil produced to moisturize the skin.
According to studies, about 20% of acnes occur among adults caused by pregnancy, hormonal imbalances and taking contraceptives or certain medication.
Green Tea for Acne
There are many over-the-counter and prescribed treatments for acne but a growing number of acne sufferers are choosing natural treatments like green tea. Following are some of the reasons why green tea is the favored treatment for acne:
- Drinking green tea can reduce the skin’s production of sebum by about 50%.
- As a topical treatment, green tea is 50% more effective than benzoyl peroxide, an over-the-counter antibacterial acne medication.
- Green tea has 6 active catechins (potent antioxidants)including epigallocatenin – 3 gallate or EGCG the “magic” ingredient of green tea against acne.
- Drinking 3 to 4 cups of green tea daily helps balance hormones.
- Green tea helps prevent acne scarring and many more.
Choosing Green over Black and White Tea
Why should you use green tea to treat acne instead of black or white tea? After all, they are all made from Camellia sinensis tea leaves.
The difference is in the way or extent they were processed particularly the degree of oxidation. White tea is the least oxidized, then green tea and then black tea the most oxidized. It is during the oxidation process that the cathecins are converted to theaflavins in black tea. Theaflavin is another powerful antioxidant like cathecin but it doesn’t have enough EGCG, the effective ingredient against acne!Both white and green teas have adequate EGCG but white tea is expensive and on limited supply.
How to use green tea to fight adult acne?
There are two general ways, orally and topicallyto use green tea to fight acne:
Drink 4-5 cups of green tea and plain water daily. You can also add 1 tablespoon lemon to a mug of brewed green tea and drink twice daily. Another way is to mix 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar to a cup of green tea.
- Apply brewed tea bags on acne lesions for about 5 minutes to reduce swelling and inflammation.
- Brew tea and apply with cotton ball or spray over affected area at least 3 time daily. You may add lemon or apple cider vinegar to brewed tea.
- Prepare green tea face mask by mixing 1 teaspoon of green tea powder with water to make a paste. Apply to affected skin area and leave for 10 to 15 minutes or until the paste is dry. Rinse with warn water and dry.
- Add green tea leaves to facial wash. Use as regular face wash but leave on for 5 to 7 minutes before rinsing with warn water.
- Green tea is not for pregnant women.
- Adding milk to green tea reduces its antioxidant properties that treat acne.