Eliminate Acne with Water as Cleanser and Sesame Oil as Moisturizer
by A.J. Shrestha
Acne is a common skin disease that affects not only teenagers but also adults as well. The search for acne cure has led to a multi-billion dollar industry. While there are several expensive products in the market (both prescription and non-prescription), I was one of those people where all these cleansers and cream made my acne only worse. By the time I was thirty years old, I was willing to try various alternative methods to get rid of my pimples.
Little did I know that the regimen that works is also the cheapest, easiest to use and most effective.
A friend of mine had beautiful radiant skin and I asked what her secret was. She said she washed her face with water only and applied Nivea Soft Moisturizing Creme every morning. I was skeptical about this treatment because it sounded so simple. If this was true, I wondered why many people did not know about it.
Before I discuss more about this regimen, you are probably curious about my background and acne condition.
I had oily skin with both acne vulgaris and rosacea. Fortunately, I did not have severe acne problem when I was a teenager. When I was at college, I started developing problems with my skin. Perhaps heavy drinking, stress and bad nutrition at college took a toll on the health of my skin. My face was then full of zits and I was so embarrassed to even go outside.
During my early twenties, I tried washing my face with acne cleansers that included benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. I could buy any of these cleansers at a grocery store nearby. At first these products seemed to work and clean my face. However, within a few days my entire face broke out and the pimples got bigger and bigger. My girlfriend made a comment that I now started to look scary.
My girlfriend’s comment got me concerned. So I finally decided to go to a dermatologist and cure my skin. Based on his prescription, I started washing my face with a different cleanser. I also started taking minocycline, which is an antibiotic, twice a day. I also applied sodium sulfacetamide as topical lotion in the morning and retin-a micro before I went to bed. Usually dermatologists prescribe antibiotics and some topical solutions if you have both acne and rosacea.
Initially, the results were good although my skin became more oily than ever. Within a week, all the redness was gone and the old zits started to fade away.
These results did not last very long. While my acne did not become as bad as before, I still got some new pimples every week. I was also concerned about long term use of antibiotics. My dermatologist told me that I would have to take antibiotics for a long period of time. I did not want to cure acne and cause another disease. After three months, antibiotics did not work very well and my acne gradually became worse. My face was so oily that occasionally some of my friends would ask why I was sweating.
During my next visit with my dermatologist, he said he wanted to switch me to Accutane. Accutane is known to stop oil production and acne. In order to get the prescription, I would have to sign a consent form. I would also have to go through monthly blood tests. When I researched online, I found that there were several lawsuits related to this prescription even though it was very effective for acne.
Some of its side effects such as severe depression, inflammatory bowel disease and Crohn’s disease are pretty serious. I did not sign the consent form because I did not want to run into more serious health problems just for the sake of looking good.
So I continued with retin-a and sodium sulfacetamide treatment. Meanwhile, I decided to make a drastic change in my lifestyle. I started creating a food diary to see if there were certain foods that would make my skin break out more.
I quickly noticed that dairy products would make my skin worse. French fries or any deep-fried food would also lead to break-outs. While changing my lifestyle helped some, it did not completely eliminate my acne. I would still get one pimple every week. But eliminating dairy products and fried food did better than antibiotics for me. My face was still very oily and I would have to wipe my face with oil absorbing sheets throughout the day.
Since I was desperate to try any reasonable method to get rid of acne, I listened to my friend’s advice about washing with water and using Nivea Creme as moisturizer. I also researched online and it seemed the consensus was that most cleansers strip away oil from the skin and also cause an allergic reaction. So it made sense to wash with water only. Even water makes your skin dry. So it was not a bad idea to use a moisturizer such as Nivea Creme.
So I gave this method a try. I stopped using sodium sulfacetamide and retin-a. I would wash my face with water only every morning and apply Nivea. Occasionally I washed my face with water in the evening, especially if I just came back sweating from a gym. But I did not use any soap whatsoever for a week.
The regimen worked spectacularly. I had no new pimples for almost two weeks and my skin was less oily.
At the same time, I heard that sesame or olive oil is a great moisturizer. Based on some reviews online, I decided to try organic sesame oil because sesame oil is the best oil for skin according to Ayurveda. Since sesame oil is completely natural, I thought it would be better than Nivea.
The result turned out to be even better. I still washed my face every morning with water only but I applied sesame oil on my face instead of Nivea. My skin quickly absorbed all the oil and my face would not look oily at all. Within a week, my skin complexion improved. I got feedback from my friends that my face was not oily at all anymore. They wanted to know my secret.
So washing face with water only and using sesame oil as a moisturizer works wonders for your skin. I have been using this technique for a couple of years now, and my skin has been blemish-free ever since. Occasionally, I get a pimple on my skin but they never get big and they heal within a couple of days. When I travel, I use Nivea Soft Moisturizing Creme instead of sesame oil because it is easier to carry in a luggage.
I believe that every person is different and this regimen may not work for you. But if you have tried several different ways and spent thousands of dollars to cure acne, maybe it makes sense to test if water and sesame oil can cure your acne. Both water and sesame oil are very cheap compared to popular cleansers and they will also help maintain your skin health on a budget.
(A.J. Shrestha is a regular reader of healthonabudget.com. He now strongly believes that eating healthy and using natural products not only help your skin but also help your overall health.)