(NaturalNews) Acne is the scourge of adolescence... and for many adults too. Many readers are likely familiar with the more common home remedies for curing acne... tea tree oil, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar and burdock root. However, because acne is such a wide-spread and troubling problem, scientists are continuing to research new natural substances that are effective against this common issue. Both in vitro and human studies conducted over the last four years around the world have uncovered even more natural substances which are effective against acne.
Propionibacterium acnes is the bacteria most frequently linked to acne. This bacteria is almost always present on the skin of adults and adolescents. The bacteria feed off fatty acids found in sebum. If a follicle becomes blocked, the bacteria grow rapidly and secrete substances which break down the skin and form an acne lesion. Therefore, much of the research on natural substances that treat acne have centered around finding substances that are effective against Propionibacterium acnes. Try the following five natural substances for a powerful anti-acne defense.
1. Licorice: Researchers at the Skin Research Institute in Korea conducted research published in July 2008 that explored the role of Chinese herbs as agents against acne. They discovered that Glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice) had anti-bacterial properties against P. acnes. Apply licorice root extract directly to blemishes and use licorice root tea as a facial wash.
2. Echinacea: Another in vitro study conducted at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada used a standardized preparation of Echinacea against P. acnes. This research was published in September 2009 and showed that Echinacea both killed the bacteria and helped reverse inflammation brought on by the bacteria. Consume Echinacea internally in the form of either organic tea or capsules and apply Echinacea extract directly to pimples as an "on the spot" treatment.
3. Resveratrol: Researchers at the University of Naples in Naples, Italy published research in April 2011 that showed that the administration of a resveratrol containing gel improved acne symptoms in patients previously afflicted. Resveratrol is a substance naturally produced by grapes and other plants. The researchers in this experiment applied resveratrol gel once a day to acne-prone skin.
4. Basil Oil: Researchers at Naresuan University in Thailand conducted an in vitro study on the effect various basil oil preparations have on P. acnes. They discovered that sweet basil oil and holy basil oil were shown to have significant anti-bacterial effects against P. acnes. In this study, the sweet basil oil had higher activity against P. acnes than the holy basil oil did, although they both were active against it. Dilute basil oil in a carrier oil (such as coconut oil) and apply to the skin to control acne.
5. Hops: Another study conducted in Washington D.C. and published in July 2007 showed that hops extract had significant activity against the most common acne-causing bacteria. Hops extract can be used externally as an astringent to cleanse the skin and to prevent acne outbreaks.
Acne is an embarrassing and annoying condition, but using one or more of the aforementioned lesser known home remedies for curing will get your skin looking clean and clear again.
Amelia Bentrup is the owner and editor of http://www.my-home-remedies.com a well-researched collection of natural home remedies. Discover natural cures for a variety of ailments and find specific information and safety guidelines for various herbs, vitamins, minerals and essential oils.