It’s easy to classify acne as a problem that only teenagers face, but that’s just not true for many women. According to the Journal of American Academy of Dermatology, 54 percent of women age 25 or older deal with adult acne. While the numbers suggest that more than half of the female population are struggling with embarrassing pimples and blemishes, it still feels like a very personal problem that makes you want to hide your face from the rest of the world. One Reddit user who says she tried everything under the sun to cure her facial seborrheic dermatitis says she finally found a cure that eliminated her acne and surprisingly it was something you can find in your kitchen cupboard.
Reddit user sebdermhoneycure posted a helpful tip on the site about using raw honey to cure her adult acne after months of trying traditional methods (including using a steroid cream prescribed to her by her dermatologist). She says the cream almost helped her aggressive acne clear up, but then it would come right back but even more aggressively: “I did this three times, and then it was out of control. Those white spots you see in the first picture aren’t flakes (yet), they’re blisters. My skin was angry and itchy and just not having it anymore.”
After doing her own research, including finding a small study that claimed 30 out of 30 of its participants were able to cure their adult acne using honey, sebdermhoneycure says she switched to this all natural solution. “After washing with mild cleanser, I massaged a thin layer of raw honey into the affected area and left it for three hours, simple as that. I expected to hate it, but as long as my hair was tied back, it didn’t feel nearly as nasty as it sounds. Plus I got to lick my fingers after applying it!,” she wrote.
In just four weeks she says she was able to resume her normal life and say goodbye to the aggressive acne that plagued her. “I cannot believe how quickly and relatively painlessly this worked. I am putting it here in the hopes that it helps someone else, as I’ve searched this sub many times for advice,” she added. “I plan to continue the treatment every other or every third day until all traces of seb derm are gone, and then to continue weekly for six months, as the study indicates, to prevent it from coming back.”
But is raw honey a surefire way to cure adult acne? We asked Campbell, CA, dermatologist Amelia K. Hausauer, MD, to weigh in on the benefits of honey, and according to her, although honey does have its benefits to treat wounds, its not something she would recommend to patients dealing with adult acne. “There is very little scientific literature evaluating honey as a direct treatment for acne. Studies show that honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties but not against P. acnes, the bacteria known to be involved in the development of acne. Of note, the benefits from honey are only if it’s raw, unprocessed and unheated.”
“Fortunately, we do have many effective, scientifically backed treatment options for acne that minimize active pimples or scarring,” adds Dr. Hausauer. “I use a combination of topical and systemic medications, peels, lasers and microneedling with or without platelet-rich plasma (a component of your own blood rich in growth factors) to treat my patients who need a viable solution for their acne.”