Acne - causes & remedies

Date Posted:18 May 2022 

Acne is caused by four main factors, which are excess oil production, dead skin cells, clogged pores and the presence of bacteria on the skin. Natural skincare can help those with oily or acne prone skin manage their skin better, without using harsh chemicals.  



Hormonal changes that occur during puberty are the most common cause for acne. For some however, this can last well beyond adolescent years. Hormonal acne is characterised by clustering of blemishes around the jawline, or acne that gets worse in women around certain time of the month. 


A poor diet in someone with acne prone skin is a recipe for disaster. Dairy, sugar and processed carbohydrate foods (white bread, biscuits, chips) are among the worst for flaring up acne. You can speak to your doctor about this and maybe even try to eliminate sugary foods from your diet to see if it makes any improvements on your skin.   


Nutritional deficiencies 

Essential fatty acids (omega-3,6,9), zinc, vitamin A and vitamin B5 are among the most common nutritional deficiencies amongst acne sufferers. Start by making sure you have a healthy balanced diet to avoid nutritional deficiencies. It is worth seeking professional advice from a qualified nutritionist in order to optimise your nutritional needs. 


Poor gut health 

As always, a healthy gut is paramount. Gut dysbiosis (overgrowth of bad bacteria) is almost always present in those with skin issues. You should consider modifying your diet or consulting your doctor and/or dietitian  for professional advice. Please also see our earlier post  Beauty from within where we talk about gut health (digestion & absorption) and ways to optimise your gut health. 



Stress can accelerate any disease state, and acne is no exception. Try practising yoga and/or meditation to reduce stress levels. Having a regular bath and some 'alone time' can also reduce stress levels and help you sleep better.  

Tips to improve acne prone skin

1. Cleansing

Following a proper skin care routine is essential for managing acne prone skin. When it comes to choosing a cleanser for acne prone skin, there are a few things to consider. Stay away from chemical laden acne products, as these often strip the skin of the natural protective oils. Despite what you may think, taking away too much oil can be counterproductive and actually make matters worse. In fact, the ideal face wash for oily skin is one that is gentle and nourishing.

The Black Chicken Remedies face wash for oily skin is actually oil based which is ideal for acne prone skin as it restores the balance of oils at the cellular level, reducing the over production of oil that leads to acne. It combines 14 remedial oils to target impurities held deep within your skin without disturbing your skins natural sebum balance. 

Of course, most people who experience acne on the face also experience acne on the body. This means that it’s just as important to consider your oily skin when choosing body care products. An acne body wash is one that won’t clog pores and will also gently purify and heal congested skin to prevent things like back acne. An acne body wash should be gentle however and not full of harsh stripping chemicals. The Eco by Sonya body wash is a great acne body wash option as it’s equally nourishing as it is cleansing.   


2. Exfoliation

Exfoliation is another crucial step in any good acne skincare routine. Regularly using a natural exfoliator removes the dead skin cells on the skin and prevents clogged pores, which are big contributors to acne. A face scrub is a great option for exfoliation. The tiny particles in a natural face scrub remove impurities and build up. We suggest you use a face scrub and a separate body scrub. As the skin on the face and décolletage is more delicate than other areas of the body, it is important to stick to gentle exfoliators that won’t damage the skin. The Jojoba Co Bead Cleansing Face Scrub is great for acne prone skin as it contains both exfoliating particles and aloe vera to soothe the skin. 

3. Moisturising

Moisturising is just as essential for acne prone skin as it is dry skin. Adding moisture to oily skin is what helps prevent the excessive oil production that happens when the skin feels it needs to compensate for dryness. For acne prone skin, we suggest choosing something light as heavy moisturisers particular in the evening can feel uncomfortable for those with oily skin. Acure is one of the leading brands for all-natural skincare that’s directed to your unique skin’s needs. The Acure Incredibly Clear range is one of our favourites for a comprehensive acne routine. The Acure Incredibly Clear moisturiser is great for those wanting a day cream that will hydrate without the thick moisturiser layer. Another great option for nourishing oily or acne prone skin is jojoba oil. Jojoba oil is actually the wax esters from the jojoba plant. It shares the same molecular structure as the sebum our skin produces. This means jojoba oil can penetrate the deeper layers of the skin and actually restore balance to oil production – over time reducing breakouts and excessive oiliness.  


4. Suncreen

The next thing to consider in your acne skincare routine is sun protection and, if you choose to wear it, makeup. A natural sunscreen is a must when it comes to protecting all skin types. We should all be wearing SPF daily on our faces and bodies – yep even in the cooler months. UV can be high despite it not being sunny and the sun is the single biggest contributor to poor skin health and faster skin aging. That said, those with oily skin can find that sunscreen doesn’t settle into their skin and instead feels like an oil slick. We’ve found the best sunscreen for oily skin Australia. Yep the Eco By Sonya face sunscreen is by far the best sunscreen for oily skin Australia as it’s not overly thick, won’t cause breakouts and rubs in with a demi-matte finish. This sunscreen is great under makeup too.


5. Makeup

Speaking of which, what is the best foundation for oily skin you ask. Well, the best foundation for oily skin is the one that stays on, doesn’t get shiny and is natural and not pore-clogging. We’ve found the Zuii Organic powder foundation is the best foundation for oily skin as it’s easily buildable and isn’t liquid, making it great for oily skin types.  





Acure Incredibly Clear Acne Spot Treatment with 2% Salicylic Acid (14.7 ml)

Fights the zit at its source & ideal for combination to oily skin



Eco by Sonya Pink Himalayan Salt Scrub With Peppermint & Lemongrass (250 ml)

For dry skin, stretch marks, scarring, acne, cellulite, eczema & psoriasis



Noosa Basics Alcohol Free Acne Spot Drying Lotion (25 ml)

Improves the appearance of blemishes overnight



Ethique Solid Face Cleanser For Normal To Oily Skin In Your Face (120 g)

Great for acne & other problem skin



The Jojoba Company Australian Jojoba Oil

Moisturises and repairs sensitive & problem skin, including acne

From $19.95

See Options

Vanessa Megan AHA & Willow Bark Clarifying Anti Congestion Serum (30 ml)

Helps to reduce blackheads, blemishes & acne

Now $50.96

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Vanessa Megan Hibiscus & Banksia Mattifying Cream Clay Mask (180 ml)

Suitable for all skin types, particularly oily & acne prone skin

Now $59.46

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Vanessa Megan Papaya Enzymatic Foaming Daily Cleanser (150 ml)

Suitable for all skin types, particularly oily & acne prone skin