When it comes to battling blemishes, three major ingredients seem to get all the love: salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, and retinoids. And while we'd never knock this top trio (they are proven to be supereffective, after all), sometimes you need a gentler, more natural way to clear your complexion. Maybe you have a bambino on board and are looking to steer clear of chemicals, or maybe you're just trying to green your beauty routine. No matter the motive, you'll be happy to know that there are plenty of natural ingredients that can zap zits and knockout breakouts. Check out the six that skincare experts love, plus the products that contain them.
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Tea Tree Oil
The most common natural ingredient for battling blemishes, this potent oil is naturally anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial, explains holistic skin care expert Cecilia Wong. Translation: Not only will it help treat occasional pimples, but it can also kill the acne-causing bacteria, p.acnes. Because it is superstrong, it can easily dry out your skin, Wong cautions, so dabbing it on as a strategic spot treatment is best.
Remember how we said salicylic acid gets all the acne-fighting love? Well, it's naturally found in this ingredient. "This makes willow bark extract good for exfoliating dead cells and revealing bright, fresh, skin," says natural beauty expert and founder of Purlisse, Jennifer Yen. It's also a top choice if your complexion veers towards oily; by regulating the pH of the skin, it also helps regulate sebum production, adds Wong.