Natural Remedies for Cystic Acne

Dietary Changes

Posted by Robert (Toronto, Canada) on 12/27/2008
5 out of 5 stars

I think some dietary changes can positively affect for most acne sufferers, and if you have acne and consider it a problem I highly recommend you examine your diet as the likely culprit.

I had virtually all types of acne that I didn't seem to be growing out of. Was put on that awful Accutane with the requisite monthly blood tests to make sure I wasn't slowing poising myself. Long story short, the drug didn't work. At least not permanently, because I simply was not addressing the root of the problem. Found out that some of the most common allergens can cause acne. I realized that soy, gluten and eggs, through a process of elimination, were the cause of my acne. Once these we eliminated literally in a couple of days my acne disappeared. Skin was no longer oily, and I felt great. Not only was my skin clear but by eliminating the foods that my body for whatever reason cannot tolerate I was running more 'efficiently' and thus felt better!

Posted by Kelly (Toronto, Canada) on 12/14/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Eat lettuce! I have suffered with acne since childhood and always believed it was diet related. After many years of drugs to treat (including accutane) and experimenting with diet, I do believe it is food sensitivity. To make a long story short, corn caused my cystic acne (especially popcorn) and chocolate. I have eliminated all corn from my diet, including corn oil and have no longer get large painful boil like acne. Chocolate tends to cause the small white or blackheads. If I relapse (popcorn just smells sooo good!) it comes back immediately. My friend also stopped eating popcorn and his cystic acne was eliminated. If only I had know this 30 years ago, life would have been so much better! I guess better late than never, eh? I found eating lettuce daily will make an outbreak heal up quickly and gives a nice glow to the skin. I will add ACV and see if my complexion can even get better! PS. Also, a natural clay mask will draw toxins out of the skin. Thanks so much for this website!

Replied by Paul
Davis, Ca

I definitely agree about the corn oil. But I discovered this most dramatically consuming a variety of corn chip that used corn oil. I too was disappointed to find that popcorn was a culprit. I love corn so much, I'm still willing to hope that tortilla's or fresh corn might not be a problem. Has anybody who has found corn oil aggravates acne had the same experience with fresh corn or corn flour tortillas?

Replied by Steve
Ottawa, Ontario Canada

I suspect I am just like Kelly. For some time now, several years in fact, I have tried to be scientific and tightly control what I eat. What I now suspect is that if I eat 'corn' some time later, e. g. 10 hours or more, I have a 'cystic' reaction and if I do not eat 'corn' I do not have a reaction.

A major problem is that it is very difficult to definitely say 'corn' is the problem since its presence is pervasive and it is hard to always remember what I have eaten.

An example of food that I think cause a reaction: McDonald's hashbrowns which, surprise, surprise, contains corn and may even be cooked in corn oil. I suspect it is not the oil, per se, thought I do not know.

If anyone is interested I can list what seems fine.

Posted by Bev (Elroy, WI) on 09/05/2007
5 out of 5 stars

to respond to the woman with the terrible boils. I suffer from horrific cystic acne. I discovered that if I eliminate all forms of hidden MSG [do an internet search to find all that it is in] that my skin is perfectly clear. I am so sensitive that I cannot even touch anything with citric acid or natural flavor which is a form of hidden MSG and is in most shampoos, liquid hand soap, prepared foods, pop etc. I convinced my husband to eliminate all hidden MSG and his headaches, ezcema and skin rash went away. Now when he has any exposure the itchy, weepy skin rash comes back and today it is back with a vengence. He had mustard on Sunday and it flared. By Monday evening it was drying up and he licked the spoon of the ice cream he served our children and during the night it erupted so bad he could hardly sleep.

A good rememdy for all these skin things is a 125 watt clear infrared bulb. Not only will this clear up the skin but is great for any aches and it healed my son of acute asthma. Asthma requires a one hour treatment 1-2 times daily or more. The more you use it the quicker it heals. The only draw back is having to stay stationary so long. My husband hasn't had time to sit under it the past two days so he is still in bad shape. He started on the vinegar and honey last night to see if a change in body pH will help

Dietary Suggestions

Posted by Tammy (Calgary, Alberta) on 08/15/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I suffered with cystic acne for years. It was so bad I had to go to the dermatologist on several occasions to have it injected with cortisone. That was the only way the acne cysts would drain. I was told there was nothing I could do. It was so frustrating and I felt hopeless and hideous. A couple of years ago I was in the spa and I told a lady there about my condition. She told me to stop using dairy products and to cut down on coffee. Prior to this I used to have a mocha every morning at work and I would also eat a bowl of yogurt for breakfast. I cut dairy and coffee out of my diet completely and have not had any cystic acne since! I sincerely hope it works for whoever tries it because I know how painful emotionally cystic acne can be. Good luck

DIM (Diindolylmethane)

Posted by Courtney (Miami, FL) on 08/28/2014
5 out of 5 stars

I have been dealing with cystic/hormonal acne since the end of college (about 5 years). Like clock work, I would get 1 or 2 very painful cystic pimples right before my period. And we all know these pimples can last an entire month, so by the time I finally got rid of one another was already appearing. This is due to the increase in testosterone levels in your body which cause your pores to tighten and acne to develope deep below the surface. I read about DIM online (which has a ton of good benefits) and started off taking just 1 capsule a day or sometimes 1 every other day (recommended dosage is 2 a day). I have now not had any cystic acne for 2 months since taking DIM-Plus. And remember I have gotten them EVERY month for about the last 5 years. Research DIM (Diindolylmethane) and find out all of the amazing benefits from this estrogen balancing supplement!

Replied by Lori
3 out of 5 stars

Have you noticed after taking for a year that the dosage needs to be adjusted at all? I take 2 a day as well and sometimes feels like I get too much or not enough and end up with the cysts again. Finding the right balance is key. I just noticed this started happening after a year of taking it. Almost like body has built up a tolerance.


Posted by Elizabeth (Chicago, Il, Usa) on 05/20/2011
5 out of 5 stars

I've gotten those horrible boils/cystic acne on my inner thigh/lower back a few times, and the absolute best remedy I ever found was to put a good amount of liquid echinacea on it, and cover it loosely with a bandaid if it doesn't hurt too much. Keep doing this throughout the day and at night before you go to bed. I thought it was too deep for any medicine to reach it, but within 24 hours, the entire cyst had become a whitehead that was painless to pop. (wow this description is kind of gross, but I know it works!)


Posted by Linda (Raleigh, Nc) on 10/17/2015
5 out of 5 stars

I started getting cystic acne about a year ago. I tried several home remedies. The paste of baking soda and epsom salts worked some, but as soon as I got rid of one, another would pop up.

I started taking ginger tincture drops (for a different ailment) but after approximately 5 days, my cystic acne has completely disappeared. I started taking 15 drops, 3 times a day. After a couple weeks, I dropped down to once a day (morning) and have not experienced any relapse at the smaller daily dose. I am now 5 weeks straight of no acne! (ginger is known for helping inflammation, as well as other things).

I am so happy i wanted to share it, in case it might also work for others.


Posted by Andrea L (Glendale, Ca) on 07/22/2013
5 out of 5 stars

I use Makuna Honey for my adult acne AND all other wounds. THE UMF (Unique Manuka Factor) tells you how much healing properties the jarred honey posses. I began with UMF 12 to save a few bucks, but after having success with that one, I splurged for the UMF 16... It works like a dream! I leave it on my face for hours sometimes; it makes my whole face glow! It very moisturizing, while purifying. Manuka honey acts as an antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal treatment. ; it heals nearly anything in record time. It ALSO works great internally (not for acne) and it good just to snack on!

Posted by Jack (Atlanta, Ga, Usa) on 06/18/2013
5 out of 5 stars

I have a 17oz jar of 100% raw manuka honey which is a product of New Zealand. It works wonders as an antibiotic for cystic acne. I use this anytime I feel one coming and it is a miracle product. A lot stronger than honey in the US. 17oz will last years.

Posted by Hannah (Middletown, Ct) on 10/04/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Raw natural honey IS the miracle cure for cystic acne! I read about it somewhere, dabbed it on before bed, covered it with a bandaid and in the morning it was much smaller and less painful! Honey is known to be a natural antiseptic with anti-microbial properties. The bandaid isn't necessary, but the honey DOES need to be raw (crystalizes). Honey in the bear bottle doesn't work. I haven't tried cinnamon with it... But I will!

Replied by Ancilla
Kansas City, Kansas, USA
5 out of 5 stars

I just tried this remedy last night. I went out to buy organic, raw honey and applied it before I went to bed directly onto the cyst. The exact same thing as you experienced occured: the pain subsided (! ) and the 'knot' beneath the swelling is gone. That's a signficant amount of healing overnight. I should have used also cinnamon. I will try that asap. Thank you for sharing this awesome remedy! It worked way better than the apple cider vinegar! I just wish I hadn't picked at it earlier yesterday and the night before because now I have a scab that has to heal yet as well. Hopefully it will be gone by one week from today!

I think this raw honey trick works because the honey works as an antibiotic, but the raw honey has, I think, properties that work as a natural steroid.

Honey and Cinnamon

Posted by Kea (Austin, Tx, Us) on 06/30/2010
5 out of 5 stars

I battle cystic acne in spurts. I went to Arizona for 3 weeks and had no breakouts. I came back to Texas and least 10 cystic acne bumps in 2 weeks. I realized that these breakouts occur a week before or during my period. I found this website and began trying everything, Vitamin c tablets, turmeric, coconut oil spearmint tea, and even urine therapy. Nothing gave results. The coconut oil seemed to smooth the rest of my skin but did nothing for the cystic acne. I began looking elsewhere and here is what is finally working for me:

When I first feel the cyst tingling I began to ice it (15 seconds on and off), which seems to help it considerably. Then at night I take a dime size amount of unrefined raw (thick) local honey mixed with the same amount of organic cinnamon and make a paste. I put it on my cysts overnight. Day 1 the cysts didn't hurt anymore and swelling decreased by 50 percent and by day 2 it is pretty much gone! All that remains is redness, no knot underneath the skin anymore!!! What a blessing!

Replied by Bryce
Quincy, Il

It really got rid of your cystic acne? It didn't irritate it? I need quick results any tips?


Posted by Kathy (Colosprings, Co) on 05/30/2013

Regarding cystic acne. I saw a show on TV today that discussed this problem today. The show is Your Health With Dr. Richard and Cindy Becker, they talked about Lugol's Iodine helping cystic acne by correcting the hormone problems many people have. The show also said that people with other problems such as low thyroid, hair loss, headaches, keloids, ringworm, and many other ailments could be helped by adding 12.5 milligrams of iodine to our diet daily. They said this could be accomplished by taking tablets purchased at the health store or by painting iodine on the skin. Clear iodine can also be used instead of the red stuff we all remember for wound healing. Some may think that we get all of the iodine we need from iodized salt, but other added chemicals we incure in our diets obstruct the absorption our bodies need. I am going to try this on myself and others in my family and let you know.

Lava Soap

Posted by Skin Reborn (West Coast, Ca) on 11/14/2012
4 out of 5 stars

All my teen years, I had horrific acne. All kinds, tiny specks to giant cysts. All was due to poor diet. All treatments worked for a few weeks, then didn't help anymore. Witch hazel, noxema, aloe, medicated pads, oxy... So, one day I use my two brothers Lava soap they used after working on motors in the garage. That lava soap didn't cure my acne, but reduced it to half what it had been. Best - not a single scar. Photos from before are terrible, from after is skin like new. Today almost 60 yrs old, and still get compliments on baby-like smooth face skin. It didn't burn or hurt, just exfoliated r-e-a-l-l-y well.

Lavender Oil

Posted by Miracles (Santa Monica, Ca, United States) on 07/11/2013
5 out of 5 stars

I thought it was crazy that something as simple as lavender oil could actually work on my cystnic acne - after going to doctors for cortisone injections to reduce inflammation and expedite the healing. But you must try Lavender Oil and put it on your acne as soon as they develop. The swelling will go down immediately and the pimple/cystic acne will come to a head within 24-48 hours. Thank you to Earth Clinic and everybody who writes in for these wonderful cures!

Posted by L (Horsham, Surrey) on 05/09/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Get occasional acne cysts and decided to try pure lavender oil, dabbing several times a day rather than leaving on the skin for an hour as per previous post. Have found this has really reduced its size over the last 24 hrs. Will continue until gone. Great tip, thanks!

Replied by Es
Newton, Nj
5 out of 5 stars

You can dab it on but the way to really get rid of the cyst is to do the compress method I described. I've tried both ways - I discovered this by accident several years ago and also tried dabbing lavender on which helps some, but the tried and true way to really get rid of them or completely prevent them from growing, is the compress method as I originally posted.