Green Tea For Acne: Does Green Tea Help Treat Acne?

Green Tea For Acne: Does Green Tea Help Treat Acne?

If you're an avid tea lover, then you probably love drinking green tea regularly. It gives you the same amount of energy as coffee, yet is much higher in antioxidants. But have you ever thought about how it might affect your acne?

Tea has been used as a herbal medicine for centuries. Its popularity is still peaking. Every article nowadays seems to be talking about the endless list of health benefits that come from drinking green tea. It's said to help with many illnesses and conditions.

The question is – is acne one of them? You may have tried other ways to get rid of your acne (but if you haven't tried Misumi's AHA 10% Skin Perfecting Cleanser, we suggest you give it a go!)

Read on to find out if drinking green tea can help acne.

Is Drinking Green Good for Acne?

The research regarding this whether green tea helps acne-prone skin is still limited. There is much anecdotal evidence to support the claim that green tea has a positive effect on inflammatory acne, but that is yet to be proven. Still, the benefits of green tea shouldn't be understated.

So far, we know that green tea is a major source of polyphenols – antioxidants usually found in food. Green tea polyphenols help protect the skin - they attack free radicals, also known as oxidant radicals, which can cause damage. Along with other polyphenolic components, they also have anti-inflammatory properties, meaning they help reduce inflammation in your body, which is one of the main causes of severe acne. People with high levels of inflammation are more acne-prone than others.

This antioxidant also has the power to balance out your hormones, which is amazing news for those who suffer from hormonal acne.

You might be wondering how exactly green tea influences hormones. It works by lowering the androgen levels in your body, which naturally become higher than they should during adolescence or because of some lifestyle factors and medical conditions. As a result, it makes the body produce more IGFBP-3 (insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3), a type of protein that binds with IGF-1. In addition, it can also block IGF-1 receptors, resulting in less acne and improving skin health. Imbalanced hormones lead to excess production of sebum, which overproduces your natural oils and can clog pores.

Another thing that leads to excess sebum production and congestion is high blood sugar levels. Studies have shown that green tea improves insulin resistance, which is one major cause of acne, often intensified with a bad diet. Regular intake of green tea can reduce blood sugar levels, and thereby reduce the amount of acne you have.

Green tea is also known for its antibacterial and antibiotic properties, which can help to soothe irritated skin. In addition, research suggests that it can work on a few acne-causing bacteria, which can improve acne and give you clear skin.

So whether you suffer from cystic acne, moderate acne vulgaris, or mild acne breakouts, this anti-inflammatory drink is certainly worth a try.

Green Tea for Acne

One of the easiest ways to take green tea for acne is by drinking a few cups per day. You can either use tea bags or tea leaves. Place a green tea bag in your cup and put some boiled water in it. The ideal boiling temperature is above 80 degrees Celsius.

Don't let your tea bag steep for more than 5 minutes, as this can ruin the taste. Let the tea cool down and enjoy your nutritious cup of green tea. If you want to spice it up (or survive your first sip), try adding in some lemon juice or a natural sweetener, like honey.

There's no universal measure for how many cups you should have per day. If you're new to green tea, start with one cup per day and then work your way up to 3 cups if you want. Like any other treatment, you shouldn't overdo it since excess caffeine can have an adverse effect on acne.

Remember - you don't just have to drink it hot! Iced green tea is more popular than ever, especially in the summer months.

How to Use Green Tea Topically as an Acne Treatment

Any acne sufferer knows that there are a million topical treatments out there - and here's another one to try. The benefits of green tea are many; green tea bags can work magic on your skin as a topical application. This study suggests that topical tea polyphenols are effective in treating acne.

So, the next time you enjoy a warm cup of green tea, save those bags for later. Wait for them to cool down and strain them on a cotton pad. You can also use them directly on your face if you're slightly more daring. This natural toner is good for reducing sebum production, which causes oily skin. It'll also tackle redness.

If you're unsure whether you should be using green tea as a topical treatment for acne-prone or oily skin or existing acne, seek professional medical advice.

Green Tea Masks for Acne

Adding a green tea mask o your skincare routine a couple of times a week can really help treat acne. Here are a couple of easy DIY masks you can try at home.

No Muss - No Fuss Green Tea Mask

Mix a tablespoon of leafy green tea with a few drops of water so that you create more paste-like quality. Put the cold tea mixture on your skin and leave it on for around 20 minutes before washing it off. You can also use this green tea mixture as an exfoliator. Gently massage it into your skin and wash it off with warm water.

Green Tea and Honey Mask

Empty out the contents of a green tea bag. Mix it with a pinch of turmeric powder, a drop or two of coconut milk, and a tablespoon of pure organic honey to keep it all together. Apply the mask to your face and leave it on for 20 minutes to half an hour. Make sure to wash it off thoroughly.

Green Tea and Baking Soda Mask

Combine one tablespoon of green tea with one tablespoon of baking soda and one tablespoon of maple syrup. Put the mixture on your face and leave it on for half an hour before washing it off. Make sure to apply more to acne-prone areas.

Matcha Mask

Matcha green tea is high in substances called catechins. Green tea catechins can help if you're trying to lose weight, and they can also normalize your blood pressure and protect the brain.

To make this antioxidant-rich facial mask, you'll need one tablespoon of organic matcha powder and some water to create a paste. You can also use a few drops of almond oil for extra hydration.

Stir all the ingredients in a bowl and carefully apply it on your face, avoiding the hairline and eye area. Let it sit for around 30 minutes, and then remove it using water or a soaked flannel.

You can also exfoliate the skin by gently massaging the mask while you're removing it. The matcha mask is amazing and quite the time-saver since you get two treatments out of it. Your skin will feel smoother and rejuvenated as a result.

You don't just have to make face masks. Why not make a green tea lotion or moisturizer?

These masks are appropriate for all skin types. They will calm down the redness, remove excess sebum and dead skin cells and treat bacteria. You'll be left with a brighter, clearer, more youthful-looking complexion.

Green Tea for Acne Scars

Acne isn't only problematic on its own - mistreatment of breakouts can lead to permanent acne scars. But can you use green tea for acne scars?

Scars are harder to treat than acne, and the treatment also takes longer to work. That's exactly why it's better to prevent them from happening in the first place. ECGC reduces inflammation in the body and has antibacterial properties, which can reduce the chances of future scarring.

Can it Provide Sun Protection?

Not only does excessive sun exposure lead to premature aging, but it also increases the risk of skin cancer. Additionally, it can also lead to hyperpigmentation, which is a result of UV rays. Since the skin builds up melanin in a certain area to protect against the damage done by UV rays, this can cause certain areas to become darker than the rest, leading to the appearance of dark spots.

Because we want to avoid all that, green tea is an excellent option if you want to protect your skin against the risky effects of sun exposure. Phenols, as we've already mentioned, are very potent in green tea, and they can help repair the damage caused by excessive sun exposure. Regular use of green tea can also protect against sunburn.

This isn't to say that it can replace sunscreen, though. Make sure you apply sunscreen 20 minutes before exposing your skin to the sun, so you can prevent damage.

Green Tea Doesn’t Work in Isolation

So, is green tea good for acne? Unfortunately, green tea, like every other acne solution, isn't a miracle worker. If you decide to use green tea for acne, it requires patience and persistence for you to notice an improvement in your skin tone.

More research is required so we can determine just how big of a role green tea has in keeping the skin clear. But one thing is for sure - green tea has many other benefits, too! So, unless you're pregnant or breastfeeding, chances are you will benefit from including more green tea in your diet or from trying out these natural home remedies.

So, even though drinking a few cups of green tea a day won't solve your acne problems immediately,  it does have positive effects in the long run, and you will likely benefit from those antioxidants in multiple ways. Of course, the best way to ensure that you're making the most out of green tea is to combine it with a well-planned skincare routine, a healthy diet, exercise, and a regular sleeping pattern.

Main Takeaway

Green tea has powerful ingredients that have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties valuable for the skin. So even though green tea on its own isn't very effective at treating acne, it has some beneficial properties that will help the skin's overall appearance.

Make sure you do a patch test before applying green tea to your face. Your body can always use a few extra antioxidants (or a little extra caffeine), so giving this alternative acne treatment a go should be a no-brainer!


How fast does green tea work on acne?

Like with most acne treatments, patience is a virtue. This study found a "significant reduction in sebum secretion after 60 days of a topical green tea emulsion."

That's right - you'll be waiting about two months before you see a significant difference.

How do I use green tea for pimples?

To get rid of pimples or control acne-prone skin, drink green tea or apply it topically.

  • You can make a green tea mask at home:
  • Mix one tablespoon of green tea with a few drops of water to create a paste.
  • Put the mixture on your skin and leave it on for 20 minutes
  • Gently massage it into your skin and wash it off


Green Tea and Other Tea Polyphenols

Oily Skin: A review of Treatment Options

The effects of green tea on acne vulgaris

Green Tea for Acne

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