Chances are, you’re asking yourself right now what does sulfur have to do with acne? But the truth is, you probably already own some cosmetic or skincare products which contain sulfur inside. It’s a very popular ingredient often found in skincare, particularly for its benefits in regards to acne. But have you ever thought of using sulfur in isolation?
There are many ways in which you can incorporate sulfur in your skincare routine, ranging from face wash/soap, toners, and moisturizers or simply as a spot treatment. In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of this element in great depth as well as all the ways in which you can use it for treating acne.
There is some evidence to suggest that sulfur has been used in Ancient Egypt, Rome, and China. Romans would bathe themselves in water filled with, among other things, sulfur. This would calm down any skin irritations or inflammations that they might’ve experienced.
Experts claim that because it’s an element that’s easy to access, people have used it for all kinds of conditions – ranging from eczema to bad skin reactions. Some even claim that Europeans during the Renaissance period have used it in order to harmonize the “humours” in their bodies, back in the day where the theory of humours was the extent of medical knowledge.
Before we get to the good part though, it’s important to understand how sulfur works on the skin. if we’re talking about using sulfur as a direct spot treatment, it’s safe to say that it has a similar effect to other common skincare products such as salicylic acid, zinc or benzoyl peroxide, except sulfur is deemed as more gentle by skincare experts.
So, what exactly happens when you apply it on the skin in isolation? We all know by now that acne is caused by excessive oil production of the sebaceous glands. Sulfur effectively dries out the pimple and helps to remove any excess sebum that’s sitting on top of the skin. Sulfur also decreases the amount of acne-causing bacteria. An additional perk that sulfur has is its ability to remove any dead skin cells which contribute to acne and to unclog the pores. It’s often referred to as a keratolytic, meaning that when applied on the skin, it makes the top skin layer peel off. This means that it not only does it work on the pimple directly, but it also prevents future acne from appearing. Pretty cool, right?
Now let’s talk about where you can find sulfur in order to get these great benefits. There are many food sources which contain high amounts of sulfur such as:
The best way you can ensure that you’re getting enough sulfur through food is to increase your intake of the above-mentioned products. Supplementing is also an option if you’re looking for an easier and faster way to get more sulfur in your body.
The truth is, there is no direct correlation between eating high amounts of sulfur and positive effects on skin conditions such as acne. But that doesn’t mean that a high sulfur intake can’t indirectly contribute to reducing the appearance of your acne.
Some studies claim that dietary sulfur can impact mental health conditions like depression. In addition, it can help treat allergies, injuries and bladder disorders. So, there’s no harm in trying it. But you should remember that increasing your sulfur intake dramatically might not be the best idea if you suffer from any of these health conditions which were mentioned above. Always talk to your doctor about any changes that you might want to make in terms of sulfur intake.
Since we’ve mentioned how it can effectively improve the appearance of pimples, it’s safe to conclude that it works great on acne-prone skin types, particularly people who suffer from whiteheads and blackheads. For more serious cases of acne, you would probably need to go to a dermatologist in order to get a well-rounded treatment. On top of that, because it’s very gentle on the skin, it’s appropriate for sensitive skin types.
Because of its ability to combat excessive oil production, oily skin types could really see improvements if they incorporate sulfur in their skincare routines.
It seems that people with dry skin types are the only ones who should be wary of using sulfur regularly since it might cause some dryness and irritation. If you want to prevent this, a very easy thing you could do is invest in a good quality moisturizer so you can apply it in conjunction with the sulfur treatment.
Experts on the subject have known about the benefits of using sulfur for a while now, which is why they insist on adding it in so many skincare products. Well, a sulfur soap is no exception. What exactly is sulfur soap made out of and how does it differ from regular face soaps?
The content of sulfur in the soap version is around 10 percent. Some natural fragrance has to be on the ingredient list though, because if you remember any experiments you might have done in school, then you might remember the horrendous smell of sulfur. Usually, fragrances of this kind don’t cause any irritation, since they’re from a natural origin.
The main goal of this soap is to exfoliate the skin gently, causing it to peel a little. This is already starting to sound like a nightmare situation if you have dry skin, and you are right. It’s not the best idea to use this soap if you suffer from any sort of dryness.
On the other hand, if your skin is on the oilier side, by using this product your inflammation will decrease and the acne will shrink in size and redness.
In addition, it also has antibacterial and antiseptic benefits. It’s known to help with certain skin conditions such as rosacea, scabies and seborrheic dermatitis.
If you have oily or acne-prone skin, you should definitely give sulfur soap a go!
There aren’t many side effects of using the soap topically on the skin. the most common side effects include redness, itching, irritation, a burning sensation or skin peeling. if you do experience any of these, try to moisturize more often or switch the brand of moisturizer you’re currently using. And if that doesn’t help, then stop using the soap and switch to something else.
Nowadays, there are so many skincare products which contain a decent percentage of sulfur in them on the market. You can find anything from face washes to moisturizers and masks. When it comes to spot treatments, the process is pretty straight forward. Wash your face as you would regularly and apply a generous layer of your favorite nighttime moisturizer. Then, simply take a cotton ball and dip it in a sulfur-infused spot treatment. Apply it directly on the acne you want to treat and let it sit overnight. When you get up in the morning, wash your face with warm water and then you’ll be good to go. If the pimple is stubborn, repeat this process the following night.
Everyone who has a history of acne can relate to the problem of treating acne scars once the acne is gone. It’s a rather difficult skin condition to deal with, and it leaves many people frustrated. But don’t despair, because sulfur might also help to get rid of acne scars.
How does it work exactly? As we’ve discussed before, applying sulfur directly on the skin can help you get rid of dead skin cells. And since by doing this you shed off the top layers of the skin, acne scars can be reduced to a great extent.
However, due to its gentle nature, it shouldn’t be something you completely rely on for your acne scars treatment. When it comes down to it, you need to decide what’s most important for you. Do you need a faster and easier treatment for your acne scars? Well, you might want to think about not only incorporating sulfur in your skincare routine but also doing some more abrasive treatments, such as using Retin A products, doing chemical peels or microdermabrasion. The right treatment option is out there somewhere, you just need to be persistent in order to find it.
We all want a quick cure when it comes to acne. And this is understandable if you take into account the incredible burden that acne is, physically, psychologically, and economically. It’s incredibly frustrating if you’re persistent with the acne treatment and it doesn’t produce any results. You always have a feeling that you’re wasting precious time, and unfortunately, that’s true in some cases.
Sulfur is a kind of treatment that takes longer to produce any fruitful results, just like any other acne treatment. Due to its gentle nature, for some people, it might even take longer to work than more conventional acne treatments. If you’re only using sulfur as a spot treatment and the rest of your skincare isn’t really meant to treat acne, then you might want to reconsider changing your skincare routine. You could also include some more abrasive treatment options such as peels, lasers, or in some cases when the acne is really severe - even oral medication.
Just make sure you’re not using sulfur in obscene amounts, or applying it on your skin every hour or so. Using it more frequently will not produce any positive effects, it will probably just dry out and irritate your skin, causing you a delay in the treatment process.
There are a few side effects which might occur if you’re starting to use sulfur on the skin. Don’t be alarmed, since these are fairly common and pretty harmless. These side effects include dry skin, peeling, irritation, itching, and redness. Your skin might need some getting used to the sulfur, so if these do happen at the beginning of your treatment, don’t stop using them. Be patient and let your skin adjust to them effectively. Once those few initial weeks are over, chances are your skin will calm down and start benefiting from the regular usage of sulfur and your acne will start to reduce in size and redness.
What you could also do if you have sensitive skin is to start adding it in your routine gradually. So, if you’re using a spot treatment, then maybe add it on your pimples every two or three days. If you’re using a sulfur-infused face mask, then you might want to consider starting with applying it once a week and leaving it on for a short amount of time, and you can build up from there.
Another thing to consider is doing a patch test before you apply sulfur on your skin. Simply put the sulfur product on a pimple or two and see how your skin reacts to it. You should repeat this for a couple of days since your skin won’t show signs of improvement right away, but it won’t show any signs of irritation immediately after applying it either.
Some people find the smell of sulfur quite nauseating and disgusting. The closest description is that it smells of rotten eggs. This can be a problem for some, although modern medicine and skincare have improved to such an extent that the smell will probably not be traceable to anyone who uses a store-bought skincare product. The potent smell usually comes with using pure sulfur, which people often do as a spot treatment.
If you’re the type of person who hasn’t had that much luck with conventional skincare products, then you should think about incorporating something like sulfur in your regular skincare routine. In most cases, it won’t do any harm if used in moderate amounts, so there’s nothing to lose if you try it out.
If you have severe acne that’s disrupting the quality of your life daily, then you should consider visiting a dermatologist who will put you on a more rigorous skincare regime and possibly include harsher acne treatments that will produce faster results.
The most important thing with any acne treatment is to be patient and consistent with it.
This information is meant to supplement, not replace advice from your doctor or healthcare provider and is not meant to cover all possible uses, precautions, interactions or adverse effects. This information may not fit your specific health circumstances, and its goal is to offer a general view of the subject. In case you are suffering from a severe case of acne, you should consult with a dermatologist or a certified medical professional.