ayurvedic ways to treat acne

Ayurvedic Treatment: Indian Home Remedies for Acne

Increasing levels of pollution, erratic schedules, and unhealthy eating habits have given rise to a host of issues for us humans. And, as our skin functions as a mirror of our inner health, bad health does reflect out on our face. It is said that healthy and lustrous skin that is slightly oily indicates good immunity. Discoloured, dry, or inflamed skin signifies poor resistance to diseases.

Plasma is a pigment that the skin reflects. Ayurveda describes plasma as Rasa Dhatu. This is the first tissue produced from the food we digest, and it mirrors the overall nutrition and health.

These factors make it important for individuals to take good care of their skin ensuring lasting good health.

Acne is one of the most common skin diseases that is first indicated by the presence of pimples on the skin. To improve this condition, it is vital to first understand what acne is.

The sebaceous gland in the skin is responsible for the oily substance - sebum - which lubricates the skin. Acne is a condition that affects these oil glands and skin follicles.

These glands are concentrated towards the face, upper neck, and chest areas which are most affected by acne.

Like with other diseases, Ayurveda takes a holistic approach to treating Acne. It does not just treat the superficial symptoms but goes to the root and treats it there.


Heal Your Acne From The Inside-out With Ayurveda

Acne is an all too common yet unpredictable skin problem. The typical response that a person has to acne is despair at its unsightly appearance. The next response is to treat acne with topical ointments. Ayurveda looks at all health issues holistically. The whole body is involved in any manifestation of a health issue and Ayurveda treats it as such. So, instead of treating only the acne site, Ayurvedic treatment for acne goes right to the root cause of the problem. 

Ayurveda defines each human as a unique balance of the elements. The five elements or Pancha Maha Bhootas are earth, fire, water, air, and space. Each human body is composed of these elements in a unique balance. Ayurveda also defines three Doshas; Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Every person has these three factors in a unique balance too. The excess or deficiency of these Doshas causes different health issues. Ideally, a healthy person has these Doshas in balance. 

Another important factor that affects health according to Ayurveda is the Agni or digestive fire in a person. When digestion and metabolism are good, there is no metabolic waste generated. The metabolic waste formed when the Agni is weak is called Ama. This Ama penetrates all the Dhatus or tissues of the body. Rasa (plasma), Rakta (blood), Lasika (lymph), and Mamsa (muscle) Dhatus are all closely linked to skin issues. The more severe the problem the more Dhatus are involved. 

Ayurvedic doctors study the skin of a person in order to ascertain their health. When a person has all the Doshas in good balance and is healthy the skin will indicate it. A healthy person has a glow of good health on their skin. Similarly, the imbalance of the Doshas can also be studied by looking at the nature of the blemishes on the skin. These factors are then linked with the definition of the nature of each Dosha. 

Vata Dosha is a dry and airy Dosha and when it is imbalanced the skin may get dry and there is pain or prickling in any blemishes. Pitta is hot and fiery in nature. When acne is caused by Pitta it is visibly coppery and red in color. It is also oozing in severe cases. This red inflamed acne is one of the most common types of acne problems. Kapha is a cold and heavy Doshs that causes skin problems that are both itchy and oily. 

The metabolic waste Ama affecting the skin causes acne and skin discoloration. Ayurvedic medicine for pimples and marks helps treat the problem from within the body. Ayurveda recommends that a person keep the digestive fire at its optimum levels to support digestion. Food and diet habits to avoid the formation of Ama and balance the Doshas are essential to avoid inflammation and irritation of the skin. Ayurvedic medicine for pimples has essential herbal ingredients that aid in the detoxification of the body and removing Ama. Ayurvedic medicine for acne is to be taken internally as well as applied externally. Topically applied Ayurveda pimple treatment helps fight the inflammation and infection at the site and improve the appearance of the skin.

Ayurveda is an ancient medicine system of the Indian subcontinent. It is said to have originated in India about 5000 years back. The word Ayurveda is a conjugation of two Sanskrit words ‘ayu’, meaning 'life' and ‘veda’, meaning 'science', thus Ayurveda literally means the 'science of life'. Unlike other medicinal systems, Ayurveda focuses more on healthy living than the treatment of diseases. The main concept of Ayurveda is that it personalizes the healing process. We treat the individual and not the disease.

According to Ayurveda, the human being is composed of 4 Components - The Physical Body, The Meta Physical Mind, The 5 Sense organs and the Eternal Soul. The 5 Sense organs connect the Physical Body with Mind.

different components of humans


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What Makes Ayurveda unique?

  • It respects the uniqueness of the individual (Our Fingerprints are not same)

  • It considers all the levels of the individual – body, mind, and spirit.

  • It offers natural ways of promoting health.

  • It emphasizes prevention (True Prevention - Not Just Routine yearly tests)

  • It empowers everyone to take responsibility for their own well-being (We are what we eat)

  • It is time-tested (No change in our Concepts (or) Theory (or) Approach last 2000 years)


Pancha maha bhutas (5 Elements)

Modern Medicine is based on Physics, Chemistry, Botany and Zoology. Ayurveda is Based on Indian Sankhya Philosophy - the theory of Macrocosm and Microcosm. Man is the Epitome of the Greater Universe. According to Ayurveda all objects in the universe including “human body” are composed of five basic elements (Pancha maha bhutas) namely, Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space (Ether). We are a Small particle in this Universe. We are Microcosm in this Macrocosm of the Universe. 

There is a balanced condensation of these elements in different proportions to suit the needs and requirements of different structures and functions of the body Structures and its parts. The growth and development of the body Structures depends on its nutrition, i.e. on food. The food, in turn, is composed of the above five elements, which replenish (or) nourish the like elements of the body after the action of AGNI (Digestive Fire). The tissues (Dhatus) of the body are structural whereas humours are physiological entities, derived from different combinations and permutations of Pancha maha bhutas.

functional elements of the body


Dosha (Functional Element of the Body)

The three functional elements of the body are Vata, Pitta, and Kapha, which together regulate and control the catabolic and anabolic metabolism. Vata is made of Air & Space. Pitta - Fire + water. Kapha - Earth + Water. The main function of the three doshas is to carry the byproduct of digested foods throughout the body, which helps in building up the body tissues. Any imbalances in these doshas cause disease.


Dhatu (Structure of the Body) - 7 Dhatus

Dhatu can be defined as one, which supports the body (Structure). There are seven tissue systems in the body. They are as Rasa, Rakta, Mamsa, Meda, Asthi, Majja and Shukra which represent the plasma, blood, muscle, fat tissue, bone, bone marrow and semen respectively. Dhatus provide stability to the body and the main aim of Ayurveda is to nourish and protect the structural elements of the body.


Mala (waste material of the Body)

Mala means waste products.  It is third in the trinity of the body i.e. doshas and dhatu. There are three main types of malas, e.g. stool, urine and sweat. Malas are mainly the waste products of the body so their proper excretion from the body is essential to maintain the proper health of the individual. 


Agni (Digestive Fire)

All kinds of metabolic and digestive activity of the body takes place with the help of the biological fire of the body called Agni. Agni can be termed as the various enzymes present in the alimentary canal, liver and the tissue cells. Charaka (One of the Best Ayurveda Physician in Ancient Times) says “Kayo Agnihi”. Which means the Agni is their all over the Body. Even though the Jataragni is their in Kosta (Alimentary System), the Reflection of Agni is there all over the Human Body.


Health and Sickness

Health or sickness depends on the presence or absence of a balanced state of the total body matrix including the balance between its different constituents. Both the intrinsic and extrinsic factors can cause disturbance in the natural equilibrium giving rise to disease. This loss of equilibrium can happen by dietary indiscrimination, undesirable habits and non-observance of rules of healthy living. Seasonal abnormalities, improper exercise or erratic application of sense organs and incompatible actions of the body and mind can also result in creating disturbance of the existing normal balance. The treatment consists of restoring the balance of disturbed body-mind matrix through 2 kinds of Approach. 

  • Shamana (Correcting the Imbalances with Lifestyle changes, Diet and Herbs)

  • Shodhana (Cleansing Procedures) - If the Imbalances of 3 Doshas are Beyond the treatment with Herbs, then Pancha Karma procedure are required to Eliminate Toxins.



In Ayurveda, the diagnosis is always done of the patient as a whole. We understand the Body as a Single Unit. That's why we don't have any Confusion in Understanding and treating Many Chronic Diseases. The physician takes careful note of the patient's internal physiological characteristics and mental disposition. S/He also studies such other factors as the affected bodily tissues, humours, the site at which the disease is located, patient's resistance and vitality, his/her daily routine, dietary habits, the gravity of clinical conditions, condition of digestion and details of personal, social, economic and environmental situation of the patient. The diagnosis is done through 8 Methods - By asking questions, By Physical appearance, Pulse, Urine, Feces, Tongue, etc


Introduction to Acne

Acne can be highly stubborn and distressing. The pimples can not only be painful but also leave behind ugly scars. It is very important to make smart choices especially when Facial skin is concerned.

Ayurveda provides abundant holistic and natural ways to fight various skin problems and keep your skin healthy. The age-old methodologies of Ayurveda goes beyond conventional approaches to find an answer to the disorder and treat it away from its roots. 

Picture this. You are all excited for a party at the weekend, you have zeroed in your dress, you have decided how you are going to do your hair, and suddenly you spot a red bump on your left cheek. While you are just wondering you would cover it through your makeup, there's another nasty pimple-popping near your nose. Acne can be unpredictable and pretty annoying, but the truth is that it is one of the most common skin condition in adolescents across the globe. Acne is caused due to excess production of oil from the sebaceous glands leading to the blockage of hair follicles. Ayurveda has many several natural approaches that may help control acne. 

Acne is a skin condition in which there is excess production of Sebum (oil) from the sebaceous glands leading to the blockage of hair follicles. It is the most common problem of adolescents, and is therefore known as Yauvanapidika in Ayurveda; yauvan means ‘adolescence’ and pidika means ‘pustules or papules’. Acne usually affects the face, back and shoulders and other areas that are densely populated with sebaceous glands. Acne presents either as blackheads, whiteheads, pimples or nodules. Ayurveda provides effective root-cause Solutions to Acne and Most of the Skin Problems. 



The primary cause is impairment of Agni which leads to Imbalance of all the three doshas, predominantly the Pitta dosha, which further vitiates the rakta and meda dhatus (blood and fat tissues). Vitiated doshas produce toxins that block the Srotas (Microscopic channels) of the affected areas leading to pimple formation. The condition of acne can also be aggravated by excessive intake of oily, spicy, salty and sour foods, Constipation and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Even if the Scalp has more Oil and that can lead to Acne and Pimples. 


  • Whiteheads

  • Blackheads

  • Pimples


Treatment of Acne & Pimples

The first choice is to consult a qualified Ayurveda physician for better diagnosis and treatments. 

If you don't have access to an Ayurveda practitioner, Then you can try these home remedies and suggestions. 

Disclaimer - Results may vary due to Body Constitution, Climatic factors. Etc

To keep Acne at bay, one should adopt a pitta-pacifying diet. Those who see frequent outbreaks of acne, should avoid Oily, Spicy, Sour and fermented foods. Heavily fried, Cheesy and Gluey kind of foods should be avoided.


Diet & Lifestyle Advice
  • Avoid spicy, oily and sour foods

  • Eat more of fresh Fruits and Vegetables, unprocessed food

  • Increase the use of herbs that have cooling effects on the body like fennel, Black Grapes, Indian gooseberry (Amla), Guduchi (Tinospora Cordifolia) and Aloe vera

  • Increase intake of water to about 8-10 glasses per day

  • Manage Constipation well with Triphala Tablets or Isabgol 

  • Wash your face frequently with Soap Free Herbal Face washes

  • Avoid irritant cosmetics

  • Do not squeeze the acne lesions

  • Take (Virechana) Purgation once in 2-3 months to cleanse the Internal System with Supervision of an Ayurveda Physician


Here are some Ayurvedic home remedies that may help treat acne better:


Amla Juice (Indian Gooseberry)

Drink Amla juice everyday. Amla, or Indian gooseberry is Ayurveda's most prized possession when it comes to skin treatment. It is said that fresh amla juice contains 20 times as much VItamin-C as is present in orange juice. Vitamin-C is a natural antioxidant, which means that it protects you against the harmful effects of free radicals and prevents the formation of Acne.


Herbal Mixture

Make a powdered mixture of Coriander seeds, fennel, basil, Turmeric, and Amla in equal parts. All of these seeds and herbs are packed with antioxidants that kill inflammation beneath the skin. Take half teaspoon of this powder 15 minutes before lunch and dinner mixed with Lukewarm water. 


External Application of Herbal Mixture

Apply Mixture of Sandalwood paste, Turmeric with rosewater on affected Skin everyday. Leave it for 30mins and wash it off with coldwater. 


Basil or Tulsi

best herbs to treat acne

Tulsi is considered sacred in Ayurveda for its wonderful healing properties and is one of the best herbs to treat acne, pimples and blemishes naturally. Crush some fresh and clean tulsi leaves, take out its juice and massage it on your face. Let the face absorb the juice of 15-20 minutes and rinse off with clean water.


Amla or Indian Gooseberry

amla to treat acne

Amla is known as elixir for your skin and removes excess sebum, fights acne causing bacteria and prevents scare. Make a paste of amla and apply on your face. Wash it off after 15-20 minutes.



benefits of honey for treating acne and pimples

Honey is a miraculous natural ingredient with numerous benefits, and the treatment of acne and pimples is one of them. Apply a few drops of Pure Honey on the pimples or the scars and rinse off after 5-10 minutes. Repeat regularly for best results.



turmeric to prevent breakouts and pimples

Turmeric is an antibacterial and anti-fungal Ayurvedic remedy to prevent bacterial breakouts and pimples. It is also anti-allergic and cleanses toxins from the pores. Make a paste of turmeric powder with “Rosewater” and apply it on the skin. Once dry, rinse off and pat dry. You can replace Rosewater with honey for dry skin.


Neem Leaves

 Ayurvedic remedy for treating pimples

Neem leaves are the perfect and most popular Ayurvedic remedy for treating pimples. Apply neem paste (Rosewater) on the affected area, leave it on until dry, rinse with water and pat dry. Make neem leaf paste by boiling and crushing 10 Tender leaves.


Dry Grapes or Raisins

Raisins for Controlling Acne

Raisins are a very good Cooling agent and Blood Purifier. Take 30-40 small raisins, Soak it in water overnight. Crush it and take the Mixture in the Morning on empty stomach for 2-3 months regularly for Controlling Acne.



Ayurvedic remedy for acne

Triphala is a popular Ayurvedic remedy for skin. It balances the tridosha (Vata, Pitta and Kapha), detoxifies the whole body, fights against bad bacteria and helps in your Acne healing. Take 1 tsp. of triphala with hot water at Bedtime (or) on an empty stomach every morning.


White Gourd or Lauki

white gourd to  prevent pimples

Lauki juice is extremely beneficial as its high water content will keep body cool and skin healthy. It cleanses your body system within, prevents pimples and gives a smooth and beautiful skin. Take a lauki, pee of the outer skin, wash it thoroughly. Cut the lauki into small pieces and put it into the blender. Extract the juice, add a pinch of salt and drink it on an empty stomach in the Morning. 



Ayurvedic remedy for acne and pimples

Papaya is a great Ayurvedic remedy for acne and pimples. Wash your face, pat dry and apply papaya paste (with Water or Rose Water) on your face. Leave the mask on for 20 minutes and rinse off with warm water. Repeat daily.



If all of this feels a little confusing, take simple steps to cut out additives and preservatives first, so you’re eating foods that are as whole and natural as possible.

This will help keep the body calm and clean from the inside out. Always use Organic and Chemical Products at home. 

Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water, as well as getting sufficient rest too as stress is known to contribute to Acne in adults. Always wash your face with a Herbal face wash before going to sleep at night. It could be time to reconsider a regular meditation practice or reignite your interest in yoga.

Finally, as frustrating as it may be, remember that beauty comes from within and there is no need to feel anything less than fabulous. Don’t let acne knock your confidence.




1. How can I clear up acne fast? 

You can take Ayurvedic medicine for acne, which would help in unclogging pores and help in improving skin health. Unclogging pores is important because these pores release oil and sweat which is an important function of the skin. With clogged pores, this function gets obstructed causing the formation of blackheads, pimples, acne, etc. Using steam on your face can help in clearing these clogged pores.


2. Hormonal changes are one of the prime reasons and are prone to get acne easily.

 This can help clear up acne. If your acne is not clearing fast, then it is probably because of some common mistakes you are committing. These are the common mistakes to avoid when you have acne:

  • Do not wash your face more than twice a day. Frequent washing can worsen acne problems.
  • Do not touch, prick, or pop the acne/pimples. You are likely to worsen the problem.
  • Change your bedsheets and pillowcases twice a week or more. Also, wash your hankies and other things that touch your face. This will help reduce bacteria that can clog the skin pores.
  • Do not try too many acne remedies at a time. Stick to the remedy plan suggested by your Ayurvedic physician and allow it time to work.


3. What is the best treatment for acne?

Ayurveda offers the best and helpful treatment for acne. It does not rely on creams containing chemicals. Instead, it recommends the use of natural remedies that can be taken orally or applied to the face. It is important to drink plenty of water to keep the skin moisturized. Use herbal face washes instead of soap or try Kerala Ayurveda’s Neem, Basil, and Honey Soap that is helpful for acne-prone skin. Try to avoid spicy and oily foods as they can worsen acne. The holistic approach suggested by Ayurveda is helpful for acne.


4. Can acne really be cured?

Yes, it is possible to cure acne. What you need to do is follow the guidelines of your Ayurveda physician properly. You need to follow a multipronged approach to help mitigate acne. You need to modify your diet to minimize oily, sour, and spicy foods. You need to take care of your skin health by avoiding soaps and cosmetics that are harsh on the skin. Try home remedies listed in this article. Avoiding touching your face or washing your face regularly. Drink a lot of water every day so the skin is moisturized. When you follow all these and take the supplements suggested by your doctor, you are on the right path to help reduce acne.


5. What can I do to make my acne go away?

There are different ways you make your acne go away. Kumkumadi Oil can help you manage your acne problems. The product contains ingredients that help reduce acne and other blemishes. This Ayurvedic medicine for pimples can also help you improve your skin tone and complexion. You can massage a few drops of the oil on your face. Do not wash it off. Allow it to remain so that it can help manage acne and other skin problems.


6. What can clear up acne overnight?

You need to understand that acne doesn’t clear up overnight. It occurs due to problems with your skin. It is impossible to clear it overnight. However, you can try and help reduce acne early and improve your appearance in various ways. You can use a natural remedy like honey. Apply it to the affected area (1 or 2 drops). Allow it to remain through the night and then wash it off in the morning. It can help you provide results. You can also use Ayurvedic medicines for acne to help you in acne management.  

About Dr. Godwin

With over 16 years of experience, Dr. Godwin is one of the leading Ayurveda physicians in South India for chronic and serious diseases that have no treatment in western medicine. His expertise has greatly helped in the treatment of chronic and degenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, disc prolapse, disc bulge, chronic liver and kidney failure, paralysis, IBS, Crohn's disease, osteoarthritis, and cancer. Having worked in some of South India's top Ayurveda hospitals and wellness centers, Dr. Godwin has helped treat several esteemed dignitaries and celebrities over the years.