Over the years, there have been long periods of time when I felt like my acne was totally under control. But every once in a while, it would flare up again. In the winter of 2019–2020, my skin started acting up. It had been nearly a year since I had a major breakout, so naturally, I was feeling pretty discouraged.
I was also pretty short on cash at the time. I was saving up to move in with my boyfriend. Between getting a security deposit together, paying off my student loans, and doing some holiday shopping for my friends and family, I couldn’t afford expensive skincare products to solve the issue.
I was searching for a cheap solution, but none of my drugstore skincare products were doing the trick. Trying to treat deep, cystic acne with topical products just wasn’t working. Instead, my face just started looking dry and flakey. But one day, I came across a potential fix on a skincare forum. A few people were commenting about how they had successfully cleared their cystic, hormonal acne just by drinking spearmint tea. I figured that it couldn’t hurt, so a couple of days later, I drove to the nearest grocery store and picked up a few boxes.
After a couple of weeks of drinking two mugs of spearmint tea per day, my face was looking so much clearer. I was genuinely shocked. My sisters noticed the positive change, so I knew it wasn’t just wishful thinking. There was something about spearmint tea that helped clear up my bad breakout. I recommended it to a few other people who were struggling with similar acne issues. They all noted that they saw a difference, too. None of us could really explain why it worked, but the results didn’t lie!
Lately, I’ve found myself boiling water for spearmint tea again. Although my experience with my state’s stay-at-home order has been fairly mundane, the stress of being isolated in a small apartment for about two months has definitely started to get under my skin—literally. But once again, spearmint tea is keeping my stress-induced breakouts under control. After seeing successful results again, I decided to find out why this surprising acne remedy works so well.
As it turns out, spearmint tea contains a perfect cocktail of acne-killing ingredients. It’s full of flavonoids, menthol, limonene, and rosmarinic acids, and these compounds are anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal. But spearmint tea is particularly effective against hormonal acne because it reduces your androgen levels. This hormone can cause serious breakouts for women when your levels are too elevated. Basically, spearmint tea helps get your hormones back into balance and corrects the internal issues that promote acne, while simultaneously killing off the bacteria that causes acne on your skin.
So, how much spearmint tea do you need to drink to see results? Two cups a day should do the trick—but you won’t see results overnight. Studies indicate that you should see a significant improvement after three months. But ideally, you’ll notice a reduction in breakouts before that point. For me, it generally takes a couple of weeks of consistent use to see a change. There are also spearmint supplements on the market that you can take if you’re not a big tea drinker. I recommend sitting down with a mug of Traditional Medicinals organic spearmint—it can become a relaxing ritual in your daily routine.
However, it is important to note that since spearmint does affect your hormones, you may not want to dive right in and start drinking several cups a day, especially if you’ve ever noticed that your cycle is sensitive to changes in your diet. You can start with a few cups a week and work your way up, as long as you don’t notice any odd side effects. Personally, I never experienced any negative side effects from drinking spearmint tea.
Want to make sure that you’re getting the freshest spearmint available? Spearmint is very easy to grow, so you could plant some seeds or purchase a starter plant from a garden center! I recently purchased my own spearmint plant because they grow so quickly. If you’re going to grow spearmint on your own, you’re better off planting it in a pot rather than in your garden. These plants grow quite fast, and you can easily end up with spearmint tendrils taking over your garden.
No matter how you’d prefer to enjoy your spearmint, chances are you’ll see some positive effects. Brew yourself a mug, curl up with a good book, and enjoy!
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