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how to use turmeric for acne

Turmeric not only gives dishes a special taste and color, but also has healing properties. The medicinal properties of turmeric are mainly due to a polyphenol and a powerful antioxidant called curcumin, which can help manage many inflammatory conditions, including acne. Turmeric has a therapeutic effect on your skin, whether it is taken orally or applied topically. In this article, we discussed the benefits of turmeric for your skin health and how you can use it for acne and pimples.

Side effects of using turmeric for acne

It inhibits acne causing bacteria

Curcumin has antibacterial properties. In a test-tube study done on pig skin, curcumin (along with lauric acid) was found to inhibit the growth of P. acnes, the bacteria that causes inflammatory acne.

It can reduce inflammation

Curcumin has anti-inflammatory properties. Research shows that when taken orally or applied, curcumin can help reduce inflammatory acne and other types of inflammation to keep your skin healthy.

Turmeric May Help Improve Dark Spots Caused by Acne

A study found that a cream containing turmeric extracts helped improve hyperpigmentation. Hence, it can help in the disappearance of dark spots left behind by stubborn acne. However, there are no studies evaluating the effect of curcumin on acne scars.

Turmeric also has other health and skin benefits, such as:

  • It slows down aging by delaying the onset of age-related health problems by suppressing inflammation caused by NF-kappab (a protein complex that promotes immunity and inflammation).
  • It prevents skin damage caused by UV radiation. A study in hairless mice showed that turmeric extracts can prevent wrinkles and loss of elasticity caused by UVB exposure and improve skin thickness.

Now that you know how turmeric can treat acne and keep your skin healthy, scroll down to find out how to use turmeric to treat acne.

How to use turmeric for acne and pimples?

Turmeric and honey

Test-tube studies have shown that honey can inhibit the growth of Propionibacterium acnes and S. aureus. Along with turmeric, honey can help kill acne bacteria.


  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon raw honey


  • Mix honey and turmeric to make a thick paste.
  • Use this paste as a spot treatment or apply it all over your face (increase amount accordingly).
  • Leave it on for 10-12 minutes.
  • Wash off with water.

Do this once a day.

Turmeric and yogurt

Yogurt may not help kill acne causing bacteria, but it does contain lactic acid. It can have a mild exfoliating effect on your skin, and together with turmeric, this can speed up healing.

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  • 2 tablespoons of yogurt (cottage cheese)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric


  • Mix turmeric well with yogurt and apply the mixture on the affected area.
  • Wash off after 15 minutes.

Use three to four times a week.

Aloe Vera and Turmeric

Aloe vera can help heal acne faster. This combination can promote healing and keep your skin healthy.


  • 2 tablespoons of aloe vera gel
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric


  • Remove fresh aloe vera gel from the center of the aloe vera leaf.
  • Add turmeric powder to this gel and mix well.
  • Apply the mixture on the acne affected area and leave it on for 10 minutes.
  • Wash off with plain water.

You can repeat this every day or every alternate day.

Turmeric and baking soda

It is not recommended to apply baking soda to the face or skin. In addition, there are no studies suggesting its effectiveness for acne. However, it is a widely used remedy. Anecdotal evidence claims that baking soda can dry out pimples and help them heal.


  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • pinch of baking soda
  • Water (for making pasta)


  • Mix baking soda, turmeric powder and water to make a paste.
  • Use the Q-tip to apply the mixture on the pimples (as a spot treatment).
  • Leave to dry and then rinse.

Do this no more than twice a week.

Lemon and turmeric

Lemon is claimed to have an astringent effect on the skin, which can help dry up blackheads. Because lemon juice can be harsh on the skin, avoid using it undiluted. It also makes the skin photosensitive, so make sure you apply sunscreen before you go out.


  • 1 st. l. lemon juice (dilute it with a tablespoon of water)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric


  • Mix the ingredients and apply the mixture on the affected area.
  • Keep it on for 10-12 minutes and then wash it off.

Do this once a day for best results.

Besan and turmeric

Besan or grams of flour helps to cleanse and exfoliate the skin. It helps reduce excess sebum and is considered a good option for treating acne and pimples.


  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons besan (gram flour)
  • 2-3 teaspoons rose water or yogurt


  • Mix turmeric, gram flour and rose water well until you get a thick paste.
  • Apply the paste on a clean face.
  • Leave on for 15-20 minutes and rinse.

Repeat this exercise twice a week.

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Sandalwood and Turmeric

A mixture of sandalwood oil and salicylic acid was found to improve acne in mice. However, more research is needed to conclude that sandalwood is effective in treating acne.


  • 2 tablespoons sandalwood powder or 2-3 drops sandalwood oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • Pink water


  • Mix sandalwood powder, turmeric and rose water in a bowl.
  • Apply the paste on your pimples.
  • Leave it on for about 15-20 minutes and then wash off with warm water.

Use this acne mask twice a week.

Milk and turmeric

Milk contains lactic acid, which has a mild exfoliating effect. This mixture can keep your skin free of acne and make it soft.


  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 tbsp. l. milk
  • Cotton swab


  • Mix turmeric with milk and apply it on the affected area with a cotton swab.
  • Leave on for 10 minutes and then rinse off.

Use this mask every day.

Neem leaves and turmeric

Neem leaves have antibacterial activity against P. acnes and can help you deal with acne.


  • 10-12 neem leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric


  • Boil neem leaves and grind them.
  • Add turmeric powder to this paste and mix well.
  • Apply the mixture on the pimples and let the mask dry naturally for about 10 minutes.
  • Rinse with cool…

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