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Antibiotics for Clear Skin? I Think Not….

Antibiotics for acne

So often I hear from people wanting to clear their skin.  The products aren’t working and it’s time to call the dermatologist.  Let me start by saying, I feel your pain-I get it.  I had acne in my teens.  The dermo. put me on antibiotics and Retin-A and sent me on my way.  Little did I know I had just stepped on a train I couldn’t get off of for years and years.  While the round of antibiotics was only a few months, my stomach issues and skin problems plagued me for years.  You name it, my stomach felt it at one point or another.  The acne cleared only mildly and after about a month of getting off the antibiotics, those zits starting rearing their ugly heads once again.  As a young girl obsessed with being beautiful, dealing with acne was heart breaking.  Dealing with gut issues added to the immense stress I was under just being a teen.  Hind sight is 20/20, huh?

Let me be straight-Antibiotics clear skin.  They do.  The remedy is short lived though.  Little do dermatologist tell you about the side effects this drug will have.  I hate to play this card but antibiotics are a multi-billion dollar business.  Natural remedies like prescribing a diet of vegetables and probiotics are not.  You do the math…. Doctors sure have.

I believe healthy, clear skin begins in the gut.

Yes, the gut! The stomach contains more bacteria then cells in our entire body-this might sound like a bad thing, but when there is a balance of good bacteria and bad bacteria, all is well in the body.  Our gut needs bacteria to carry out the functions needed to absorb nutrients and keep things moving, if you know what I mean….

When you take antibiotics, they kill all the bacteria in the gut in order to fight infection.  When all bacteria is gone, the gut can not function properly.  This is why you get stomach issues when put on a round of antibiotics.  Slowly the body will replenish the bacteria, but in some cases this can take years.

Antibioitics lead to an over growth of Candida, or more commonly known as yeast.  Yeast is a fungal issue.  I believe fungus is one of the biggest causes of acne.  Bad bacteria can cause a yeast overgrowth.  It can also cause damage to the gut wall and lead to leaky gut syndrome.  This condition causes small gaps to open between cells in the intestinal barrier. Through these small gaps bacterial toxins and other inflammatory substances can “leak” into the bloodstream.  Uh, no thanks!

Skin Clearing Antibiotics for acne

What Antibiotics Do To You and Your Gut:

  • Rids your gut of good bacteria
  • Causes Inflammation-Inflammation is one of the leading causes of disease and premature aging in the body.
  • Leaves you vulnerable to depression-There are many cases that link depression and gut issues.
  • Causes nutrient deficiencies.
  • Causes gas, bloating and constipation/diarrhea-cha, cha, cha.
  • Exacerbates food allergies.

Other causes of an unhappy gut

  • Ill management of stress
  • Sleep issues
  • Unbalanced stomach pH
  • Eating processed foods
  • Lack of fiber

PLEASE, think twice before heading to the dermatologist to treat your skin.  It may be a quick fix but the after math is mind blowing.  There are a few things you should do instead.  These might not be quick fixes, but they will help long term.  A healthy lifestyle is something to constantly strive to reach.  Changing some bad habits and starting some good habits can make all the difference in your skin!

Good Habits for Clear Skin:

  1. Take a probiotic daily-this little supplement will help increase the good bacteria in your gut.
  2. Eat lots of YOGURT!  Go for organic, and make sure it states that it contains live cultures.  This is another way to increase good bacteria.
  3. Drink tons of water.
  4. Eat your fiber.  Women should get about 25 grams of fiber a day-YIKES!  Go for beans, veggies and limit your whole grains.  I take psyllium capsules daily to increase my fiber.  Psyllium is like a broom sweeping and cleaning out your intestines!  Prunes are also a good idea.
  5. Steer clear of processed foods.  I’m talking microwave dinners, box dinners, sugary drinks, sugary snacks etc.  Basically, make it a habit to shop on the outside corners of the grocery store.  The inside aisles are mostly processed foods.
  6. Watch your salt intake.  Too much salt triggers your body to retain water.  For me, this throws me off in every way.  The more bloated I feel, the more frustrated I get which leads to bad food choices.

The bottom line is-skip the antibiotics!  It is not the cure you are being told it is.  There are very few quick fixes with skin problems.  Using good products that will calm the skin is very beneficial-Try an Anti Acne Toner with apple cider vinegar and French Green Clay should be your new bestie!   Look into Melaleuca Oil (tea Tree) for applying directly to blemishes.  Lavender essential oil is anti fungal-anything that says “anti-fungal” is probably a good thing!

Take control of your own health-No one is going to do it for you.  While you might be prone to acne more then most, you can take charge of it by changing aspects of your lifestyle.  On the positive side, your skin issues are going to cause you to live a healthy lifestyle which will reward you for the rest of your life!   My hope is that you can enjoy your journey towards healthy habits, knowing you value yourself enough to do the right thing by your body.


  1. Cristina says:

    Hello Jenni, I just wanted to let you know that I have been using the apple cider toner with the skin clearing serum and it has been working wonders for me! The only thing is that I am still using a neutrogena acne scrub as a cleanser. What would you suggest as a cleanser? I thought about oil cleansing but someone told me I couldnt use a toner if I did so and I really like using the toner. Also, I am 27 years old and as I am getting older I am noticing I am getting alot of freckles. I have been trying my best to use sunscreen and sunglasses but I would really like to fade the ones that I have. I was thinking about getting a vi peel to fade them, what do you think about chemical peels such as this one?

    • Hi Cristina! I’m so glad you like the toner! You can absolutely use it with oil cleansing. I only oil cleanse at night and I don’t use my toner but only because I’m so dry. I would try whipping 4 ounces of coconut oil, add about 1 ounce of Castor oil and oil cleanse nightly! Have you looked into Vitamin C? It’s great for lightening sun spots. Sun spots really start to show up at your age. You are very smart to be aware of that and protect your skin. You will reap benefits the older you get! I have never had a vi peel but I’m looking into one. I’ve heard it is very gentle but the results are amazing. Hope this helps!

  2. Kristin says:

    Hi Christina! I just found your website through Pinterest. I’m an esthetician myself and I’ve been looking into more natural skin care. I just turned 30 and for the first time in life I’ve been experiencing cystic acne :(. I’ve been doing some research and I’ve read a few places that dairy is usually the #1 culprit for cystic acne. What are your thoughts on that? You recommend eating yogurt, so that counteracts those claims.

    • Kristin says:

      I meant Jenni, not Christina, sorry.

    • Kristin-I have always heard that dairy is the first thing to eliminate when acne is an issue. I don’t have an issue with dairy. I have been reading a lot about stomach issues, i.e. IBS and celiac disease. Again, dairy is always eliminated. So many skin issues stem from these to stomach issues due to toxins in the system usually from constipation. There is just so much to consider with our diet and I believe good skin has a lot to do with what we are eating! Everyone is so different that you just have to start eliminating foods. Go HERE if you want to read a really interesting blog about stomach issues that have been relieved and skin issues connected to those stomach issues. I love this blog-I even bought her book-So interesting.

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