If you have struggled with acne you've likely heard of, considered, or taken Accutane. Perhaps you've wondered if there is a less harsh alternative to Accutane. From a medical perspective, the alternatives are quite limited. However, from a holistic perspective, there are some approaches that you may want to consider before trying something with more severe side effects.
Why you should exercise caution when considering Isotretinoin (Accutane):
Accutane, the brand name for isotretinoin, is a commonly prescribed oral drug used to treat severe acne that hasn’t resolved with other less aggressive treatments. Isotretinoin is a type of retinoid which is derived from vitamin A. It is thought to help reduce acne and breakouts by decreasing the amount of oil made by glands in your skin, reducing the amount of clogged pores and bacteria that can populate your pores and reducing inflammation in the skin.
Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin which means that excess amounts of it get stored in the fatty tissues of our bodies. When high doses of vitamin A - like isotretinoin - are consumed, it can cause dangerous, unappealing side effects.
Common side effects of isotretinoin use include:
- Dry skin
- Dry, chapped lips
- Dry eyes
- Dry nose and nosebleeds
- Increased photosensitivity in skin (sensitivity to sun)
More severe side effects of isotretinoin use include:
- Thinning hair
- Increased fat and cholesterol levels in blood
- Joint and muscle pain
- Broken bones
- Stunting of bone growth in teenagers
- Severe headaches, dizziness and blurred vision
- Seizure and stroke
- Skin rash, peeling and sores
- Permanent organ damage
- Hearing loss
- Vision problems
- Diabetes and blood sugar problems
- Decrease in red and/or white blood cells
- Suicidal thoughts
- Birth defects if taken during pregnancy or preconception
The side effects are pretty extensive, so we are here to educate you on why you may want to look to holistic whole food supplements as a first step.
An Alternative to Accutane That Actually Works
Maybe you’ve already taken Accutane, are currently taking it or are thinking about taking it. No matter what the case is, we’re here to help, not to judge! You have to take the right approach that feels good to you. With that said, there are many people out there who would like to manage their acne naturally - we’re guessing you may be one of them if you’re reading this. Implementing a more natural approach to healing your acne before trying Accutane may make a huge difference in your skin and wellbeing without any negative side effects, and if it doesn’t, at least you know you did everything you could before taking that next step. The thing is, finding the right natural protocol that actually works can feel incredibly daunting, overwhelming and lead to wasted time and money with little to no success. The struggle is real! This is exactly what Avalon (our Founder) experienced on her own journey to healing her acne without wanting to use Isotretinoin and suffer the extreme side effects it could cause. She set out to look for an alternative to Accutane and ended up healing and clearing up her skin. At this point you’re probably wondering what that alternative looked like and how you can give it a try. Read on to learn about Avalon’s 2-step protocol - addressing both internal and topical - that cleared up her acne without Accutane. This is also the point where we’ll mention that you should always speak to your doctor before starting any new supplements, especially if you are pregnant, have any health conditions or are on any medications.
Step 1 - The Internal Approach to Healing Inflamed Skin
After conducting much research and experimentation, Avalon turned her efforts toward healing her gut and supporting her microbiome with pre and probiotics. She also added in powerful antioxidant-rich and adaptogenic super berries to restore the gut-to-skin connection, protect the skin against oxidative damage and inflammation, and support her stressed-out skin internally. Finally, she started seeing results. Her skin cleared up, her inflammation went down and she also noticed other positive side effects like improved digestion and less bloating. She realized she had to share this protocol with other people struggling with acne and not having any success. This is what led to the creation of our Inner Beauty Restorative Powder.
How It Works:
Here’s how our Inner Beauty Restorative Powder works to heal your acne and give you clear, glowing radiant skin and a healthy, happy gut:
- Persistent, unexplained skin issues like acne are often connected to gut-related imbalances from a leaky gut.
- Everyday stressors such as coffee, alcohol, sugar, and stress can all lead to a disrupted gut flora (bacteria) that shows up on your skin.
- Inner Beauty restores the gut-to-skin connection with pre/probiotics while also supporting hormonal health with adaptogens (schisandra berry), and unique and powerful antioxidant-rich super berries that all work together to give you happy, healthy, beautiful skin.
Our Inner Beauty Restorative Powder is Designed to:
- Improve gut-health and digestion
- Restore your gut-to-skin connection
- Protect your skin against oxidative damage and inflammation
- Transform your stressed-out skin by restoring balance and enhancing resiliency
- Regenerate healthy skin cells helping you age much more gracefully
- Nourish your beauty from within for happy, healthy, beautiful skin
- Support your overall health and well being
The Powerhouse Ingredients that Work Synergistically To Heal Your Skin and Your Gut
AuraFloraSkin™ Probiotic Blend - Dose: 7.5 billion CFUWith direct links between gut- and skin- inflammation, our probiotic blend contains diverse strains of ‘good’ bacteria to ‘promote healthy gut flora,' support digestive health and combat effects of a 'leaky gut' with 7.5 billion CFU of the most studied strains of pre/probiotics.
Organic Pomegranate - Dose: 500mg, (10% Ellagic Acid, 20:1 extract, 6000mhg DHE)Pomegranate seeds are not only used extensively in the holistic science of Ayurveda to support overall health, but also contain an abundance of antioxidants and polyphenols that calm inflammation, reduce cellular damage, and rejuvenate skin.
Organic Mangosteen - Dose: 250mg, ORAC 450 umole TEMangosteen contains a rich supply of antioxidants and nutrients as well as a unique class of antioxidant compounds known as xanthones that reduce inflammation throughout the entire body. Natural antibacterial properties and antimicrobial compounds also soothe many common skin issues, like acne and dermatitis.
Schisandra Berry - Dose: 300mg (4:1 Extract, DHE 1,200mg)A unique adaptogen that is not a mushroom or a root, schisandra is a powerful berry that increases resistance to stress by restoring hormonal balance, enhancing resiliency and completely transforming skin.
Organic Camu-Camu - Dose: 500mg, Vitamin C 45mgCamu camu is a powerful antioxidant that is rich in Vitamin C supports the health of your skin by stimulating collagen production, calming inflammation, and promoting cellular regeneration.
Slippery Elm - Dose: 225mgThe inner bark of the slippery elm tree works as a mucilage to coat the digestive tract and reduce inflammation associated with gastrointestinal issues. It is also a prebiotic that supports digestive health by feeding the beneficial bacteria found within our AuraFloraSkin probiotic blend.
The comparable side effects, you may have mild gastrointestinal discomfort if you are sensitive to inulin (chicory root) or probiotics, but generally there are no side effects to this approach.
Omegas and Plant-Based Vitamin A
Incorporating essential fatty acids in your diet is an incredibly powerful way to reduce inflammation and speed up skin healing. Our Dew Drops are a powerful plant-based source of omega fatty acids, and Vitamin A. As we mentioned earlier, isotretinoin is a derivative of Vitamin A, so if you’d like to get natural, whole foods form of Vitamin A, our Dew Drops provide 85% of your daily Vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene, a natural and safe precursor to Vitamin A, that acts as an ingestible retinol that stimulates cell regeneration, helps maintain eyesight, membranes and immune function.
How It Works
Here’s how our Dew Drops - Omega Oil gives your skin added boost (note, you can take the Dew Drops internally and also use them topically on your skin):
Organic Seabuckthorn Fruit and Seed Oil - Dose: 500mg, Organic + Supercritical CO2Its highly-nutritious and medicinal profile contains over 190+ plant actives, including the full spectrum of omegas 3, 6, 7 and 9, has been traditionally used to soothe skin issues like dermatitis and acne, stimulate the digestive system and support overall health.
Organic Goji Seed Oil - Dose: 500mg, Organic + Supercritical CO2Naturally high in antioxidants, its therapeutic effects support immune function, calm energy and stamina from within, while topical benefits restore and protect skin
Organic Pomegranate Seed Oil - Dose: 275mg, Organic + Supercritical CO2As the only plant source that contains omega 5, one of the most powerful antioxidants for skin health and resiliency, it also provides a range of nutrients that benefit immune, hormonal, circulatory and metabolic systems.
Organic Chia Seed - Dose: 450mg, Organic + Supercritical CO2High in omegas 3 and 6, it promotes overall health, while it seals in moisture and relieves inflamed skin.
Organic Flax Seed - Dose: 350mg, Organic + Supercritical CO2High in omega 3, it supports overall health, helps improve skin smoothness and hydration, and soothes skin conditions like dermatitis.
In summary, acne can be complicated but this is how these internal ingredients help:
- Pre/probiotics – strengthen the gut wall, reduces permeability and gut-related skin inflammation
- Adaptogens (schisandra) – help balance your hormones if an hormonal imbalance is causing your skin to have breakouts
- Antioxidants – regenerating new skin cells and protecting against oxidative damage
- Omegas – fight bad oil with good oil, Omega 7 helps reduce skin inflammation and replace your skin with skin loving fats
- Beta-carotene – the natural precursor to Vitamin A and a safe alternative
Ready for Step 2 - our Topical Approach? Click here to read on.
Familydoctor.org. (2014, March). Acne: Isotretinoin
Isotretinoin and other retinoids during pregnancy. (2014, July)
Isotretinoin: Answers to questions patients often ask. (n.d.)
Medication guide: Absorica. (2014, August)