Unexplained Acne

Unexplained Acne


As a seasoned esthetician, I’ve had the privilege of assisting numerous clients dealing with acne, which became my specialty. I vividly recall an encounter in 1982 with a client who presented severely infected nodules, resembling boils. Regrettably, all I could offer was the notion that the issue might be related to something within their bloodstream.

Over time, as I continued to attend to acne clients and encountered new clients with peculiar conditions, I began to discern a pattern among certain cases. There were individuals who couldn’t find relief through conventional acne treatments. The lesions on their skin differed significantly from typical acne resulting from congestion or blackheads. These cases indicated deeper underlying issues, rendering the attainment of positive outcomes considerably more challenging. What stood out was the persistent non-healing nature of these lesions, coupled with itching, soreness, hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation, and the appearance of acne in atypical areas such as eyelids, back of neck and ears. Many had already undergone one or more courses of antibiotics, spanning years, yet achieved no discernible improvement. In fact, it may have become worse.

The revelation of the specific type of acne came to light during a pivotal moment in 1984 with my long-term client, “Barbara.” After diligently visiting me monthly for two years, she walked into her appointment one day with remarkably flawless skin. Naturally, I couldn’t contain my curiosity and inquired about her transformation. Barbara shared that she had come across an article in a Good Housekeeping magazine that discussed the “yeast connection.” Intrigued by her unexpected results, I urged her to share more about her experience. As she recounted her treatment with a doctor, everything started to fall into place. It became evident that her blemishes were indeed a consequence of an imbalance in her gut flora, affecting her bloodstream. Barbara’s journey showcased a complete 180-degree turnaround from the previous month’s treatment, confirming the significance of addressing gut health in managing persistent acne. Read the complete story of Barbara here.

Acne vulgaris is a common skin condition that affects the face, neck, arms, back, and chest. It is characterized by inflammation of the hair follicles (most people call hair follicles pores) and can lead to scarring and dark spots. Factors contributing to acne include increased sebum production, imbalanced microbial flora in the hair follicles, faulty skin cell turnover, and inflammation caused by bacteria or fungi. Other factors such as hormones, genetics, stress, immune system, pregnancy, menstruation, hot weather, poor hygiene, cosmetics, and diet can also contribute to the development and severity of acne.


Treating acne with antibiotics can have drawbacks, including the potential for antibiotic resistance and disruption of the skin’s normal bacterial balance (the microbiome), which can allow yeast to grow. Candida, a type of yeast, can take advantage of these conditions and contribute to acne, as well as conditions like eczema, psoriasis, and atopic dermatitis.


Candida albicans, a type of yeast that commonly resides in the gut, can undergo morphogenic changes. When Candida albicans transitions from the gut into the tissues, it can lead to various infections and health issues. Candida is normally present in the gut microbiota in small amounts without causing harm. However, under certain circumstances, such as a weakened immune system or disruptions in the gut microbiome, Candida can overgrow and penetrate the intestinal lining, entering the bloodstream and potentially spreading to other parts of the body, including the skin.

The transition of Candida from the gut to the skin can occur through several mechanisms:

  1. Immune system impairment: When it is compromised, Candida can overcome the body’s defense mechanisms and establish infections.
  2. Disrupted gut microbiome: Factors such as antibiotic use, a poor diet, or stress can disrupt the gut microbiome and can lead to an overgrowth of Candida. This overgrowth can contribute to a condition called candida overgrowth syndrome. As the Candida population increases in the gut, the likelihood of it colonizing other parts of the body, including the skin, also rises.
  3. Skin microbiome imbalance: Disruptions in the skin microbiome, such as excessive use of antimicrobial products, taking antibiotics, hot showers, eating processed food, over exfoliating, over washing, oxidative stress, harsh cleansers, or prolonged moisture, can create an environment favorable for Candida colonization. If the skin’s natural defenses are compromised, Candida can take advantage and establish an infection.  
Jawline of Young Woman with Candida

Once Candida colonizes the skin, it can lead to various skin conditions, including cutaneous candidiasis. Symptoms may include redness, itching, rash, and sometimes the formation of pustules or blisters. In individuals with compromised immune systems or pre-existing skin conditions, Candida infections can become more severe and difficult to treat.

To prevent Candida overgrowth and colonization on the skin, it is important to maintain a healthy gut microbiome and support a balanced skin microbiome. This can be achieved by practicing good hygiene, avoiding excessive use of antimicrobial products, maintaining a nutritious diet, managing stress levels, and addressing any underlying health conditions that may contribute to immune system impairment or gut dysbiosis.

Candida removal is the logical first step toward effective intestinal cleansing. In cases where Candida infections occur, treatment may involve antifungal medications, both topical and oral, to eliminate the overgrowth and restore balance. Ironically, the same treatment used to address Candida overgrowth may cause conditions that welcome recurrence.

Antibiotics are currently the main therapeutic agents used in treatment of Candida overgrowth, however, recurrence of infection, side effects, and secondary infections are quite common. Therefore, the use of supplemental probiotics to replace or augment natural bacterial populations is gradually achieving acceptance.

I recommend that you consider natural alternatives before turning to traditional medications. Exploring natural remedies and approaches can often provide effective solutions for various conditions.


The skin microbiome, including the facial area, is an essential ecosystem of microorganisms that reside on the surface of our skin. It consists of a diverse array of bacteria, viruses, fungi, and other microorganisms. While the concept of having bacteria on our skin might sound unpleasant, the skin microbiome plays a crucial role in maintaining our skin health and overall well-being. Let’s discuss the importance of the skin microbiome, focusing on the facial area.

  1. Protection against pathogens: The skin microbiome acts as a protective barrier against harmful pathogens. It competes with potential pathogens for nutrients and space, making it difficult for them to establish an infection. Beneficial bacteria in the microbiome produce antimicrobial substances that inhibit the growth of harmful microorganisms, preventing skin infections.
  2. Maintaining skin barrier function: The skin barrier is the outermost layer of our skin, responsible for preventing water loss, protecting against environmental pollutants, and maintaining skin hydration. The skin microbiome contributes to the maintenance of this barrier function by regulating pH levels and producing lipids that help retain moisture, promoting healthy and well-hydrated skin.
  3. Immune system regulation: The skin microbiome interacts closely with our immune system. It helps educate and fine-tune the immune response, ensuring a balanced and appropriate reaction to different stimuli. An imbalance in the skin microbiome can lead to inflammatory skin conditions such as acne, eczema, and rosacea.
  4. Influence on skin appearance: The skin microbiome is also implicated in skin aesthetics. Studies have shown that a diverse and balanced skin microbiome is associated with healthier-looking skin. An imbalance or disruption in the microbiome can contribute to skin conditions like acne, inflammation, and premature aging. Explore our Microbiome Serum and Prebiotic Serum, along with our supplements and creams, specifically formulated to support skin clarity and balance.
  5. Response to external factors: The skin microbiome is responsive to changes in our environment and lifestyle. Factors such as diet, hygiene practices, cosmetics, and climate can affect the composition and diversity of the facial skin microbiome. Understanding these interactions can help us develop personalized skincare approaches that optimize skin health.

Given the importance of the skin microbiome, it is essential to adopt practices that promote its health. This includes gentle cleansing, avoiding harsh soaps or cleansers that can disrupt the microbiome, maintaining a balanced diet, and using skincare products that support a healthy skin environment.


More recently, in 2019, I had the privilege of meeting a client, whom we’ll call Wanda (not her real name). At the age of 42, Wanda shared with me her ongoing struggle with acne that had plagued her since she was just 12 years old. Throughout the years, she had tried numerous rounds of antibiotics, hoping for a solution. However, the moment Wanda arrived, it was evident that her chin was heavily affected by distinct types of lesions and inflammation.

Although she came seeking a facial, I knew that a facial would not address her specific concerns. Upon closer examination, I identified a yeast condition on her skin and advised her on the appropriate treatment. At the time, Wanda was under the care of a physician’s assistant who was considering evaluating her hormones. Recognizing the value of my proposed treatment plan, she decided to discuss it with her PA.

As it turned out, Wanda’s PA considered my suspicion that yeast might be the underlying issue. Following our discussion, the PA conducted some tests, which confirmed that yeast had indeed become an internal problem for Wanda, directly contributing to her skin issues. This validation further reinforced the importance of addressing the yeast condition as part of her treatment plan. Together, we had uncovered a crucial piece of the puzzle that would help Wanda achieve long-lasting results and restore the health of her skin.

One month later, Wanda’s skin had miraculously cleared up entirely. She expressed profound gratitude and continues to acknowledge the positive impact I had on her skin. It’s moments like these that remind me of the rewarding nature of my work and the difference it can make in people’s lives.

Over the years, I have acquired knowledge about a condition that contributes to acne development. This understanding has enabled me to provide support and guidance to my clients in achieving healthy skin. I have found that a combination of internally recommended systemic enzymes, probiotics, and prebiotics, along with the recent addition of prebiotics and probiotics specifically formulated for the skin, can yield faster and highly desired results when used concurrently. Treating both aspects simultaneously hold the potential for a quicker resolution of the condition, which is greatly sought after.

To support my clients’ gut health, I have taken the initiative to have prebiotics, probiotics, and systemic enzyme capsules specially blended. These products aim to provide beneficial support to their gut microbiome.

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