A Naturopath’s Guide to Skincare For Teenagers

Have a teen asking about skincare, or know someone who does?

We were all teens once, so I understand the pressure teens feel to use the latest beauty products just because their friends and favorite influencers are using them! Couple this with changing hormones and skin that is more susceptible to acne and oiliness, and the pressure becomes ten-fold.

The thing is, teen skin is extremely susceptible to damage and many ingredients used in skincare made for adults (such as retinol, peels, and acids) could be causing more harm than good!

Below you’ll find my Naturopathic advice on tackling skincare for teenagers, which will keep their skin looking healthy and radiant from the inside and out, and set them up with good skin habits for their twenties and beyond!


1. Educate!

The best way of helping teenagers with their skin concerns is educating them. Many are jumping on Tiktok trends for skincare which is highly “active” and not designed for teenage skin which has a high skin cell turnover and is not in need of “anti-ageing” formulas such as retinols and acids which strip their delicate acid mantle.


2. Keep it Simple

In order for the protective layer of teen skin to be preserved and nourished, teenagers need to be keeping it simple. The first change I recommend they make is to look at how many products they are using. Using a cleanser and lotion is all that is really needed. In terms of their cleanser, I recommend avoiding anything that foams, avoiding detergents like sodium lauryl sulfate, emulsifiers such as diethanolamine (DEA), triethanolamine (TEA), MEA, and harsh scrubs. Opt for gentle cleaners which are non-foaming like the Edible Beauty No.1 Belle Frais Cleansing Milk.


Looking at the pH of their skincare formulas is also important; this helps to avoid anything overly alkaline, matching the pH of their skin around the 5.3 to 5.5 mark. In terms of a moisturizer, not being afraid of oils but using carefully formulated moisturizers that avoid synthetic fragrances and are designed to be absorbed and not sit on the skin. If they are suffering from acne, using herbal antimicrobials – I love turmeric, proven to eliminate P. acnes, acne-causing bacteria from the skin microbiome. Try our Turmeric Brightening Serum for natural zit-zapping action!


3. Increase Nutrient Intake

Our soil is depleted and we are not absorbing critical nutrients such as Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin E, and Vitamin D which are all critical for hormone health, balancing sebum production, immune health, and skin cell healing. I love recommending that teens incorporate the Edible Beauty Native Collagen Powder into their smoothies or breakfast. This powder contains 4x the RDI of Vitamin C. My other favorite supplements include zinc picolinate and vitamin E applied and also ingested.


4. Increase Fiber Intake

Many of our teens have sluggish digestive systems and many skin issues are easily addressed by increasing fiber. My favourite fiber-rich food to recommend are flaxseeds, raspberries, oats, and kiwi fruits. Get them onto a glow smoothie with these ingredients plus healthy fats such as avocado and flaxseed oil. I always recommend our Edible Beauty Skin+Gut Renew for more serious gut health issues.


5. Address Lifestyle Factors that are Increasing Cortisol

I always recommend my younger (and more mature) clients incorporate meditation, exercise, and sunshine. I love essential oils such as lavender and rosemary and Epsom salt baths to also assist.


6. Heal the Gut

For more serious cases of acne, I will recommend my patients have gut microbiome mapping tests and we normally use herbal antimicrobials along with liver detoxifying herbs and hormone balancing herbs to reduce inflammation, balance hormones and improve detoxification pathways, all which assist in reducing acne flare-ups.


7. Avoid These Harsh Ingredients, Which Damage Teens' Precious Acid Mantle

  • 1,4 Dioxane
  • BHT & BHA
  • Ethanolamines (TEA, MEA, DEA, etc.)
  • Formaldehyde
  • Formaldehyde releasers (Bronopol, DMDM hydantoin, diazolidinylurea, imidazolidinylurea, and quaternium-15)
  • Hydroquinone
  • Oxybenzone
  • Octinoxate
  • Parabens (Butyl, propyl, and ethyl parabens)
  • Petrolatum/Mineral Oil
  • PFAs and PFCs
  • Phthalates
  • Polyethylene glycol (PEGs)
  • Resorcinol
  • Siloxanes
  • Sulfates
  • Triclocarban

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