Turmeric has been long used throughout Asian cultures for its boundless benefits, with a rich history throughout traditional Vietnamese medicine and cuisine and origins that date back to India. Treasured for its anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and gut health-boosting benefits, Turmeric also boasts beautifying properties—which is why it has been passed down for generations as a holistic skincare ingredient, too.
Julie Nguyen, founder of the sustainable, ready-to-eat meal service Methodology, shares her time-tested beauty tip for keeping her skin in check. The (holistic) secret to clarity, according to her mother.
Turmeric, inside and out. Here’s Julie’s recipe.
“As a teenager, I had really bad acne, so my Vietnamese mom taught me how they use turmeric for acne and acne scars in Vietnam. Turmeric powder can be mixed with just water or with rice water, which is the water that's created when we wash rice at home, which we made fresh every day. Just a teaspoon of turmeric powder mixed with enough water to make a paste is all that's needed. Put it on the pimple and let it dry there for about 20 minutes. Then, wash it off. Be really careful though! The first time I did this I stained my fingers and clothes. Also, the turmeric stains your face as well and is a bit challenging to scrub off. I used to have to use toner on a cotton swab to get it all off."
Now that I'm older and have learned a lot about food as medicine due to co-founding Methodology, I understand that this home remedy helped because turmeric is highly anti-inflammatory, and acne is often caused by excess inflammation. While turmeric can be applied directly to pimples, it can also be incorporated into one's diet to help prevent acne. I should point out, though, that for me personally, clearing up my adult acne for good required cutting dairy and gluten out of my diet and limiting eating meat to just a few times per month.”