Article by Angela Haldane

Q. I have acne like a teenager's, and I'm 32. What can I do, apart from antibiotics and Roaccutane?

A. If your acne is localised on the jawline, and worsens before a menstrual period, I recommend you see a registered herbalist. A herb called Chaste Tree – Vitex agnus-castus balances the hormonal profile. It takes three to six months to correct the problem. There are prescribing rules for Chaste tree, so avoid purchasing without an appointment.

If your acne is more generally spread across the face, or chest and back, then I can recommend the Skin Tonic available on this website. These herbs are designed to act deeply on the skin and immune system.

A good 'practitioner range' of zinc and vitamin A supplement is worthwhile. These nutrients support the skin, minimise scarring and reduce the synthesis of testosterone, which can increase the oil production in the pores.

Reduce stress with exercise and time management. Eat big salads, fish and lean meat. Cold pressed oils are beneficial. Avoid trans fatty acids in baked goods, and margarines, as these can worsen acne.

Kiwiherb 'skin clear' is a good blemish gel sold nationwide.

Some people achieve great results for their acne with an allergy test – see more info under the 'about' section.