I have a pimple. It’s on the right side of my chin.
It’s always on the right side of my chin.
I’ve had this pimple off and on for the last 20 years, and I’m sick of it. Why does it keep popping up in the exact same spot, over and over again?
Well, according to the concept of face mapping, it has a lot to do with my hormone levels.
Face mapping is a practice derived from Ayurveda teachings and Chinese medicine. It takes the location of the blemishes on your face as a roadmap to what’s going on inside your body and how to fix it.
Basically, breakouts on certain areas of your face tell you where the bigger issues are. And once you know that, you’ll have a better idea of how to prevent future breakouts (as well as, you know, being generally healthy).
According to skin coach and aesthetician Hayley Roy, and holistic nutritionist and health coach Tara Curran, there are three main reasons we breakout. But as they explain to Well + Good, face mapping will help you figure out how to fix them.
Smog affects more than just your lungs. Environmental stressors can show up on your face as well.
Environmental toxins can cause breakouts in the area between and around your eyes, on your temples, and on the apples of your cheeks crossing over the bridge of your nose.
Face mapping says these breakouts are your body’s way of telling you there’s too much stress on your liver (temple), there’s an imbalance in your kidneys or thyroid (eye area), or there is too much pressure on your vascular system (cheeks).
You can’t do anything about the smog, but you can protect your skin and help to heal any issues in your body.
Fix: Roy recommends using topical products with vitamin E, Zinc, aloe vera, and rose oil.
Curran recommends eating less acidic foods, and more healthy fats and omega-3s.
This is where the little friend on my chin comes in.
Hormonal acne that pops up between your eyebrows, on your temples, and around your eyes can signal stress on your liver. But type that shows up so often around your mouth and on your chin could mean an imbalance in your colon.
Fix: Roy recommends topical products with argan oil, rosehip seed oil, willow bark extract (which is salicylic acid), and exfoliators with either lactic acid, honey, pineapple, or papaya.
Curran suggests reducing sugar and adding a magnesium supplement to your vitamin regimen as she says most of us are deficient.
3. Your gut
An imbalanced gut means more than just a stomach ache.
Breakouts on your forehead might indicate an issue in your small intestine, and below your cheekbones and on your upper lip suggest a stomach imbalance.
Fix: Roy recommends rose hip, buriti, and carrot seed oil as topical treatments.
Curran suggests adding a probiotic supplement, reducing dairy intake, and eating more fermented foods because they promote heathy gut bacteria.
Big brands like Dermalogica are starting to use face mapping as part of the way they customise skin care plans. So if you’re looking for a more spelled out way of learning about your skin, and how it relates to your health, check them out.
And if you’re still breaking out don’t worry too much. The Journal of Investigative Dermatology says there’s new evidence your zits might actually keep you looking younger for longer.
The research says acne sufferers are more likely to have long telomeres (a compound structure at the end of a chromosome which acts as a protector for a strand of DNA associated with the ageing process).
As we get older, our telomeres shrink, which makes our cells age. A longer telomere means less cellular ageing, which means looking younger for longer.
New York magazine said, “Ultimately, the findings relay the inevitable beauty conundrum: suffer now or suffer later.”
Basically, try face mapping if you’re sick of acne, because it might also actually lead to your feeling better on the whole. But, if you’re feeling lazy, enjoy those spots.