What Is Face Mapping And Can It Improve Your Acne?

Finding the cure to get rid of your acne can feel like winning the lottery. Though in order to find the winning ticket, many of us have to take a hard look at what we put on our faces and wash it off with, our nightly routines, and the medicine we are taking. If that doesn't help, you can resort to the new methods involving lasers and chemical peels. Not a fan of that route? Try taking a look back through history instead.

Enter face mapping. Daniel Hsu, a doctor in New York who specializes in acupuncture and Chinese medicine, tells Byrdie this isn't a new technology. "Face mapping goes back thousands of years," says Dr. Hsu. "A lot of it comes simply from clinical experience. Nowadays, you have all types of blood tests and scans, but back then, doctors would have to give a diagnosis by looking, touching, and asking questions."

Before we dive in further, just know that you are not alone when it comes to dealing with frustrating and sometimes painful breakouts. According to Heathline, 50 million Americans are dealing with the same issue.

Your acne could be a sign of internal distress

So how can mapping the pimples on your face lead to a cure? Healthline explains that in Chinese medicine, the belief is that the health of your skin is directly connected to the health of your organs and other internal systems in your body. "The body is made up of a bunch of systems — lymphatic, neurological, digestive, to name a few — and all of these systems are tied together," says Hsu to Byrdie.  Adding, "It's very difficult to affect one without affecting others."

So if you are experiencing a breakout in the same area of your face, it may be a clue that there is an internal issue. For example, if you are having breakouts on the lower two-thirds of your face, it could be a hormonal imbalance. "Modern acupuncturists would say that if you break out around your chin, you should get your hormone levels checked," Hsu says to Byrdie. "Stress can also be a huge part of it." He goes on to suggest drinking spearmint tea and discussing your hormone levels with your doctor.

There is a difference between the left cheek and the right one

Healthline lists other areas of the face and what they are known to be linked to in Chinese medicine. If you map your pimples to be mostly on your nose and forehead, it is a sign that your digestive system is in distress and you could need to change your diet. Hsu recommends cutting back on spicy foods, meat, and salt and replacing them with fruits, veggies, and nuts to help try to put an end to recurring breakouts in these areas (via Byrdie). Other areas that can possibly be cleared of acne with a cleaner diet include around and on the ears and around the mouth. In addition, "Chinese medicine is really big on the left and right," Hsu says. He explains further, noting that breakouts on your left cheek are connected to liver issues, and the right cheek is more connected to the heart and lungs.

So, does face mapping work? According to Healthline, some elements of face mapping have proven to be beneficial, though there is little evidence to support the ancient practice. 

As we stated before, finding a cure for your acne feels like winning the lottery. If you're intrigued by the ancient practice of face mapping, then give it a try. If it doesn't work, you can make an appointment with your dermatologist to discuss other treatment methods to try instead of or in addition to face mapping.