Aside from being a straight-up nuisance, breakouts can be painful and mess with your self-confidence. There’s no shortage of products designed to treat acne, but it can be difficult to find one that works for your particular skin and its issues. So when a simple, affordable acne solution comes about, it’s no surprise that people will jump at the chance to give it a go. Social media has become a haven for skin care hacks, and TikTok user Aubyrn Jade recently went viral for sharing what she believes to be the reason behind her newly clear skin: sea salt water. Yes, in the video, which has 4.5 million views and counting, Jade says @leacrylics’s video about using a sea salt water solution on her acne inspired her to try it for herself.
“I was like, ‘What do I have to lose?’ I’ve tried everything to cure my acne,” she says. “I’m 31 and I’ve had acne since I was a teenager.”
After watching the original video (in which the creator says she always noticed her skin was clear after coming back from a beach vacation), Jade says she turned to Google and found that sea salt balances your skin’s pH and kills bacteria. She then began making her own saltwater solution with four ounces of water and one teaspoon of the “cleanest sea salt you can find” (aka, one that only contains salt and no other ingredients) and spritzing it on her face twice a day.
If you’re thinking that this hack seems too good to be true, you might just be right. Connecticut-based board-certified dermatologist Mona Gohara tells Allure that while salt can help draw out oils from the skin, there’s no science behind it as an acne treatment. She also notes that the salt you find at the grocery store is not the same salt that you get from the ocean — no matter how “clean” it may be — so you can’t expect it to have the same effect.
While this saltwater solution might certainly work for some, DIY skin care comes with risks and it’s always better to speak to your dermatologist about pursuing any acne treatments.