As some of you would have realised I am not a beauty blogger so this sort of post isn’t really what I usually do. But I thought that as I have had quite a few years of first hand experience in this area I thought I would give you all some tips on dealing with acne.
To start with, its time for a reality check. If you are wasting away hours watching those videos on youtube to see if all those different overnight remedies will help get rid of your acne in just 8 hours, well I’m sorry to say that it will never work. I can say that in confidence as someone who has had acne for 4 years and has tried all the different “solutions”. Lets face it, we’ve all been there.
The most important thing that problematic, acne prone skin needs is a routine. I can’t really stress this enough. That means not changing your face wash every week and keeping everything regular and consistent. Now unfortunately this means finding skin care products that work for you. I can’t imagine the amount of money I have wasted trying to find a face wash that doesn’t make my skin worse. But, it’s a trial and error process that you need to go through to find what is right for you. Your best bet is to look at reviews of popular products to see how people find them.
My skin type is acne prone (obviously) and dry. This is probably the worst combination to be because about 90% of products aimed for spotty skin also dries out the skin even more. So over the years I have found products that don’t dry out my skin but still keep my acne at bay.
Skincare: The Basics
- Face wash: Neutrogena Pink Grapefruit Cream Face Wash
This face wash is really what started to make my skin look better. I started using the normal wash in this range which I thought was good but I found it too drying so I tried the cream one which works a dream. If you have oily skin I would recommend the other one.
2. Toner: Simple cleansing water
Now I have found toners to be very problematic in the past. A lot of them contain alcohol in them which is very drying and I have just given up on them. To be honest you can get away without using a toner in your routine but I just like to use one so I can make sure my face is completely clean and it helps to close your pores. This toner is very light and refreshing and great for sensitive skin.
3. Moisturiser: Simple light hydrating moisturiser and E45 cream
Even if you have the oiliest skin ever, you HAVE to moisturise. When you use face wash and toner you are stripping your skin of all its natural oils and so if you don’t replace them with moisturiser your skin will have to compensate for that loss by producing even more oil. Also, when it comes to your face forget the fancy smelly moisturisers. Save them for your body. Just think about it, does it really seem like a good idea to put chemicals from the scent and colour of a cream onto your acne prone face? No i didn’t think so. The great thing about both moisturisers I use is that they are unscented and won’t irritate my skin. The Simple moisturiser is great for oily skin types and I tend to use this in the summer when my skin gets less dry and every morning as a base for my makeup. Your probably thinking that E45 cream is a bit heavy duty for your face, but in the winter when my skin is flaking away trust me I need it.
Skincare: The Extras
Once a week I recommend doing a face mask and use a face scrub. You may have noticed a lot of face scrubs say they the word daily on them. Don’t be fooled by this. What a face scrub does is it removes the top layer of dead skin off your face. So if you’re doing this every day it will only irritate your skin, especially if it’s on top of sore, sensitive spots. Still its good to do this just once or maybe twice a week maximum.
Doing a face mask once a week is also really helpful. It’s just like having one day of extreme facial care and your skin will thank you for it. I use the Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Purifying Mask.
So if you are doing all these steps regularly and your acne is clearing up, well that’s great! But if not (mine didn’t clear up after doing all this) its time to bring your skin care routine up a gear. Isn’t it the most annoying thing when your friend who has flawless skin tells you they don’t do anything to care for the skin? And there you are everyday with a 4 step skincare routine doing everything by the book and your skin STILL isn’t clear. From here it’s probably time to see a dermatologist.
I was prescribed this cream called Epiduo. Its is essentially just very concentrated benzoyl peroxide which is an ingredient in a lot of anti acne products. This stuff is strong and when i first started using it, my skin was sore and incredibly flakey. I wasn’t happy. However, I carried on at it and now my skin doesn’t get affected by it like it used to. I used it directly on the areas where there are spots and it just stops them from not getting any worse. Epiduo is sort of like freederm gel which you can get from the drugstore, except this requires a prescription.
This cream helped, but not enough. So I went back to my dermatologist and she prescribed me this antibiotic called lymecyclene. It is basically an anti-inflammatory and takes the redness away and tries to keep the spots at bay. FINALLY, at last I have found a combination of products that have cleared my skin!
Hope this helped!