How many times have you been at the mercy of that damn zit which decided to pop up at the exact moment you need to look your freaking best? And how many times have you realized your period is around the corner because your skin starts looking like a war-zone?
It’s time to change all that. It’s time you gave acne a real good fight. Here’s how.
1. Never ever over-clean your skin.
You can’t ‘wash away’ acne. Acne is not from dirt. If it were, you would have it on your feet right?Cleansing your skin too often will strip it of all that’s good – moisture and the ‘good’ natural oils.
This makes your skin dehydrated and sensitive, and in the process, aggravates acne instead of clearing it up.
Instead, use a gentle facewash (meant for sensitive skin) not more than thrice a day. Don’t bother with extra strength acne-fighting ones. These also dry your skin excessively.
You should treat your skin like you would a baby’s – with tender loving care.
2. Don’t use a toner with alcohol no matter how ‘clean’ it makes you feel.
Let’s admit it, we adore that clean and tight feeling after using a toner. But that feeling is actually really bad for your skin. Alcohol simply makes all the water from your skin evaporate. And drying up oily skin is actually the worst thing you can ever do. When skin is not moist, more dead skin forms, leading to more clogged pores and breakouts. Plus, your skin will overcompensate for the dryness and produce more oil. You lose either way.
Pick a toner that softens and hydrates your skin, preparing it for the acne-fighting regimen that will follow.
Stuff I love: Facial Toner Pure Rosewater by Forest Essential does a fab job in hydrating, soothing and cooling skin, while tightening pores. Perfect for angry acne-prone skin.
Tip: Always leave your toner damp before applying your moisturizer. Instead of using a cotton pad, just pat it on with your fingers. Your cleanser is that product that should remove dirt, not the toner.
Did you know?
When you see ‘dirt’ on a cotton pad after you swipe with a toner, it’s actually your skin’s essential oils, not dirt.
3. A moisturizer is an absolute must.
Moisturizers are super important in keeping your skin in top condition. Most people with oily skin think that they already have enough moisture and don’t need a moisturizer. In reality, you have too much oil, but not moisture. When your skin is thirsty, you have to give it water. Otherwise it will create more oil to make up for the shortage. So use a gel based moisturizer to actually prevent your skin from getting oilier.
Tip: Just remember that it will take your skin 2 weeks to get used to it and then it will reduce the oil production. So don’t expect immediate results.
4. Don’t use too many acne products all at once.
You think it’s a good idea to use a face wash, toner, moisturizer and treatment that’s meant for acne skin. But unfortunately, that’s going to distress your already freaked out skin.
When you layer on too many acne products, your skin gets over-dry, especially those parts of your skin that don’t have acne. This leads to dead skin cell buildup that will trap oil under the skin causing more clogged pores and breakouts.
What’s worse, 2 different acne products may react with each other and cause a bigger flare up.
So it’s best to use products that are gentle, non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores) and hydrating along with just 1 product that actually treats acne.
5. Put some acid on your face.
Many facial scrubs have sharp edges, which can tear the skin, causing bacteria to spread. Instead use GLYCOLIC ACID to peel it off ever-so-gently.
Don’t freak out by the word ‘acid’ just yet. Glycolic acid is a fruit acid that’s derived from sugar cane.
It exfoliates and re-texturizes your skin very gently, corrects hyper-pigmentation and skin discoloration, reverses sun damage, decreases the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles and shrink pores. Whew!!!
And the best part? (As if the ones above aren’t good enough)
It suits all skin types. So whether you have sensitive, dry, oily, acne-prone skin, you will benefit from using it.
Glycolic acid can be found in many toners, serums and moisturizers. You may actually even be using one without realizing it.
6. Sunscreen will save your skin. Literally.
Acne meds peel the outer layer of skin, making you more sensitive and prone to a bad sunburn. In fact this can lead to permanent discoloration on your face. So never leave your bathroom without applying sunscreen with minimum SPF 30.
Also, remember to apply sunscreen generously if you want to truly filter out the harmful UVA/UVB. You need at least 4 pea sizes for your face and neck.
Since a lot of the formulas out on the market are greasy, most of us use it very sparingly. Look for ‘oil-free’ or non-comedogenic on [sunscreen] labels. These won’t clog your pores or cause breakouts.
Tip: Go for a sunscreen meant for babies. Its formula is ultra-gentle so you can be rest assured your skin won’t get irritated and break out.
Stuff I love: I can’t do without my Shiseido Gentle Sun Protection Lotion for Sensitive Skin and Babies. It’s milky in texture and glides on my face, and within a few minutes it feels as if I have nothing on my face. Love love.
7. Avoid breakouts during your period by popping 3 amazing capsules.
Just 3 capsules are all you need to prevent those pesky hormonal pimples from popping up every time you get your period.
Evening primrose oil capsule is packed with Omega-6 fatty acids that help control acne, eczema and wrinkles.
Fish oil capsule has the awesome Omega-3 fatty acids that have anti-inflammatory qualities that reduce the size of zits and heal your skin.
A multivitamin has Vitamin A, C and E that make your skin all youthful, plump and glowing.
8. Drink like a fish.
Drinking tons of good old-fashioned water is the best thing you can do for skin. The skin is often called the ‘third kidney’ as it flushes out toxins that the liver and kidney don’t.
Just make sure you drink 3-4 litres a day – and stick to it. Don’t go overboard one day and completely forget to drink on another.
If you drink a lot of water consistently, within 2-3 weeks you will see a marked improvement in the quality of your skin. It will be clearer, plumper and with an unmatched glow. It’s definitely worth trying!
9. Sleep it off.
When everything else fails, sleep over it!
Sleep is the easiest, quickest and simplest way to make your skin fabulous. And who doesn’t like to sleep?!
While you’re in la-la-land, your skin is actually up and about purging all the waste from your body. If you sleep less, your skin has less time to remove the toxins. It’s really that simple.
Another great thing about sleep, it reduces stress – the No. 1 culprit of acne.
So, just pass out for a good 8 hours or more for porcelain skin.
10. Change your pillowcase every single night.
This seems a bit troublesome but it can save you a lot more trouble getting rid of those pimples. When your press your skin against the pillowcase, you’re transferring dead skin, oil and bacteria on it. When you re-use the same pillowcase the following night, you’re adding all that gunk back to your skin. And you’re wondering why you breakout!