Hey guys! I decided to write a post on my favorite tips for clear skin. I have struggled with moderate acne in the past, so I understand how frustrating it can be to find a solution. Here are some tips that I have found helpful in my skin care journey.
1.) Less is more! // Less really is more when it comes to skin care, especially if you have acne or sensitive skin. If you use a ton of products, it will just irritate your skin further and cause more breakouts. Make sure to use a gentle cleanser (NOT Cetaphil as it tends to cause breakouts for many) and avoid physical exfoliators (scrubs).
2.) Be an ingredient detective. // Look at the ingredient lists of skin care and makeup products before purchasing. This website has a list of ingredients and rates them on comedogenicity and irritancy : Become an Acne Detective. You can also copy and paste ingredients into this website and it will rate the ingredients as well: Ingredient Analysis. These are not fullproof lists. Some ingredients that are rated high on the scales may not break you out or vice versa, but the websites are good starting points. Some people break out from silicones, such as cyclopentasiloxane, which is not rated comedogenic.
3.) Check your hair products and toothpaste. // If you have acne around your hair line and forehead, it may be caused by your hair products. Washing your face, chest, and back after using shampoo and conditioner can help reduce breakouts caused by hair products. If you are breaking out around your mouth and chin, your toothpaste may be to blame. Try switching to an SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate) and SLES (sodium laureth sulfate) free toothpaste, such as Sensodyne ProNamel.
4.) Don't use fabric softeners or dryer sheets. // They leave residue on sheets and towels that can cause breakouts. Also be sure to only use free and clear/fragrance-free laundry detergents.
5.) Hands off! // I know it is extremely hard, but try your best to avoid touching your skin or picking at pimples. It will only cause more breakouts and scarring. If you really struggle with picking at your skin, I recommend taking a look at this website: Stop Skin Picking. It is really helpful for those with a serious obsession with skin picking.
6.) Clean your cell phone and change your pillowcases often! // Make sure to disinfect your cell phone daily, so that it won't contribute to breakouts on the sides of your face. Dirty pillowcases and sheets can also contribute to acne on the sides of your face. Try to change your pillowcase every other day and change your sheets once a week.
7.) Make dietary changes. // If your acne is hormonal, certain foods may be causing or contributing to your acne. Soy, green tea, flax seed, and skim milk (all dairy for some) can all affect hormones and cause breakouts. Biotin and iodine in supplements can also contribute to acne. Some people find that taking Vitamin D3 and Omega 3 supplements improve their acne. Omega 3 supplements can cause acne in some people, though.
8.) Keep a skin care journal. // Keep track of products you are using and any dietary changes you have made, so that you will know what is helping or hurting your skin. Make sure to only make one change at a time and give it at least 2 weeks before making another change. If you make too many changes at once, it will be hard to figure out which product or change made a difference in your skin (whether it be a positive or negative one).
I hope you found these tips helpful! If you try all of these out and are still having issues with acne, I recommend seeing a dermatologist. Let me know if you want me to write a post on skin care product recommendations or go into detail on acne-fighting ingredients.