Friday, June 19, 2015

Tips for keeping your face acne free

Since I am trying to get more posts on my blog this summer, instead of avoiding this commitment as per usual, I wanted to extended my skin care routine post by talking about simple and easy steps that everyone can do to help reduce and get rid of acne. As I said before, I am not a dermatologist or specialized in skincare, though I have a nurse as a mother, I am not formally trained and all my tips are pretty straightforward, given to me by my mom, or based on things I have done that have helped my skin. So if you are looking for some tested and true tips to get rid of acne, then you found the right place!

1. Wash everything that touches your face: It is simple, keep dirty things away from your face and your face will stay clean. Germs and bacteria linger everywhere, and these germs are spread every time you touch something, including your face. I recently learned that staff bacteria rests on your skin too, which is normal so don't get worried, but led my mother to making a house rule to wash your hands every time you entered the house, eat, or do anything really. So this same simple idea should be carried to what is touching your face. Not only should your face be clean (seen in the next tip), but what is going to touch your face should be as well. Wash your sheets, towels and pillowcases, which are filled with dry skin cells and natural oils; wash your hands before putting ton makeup; and clean those makeup brushes! I try to clean my sheets every week, my towels after several uses, and my brushes every three weeks -- which is probably 2 1/2 weeks too long! By keeping these things clean, your face will also stay clean.

2. Use more water than cleanser: When you wash your face -- in the morning, before/after a workout (no makeup during a workout! tip six), before bed -- use more luke warm water than cleanser. Whenever it comes to applying something to your hair or body, err on the side of less is more. I am not saying put the tiniest amount of cleanser in your hands, but be reasonable with the amount of product you use! For a facial cleanser, you should only be putting a dime amount in your hands. I also add that you should be rinsing with more water in order to ensure you have thoroughly cleansed your face and made sure to rinse off any product residue which could linger on your skin and clog your pores.

3. Use an acne spot treatment: This may be a no brainer when it comes to fighting acne, but if you are someone who swears by acne treatments, maybe it's how your are applying the treatment. Instead of spreading a spot treatment across your entire face, target the areas that actually have acne or black heads. By doing so, you are wasting less product and only targeting and clearing up existing acne. If you continue to spread the treatment over other parts of your face, you end up drying up those areas, causing your skin to produce more oils that will potentially clog your pores and produce more acne.

4. Exfoliate -- but be gentle: Exfoliation does not mean you have to use a harsh product that will irritate your skin. It does mean that you can gently rid your skin of dry skin patches and clear out your clogged pores. Instead of buying an expensive exfoliator with a bunch of unneeded anti-acne chemicals that will be washed straight down the drain, use baking soda. Simply put a nickel sized amount in your hands and mix with some water and go about washing your face as you would normally. I tend to focus on my t-zone where most my acne and dry skin resides, then follow with lots of water to cleanse my face thoroughly. You also don't need to exfoliate often, too much and you can actually break open your skin. I exfoliate about two to three times a week, normally in the evenings.

5. Simplify your skin care routine: Do you really need the new 3-step skin care kit that costs an arm and a leg? Just like I said in my post about my skin care routine, you don't really need a bunch of products on your face to get your desired result. If you really think about it, a lot of anti-acne products offer many cleansers and exfoliators with acne-fighting ingredients, just to be washed off your face within seconds of applying. Does that really help fight acne? (No). Instead of wasting my time and money by buying different 3-step systems and products with a ridiculous amount of ingredients in them, I try to simplify my routine. I tend to stick to cheaper drug store options, without parabens, fragrances, or other harsh irritants, when it comes to products that will only remain on my face for a short period of time (think cleansers, body washes, etc.). I use the same cleanser day and night to gently clean dirt and makeup off my face, skip the over-drying toners, and head straight to the spot treatment. When it comes to moisturizing, I skip the anti-acne moisturizers because I have already got the acne-fighting ingredients in the spot treatment, and these moisturizers will end up drying out your face instead of doing its moisturizing job.

6. Wash your face: Ideally this would be number one, but since it is a no-brainer, I decided to put it as the last step. After seeing the other tips, however, I think you understand the importance of keeping your face and anything near it clean. But, I think I should reiterate this point! Wash. Your. Face. Plain and simple. Wash it when you wake up, wash it before bed, and wash it (please) before and after a workout. Before -- only if you are wearing makeup, but definitely after, to get the sweat out of those pores!

So there you have it. My super simple tips to keep your face clean. Now I know the title picture seems odd, I had an idea and went with it, though it is probably going to change to something more simple and pretty. Anyway, I hope that these tips really help you all!! I have been struggling with acne for many years, but by following these tips, my face has really cleared up. Remember that what you eat will also affect your skin too, so avoid sugar and processed foods, your skin will thank you!

If you have any questions about my routine, or want to start a discussion about your healthy skin tips, please feel free to comment below!


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