Managing acne is simple but most acne sufferers get some basic rules wrong. This leads to worse skin, multiple product use and an unnecessary amount of money spent.
Here are 7 rules that you need to keep if you want your acne to vanish quicker than you can say abracadabra.
Rule 1: Wash your face twice a day
Offence: Washing your face multiple times a day
Most people with acne wash their skin much more than is necessary. This is understandable because the most common myth is that acne is from dirty skin (it isn’t). Besides, because a lot of people with oily skin have acne it makes sense to wash off the oil and prevent the acne. Except it doesn’t work. Excessive face-washing makes your skin produce even MORE oils. This results in more breakouts and the cycle continues.
Wash your face with the right cleanser or face wash. This ensures your skin gets the right treatment without stripping it of its natural oils. Leading to more issues down the road.
Rule 2: Avoid harsh products
Offence: washing with black soap, bar soap or body products
Like overwashing, harsh products strip your skin leaving it dry, and dehydrated. And guess what? dehydrated skin doesn’t function properly. This means your acne will take longer to heal and your breakouts last longer. Also, products like black soap are too alkaline for the skin of the face which has an acidic PH.
Stick with products formulated for use on the face only. If it doesn’t say ‘’face wash ‘’ leave it alone. Restrict your black soap use to your body that has thicker skin that can handle it.
Rule 3: Moisturize daily
Offence: Skipping moisturizer
All skin types need a moisturizer, especially one with acne. When you skip a moisturizer, your skin loses water rapidly as you go about daily activities. This water loss causes dehydration over time. Meaning your skin will not function at its best and it will slow down the healing proves.
Use an oil-free moisturizer. It gives your skin the protection it needs without clogging your pores.
Rule 4: Exfoliate Gently
Offence: Using Face scrubs (sugar, salt or coffee)
Acne-prone skin needs exfoliation more than most skin types. But the type of exfoliation matters. I know we are all used to the feeling and the habit of using scrubs – hello apricot scrub.
But on acne-prone skin, it is a huge mistake. When you have acne, your skin is rough and uneven. This means when you use a scrub it can lead to damage. Resulting in scarring, infection or acne spread to other parts of your skin.
Use an acid toner instead. A BHA or AHA toner will give you better results than a physical scrub. There is no danger of injury or infection and they only remove dead cells.
Rule 5: Don’t pick your skin
Offence: Using your hands to pop your pimples
Don’t do it! I know it is hard but picking your pimples is a one-way trip to dark spots, scarring and even more breakouts. Picking your skin can introduce bacteria into your skin. It is an open wound after all & pushes the infection deeper making it worse. It also leads to scarring because it destroys part of the surrounding tissue due to the force used.
If you must pop your pimple, do it with an implement, not your hands. Ensure you wash your face and clean the area before and after the event to keep infection at bay.
Rule 6: Don’t DIY (do it yourself)
Offence: Use lemon juice, baking soda, and toothpaste! on your spots
All these are giant and I mean giant bad ideas.
Lemon /lime juice burns the skin and can cause sensitivity. Baking soda and toothpaste do the same. These products have no business on your face, and they do not work.
Use a spot treatment like benzoyl peroxide on large bumps. Then upgrade your skincare routine to one that controls acne. Stop relying on old wives’ tales and myths when it comes to caring for your skin.
Rule 7: Manage your lifestyle
Offence: Poor diet, sleep and high-stress environment
Poor diet is one of the contributing factors if your skin is prone to acne. Eating a high glycemic diet aka one high processed food is a recipe for disaster.
Besides, high stress and poor sleep patterns stimulate cortisol production. Cortisol is a steroid which can lead to excessive oil production and acne. Continuous stress reduces your immunity making you less able to deal with any trauma.
Eat a balanced diet. One that is rich in vegetables and whole foods to reduce blood sugar spikes that contribute to acne.
Reduce your stress levels by meditating, walking and even praying! Make sure to get adequate rest each day by practising good sleep hygiene. This includes sticking with a bedtime ritual and getting an adequate amount of rest each day.
You can learn more about the basics you need in a skincare routine here and how to put together an effective routine that works here. If you want a routine specifically targeted to your acne or breakouts, then you are in luck with my eBook banish breakouts you can learn more below.
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