Hello lovelies! Today on the blog, we’re diving into the subject of acne, and let’s just say I have lots of first-hand experience with this topic.
I don’t plan on dishing out my entire acne journey here, although I might write about it someday. I’ve had acne since I was about 14 years old, so it’s been about 7 years since I found that first pimple on my face.
I didn’t have cystic acne, but my breakouts were painful. It didn’t help that my teenage years were spent learning how to fight my acne and although the internet helped, I was still making lots of mistakes with my skin.
Fast forward to today, and my skin is the softest it’s ever been. The only traces of my breakouts in the past are some scars and texture from when I used to pick at it.
And it feels so weird. I’ve had acne for so long that it seems too good to be true when I notice how clear my skin looks now.
So that’s a short summary of how my skin has transformed over the years. I still have oily and sensitive skin and I do break out from time to time, but it’s been doing a lot better. And here are my personal tips on how I control my acne-prone skin! (Disclaimer: I am by no means a skincare professional. I learned everything I know from years of my own research.)
1. TRY THE NATURAL ROUTE.
For years, I thought chemicals were the way to clear up my skin. Proactiv was everywhere when I was a teenager, and I used to beg my parents to buy it for me so I could try it (they didn’t, thank goodness). I also tried out countless products that claimed to clear up my skin overnight, but failed. I was desperate for a cure, but eventually I would learn about natural skincare.
It makes sense. Sometimes using what nature gives us might help more than exposing ourselves to an abundance of chemicals that might be doing more harm than good. If anything, using natural products will give your skin a break from all the harsh substances and reduce irritation.
Ingredients such as honey, sugar, aloe vera, egg whites, and natural oils have been used in many natural skincare products and at-home treatments. So give some natural remedies a try before heading down the skincare aisle again!
2. SOMETIMES CHEMICALS DO WORK.
I know this contradicts my first point, but depending on your skin type, some chemicals may work for you. For instance, salicyclic acid and benzoyl peroxide are the most commonly used chemicals to treat acne.
Salicyclic acid does nothing for me, whereas my holy grail skincare product has benzoyl peroxide. Just make sure to not overdo it with the chemicals so that your skin doesn’t get irritated or dry out.
3. GIVE PRODUCTS TIME TO SHOW RESULTS.
We live in such a fast-paced world that thrives on instant gratification. If something doesn’t work right away, we assume something’s wrong with it. But that’s not the attitude we should have with skincare products.
If a product claims to clear up your skin overnight, don’t fall for it. If you read a review on a product saying it broke them out after using it once, it’s not a valid review. If you don’t see results after a week or it seems to get even worse, don’t give up on it just yet.
The average time you should give a product a chance to get acclimated to your skin is somewhere between 3 weeks to a month. Of course, if your skin burns when you use the product or you have an allergic reaction to it, then it’s probably not compatible for your skin. But sometimes your skin tends to get worse first because your skin is purging all of the bacteria living under your skin and bringing it to the surface.
Every product is different so you do have to watch how your skin reacts, but if you observe carefully enough, you should be able to gauge if it’s working for you or not.
4. MAKE HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE CHOICES.
You probably hear it every day, but yes, there are so many benefits to living a healthy lifestyle and one of them is better skin!
Now I’m not saying you should flip your life upside down and sign up for a yoga class, drink green smoothies, and get 8 hours of sleep from now on. Just take it slow.
When I started transitioning into eating healthier, I didn’t do it on purpose. I started making fruit smoothies and eating salads because it was quick and easy; now I find myself craving healthy foods from time to time.
The other big change for me is drinking more water. I’ve even talked about it in a monthly product review, but I own a tumbler that comes with a straw and I use it almost daily because it helps me drink anywhere between 60-80 ounces of water a day! Treating your skin from the inside out is bound to help your skin in some way.
5. KEEP YOUR SKIN MOISTURIZED.
I always thought that oil-free products and getting rid of the oil on my face would help with my acne. But it turns out I was wrong. Using oil on our skin can actually help us instead.
After I watched Michelle Phan’s video on removing makeup with olive oil and water, I immediately tried this on my skin, and I found leftover makeup even after I used a makeup wipe! After that, I started incorporating it into my daily routine and I think it really helped with starting to clear up my skin.
Some oils may clog your pores, so do your research first! But my personal theory with oils and moisturizers is that if you moisturize enough then your skin will believe it’s hydrated and won’t produce as much oil.
6. IF YOU MUST POP…
Then make sure you do it right after you’ve removed your makeup and before you jump in the shower or wash your face. That way, the steam from your shower can open up your pores and washing your face will treat your skin right away.
7. HAVE AN OVERALL GOOD SKINCARE ROUTINE.
I have friends that can get away with washing their face with water and moisturizing when they feel like it. However, if you have acne, it’s important to have a skincare routine in place. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but over the years that I’ve had acne, I’ve come to realize that each step does have its own benefits:
- Cleansing: I use wipes and micellar water to remove my makeup, which is my first cleanse. Then I go in with my face wash for my second cleanse and to treat my skin. Double cleansing is super important to me to make sure my skin is clean.
- Toning: I used to think toners weren’t important, but my current toner treats my skin and helps with scarring, so it’s become an essential in my routine.
- Moisturizing: This is so important for every skin type. After you’ve cleansed and toned, your skin is probably a little dried out, so you need to replenish it with a moisturizer.
- Masks: Masks should be done once or twice a week to clear out your pores and prevent bacteria from turning into a breakout.
- Exfoliating: Exfoliating your skin will help remove dead skin cells and deeply cleanse. This should also be done once or twice a week depending on how sensitive your skin is.
Other products that can be included in your skincare routine are serums, essences, sheet masks, and a cream, but I think these are optional depending on much effort you want to put into your nightly routine. I like using sheet masks every once in a while, but I haven’t tried out any serums or essences yet.
Remember, clear skin will not come overnight for many of us. I know how discouraging it can be to read all the articles and watch the commercials that claim to clear up your skin right away because I was once in that position before.
In reality, it takes time and a whole lot of patience, so as long as you put in the effort to take care of your skin and your body with healthy habits, one day you’ll have the clear skin you’ve always wanted.
I hope this article helped! If you have any other tips, leave them in the comment section below! Thanks so much for reading and I’ll see you lovelies tomorrow!