Saturday, 21 February 2015

The Acne Tips That Helped Me

Acne. It's up there with my least favourite words in the English language and for good reason: from the ages 12 to 20, I was at a complete loss at how to deal with it. Over the last couple of years however, I have learnt a thing or two that seems to have helped... touch wood.

Before we move onto the tips, a disclaimer: acne is, unfortunately, hormonal. My advice is anecdotal and I am by no means promising you clear skin - but this advice helped for me, so I thought it worth sharing!

Get some exercise

Not the most obvious or glamorous one to start off with I know, but there's a reason why I've put it first. My logic is that there is little point in spending money on products that may help if the basics are off, and this one is pretty important to me. Healthy circulation = healthy skin, so please, hold off spending on expensive skincare and get your heart pumping first and foremost!

Keep your skincare simple...

Hell, I love skincare as much as the next guy - believe me, I do - but there is a lot to be said for a paired back routine. The more products you use, the harder it is to determine what is beneficial (and of course, what isn't). Save your pennies and spend them on lippy instead.

FYI, this is how not to do it

...but try a double cleanse

Not necessary for everyone, but a step that works wonders for me; a double cleanse, for the uninitiated, involves using a makeup remover in the evening, and washing your face with your "proper" cleanser after (think balms or creams that must be washed off). Your pre-cleanser needn't be expensive; I've used coconut oil and Garnier Micellar Water and been perfectly happy with both; they cost less than a fiver each.

Keep long hair back when possible

Get all 80s/90s and bring back the alice band girlfriend - you won't damage your locks by sticking your hair in a bun and your face will thank you. I am by no means pressuring you to rock this look in the street, but it is a good shout for whenever you are at home.

Explore which blemish busting ingredients work for you

I know if a product has salicylic acid in it, it is bound to be my friend; but for my bestie Beth, we know it will irritate her like no end. Equally, while her skin responds well to products with natural oils like lavender, mine freaks out like nobody's business. My advice? Inform yourself, get nerdy with ingredients lists, and you'll get there.

Wash pillowcases, flannels, makeup brushes and towels as much as you can

I won't give you a hard and fast rule about how often, because life is life... but if you've just had a nasty breakout, stick everything in the wash as soon as possible. I bought myself a load of plain white pillowcases from the supermarket and it was an excellent shout.

More tips to get through facial crisis mode:

- keep away from alcohol
- get more sleep
- ditch any products recently introduced to see if they are the cause
- stay consistent
- don't forget to moisturise as most acne treatments are very drying
- hold off from wearing base products for a while
- avoid touching your face as much as you can, and wash your hands thoroughly before cleansing/applying any face products
- remember that contraceptive methods such as the pill/implant/hormone coil can all have an effect, for better and worse
be patient

That's me done! Now over to you guys - have you got any of your own acne advice to share? If so I would love to hear about it in the comments!


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