I’ve been tackling acne for the past 4 years as well as acne scarring, combination of oily and dry skin. I will take you through my current skin care routine and give some advice that hopefully you find useful or may have never known.
My morning begins by rinsing my face with warm water to open clogged pores, followed by cold water to help wake myself up. I use a clean towel to pat dry my face. Next I use Simple’s light moisturiser, locking moisture into my skin. I’ll apply a generous amount of Garnier SPF50+ sun cream, reapplying as I go about my day. If you were like me, I didn’t like wearing sunscreen. It would be oily, leave white streaks or have purple tints. However, it’s crucial you try out various sunscreens, finding one that work for you. Because, it can offset your skin’s ageing process by protecting it against UV rays which can also damage your skin during cloudy days. Equally, there’s no point in buying expensive skincare and if you do not use sunscreen. That’s why I have 4 products that I would recommend all under £10 each from ‘The Ordinary’ that actually helps tackle acne, acne scarring and general healthy skin. The Ordinary is a very honest and aesthetic brand. It’s formulations are scientifically formulated for a range of skin types.
Taking hot showers, where the mirrors in your bathroom begin to fog, it can dry out your skin more. It’s important to keep well hydrated skin as dry skin can cause your body to produce more sebum and oil to compensate for the moisture loss.
It can become a problem when pores get congested. Use an exfoliator 2-3 times a week helps penetrate and clean deep into blocked pores. I prefer chemical exfoliators, which have active ingredients which penetrate effectively into the necessary layers over physical exfoliator, may have small beads which can strip more than you need. I rate the ‘Alpha hydroxide acid 30% + Beta hydroxide acid 2% peeling solution” chemical exfoliator from The Ordinary 4 out of 5. Acids and peeling sounds daunting to some, but they’re formulated concentrations for AHA to exfoliate and brighten and BHA to exfoliate and unclog pores. Another product is The Ordinary’s ‘Salicylic acid 2% solution’ which is a powerful active ingredient to look out for in acne treatment products; a 4 out of 5 rating for me. Other active ingredients include retinoic acid and benzoyl peroxide which can also be prescribed ointments.
Use a gentle cleanser once a day, preferably in your PM routine. Cleansing too much can dry your skin and you will not be using your product efficiently. Freshly washed skin is like a sponge that absorbs the products that you put onto it. Therefore after I shower, exfoliated and or cleansed I may follow up with a toner depending on how my skin was during the day. Tea tree is a good defensive ingredient for P-acne, acne caused by bacteria. Therefore, it’s important to maintain good overall personal hygiene. Refrain from continuously touching your acne, or popping it as it will lead to scarring. It’s best not to listen to those Snapchat suggestions on whether you should pop it. I would recommend it’s always worth getting clinical advice from a dermatologist and not feel insecure talking about your skin.
Start or if not use serums. There are millions of serums available. One I recommend is ‘Niacinamide 10% + Zinc 1%’ The Ordinary 4 out of 5. I believe the best serums are the ones that should be ‘a little goes a long way’ and doesn’t have to be expensive. The Nia serum has helped me combat brightening acne scarring and hyperpigmentation. This accessible and affordable high concentrations of the active ingredient niancinamide which helps to reduce blemishes and the zinc to balance sebum levels.
Finally a moisturiser I rate 2 out of 5 like the ‘Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate 10%’ cream from The Ordinary which is an active ingredient and Vitamin C derivative which has assisted me with acne scarring and hyperpigmentation. That’s why it’s important to use a sunscreen in conjunction with this product to see greater results in more even skin complexion.
It’s important I stress that all these products I’ve mentioned are not meant to cure acne but, help tackle and reduce acne. I’ve realised that lifestyle is a major factor in skin complexity; eating right by especially reducing sugar and dairy product intakes to the air quality of where you live. Other lifestyle suggestions for clear skin include sleeping 7-9 hours, drinking plenty of water, weekly exercise that gets your heart pumping, controlling stress to stay positive, stop smoking and reduce alcohol intake.