Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Skincare for Acne Prone Skin

No one likes breakouts.

That is just obvious. But, it seems that as much as we all hate breakouts that many of us don't know how to properly treat and clear up these pesky blemishes. I have had breakouts since about fifth grade, and now I am an entering Freshman into college, so, yeah, I know what it is like to have less than perfect skin:) I have never had severe acne, my acne was more of the little bumps, but in mass amounts, especially on my forehead, cheeks, and chin. And it was not until ninth grade that I started wearing makeup, so makeup was never the main cause for my acne. But, once I started wearing it, I began to realize the importance of skincare, because I was now paying more attention to the appearance of my complexion. And that is when I was turned onto Neutrogena products. From this point on I was able to begin my journey to clear skin.

I wasn't one of those success stories like the ProActiv commercials where the girl is like, "I had severe acne yesterday, and today my skin is perfect, and I also got a tan, a haircut, and now look like a supermodel!" Ok, well that may be a little bit of an exaggeration, but seriously, facial products just don't work that fast. I had to experiment with facial products until I was able to find the products that really benefited my face. But, I always came back to the Neutrogena line. And, if you have perused the "Products I am Loving" page you may have noticed my love for Neutrogena products. That is because most of my facial routine consists of their products. Alright, enough of my life story, here are some tips and important things to remember when caring for your face...

The first rule in proper skincare is "Keep it Clean." Clean skin is healthy skin. So that means washing it on a regular basis. I have Combination/Oily skin, which means some parts of my face are oily and others are either dry or "normal"...whatever normal means:) So I have to make sure that all the dirt, makeup, and oils are cleared from my skin. So I wash my face at night with an "Olay Combination/Oily Face Cloths" and then use a nightly facial scrub by Neutrogena called "Deep Clean Relaxing Nightly Scrub." You don't want to over do washing your face, because this could irritate the skin. So, when using facial scrubs or face cloths, don't scrub your face really hard, just gently wash it. At first when I started using face cloths and scrubs I thought that the harder I scrubbed the cleaner my face was, that is not the case at all! This only harms your face, so don't do it! But, I do highly recommend washing your face every night, so you can clear everything from your pores and off your skin. And even if you don't wear makeup I recommend washing your face nightly, you still have oils and dirt that get into your pores. And cleansing your face in the morning is good too! You can either wash it or use an astringent. If you want to wash it in the morning, don't use a face cloth and a facial scrub. Only do one or the other. There isn't as much dirt to clear away in the morning, so there is no need to over burden your face. And a great facial scrub for in the morning is Neutrogena's "Pink Grapefruit Foaming Scrub Acne Treatment"...it smells good:) And the second option to clean your face in the morning that I mentioned is an astringent. What is an astringent? It is a product that contracts the cells of the skin to make it nice and toned and also cleanses the pores to clean everything up. Astringents can be a little harsh on the skin so use it sparingly. I recommend TN Dickenson's Witch Hazel as a great astringent, but beware, the smell of this astringent is pretty strong the first week you use it, but I promise after a while you won't even be bothered by it (I myself have become immune to the smell.) And be careful not to get the astringent in your eyes or mouth.

The second rule in proper skincare is "Hands Off!" This means, keep your hands off of your face during the day as much as possible. When you touch your face a lot during the day, this transfers dirt and oils, from things you have touch or just your skin in general, directly to your face. Ewwww. So, be sure to pay attention to how much you touch your face, if you keep your hands off, your face will thank you:)

The third rule in proper skincare is "Healthy Diet=Healthy Skin." What you eat really does translate to the clearness of your complexion. When I started to cut down on sodas, candy, and greasy foods, my complexion really took a turn for the better. Drinking lots of water keeps your body healthy, inside and out, I cannot stress this enough. I know you have probably heard this a thousand times, but seriously water is great for you. Drink at least three bottles (8 oz) a day. You will start to feel and look healthier. Another thing to think about is, when you get a case of the munchies, instead of grabbing for that bag of Doritos, grab an apple or some baked Ritz chips (yummm, I prefer them over potato chips.) And I have recently discovered what many call "Nature's Candy"...cherries. I had never really eaten cherries, except for the ones you get on ice cream, but seriously real, 100% good for your cherries, are so addicting:) And another fruit that you should try are mangoes. They are really...awesome. My skin is on the fast track to being almost clear now, and part of the reason is my change in diet. So, if you are really serious about clearing up that skin, think about tweaking your diet.

The fourth rule in proper skincare is "Prep Before You Primp." And what I mean by this is, prep your skin before you start to apply makeup. To prep your skin you have to make sure it is clean and apply oil-free products. I personally use an oil-free matifying moisturizer, but that is because that is what my skin requires. But any product that you apply to your skin before applying makeup preferably needs to be oil-free so that you aren't clogging your pores before you even apply your makeup. And make sure your makeup is healthy for your skin. Neutrogena has a great line of makeup products that span everything from powder to foundation to concealer to mascara. So check their makeup out, it looks great and it is not harsh on the skin. And another thing, make sure your makeup brushes are clean. If they are just caked with makeup and old oils from your face the brushes are a hindrance to your skin. So clean them at least once a month, and if you don't want to invest in makeup brush cleaner you can always wash them with shampoo and water and then hang upside down to dry:)

Well, I hope that this helps with some aspects to skincare. If there is enough interest I will put out a piece on how to take care of acne on your back and chest. If you are interested, leave a comment below, and leave any questions you may have for me by following the tab "Questions/Suggestions." Thanks to all who voted for this topic and I will be posting the "Back to School Fashion" piece soon:) Get out there and try something new!

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