I'm not a huge fan of talking about the fact that I get acne. Most of us who experience it prefer to just ignore its very existence with hopes it may go unnoticed, or that it might disappear. Some of us only get a pimple once every blue moon (and at the worst times, no less), others are experiencing new breakouts every day. I tend to be in the latter group...
To say that my acne was affecting my life was a bit of an understatement. I would wake up each morning feeling totally helpless, frustrated and on the verge of tears. I tried everything to get it to go away, from changing my diet to pills, creams and treatments provided by a dermatologist. After much trial and error, I can confidently say that I rarely have breakouts now, and feel better about my skin than I ever have before. Anyone who struggles with acne knows how invaluable that is. For those of you who suffer with chronic, cystic, or regular breakouts, I recommend giving the following a try.
- Accept that you'll have to maintain a strict regimen to keep acne at a minimum.
Back in the day, I would hear stories from friends who used to have acne and how it just "disappeared" one day. I kept hoping that would eventually happen to me, but it never did (at least not in 13 years). I realized that occasional acne is just a part of my body that I would have to treat to the best of my abilities. Once I abandoned all of my unrealistic expectations, it became much easier to treat (AND less stressful).
- Get the right skincare products for treating acne.
If I am diligent about sticking to my skincare regimen, I rarely ever get acne (and if I do, it's much more short-lived). I've been using the Glymed Plus Serious Action line and have been VERY happy with it. I recommend starting with the Sal-X Purifying Cleanser, then using the Skin Astringent No. 2 as a toner, and ending with a cocktail of the Living Cell Clarifier and the OXYGEN Age Management Treatment Cream.
- Do NOT skip washing your face before bed.
Don't go to bed without washing your face...no excuses! I don't care if you're tired, drunk, or at your boyfriend's house - this is one of the worst things you can do to your skin. It is hard on your complexion, amplifies signs of aging, and aggravates acne.
- As far as wearing makeup - if you haven't tried Jane Iredale yet, get on it.
This is the only mineral makeup brand I've found that not only caters to sensitive/acne-prone skin, but actually helps treat it. My favorites: the PurePressed Base is great for minimal day-to-day coverage, and the Glow Tint is perfect for when you want full coverage for special occasions.
- Get an Ultrasonic facial.
If you haven't had an Ultrasonic facial before, you're in for a serious treat. This customized treatment exfoliates and deeply penetrates your skin with products that are meant to reduce and remove existing bacteria. If I'm having a bad breakout, I will get a series of Ultrasonic Treatments and actually watch my acne disappear.
- No dairy.
For me personally, cutting out dairy made HUGE improvements to my skin. More and more people are reporting a lactose intolerance these days, so it's probably a safe starting point if you think you may have some skin conditions that might be related to food allergies.
- Cut out junk food, booze and processed sugar.
People tend to tune me out when I tell them this. It's no fun to hear, but the fact is that what you put in your body absolutely affects your skin. If you put junk food in, that's all your body has to work with, and you won't be getting the nutrients you need to have a healthy complexion. A diet rich in veggies, protein and fruits will make your skin very VERY happy.
- Don't worry - be happy!
Acne is very closely linked to stress. Ever noticed that your skin improves when you're on vacation? There's a reason for that. When you're stressed, your body reacts very poorly (in more ways than one). Practice meditation, go for a run, get a massage, do whatever relaxes you. You'll look AND feel better, I promise!
Posted by Sadie Upwall
Project Manager and Editor for the best little beauty business in town.