I’ve always been an acne sufferer, as most of you will know. Ever since I was around 15, I just broke out like crazy. Over the years, I’ve some better periods and then some down right awful times, where I could barely even look in the mirror.
Sometimes it’s hard to know what your skin really needs to be as healthy as possible. I had every doctor and dermatologist giving me all kinds of advice, which probably worked for others but then didn’t work on me.
However, there have been a few things I’ve been lucky with over the years, and right now, at age 33, my acne is finally giving up and disappearing.
Over the past six months, more people than ever have said to me that my skin looks clearer, and what was it that worked? In all honestly, it;s been a combination of things and I feel that getting older also was a turning point too. Perhaps my hormones finally decided to settle down?
Here are 6 things that stand out to me to have made a contribution
1. Wash your face twice a day – and use a brush
If you’re prone to breakouts or have oily skin, don’t skimp on washing your face as part of your morning and evening skin care routine. However, one thing I would say is that making your evening cleanse an intense one, and your morning one a lighter one, works much better. Too much washing can do more harm.
Because of my acne, I use salicylic acid products, so my cleanser is always loaded with the stuff. I’ve started to use a cleaning brush device from Magnitone in the evening, which has made a huge difference! I honestly never thought a vibrating cleansing brush would make such a difference, but honestly, the six months I’ve been using it, my acne has completely eased up.
Coincidence? Who knows. But I won’t be giving it up any time soon!
2. Research into acne-fighting agents
For me, some acne ingredients and treatments didn’t work, but some really did and everyone reacts differently. So I’ll share the ones I hear that can help, but bear in mind the only ones that eased my breakouts were Salicylic Acid and Lactic Acid. Whether in skin peels or products, these helped me a lot during bad times
Depending on the type of acne you have, the following are recommended:
- Comedonal acne (blackheads and similar bumps). Look for products that contain retinoids like adapalene gel (Differin).
- Mild acne. Topical benzoyl peroxide can help fight mild acne, either on its own or together with a topical retinoid.
- Inflammatory acne. Topical dapsone 5 percent gel is recommended, particularly in adult females. Salicylic acid or lactic acid peels.
- Acne with scarring. Azelaic acid preparations can help reduce acne and the risks of acne scarring.
- If you want to simultaneously target different types of acne, look at a combination of benzoyl peroxide, tretinoin, or adapalene gel.
3. Invest in treatments
When I started to book in for professional skin treatments, I noticed that not only did my acne clear up, but the clarity, tone and texture improved. I started to have brighter, healthier looking skin, even during those times where my skin was still breaking out.
Some people can feel scared about having any treatments done while still having painful breakouts, and there are some that should be avoided. For example, microneedling is one of my favourites, but it’s best to do when your acne is having a good turn. It completely rejuvenates the skin and reduces scarring and marks over time, so it’s great for those who have sluggish red marks and deeper scarring too.
In terms of other great acne treatments you can have done at a clinic, laser therapy, peels and microdermabrasion can have positive effects too. I had laser done to kill the bacteria, ease scarring and improve the texture of my skin, in which I didn’t have much hope for at the time. However, I did a course of 6 and honestly feel that once a few months has passed, the results really start to show!
The key is to find a trusted, professional clinic, one like Snowberry Lane, that offers a variety of treatments and procedures which can be tailored to the severity of your acne. I honestly found so much relief by having regular laser, peels, microneedling and microdermabrasion over the years, and it’s about finding which one suits you and works with your skin.
4. Get plenty of sleep
Not getting enough sleep may also cause your skin to break out more often. According to a 2016 study, more than 65% of the study’s participants who said they felt tired also had acne. I’m terrible with sleep, and I really do think that my lack of it was stopping my skin from healing and slowed down my cell turnover.
Experts say that a lack of sleep could, in some instances, cause the body to release inflammatory compounds. These compounds could cause the skin to break out or worsen acne.
To stay healthy both on the inside and out, aim for seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night.
5. Choose makeup that won’t clog your pores
I used to have to wear really heavy, thick makeup in my early twenties when my skin was as its worst. It only made the problem worse, but it is a catch 22 – your confidence can suffer hugely when you don’t cover it up.
Over the years, makeup has changed and there are now fantastic mineral brands that are much kinder to your skin. There are also full coverage foundations packed with skin loving ingredients, in which a little bit goes a long way.
Of course, I can’t deny that makeup can be a bad idea when trying to clear up the complexion. But lets be honest – I need it. Instead, look for mineral makeup brands and look at those that are long lasting and only need a small amount of products. They tend to be the most expensive but they really are worth it!
The bottom line
Going on the pill Dianatte and Yasmin were two things I did throughout my twenties, and I feel these kepy the agressive stages a little calmer. Being on the pill isn’t for everyone, so the above tips are aspects which I felt really helped while I was trying to improve how I managed my acne.
The pill and certain medications may be your answer, but pay attention to what you put on your face too. Cleansers, products, treatments, clean brushes…. it all counts!
Focusing on certain lifestyle factors, like quality sleep, a healthy diet, and stress management, can make a difference to your skin, too.