It seems as though these days people have forgotten what an imperfect human (we all are) looks like. We’ve got so caught up in the filtered Instagram pictures, and the Photoshop editing that we see of people that we think this is what people actually look like. Maybe some people do, but the reality is most of us do not. In this blog post, I want to talk about something that’s been a big part of my life, and in the life of many…and that is ACNE!
I started getting the pretty typical hormonal acne at the age of about thirteen years old when puberty struck. At that time, I didn’t know this was something that would go on for years and years. I always had that ignorant view of “Well only teenagers get acne anyway, it’ll go away”. For me, it did go away off and on for some time. However, I can’t remember a single instance where my face was 100% blemish or scar free and “flawless”. Now, approaching Twenty-Five years old I am still battling my skin at times (no where as bad as when I was a teen) but have learned to love myself as I am. My motto is: If someone doesn’t like me because of my skin, then they’re not the type of person I want around me anyway.
At one point, I became so obsessed with my skin journey that I actually went to Esthetician school thinking that could be a potential career path for me. It turns out, it wasn’t, BUT I did learn a lot of valuable information while I was there. I figure I can share all this good info with you all and that it might be helpful for anyone struggling with their skin like I have in the past. Before I get into all the tips that I have, I just want to briefly touch on the emotional side of having acne. Having Acne mild or not, can make you feel like you’re ugly. It can make you feel like everyone is staring at your blemishes and not at you. It can make you feel like you can’t leave the house without makeup until you’re wearing it so much that you’re hiding behind it. Well, I just want to say, and excuse my language please, but EFF THAT SHIT! ACNE IS NORMAL! Some of your favorite celebrities and idols have acne! You are beautiful with acne, without acne, with scars, and without scars. I suggest everyone try to go outside the house at least a few days a week without makeup. This is you, confronting the fact that you’re aware of your face, and you don’t give a damn you’re gonna’ own that acne not let it own you! Also remember, Acne is not incurable; it can go away. A beautiful heart is what matters the most!!!!!! NOW LETS GET TO THESE TIPS!
Acne is not all about what you put ON your skin..But also what you put IN your body. Dairy is known to cause inflammation in the body which causes inflammation and acne on your face. Try to eat less dairy, and processed food/junk food if you notice that no topical products are working.
Wash your face with a gentle cleanser. We tend to think we have to use all kinds of medicated cleansers made for acne when we have skin issues, but that actually can cause more harm than good. Use a mild Face wash like Cerave, this way your face gets clean but it’s not completely stripped. “Squeaky Clean” is not always a good thing.
Just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Stay away from online trends that tell you to use Lemon/Lemon juice or Coconut Oil on your face. Lemon Juice is way too acidic for our skin barrier and can harm it. Coconut oil is extremely thick and pore clogging, it rates a 4 out of 5 on the comedogenic scale and should not ever be applied to your face unless you want to wake up to 50 brand new pimples. Always do your own in depth research or ask a Dermatologist.
If you do want to incorporate a skin care oil into your skincare regimen then you’ll want to do your research about which oils are not ranked high on the comedogenic scale. One of my favorite oils I add to my moisturizer in the winter without having any adverse effects is Grapeseed Oil. Not all oils will work the same for everyone though so this will involve some trial and error on your part.
Aways always always wear sunscreen! The sun can darken acne marks and hyperpigmentation quite a bit, to avoid this always have on a facial sunscreen that is at least an SPF 30 or 50. If most sunscreens break you out, then I recommend trying a physical mineral sunscreen which tends to be more natural and full of less harmful ingredients.
Exfoliate at least 2 times a week. Exfoliating gets rid of dead skin cells that build up on our skin and cause acne. If you exfoliate a few times a week you are essentially rubbing these dead skin cells off. Avoid Facial Scrubs with walnut or Apricot in them. Although they’re popular they actually make microscopic cuts in your skin making your scars much worse. Opt for a scrub with jojoba esters instead. The one I recommend is pretty cheap from my local target and is called “Three Times Sublime” by the brand Formula 10.0.6
Use a spot treatment each night to reduce the size of pimples overnight or completely get rid of them all together. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg on a fancy spot treatment at Sephora. What you can use is something most of us have around the house and that’s ASPIRIN! Aspirin is made up of Salicylic Acid which is a prominent acne fighting ingredient used in many acne medications. Simply put an Aspirin tablet in your palm get a few drops of water from the sink and saturate the tablet until you can mush it up into a paste. Apply this on the pimple and leave it on for as long as you can…I PROMISEEEEE it’ll be greatly reduced in size or COMPLETELY GONE!
Putting an Ice cube on a cystic (under the skin) pimple can reduce the redness and inflammation of a pimple tremendously. The cooling Ice cube should take away some of the raised appearance it has.
DO NOT PICK / POP YOUR PIMPLES! Picking your pimples prematurely can cause long-term and deep acne scars and pigmentation. The only time it is acceptable to pop a pimple is if a white head has formed at the top, and even with that, you want to make sure you do it in a clean safe way. Take two q-tips, dip them in hydrogen peroxide or Witchhazel and then push the q-tips together on both sides of the white head until you see the white puss come out. I personally rarely ever do this because even doing this can sometimes leave behind a scar…So I say, better to be safe than sorry!
The most cliche yet extremely true tip of all…DRINK LOTS OF WATER! Our bodies thrive off water! The less water you drink the more dehydrated your skin gets and the more wrinkles and blemishes you get! To prevent a dull complexion drink lots and lots of water! This will also help flush out toxins in your body which also helps to give you that clear complexion!
And that’s it! Now you have some different tips that can help out with your acne. I hope if you’re reading this and you do have acne you know that it’s not the end of the world! This is one small bump in the road (no pun intended) and you’re awesome and beautiful regardless of what’s on your face!