10 Tips for Clear Skin Part 1

clear skin part 1

I never realized how much stress and anxiety my skin caused me until it went completely clear. To set the record straight, I am lucky enough to never have suffered from serious acne, but I had some bouts in my teenage years when a gigantic zit would rear its head in the most undesirable place possible, like smack dab in between the brows. Cute, right? Random red bumps also had a habit of appearing randomly along my chin and sometimes cheeks that were incredibly irritating to me. It seemed like no matter what I did, my skin was never perfectly clear. Fast forward a couple years and subtract a hefty wad of cash from my wallet and I finally have achieved clear skin. Now, I know not everyone has the same skin as me, and may have serious skin issues that require medication like Acutane, but here are the first set of tips that I’ve discovered along my skincare journey.

1.       Know what type of skin you have – Knowing if you have oily skin versus dry versus combination etc. is crucial at obtaining results. It will not only determine your tactics for clearing up the skin, but also what skincare and makeup products you should use as well. For example, if you have oily skin you will want to stay away from “dewy” foundation and stick to mattifying powders and foundations. Additionally, you would want to use gel-like textured moisturizers versus heavy creams.

2.       Stay away from mineral oil! – Mineral oil is a substance used in a lot of drugstore brand skincare since it is quite inexpensive. It’s similar to petroleum jelly in that it sits on top of the skin, without penetrating deep down into the pores. As a result, it clogs your pores and cause break outs instead of providing moisture, especially with sensitive skin. Aveeno is a great brand to use if you’re not trying to break the bank because of its drugstore prices and lack of mineral oil.

3.       It’s all about the moisture – At my young age (under 25), there’s really no need for anti-aging products. But, it’s incredibly important to keep the skin moisturized at all times. This will prevent dry patches on the face and with the right products, control your natural oils if you are an oily gal.

4.       Sunscreen! – Sun protection is an aspect of skincare that most people, especially young people, tend to overlook. Why apply yet another product when you won’t be out tanning? What you may not know is that the #1 cause of aging is sun damage! Additionally, harsh sun exposure can cause your skin to go all red and bumpy (I know from personal experience), and wearing an SPF of at least 15 at all times can easily prevent this.

5.       Stick to a routine – Skin is fussier than one might imagine, and in general, it doesn’t appreciate being a little experimental hamster. Once you find a skincare routine that works for you, stick to it! Constantly changing products will only fluster your skin, leaving it confused and broken out.

That’s it for part 1 ladies, hope you learned a few things. Part 2 will be up early next week!

My Winter Skincare Must-Haves

ImageEvery woman knows (or should know) that as the seasons change, so does her skin and therefore so should her skincare.  In the winter months we get drier, scalier skin that is constantly in need of heavy moisturizers, exfoliation and some general TLC due to both the cold and the dry air from heaters. In the warmer months our skin is often oilier so we need lighter and more refreshing products as well as lots of SPF.  Because it is currently -12 degrees out where I live and my skin (and my soul) feels like it’s dying, I’m sharing with you my winter skincare must-haves.

The first thing I notice when the weather begins to turn colder is that the skin on my body gets very dry, very fast. Dry as in rough with dead skin cells (yummy) and very itchy and scratchy. My first product in combating this terror is Soap & Glory Scrub ‘em and Leave ‘em Body Buff. I use this exfoliant in the shower as the very last step before I get out to exfoliate (slough off all the dead skin cells) as well as moisturize. Although it leaves my skin super smooth, my pesky sensitive skin needs more moisture to be satisfied. That’s when L’Occitane’s Shea Butter Ultra Rich Body Cream steps up to the plate. It’s packaged in a giant 7 oz. tub and smells absolutely delectable – a mixture of shea butter (it makes up 25% of the formula) and jasmine.  It immediately softens my skin and leaves it plump and nourished with moisture.

As far as my face goes, I switch from using Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser to L’Occitane Shea Cleansing Milk. At first I was skeptical about using a “cleansing milk” on my face – would it leave a weird film on my skin? Would it actually clean my face? However, it not only cleans my face impeccably, but also provides extra moisture to the skin. The beauty of this product is that you don’t need water to use it; you just massage it all over your face and can wipe it off with a washcloth or cotton pad.  Water can actually be very drying to your skin (every notice how dry your hands are after you wash them?) so by eliminating the exposure of your face to water, your skin avoid becoming extra dry. As far as a face cream goes, I stick with my good ole Ponds Dry Skin Cream. It may not be the most luxurious, expensive face cream out there, but it does the job just fine. It’s thick and rich and my face just adores it.

One last winter must-have for me is Lush Mint Julips, a lip scrub that leaves your lips soft and properly exfoliated (an important step before applying lipstick). I forgot to bring this home over winter break and boy was it missed.

What are your winter skincare must-haves?