I've been getting asked this question so often lately that I felt it was time I write a post on it! While everyone's skin is different and will respond to the same routines in unique ways, below are my top recommendations for acne-prone skin. Tip: Play around with different routines until you find the right one for you. What works for me or someone you know, might not work for you, even if they have a similar skin type. Take the time to learn your skin; and know, that as the seasons change, so will you and so should your skincare regime ;)
What is Acne?
Acne is the result of clogged pores and excessive sebum production. Our skin cells typically die and shed every 3-4 weeks; however, with acne-prone skin, instead of shedding, dead cells get clogged in our pores, trapping in dirt, oil, and bacteria.
What to Avoid
- Mineral Oils + Petroleum: Both of these are pore-clogging, which will only lead to more breakouts! They are also super drying.
- Alcohol-based Ingredients + Other Harsh Chemicals: These will only dry you out, which is not the goal, even with oily skin. Think about it: if your skin is too dry, it will cause your skin cells to produce more oil, which will result in more clogged pores and acne, and the never-ending cycle will continue.
- Hydration: Contrary to popular belief, if you have oily/acne-prone skin, you still want to avoid cleansers and moisturizers that will dry you out. And, it's still just as important to keep your skin hydrated (remember: excessive oil doesn't necessarily equal hydration!) The key is to use a moisturizer that causes sebum-producing cells to shut down.
- Plant-based Oils: I recommend organic Argan oil as it tricks your skin into making less sebum and helps clean out your pores. It also helps reduce the appearance of acne-related scars. Simply apply as you would your normal moisturizer. This absorbs quickly so you won't even notice a trace of oil ;) Tip: Make sure to exfoliate your skin with a natural soap or face scrub before moisturizing to cleanse your pores and remove excess dirt and oils. I recommend this one.
- Note: It can take a few weeks for your skin to adjust to new products so it's normal to notice breakouts, bumps, etc., initially. This is the argan oil doing its job (aka: all that clogged gunk is finally being released!). So while it may seem like your skin is getting worse, it will actually start to improve once you get through this phase.
- Change Your Pillowcases Often: This helps decrease the spread of acne-causing bacteria and excess oils.
- Diet: Skin health is affected by inner health. I always say you are what you put onto your skin, but you are also what you eat so be sure to avoid processed sugars and foods that can trigger more breakouts.
- Sleep: Increased stress can cause our hormones to fluctuate, which can result in oil imbalances and thus more breakouts. Make time to destress daily and catch those zzz’s!
- Herbal Steam: This is great for those of you with mild cases of acne or occasional outbreaks. Steaming helps open up our pores allowing clogged dirt and oils to be released. Plus it's super relaxing! I recommend this one.
What are your favorite acne remedies? Share them in the comments below!
Love + Light,