Breakouts can wreck your confidence and self-esteem. Even if you’re lucky enough to have few blemishes through your teenage years, acne can strike at any time as an adult.
At a time when you feel like you should be able to stop worrying about pimples and bad skin, your journey might be only just starting. Getting breakouts sucks at any time, but you can feel especially alone and self-conscious as an adult.
While there might not be any specific magical treatment or overnight cure, there are different strategies to help minimize breakouts when they happen.
Check out some of our tips for getting clearer skin.
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- Take off your make up every day – without fail
This is sometimes easy to ignore but it’s one you can’t skip, ever. Having breakouts can be a vicious circle, you put more makeup on to cover your skin, but then adding layers of cosmetics can block and irritate your skin further.
No matter how tired you are at the end of each day, it’s crucial to go to bed with clean skin. I swear by make-up removing wipes for times when I’m feeling lazy. Although it’s best to be gentle and not scrub, I always go over my skin a couple more times than I think I need to, just to make sure all traces of make-up are completely gone. I like the ‘Simple’ brand for wipes that don’t contain a lot of perfumes and added ingredients.
- Use a gentle cleanser
Once your make-up is removed, use a gentle cleanser like Cetaphil. There are all kinds of expensive cleansers and fancy washes but this drugstore find is one of the best, and has no irritating ingredients.
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There are lots of astringents that are sometimes recommended for acne-prone skin, but, although it’s tempting to throw everything you can at a breakout, gentler is usually better so that your skin isn’t irritated or inflamed further.
- Try sleeping on silk
Silk pillowcases are said to keep moisture on our faces rather than stripping it out as other fabrics can, plus being made from natural fibers, they’re less likely to cause irritation or allergies. While it’s still not absolutely proven, a silk pillowcase might be worth a shot to see if it helps your skin and I love using mine.
If you can’t get a silk pillowcase, make sure to wash your pillowcases often. Change them at least once a week, but even better would be every day or two.
- Wash make-up brushes and sponges regularly
Germs and dirt will make themselves thoroughly at home on gunk-laden make-up brushes and sponges, especially when they’re left for weeks at a time. Keeping them clean is a must for avoiding breakouts. At least once a week, be sure to wash them either with a specialist brush cleanser or just some baby shampoo and let them air-dry overnight.
- Don’t touch your face
This might be a difficult habit to get into at first, but the more you can avoid touching your face at all, the better to keep dirt at bay.
- Schedule make-up free days
For me, it was tough to go without make-up when my skin was at its worst – even at home. If you’re a make-up addict, however, give your skin a chance to breathe for 24 hours with a make-up free day at least once a week.
- Switch your foundation and opt for non-comedogenic products
Sometimes, irritating cosmetic formulations can be the culprit, especially if your acne appeared from nowhere. Change foundation and powder brands for a month or two to see if the problem improves. When shopping, choose products labeled ‘non-comedogenic’ which means they shouldn’t block pores.
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- Avoid stress
Easier said than done when your skin is out of control and driving you crazy, but stress never made anything better. Make time for relaxation and keep a diary to see if your skin problems are linked to stressful events. Record what happens to your skin for at least three months, to see if there are triggers such as hormones or stress
The Morning Sidekick Journal – Habit Tracker
- Try a zinc supplement (but don’t overdo it)
Studies have shown that acne sufferers are often deficient in zinc, so a supplement could help. Zinc picolinate is the most easily absorbed form of zinc and it doesn’t have side effects. Aim for a dosage of 15mg-30mg a day to see if it makes a difference to your skin.
Why is zinc so good at fighting acne? It’s anti-inflammatory, it’s an antioxidant and it fights acne-causing bacteria. I’ve tried a zinc supplement and found really good results with it. You do have to be careful not to overdo it, however, as too much zinc can be toxic, check with a pharmacist or your doctor if you are unsure of how much to take.
Try this: Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes
Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes
Try this: Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser
Try this: Alaska Bear Natural Silk Pillowcase
Alaska Bear Natural Silk Pillowcase
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Eco Tools Brush Shampoo
Makeup Brush Cleaning Mat
Makeup Brush Drying Tower
Also try this: Anti-stress Scalp Massager
Anti-stress Scalp Massager
Try this: Solgar Zinc Picolinate
Solgar Zinc Picolinate
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