I don’t know if there is anything more frustrating than adult acne. I mean, I went through high school with clear, blemish-free skin, and as soon as I hit 18 or 19 I started having awful breakouts! What a blow to your self-esteem, am I right?
Thankfully, I’ve started to figure out how to manage my skin, aside from the areas I can’t control, like stress and medication. Figuring out the right skin care routine for you is so important, because what works for your best friend or your sister won’t necessarily work for you. Read on for 5 Steps to improve your skin.
STEP 1: IDENTIFY YOUR SKIN TYPE
Why is this important? Because in order to figure out what your skin needs to be clear and healthy, you need to know what your skin type and specific concerns are. This guide can help you determine what type of skin you have, if you aren’t sure. My skin type is combination and sensitive – I know my main concerns are oiliness (mostly in the t-zone), acne, and redness. Any harsh products are a no-go for me, because I know they can make my sensitive skin flare up and leave with me with dry, itchy cheeks and an overproduction of oil in the t-zone. If you have dry skin, you may be concerned about wrinkles or lack of elasticity as well as (obviously…) dry and flaky skin.
STEP 2: USE THE RIGHT PRODUCTS
Now that you know what type of skin you have, you need to find the right products for you. I recently tried a serum that was specified for “dry and extra dry skin” (not me) but I really liked the ingredients in it and wanted it to work for me…. but after a week of using this serum once or twice a day started producing waaaay too much oil and breaking out. Go figure. If you have dry skin, this means using heavier creams and moisturizers to keep moisture in, a hydrating or anti-aging serum, and a very gentle cleanser. For combo/oily skin like me, this means you can use a cleanser and a scrub to help keep oil and acne away, as well as sticking to oil-free moisturizers and clarifying or brightening serums. I do try to avoid salicylic acid as I find it just dries me out and doesn’t help with acne, but if you struggle with acne, it’s worth a try to see if it works for your skin.
STEP 3: ANALYZE YOUR DIET
Various skin problems, like acne and aging skin, can be attributed to diet. Sugar is known to accelerate aging skin by damaging collagen and also causes inflammation in the body that can lead to acne. Dairy is also believed to be linked to acne. How often do your friends (or you, yourself) complain about breakouts after eating pizza or notice a reduction of breakouts when they clean up their diet? Cutting out dairy and sugar, or even doing an elimination diet to find your specific acne triggers, can be a great way to get some relief from breakouts.
Now that you know what you might need to cut out of your diet, what should you think about adding? Healthy fats, like avocado, coconut, and nuts! If you’re suffering from dry skin, it could be a sign you need to add more healthy fats into your diet. Essential fatty acids (omega-3 and omega-6) may also help reduce the inflammation that causes acne.
STEP 4: SUPP IT UP
Meaning, supplements, of course! Supplements can be a great addition to your skincare routine because, as we all know sometimes, it can be challenging to get all your nutrients in from diet alone. I use two scoops of collagen powder in my coffee in the morning, more so as a preventative measure as I’m getting to the age where my collagen production is slowing down. Did you know that collagen makes up over 70% of the protein in your skin? As you age, your body stops producing as much collagen, which is where a supplement comes in. Collagen makes skin appear more elastic and helps it lock in moisture, as well as reducing the appearance of wrinkles. Who doesn’t need that?
I also take Olly’s Vibrant Skin gummy vitamins every morning. They contain collagen and hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is excellent at helping the skin retain moisture. It is also believed to help reduction of wrinkles. I’ve been taking them a little over a month and haven’t noticed a huge difference, but I believe that the good stuff is working from the inside out, and it takes a little while to reap the benefits, so I’ll keep it up with those and see how it goes 🙂
STEP 5: BE CONSISTENT
Now that you know what you need to do and what products to buy, the most important thing is consistency. If you’re using products that will be working hard on your skin, but only use them twice a week? It’s going to take a looong time to reap the benefits. As with exercise, consistency is key.
Do you have any advice for how to get your best skin, or any holy grail products or supps you recommend? Let me know in the comments!