A clear skin routine delivers results - getting clear skin may seem impossible, especially if you feel you've tried everything.
BUT for some, it can literally be just one change they never thought of which finally clears their pores or stops their breakouts.
See if one of the tips below works for you, and enjoy clear skin!
1. Use a cleanser with salicylic acid - this dissolves oil, dead skin cells and rebalances oil production - your skin will continue to improve with use. Massage for at least 30secs, especially at night to remove make up, sunscreen and the day's grime.
2. Rinse your cleanser off well by splashing your face with cool water a number of times. This increases circulation and is just down right refreshing! (For more important cleansing tips see this page).
3. At night, follow with a light 'peel' exfoliator such as salicylic (best for acne) or glycolic acid (best for aging or dull skin). This not only removes any remaining dirt or oily, but actively dissolves dead skin cells and unblocks pores to keep your skin clear and fresh.
4. Always use a light moisturizer to keep skin balanced. Keep in mind that while creams and lotions with fancy ingredients are nice, the main goal of a moisturizer for acne should be to rebalance and protect. Leave the specific treatments to other parts of your routine.
5. Use a non-comedogenic sunscreen daily. The sun causes inflammation deep within your skin and can be a major cause of breakouts, blackheads and oil (not to mention the aging effect!). A physical block that contains zinc oxide is less irritating on skin. Plus, zinc is has anti inflammatory and anti microbal properties which have been shown to be effective for acne (source)
6. You mind find your skin is not only oily but also dull and 'thick' looking. The right exfoliation will reduce oil, clear dead skin cells and improve your skin's look and health over the long term - especially important if you suffer from adult acne when you're dealing with breakouts and anti aging concerns
7. I'm not a fan of harsh gritty scrubs and exfoliators - they are too irritating for skin and can cause inflammation which leads to more oiliness, breakouts, and micro damage that manifests as enlarged pores or broken capillaries.
8. Instead, the best exfoliator for acne is salicylic acid which dissolves oil and dead skin cells, evenly. Used consistently it will remove and prevent blackheads, refine pores and improve the health of your skin long term.
9. The easiest and safest way to use an exfoliator like salicylic acid is as a treatment after cleansing. A topical product with 2% salicylic acid applied like a toner works wonders and is the best way to get your skin accustomed to using it (it will be drying for the first week or 2)
10. If your skin is accustomed to acids fortnightly light peels are a great idea. The stronger intensity of a peel works like a kickstart in clearing your skin. For best results you will need to perform them consistently every 2 - 3 weeks. (See this page for details and how-to)
11. Active treatment masks twice a week should be added to any good clear skin routine. These will provide anti inflammatory actions plus deep cleansing benefits. Our new Clearing Clay Mask detoxes, purifies, calms and smoothes. Check it out here >>>
12. Keep your pillowcase clean (ideally change it every 1 or 2 nights). Oil, sweat, hair products and last night's moisturizer all provide a pore clogging player for ready-to-form pimples while you sleep.
13. Same goes for your bath towel - I like to use a clean face cloth to dry my face and use it ONLY for my face, changing every 2 days. You might be surprised at the difference having a 'face only' towel can make!
14. If your acne is particularly stubborn, take heed of this tip - Using unclean makeup applicators and brushes is simply asking for dirt and bacteria to affect your skin. Spritz them with alcohol after every use, or apply alcohol to a tissue and wipe.
Guys - keep your razors in a jar with alcohol or wipe the blades (carefully!) before each use. You might be surprised at the difference this tip can make.
15. Regularly clean your mobile phone with alcohol wipes. Very simple but you might be (unpleasantly) surprised how much grime is on them! Plus, avoid touching your face as much as possible for the same reason.
16. Consider taking vitamins and supplements which are hard to get through diet alone. Fish oil (omega 3) is my number 1 recommendation for a beautiful complexion. Zinc, B Vitamins and Biotion can also be very beneficial. Speak to your doctor about making them a part of your daily clear skin routine.
17. Sweat is good! There's no better way to clear pores and detox your skin. Exercise for a sweat daily - 15mins is enough to start. And/or have regular saunas or steams. They're also extremely relaxing which just makes life better :)