Getting Clear Skin
For some of us, clear skin has always been something that comes easy, something that you don’t even have to think about. Some people can get clear skin just by using the cheapest, most un-acne friendly skin care products, and not washing their face every night. However, getting clear skin for those that are like me has been a lifetime challenge.
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Everyone is different when it comes to their skin type, and for those of us that have oily and acne prone skin due to hormonal imbalances, acne becomes a lifetime battle, and those victories where we achieve that clear skin are all that much more savored when they happen.
While it is true that some are just genetically more predisposed to having a clear complexion, everyone should adhere to a few finer points of skin care that will enhance anyones skin and clear up breakouts when they do occur.
The cardinal rules of clear skin aren’t just for those that suffer excess sebum excretion, but for everyone since even those that aren’t too prone to acne can suffer from dull, drab and lifeless skin if they don’t adhere to these rules.
You should never take naturally pristine skin for granted, you should always nurture it with the healthiest and most fitting products for your skin type, because this is the skin you’re in for life, and it responds well to better treatment and kinder products.
One of the first things I love to do to pamper my skin and help it to maintain that fresh glow and clarity is something that is very simple and also something that is extremely
healthful for anyone to do, even if their primary goal is not healthy looking skin.
It is drinking lemon water. It’s just purified water with a few squeezes of natural fresh lemon juice. You can’t use bottled lemon juice, it must be fresh as the bottled stuff doesn’t retain the lemon’s most precious and valuable vitamins and nutrients, all of which are excellent as “internal scrubbers” and purifiers.
Lemons are also a very alkalinizing fruit, and drinking lemon water helps counterbalance any excess acidity in the body, which helps clear up acne. Just try drinking purified water with lemon in it a few times a day and you should see an improvement in your skin in anywhere from a few days to a few weeks, depending on how consistent you are with it.
You can also add a little bit of organic apple cider vinegar and get similar results, however I believe lemon juice is the better option since I’ve personally had better results with it.
Another tip for clear skin is to avoid caffeine as much as you possibly can, along with any other stimulant which activates the central nervous system.
Activating the central nervous system in an artificial way like this actually throws the hormones out of whack, and this is what can cause you to break out if you drink excessive caffeinated beverages or even take certain supplements with volatile stimulants in them. Hormonal acne treatments are especially helpful for people who easily experience hormonal imbalance.
I know mature adult women who don’t really have an acne problem, but they drink a lot of caffeine and their skin is very rough because of it. You should notice a smoothing of the skin and less irritation and acne if you have acne and are a big consumer of caffeine or stimulants, once you cut them out completely or cut them down dramatically.
You won’t believe how much less prone your skin is to inflammation if you cut down or cut out caffeine.
The same goes for sugar of the refined nature. It has the same inflammatory affect on the skin, and cutting it out of the diet not only benefits the skin immensely, it has numerous other health implications as well. Of course I speak of refined sugars, not the natural healthy sugars that are found in raw fruit and even some veggies.
Now, while we’re still on dietary guidelines to getting clear skin, let’s talk about another important nutrient that I feel helps clear and maintain a calm, clear complexion. I believe that omega 3 fats play a role in keeping skin supple, moist and glowing.
If you don’t like fish, which is rich in omega 3 fats, then you can get these fats in your diet by eating ground flax seed, a popular vegetarian choice for getting these healthy, fortifying fats in the diet, or enjoy a snack of almonds.
One of my favorite ways to get omega 3′s into my diet is by enjoying avocados. Some worry about their fat content, but when you eat half an avocado, it’s only about 100 calories, and it seems to fill you up forever. It also has an abundance of other acne vitamins and minerals that are immensely important to the clarity and suppleness of your skin.
Now, let’s talk about the external rules to getting clear skin. You have to choose your skin care products very wisely. There are a lot of individuals, who through no fault of their own, have been using the wrong types of products for their particular skin type their whole lives, and they wonder why their skin seems to be too dry, too red, too irritated, or too oily all the time.
If you tend to get very oily, to where you can see the sheen of oil on your t zone, that magical area of the nose, the chin and the forehead, several times a day, then you know you have oily skin.
Since most of you reading this are in that group, like me, we are going to talk about the right products and the right care for your skin that will get you the best results. I like to use cleansers with salicylic acid in them.
Not only is it non drying and non irritating to most skin, but it also is a sloughing agent, which means it helps gently slough off dead skin cells, which often deposit themselves in the pores and stick to the sebum, which forms both blackheads and whiteheads, the bain of the acne sufferer’s existence.
You have to be absolutely religious about washing your face gently, in warm, never hot, water every morning and every night, or else you are leaving your skin wide open to irritation and acne formation.
Always splash a bit of cold water on the face when you’re done washing it. This helps to seal the pores and prevent debris from getting in there and forming postules of acne. If you don’t splash cold water, than use a toner, preferably alcohol free, which is supposed to seal off the pores to keep them clear.
Use a very lightweight moisturizer during the day, and avoid any products that contain heavy mineral oils, petroleum or petrolatum based ingredients, or paraben. These are all harsh ingredients that are not clear-skin-friendly.
Make sure you use a light but effective layer of sunscreen infused acne-safe moisturizer during the day. I love to use a combination of products at night for the renewal of my skin, including one with a retinol and one with a peptide.
I layer this stuff on generously at night, as this is when the skin repairs and renews itself, plus the retinol is a great exfoliating and renewing agent, but it is inactivated in the sunlight, so products with this ingredient are only effective when used at night.