Do you suffer from acne and pimples? If so, you’ve probably spent countless dollars on acne creams and gels that promise to help clear your skin. The bad news is you’re probably wasting your money. The good news is, there are ways to prevent future breakouts that won’t cost you a penny.
Acne breakouts often occur because of changes you’ve made to your daily routine. Maybe you’ve started using a different laundry detergent, shampoo, face cream or soap. These are often the biggest culprits of an acne breakout.
If you want to keep your skin clear and radiant, avoid breakouts by following these simple tips:
21 Tips To Prevent Acne & Keep Your Skin Clear, Smooth, and Healthy.
1. Use over-the-counter acne treatment products with caution.
A topical acne treatment product typically contains an antibacterial benzoyl peroxide ingredient or salicylic acid. These acne treatment components, especially when used in combination, are very effective, so use a small amount to begin, and slowly increase or decrease the quantity used depending on your skin's reaction. If you have sensitive skin, use these ingredients with caution -- they may cause redness when used in excess. You may also use
2. Start using serum.
"It's much more concentrated than cream or lotion, so you tend to only need a small amount daily to see results," says Fran Cook-Bolden, Director of New York's Skin Specialty Dermatology. Look for one with antioxidants, the skin's major defense against free radicals and stress, and pentapeptides, which are a must-have when it comes to boosting collagen, the support structure that gives skin a firm, youthful appearance. Don't worry about spending a fortune on the ingredients; one of my favorites is
3. Moisturize your skin.
It's not uncommon for acne treatment products to utilize anti sebum ingredients that dry out the skin. As counterintuitive as it may seem, moisturizing is an important part of an effective acne treatment. Not all moisturizers are alike, so be sure to choose wisely. Moisturizers should reduce dryness, peeling, and irritation, but they shouldn't lead to clogged pores. Light, gel based moisturizers works well on oily skin, and cream based moisturizers can be used by
4. Minimize makeup use.
It's the catch-22. Individuals with pimples and acne scarring want to hide behind makeup, but makeup can worsen existing acne. Not fair, right? If you are suffering from a breakout then try to avoid makeup that covers common problem areas. This may mean staying clear of foundations, powders or blushes. If you still decide to wear makeup, cleanse the skin before you go to bed. Try to use oil-free cosmetics which don't include added dyes or chemicals. The ingredients found in makeup should be found on product labels.
5. Choose hair products carefully.
Believe it or not, the products you use on your hair can affect facial acne. It's best to avoid hair products with added fragrances, oily ingredients and harsh chemicals. These ingredients can drip down and block the skin pores. In addition to using a acne treatment, reduce breakouts by using gentle shampoos and conditioners. Another solution to keep hair products from affecting your skin is keeping long hair off the face by pulling it back into a ponytail or braid.
6. Clean your skin daily.
Regardless of whether you have acne or not, it's important to keep your skin clean and reduce the oil buildup on its surface. Washing your face every day will rid your skin of impurities, dead skin cells and excess sebum. Be attentive to the way you clean your face. Massage it gently, and rinse it with warm water. Using harsh cleaning products can cause redness and skin irritation.
7. Wash twice a day and after sweating.
Perspiration, especially when wearing a hat or helmet, can make acne worse, so
8. Use your fingertips to apply a gentle, non-abrasive cleanser.
Using a washcloth, mesh sponge or anything else can irritate the skin.
9. Be gentle with your skin.
Use gentle products, such as those that are alcohol-free. Do not use products that irritate your skin, which may include astringents, toners and exfoliants. Dry, red skin makes acne appear worse.
10. Scrubbing your skin can make acne worse.
Avoid the temptation to scrub your skin.
11. Rinse with lukewarm water.
12. Shampoo regularly.
If you have oily hair, shampoo daily.
13. Don't touch your face.
This tip is pretty obvious, but it's important, so let's reiterate it. Do not touch your face or rest your face in your hands. Pressing against skin cells can spread bacteria and irritate skin that is already experiencing acne, irritation, and pain. And never pick at your pimples with fingers. Puncturing the skin with your fingers is not a good acne treatment plan. It can lead to infection and may make your breakouts worse. Leave the treatment to our cleanser products.
14. Avoid the sun.
You might be having fun in the sun, but the same can't be said for your skin. The sun's rays can accelerate acne and increase inflammation. Some acne treatment products even heighten the skin's sensitivity to sunlight. If you're outside, you should always wear sunscreen. By choosing sunscreen that is non comedogenic, you can also reduce pore clogging and minimize acne.
15. Stay out of the sun and tanning beds.
Tanning damages you skin. In addition, some acne medications make the skin very sensitive to ultraviolet (UV) light, which you get from both the sun and indoor tanning devices.
Using tanning beds increases your risk for melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, by 75 percent.
16. Eat sensibly.
Unless you smear your face with fries -- and we certainly hope that you won't -- fatty foods will probably not trigger outbreaks. Nevertheless, foods that contain plenty of vitamins and minerals will provide you and your skin with vital nutrients. Some research suggests that foods that are rich in vitamin A and beta-carotene can improve the health of your skin. Examples of skin healthy foods include carrots, sweet potatoes, cantaloupe, apricots, kale and spinach, all of which have a high vitamin A content. Make sure to fill your diet with these goodies.
17. Regular exercise.
Daily exercise is great way to maintain your overall health. While working out doesn't exactly reduce oil production, it does reduce stress and enhances blood flow, contributing to other acne treatment regimens. Just make sure to wear the proper clothing when you work out. Stay clear of hats, goggles or helmets that can induce excess sweat. Also, remember to shower after exercising to clear sweat away and keep your pores clear.
Just the thought of having to relax may stress you out. Plus, how can you relax when your skin is inflamed and you have acne scars? Well, it's certainly easier said than done, but do your best to chill out. Some studies indicate that there is a strong association between acne and stress. So visit a friend, take your dog for a walk, do some yoga -- whatever works best for you. Relaxation can be a form of acne treatment, and if you can master the mind, your skin may follow.
19. Let your skin heal naturally.
If you pick, pop or squeeze your acne, your skin will take longer to clear and you increase the risk of getting acne scars.
20. Keep your hands off your face.
Touching your skin throughout the day can cause flare-ups.
21. Clean your makeup brushes.
A British study found that 72% of women never wash their brushes or sponges, even though they harbor dirt and bacteria which can cause breakouts. "You should wash loose powder brushes every two to three weeks, and those used to apply foundation once a week," says Jessica Wu, an LA-based dermatologist and author of Feed Your Face. Mix a couple of drops of gentle facial cleanser or shampoo and lukewarm water in a cup, swish your brushes around, rinse with lukewarm water, pat dry, and lay flat to air dry.
Consult a dermatologist if:
- Your acne makes you shy or embarrassed.
- The products you've tried have not worked.
- Your acne is leaving scars or darkening your skin.
Today, virtually every case of acne can be successfully treated. Dermatologists can help treat existing acne, prevent new breakouts and reduce your chance of developing scars. If you have questions or concerns about caring for your skin, you should make an appointment to see a dermatologist.