There is nothing worse than waking up and seeing a giant zit on your face. We’ve all been there: breakouts. PMS, the stress of “I have a 10-page paper due in 48 hours that I haven’t started,” and the plain forgetting to take off your makeup moment.
Every woman wants that picture-perfect skin and the feel-good beauty of having a flawless look. We all have those phases where our skin just doesn’t look its best. At some point, we all have bought into the overnight skin transformations that never quite fulfill the hefty promises of clearing your skin fast. That promise to clear your breakout in 12 hours with a spot treatment was a pretty good marketing tool, wasn’t it?
Although I’ve never had a severe problem with breakouts, I’ve tried my fair share of skin-clearing products over the years for those stubborn breakouts. What I realized is that skin clearing products don’t work on their own if you aren’t helping the process along throughout your daily routine. Here are some great tips on how to keep your skin looking its best, day or night! Let the countdown to clear skin begin!
1. Drink water
I can’t stress this enough. Water is your best friend. Have you ever seen someone cleanse their pores with Diet Pepsi? Didn’t think so. Your body needs water to flush foreign materials, toxins, and dirt out. In terms of clearing your skin, your pores rely on water to not only to flush out dirt but to stay hydrated. The more hydrated your body stays, the less likely it is that your pores will be exposed to outside forces and the more likely it is that your skin will appear full and refreshed on a regular basis. Don’t enjoy water? Try adding Mio or Dasani Water Enhancer for some flavor!
2. Watch your diet
Did you know that dairy products and sugars stimulate oil production in your glands and pores? Skim down on the dairy products to avoid the pesky hormones (fat-stored), and avoid excessive amounts of fats and sugars, as those are packed with carbohydrates that can cause premature aging and wrinkles. To adjust your diet for healthier, clearer skin, stick to lean proteins like fish and grilled chicken or fruits and vegetables that are jam-packed with antioxidants like oranges (Vitamin-C is PERFECT for skin health) and berries (full of antioxidants to reverse dehydration and provide collagen to skin cells and pores to help your skin towards that plumping effect).
3. Wear sunscreen
Remember how irritated you used to get when your parents insisted you use sunscreen? Turns out their advice was pretty legit. UVA and UVB rays can cause premature aging and skin cancer (with over-exposure). It is much easier to prevent that damage with a lather of sunscreen than it is to heal a peeling sunburn. I like using Neutrogena Clear Face Liquid Lotion Sunscreen because it’s built to not only protect you from UVA and UVB rays but also keeps your skin clear.
I know my pores look HUGE when they aren’t clean. The key to clearing that out is not only washing your face but exfoliating. Exfoliating clears out all of the dead skin cells, dirt, and oil that facial cleansers alone might not be able to reach. Aveeno Positively Radiant daily facial scrub has microbeads and additional soy extract to brighten and even out your skin tone. I just started using this a few months ago, and the results of long term use are awesome. Just after the first week or two, I could definitely see the difference in my skin tone and texture. It just feels all-around healthy! Another thing I like to use at least once a week is a homemade exfoliating scrub. Mix one part warm water with dry oats (oatmeal) and honey for the perfect oil-free exfoliating scrub. I like to add a few drops of lavender to soothe any redness or inflammation just from scrubbing the top layer of your face.
5. Wash your face twice a day
When you wake up in the morning, your face likely has some dirt and oil build up from sleeping on your pillow and sheets. Regardless of how clean they may smell or feel, there’s always a little something left there. It’s crucial to wash your face in the morning of that buildup; otherwise, the excess during the day will only pack on to that. Washing at night is just as important, especially after clearing off any makeup. Neutrogena’s Nourishing Night Cream is a great way to settle your skin after a long day on the go.
6. Strip it clean: Taking off makeup is VERY IMPORTANT
While makeup has us feeling pretty for a few hours during the day, leaving it on overnight just because you are tired is just asking for a war on your face. Not only will it clog your pores, but it also has a tendency to dry out your skin (since it can’t really breathe much under there). I personally don’t like liquid makeup removers; there’s a cleaning astringent in a lot of those that seem to dry out the skin. I use Neutrogena Naturals makeup remover cleansing cloths (or Neutrogena Night Calming makeup remover towelettes). Either one works great for clearing both face and eye makeup.
7. Use a primer before any foundation
I’ve found that using Almay Smart Shade Skin Perfecting Primer before applying any foundation or cream really fills out my skin and evens out its tone. It’s kind of acts like an extra protective layer for your pores before putting makeup on as well. Another really great benefit of using a primer on your face is that it adds the plumping effect to your skin; in doing this, you not only leave a clean, even surface for any foundation you may be using, but you also get an even glow and smaller pores. Win-win situation!
8. Liquid Foundation vs. BB or CC Cream?
ALWAYS check the labels on the foundation you are using on your skin. So many cosmetic companies claim to have oil free products, but some of the components in liquid foundations have oils in them. Matte foundations have always dried my skin out. After years of struggling to not only find the right shades but also worrying about over-dried or oil-clogged pores, I finally ditched the liquid foundation for Revlon BB Cream. With SPF 30 in it, as well as a moisturizing agent, it has really worked miracles on my skin texture and literally makes it as soft as a baby’s butt.
9. Get enough sleep
Wrinkles and bags under your eyes are the result of those late nights studying or partying. Getting enough sleep means a rejuvenated face from the increased skin cell production/renewal, and it adds a little hint of color to your face. No one likes looking washed out. Health professionals recommend at least 8 hours of sleep a night to keep your body at its best.
10. Stop using make up sponges, or make sure you clean them at least
If you’re going to apply makeup with a facial sponge, at least make sure that you clean them regularly or switch them out daily. With using a BB cream, I just wash my hands thoroughly first and apply by hand. Years of makeup sponges was not only costly but somewhat gross for me. Think of how many times one makeup sponge goes over your skin. Not a pretty picture, is it?
For more tips on healthy skin and where you can buy some of the best skin regimens, check out In Style. They had a great article out with a ton of different ways to love the skin you’re in. Your skin can be your best feature, so take care of it!
Featured Image Via Katy Perry