My skin has been particularly bad over the past number of months, and tbh at 27 I thought I was over the worst of it. I have been sporting loads of angry red sore spots, clogged pores, and the general look of congestion.
With so many products available it is very easy to get lost and come out the other side not having a clue what will work for you. Caroline Hirons blog has really opened my eyes on how to look after my skin, and sure I thought I was doing a great job up to now (hahahahah)!
I have been using foaming face washes for the last number of years, CH explains that these foaming face washes actually break down the armour of the skin making it the 'perfect breeding ground'. I was also avoiding oil as I thought this would just make the acne worse, but again CH explains how plant/natural oils are indeed good for the skin. Exfoliating was something I was avoiding as I had it in my head that I would just aggravate the skin and make it worse, CH tells us how to avoid those gritty exfoliants and use topical ones that contain glycolic and salicylic acid. Oh ye, you might also need a little supplement boost such as fish oils. Hydration was another hot topic on beauty blogs, your skin can be hydrated underneath its oily appearance.
So baring all the above in mind, and taking advice from the lovely ladies over on beaut.ie, the past two/three weeks (yes i know its a relatively short space of time) my skin has had a complete overhaul, and I can happily tell you with a mahoosive smile on my face that the skin on my face is nearly clear (touches wood x100 times). So here is what I have been doing/using to whip it in to shape:
Cleanser: Úna Brennan Vit C Skin Renew Cleansing Oil - rub about a 50c piece size of oil all over face then rinse with hot face cloth.
Toner: Eau Precise (A friend I met through beaut.ie was incredibly generous in sending me a sample size of this to try before I forked out, the kindness of strangers is incredible) - I don't think this is readily available in Ireland so I will probably switch it for the Clarins Exfoliating Toner or Paulas Choice when I run out.
Hydration: Hydralauron - use a pea sized amount of this and rub in all over face
Moisturiser: Olay Complete Defense SPF 15 - rubbing this all over face and on to neck
Cleanser: (as soon as I get in the door from work) - Clinque Take off the Day Balm - use a small amount and massage in to face - wash off with hot face cloth.
Toner: same as above
Oil: Trilogy Rosehip Oil - three drops rubbed in to chin and cheeks -review here
Moisturiser: Bia Beauty Skin Superfood - review here
Fish Oil Tablet: Boots Omega 3 Fish Oil 1000mg
WATER WATER WATER: drink pints of the stuff!!! (be prepared to wee every 20mins!)
Twice a week:
Exfoliator: Paula's Choice 8% AHA Gel Exfoliant - use 20c piece amount and rub in to face and neck, leave on. (the same lady sent me a sample size of this, again thank you so much)
Face masks 1. : Origins Out of Trouble - use this on the areas that need a bit of calming - rinse off with
Face Mask 2. : No. 7 Pore Vacuum Mask - I use about three days before/after the Origins one - I don't peel this off like the instructions say, I cleanse off with a hot face cloth, then follow with toner and trilogy oil.
The one thing I am missing, and will be getting by the end of week is SPF. SPF 15 is just not strong enough for my pasty Irish skin!
Ok so that's its in a nutshell. It might seem pretty extensive but the effort is most defiantly worth it.
I will do individual posts on each of the products mentioned above in the coming few weeks, but if you do have any questions on them, leave a comment below and I will answer as best I can.
If you like having a nose at peoples skin care routines, be sure to check out beaut.ie where the lovely Laura shares her step by step.
My next step is going to be a big change - giving up dairy. I have read so many articles on the negative effects dairy can have on the body/skin, I will update you as I go along.