Thursday, March 30, 2017

What Saved My Skin + My Current Skincare Routine

I am a firm believer in that taking care of your skin is just as important as eating healthy and exercising. Your skin is the largest organ on your body and if you don't take care of it, you might regret it later in life and you may even be faced with health problems. Before I talk about the products that help keep my skin in check, let me first discuss my skin's background and history. 

Throughout middle school and high school, I had to deal with pretty severe acne. I tried tons of over the counter skincare regimens such as Proactiv and AcneFree, but nothing worked. I finally started seeing a dermatologist who prescribed me oral acne medication and a topical acne gel. I used those for about a year and my skin cleared up enough to the point where I didn't need the medication anymore. 

Although my acne breakouts calmed down a lot, I was left with a decent amount of scarring. On top of that, I have pretty oily skin and large pores. It took me quite awhile, but I think I've finally found the products that really help my skin. Some of these products are on the pricey side, but it is well worth it for the results they deliver.

My A.M. Routine

1. I wash my face using my hands and the Aveeno Positively Radiant Brightening Cleanser. I love this cleanser because it makes my skin feel clean and really smooth. 
2. Before I apply my makeup, I use the Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Gel. Gel  based moisturizers are ideal for those with oily skin, and I've been using this one for years. It gives my skin the moisture it needs without overdoing it and making my oily skin worse. 

My morning routine is very simple and short. I usually don't have a ton of time in the morning, so I only use the bare essentials. However, my night routine is slightly more extensive.

My P.M. Routine

1. I remove my makeup using the Clinique Take The Day Off Cleansing Oil. Most oil based makeup removers make me breakout, but fortunately this one doesn't do that at all. It does an amazing job of taking all of my makeup off.
2. I use my Clarisonic Mia2 when washing my face at night. The Clarisonic is a skin cleansing system that gently, yet deeply cleanses the skin, and removes six times more makeup and dirt than manual cleansing. I have recognized a huge difference in my skin after using this for the past 2 years. You need to replace the brush head every 3 months, and I usually use the Deep Pore and Acne ones. 
The face cleanser I use every night is the Biore Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser. This product does a really great job at getting deep down and removing all of the left over makeup, dirt, and oil in my pores. I have found that charcoal based products help clear up and keep away any breakouts. 
3. After I wash my face, I will use some sort of mask. Lately, I have really been loving the Dr. Dennis Gross Clarifying Colloidal Sulfur Mask. It specifically targets acne, oiliness, and redness. I will use this about 3 times a week and I usually leave this on my skin for about 10 minutes and rinse it off. If my skin is in a really bad spot, I will leave this mask on overnight and rinse it off in the morning. The first time I used this, I had a pretty bad breakout. I left it on overnight and in the morning, the redness had diminished a lot and my acne spots had decreased more than half of their size! I highly recommend this product to anyone with skin concerns similar to mine. 
3. After I rinse off my mask/wash my face, I will then apply a toner using a cotton round. My absolute favorite is the Kate Somerville Clarifying Treatment Toner. This toner acts as a treatment to fight acne breakouts and keep oiliness at bay. It also claims to lighten discoloration from acne scarring (yes please!). Toners are essential because they help balance the ph levels in your skin.
4. If my skin is feeling sightly drier than usual, I will use my Clinique moisturizer following the toner. 

And there you have it. I have found that this regimen really helps my skin and I have noticed that my acne scarring is diminishing more and more over time. I am still not 100% happy with how my skin looks, but I have come a really long way and I know that it will only get better If I keep up with my regimen. Obviously my skincare routine won't work for everyone, but hopefully it gives you some idea of how to take care of your skin and the types of products you need. Let me know what your favorite skincare products are in the comments below!  


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