Firstly I’d like to admit that I don’t have perfect skin (who does?!) however my skin has been a lot worse than the condition it’s in today. I’ve struggled with acne over the past three years and, whilst at some points it seemed to crush my confidence, it has helped me to learn many things about my skin type and how best to care for it.
Bearing in mind that this is a Teenage Healthy Living Blog, with emphasis on the teenage part, acne should feature in abundance; most teenagers suffer from pimples and seek advice. I wanted to share some advice I’ve picked up over the past few years, in hope that you’ll find it helpful.
1. Determine your skin type
Determining your skin type is fundamental when considering skincare. There are four types: oily, combination, normal and dry. Once determined, you can adapt your routine to suit, it also helps when looking for products. Generally teenagers have oily-combo skin (which acne and bacteria thrives off), so look for oil-free skincare products, wash your face twice daily and splash with cold water to help reduce oil and close up your pores. In addition, you may want to carry oil absorbing sheets (I don’t know how I’d survive without these!) to help soak up excess oil throughout the day, I love the ones by kleenex.
2. Stick to your routine
A basic routine consists of cleansing, toning and moisturising (sometimes with the addition of acne medications/creams), which is completed twice a day. I find that my skin responds best to a simpler routine, it is also easier to repeat morning and night. On top of your everyday routine, exfoliating 1-2 times a week helps to scrub away acne-causing dirt embedded deep in your skin, and using a face mask once a week (which you can homemake using ingredients like mashed banana) can also help to improve the condition of your skin.
3. Let your skin breathe
As much as you can, get your hair out of your face and leave it bare to let it breathe and heal. This is also a great confidence exercise, as it shows that you are not so controlled by pimples. I tie my hair up before bed, try to prevent myself from touching my face and also change my pillowcase and bathroom towels regularly to reduce the amount of bacteria that settles on my skin.
Many people have told me that your skin reflects what’s going on inside your body. Try to bear in mind that a large amount of teenage acne is hormonal, which means that there really isn’t much you can do about it other than taking care of your body, inside and out. Remember that having acne as a teenager can be good thing, as it makes you think about health and skincare choices, meaning that often your adult skin will be great! Keep going, teenage acne in most cases is simply a phase and you’ll grow out of it. Think about how clear your skin will be in the future if you take care of it as a teenager. Make an effort; it will be worth it in the end.