#GETREAL About Skincare: You Asked, We Answered

TARA RIBISI

 

In last week’s edition of our new IG-story segment, #GETREAL, we asked what your primary skin concerns were, and boy, did you answer. We received 32 responses bemoaning everything from acne, to blackheads, sensitive skin, oily skin, sunburns, and more. We hear you. Managing your skin is often a delicate balancing act that crashes and burns faster than Justin and Selena’s most recent refuel. Well- you asked, we answered. Whether you’re dry, oily, sensitive, or everything in between, have no fear because we have spoken to the skin gods and have the answers to all your skin catastrophes. Read below to find your specific sorrow, pulled directly from our #GETREAL archives.

 

Issue: “My forehead acne!” – x6

Typically, acne on your forehead and around your eyebrows is a reflection of one of two things—stress, or your diet. Oftentimes, our foreheads break out when we are experiencing significant stress, or consistently eating something that we are intolerant to, or doesn’t agree with our digestive system.

While stress may seem constant with school and the many activities you’re involved in, it’s important to focus on stress-management techniques to maintain both inner and outer-health. Favourite techniques include exercise, meditation, and journaling. In addition, keeping your skin as clean as possible will help reduce breakouts even when you are feeling extra-stressed. Double cleanse with an oil cleanser and facial cleanser, apply a toner, and follow up with a vitamin C serum.

More importantly, is the factor your diet is playing in your external health and appearance. High-sodium and processed foods will ultimately contribute to a less than smooth forehead. In addition, however, if you are experiencing regular breakouts, it is possible that you are intolerant to one or more of the foods you are ingesting on a daily basis. The two most common culprits are-*gasp*- gluten and dairy. To determine if this is the case for you, try cutting out one of the food groups for one week, and observe any changes in your skin. If your forehead begins to clear up, it may be time to visit a doctor to examine potential intolerances.

 

Issue: “Blackheads :(“ x4

Blackheads are the scary monster under-the-bed of skincare. That is, until you understand what they truly are. Blackheads are just an oxidized mix of oil and dead skin cells that are sitting in your pores. The problem is that they can’t—and shouldn’t—be popped. That said, there are ways that you can get rid of these pesky blemishes.

  • Don’t pop! Attempting to pop blackheads simply pushes the bacteria further into your skin.
  • Instead, exfoliate. Use a topical exfoliator like Paula’s Choice, or an exfoliating face mask with charcoal in it.
  • Follow this with a salicylic acid, which can be found in spot treatments like this.
  • Moisturize! These methods may strip natural oils from your skin, so continue to apply moisturizer to keep your skin balanced.

 

Issue: “Whiteheads UGH” x5

You know you shouldn’t pop them, but you do it anyways. Been there. Similar to blackheads, popping exposes bacteria to other areas of your face that can result in more whiteheads, and increases your chances of scarring. Instead of popping, try the following tricks:

  • Take a hot shower, as the heat will help open your pores.
  • Double cleanse! Use an oil cleanser, followed by a facial cleanser, to deep clean those open pores.
  • Apply a spot treatment to fight the bacteria:
    • Products such as benzoyl peroxide, tea tree oil, or apple cider vinegar all fight bacteria, and will help reduce the pimple, and ultimately distinguish it altogether. Simply use a Q-tip, dip it into your pimple-fighter of choice, and apply it directly to the blemish.

 

Issue: “Body Acne” x5

Acne on your bod is cause by clogged pores. Since the skin on the rest of our bod is less sensitive than our face, we typically see less breakouts in these areas. But when we do, it seems gross. Contrary to popular belief, body acne does not mean you are dirty- we’re all prone to getting clogged pores in these areas at one time or another!

The key to clearing up this acne is exfoliating regularly (a loofah in the shower will do the trick!) to clear out dead skin cells. If you are active and sweaty often, make sure you shower as soon as possible after exercising so the sweat has no time to settle into your skin. Lather extra-well with your body cleanser to clear our any bacteria. Finally, avoid letting wet hari dry directly in contact with your skin after a shower. Wrap those tresses up in a towel, as your clean and freshly-conditioned hair can clog pores and lead to further breakouts!

 

Issue: “Scars- The Worst” x6

Speaking from personal experience, acne scars are as bothersome to have as they are to get rid of. The most obvious way to prevent acne scarring is to prevent acne in the first place. Luckily, you can use the above steps for that! Once a breakout has appeared, however, don’t touch it! Picking and popping is a path straight to acne scars. If your acne scars are already there, help diminish them using the tricks below:

  • Vitamin C Serum: Vitamin C is essential for producing collagen in your body- the compound that helps rejuvenate skin and hair cells. Not only does collagen help with hair growth and getting that glow-up skin look, it also helps repair damaged skin—aka scars. Apply a Vitamin C serum morning and night after cleansing your face, and before your moisturizer.
  • Collagen: Since we’re already using Vitamin C serum to help with Collagen production, we might as well ingest some in addition! Adding a collagen supplement to your morning smoothie, oatmeal, or coffee is a great way to help boost your overall health and get rid of those acne scars while you’re at it.
  • Sunscreen: Apply sunscreen! There are about a million reasons you should be wearing sunscreen, not the least important of which is the fact that the sun will add to the hyperpigmentation of scars, thereby making them appear more noticeable. Apply sunscreen and keep those marks at bay.
  • Scar Treatment Serum: Fortunately, there are serum’s made specifically for treating scarring. We like Kiehl’s Clearly Corrective Dark Spot Solution.

 

Issue: “Small bumps everywhere” x3

Those small bumps that appear in large splotches, for seemingly no reason, are often a result of a genetic condition called Keratosis Pilaris. Keratosis Pilaris is very common, and is a result of a build-up of Keratin (the protein that protects hair, nails and skin) blocks the opening of a hair follicle. These small bumps typically appear on our arms, legs, cheeks and foreheads.

Though they don’t pose any health threats, they can seriously impede our #flawless skin goals. Follow the tips and tricks below to minimize these bumps:

  • Exfoliate with a loofah or sponge scrub to remove dead skin cells.
  • Oatmeal, olive oil or coconut oil skin rubs to add moisture to your skin.
  • Products like apple cider vinegar or lactic acid lotion with alpha hydroxy acids help remove dead skin cells through their acid composition.
  • Lastly, Vitamin A helps promote proper keratin production and aids in inflammation.

 

Issue” “Summertime Sunburns” x2

When you’re attempting to reach that golden glow but forced to come to terms with the fact that your skin is whiter than Kendall’s Met Gala ensemble… the struggle is real. There is nothing worse when, in an attempt to change your skin tone from one shade to the next, you end up burned instead, and you’re forced to endure a week of painful skin and uncomfortable clothing (nevermind the possible health consequences!). The reality is we should all be practicing safe skincare and avoiding burns, but if you’re left with a red patch, try the following tips:

  • Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! Using an aloe vera or similarly hydrating lotion, make sure to apply morning in night in order to nourish your skin and prevent peeling.
  • To help with pain and itching, use witch hazel, which you can apply in small amounts with a cotton pad.
  • If you have a particularly bad burn and your skin is inflamed, apply coriander oil to help with inflammation.

 

 

COVER IMAGE: Julianne Eleanor

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