Acne is the red bumps that appear when your pores are clogged. It can result in scarring and it can be quite painful. To clear acne, it may be tempting to use harsh cleansers or scrubbing tools. However, irritated skin may actually be more prone to blockages in the future. Be gentle with your skin.
Because acne blockages can be caused both by inflammation and by dead skin cells, keeping your skin well rinsed and as soothed as possible is also very important. Invest in some microfiber towels that you only use on your face and try to wash and dry them with fragrance free soap and dryer sheets. If you feel you need to wear makeup in certain settings, do so. Remove it as soon as you get home, rinse your face with tepid water, and pat your face dry with your microfiber towel.
Focus on Antioxidants
Antioxidants in your diet travel through your bloodstream and remove oxidized toxins, also known as free radicals, from your body with the help of your cleansing organs. The more antioxidants you can ingest and the more water you drink, the more support you offer to all of your tissues.
Antioxidants also help to fight inflammation in your body. Inflamed skin is one of the big causes of acne. Just as you don’t want to irritate your skin with harsh scrubbing and cleansers, you don’t want to irritate your skin with a poor diet. A focus on fresh fruits and veggies is an ideal start.
Bump up your intake of orange foods, such as carrots and sweet potatoes. Green foods, such as spinach and broccoli, can also lower inflammation. Berries of all sorts are beneficial, especially blueberries.
For meat eaters, adding a serving of salmon each week can benefit both your skin and your heart. Grains such as brown rice and whole wheat products can lower the risk of an acne flare-up. Beans and lentils are also an excellent dietary addition.
Most importantly, when bumping up your antioxidant intake, make sure you increase your water intake. Many of the foods listed above are high in fiber. If your gut is not used to that much fiber, your reaction may not be pleasant. Your cleansing organs, including your kidneys, liver and gut will appreciate that extra water as your body adjusts.
You can also bump up your antioxidant consumption externally. A very simple scrub, made of brown sugar and olive oil, is a wonderful treatment for acne on your back and chest. In fact, you can mix up a small batch and apply it to your whole body from the feet up. By the time you get to your face, the sugar will have broken down enough to gently exfoliate your skin. Another option is to use a natural antibacterial cleanser, such as a tea tree oil soap and cleanser combination.
Always avoid pressure on acne-inflamed skin. If the pore is blocked, pressure will only increase the inflammation and it will take even longer to clear the blockage. If you choose to exfoliate with anything, give the product more time than pressure and carefully assess the acne after an hour. If the redness has increased, avoid exfoliation on that area until the blemish is gone.
Take special care with your make-up application products. If you use your fingers, wash your hands thoroughly before touching any product. If you use a brush, clean your brushes weekly and keep a spare or two so you can swap out and clean them more often if you wish. Instead of using latex sponges to blend foundation, consider using a disposable natural sea sponge or an organic cotton cloth that you can either discard or wash.
Anything that increases irritation can contribute to an acne flare-up. Instead of avoiding moisturizer, use something light at bedtime and something that offers UV protection during the day. Sniff your bedding, especially your pillowcases, for laundry fragrances. Use as few additives as possible in all products that get close to acne-impacted skin.
Tepid water, gentle handling and clean, fragrance free fabrics can do a great deal to protect your skin from the outside. A healthy diet, quality sleep and plenty of water can boost skin health from the inside. Ready to get started? Call us today at 205-352-9141.