Hey guys, so I know I talk a lot about my skincare and it's really because it means so much to me. I spent a lot of years crying about my skin and I'm still learning how to just deal with it. I simplified my routine even more these past couple of weeks. The less products you put on your face the easier it will be to figure out products that are actually working. The hardest part about this is that nothing is overnight. Everything is a process. So, sometimes you will have to use a product for a couple of months to see some progress or to realize it's not working. One product I wanted to mention here is the Neutrogena Transparent Facial Bar. When looking for a facial cleanser I try to stick with ones that are gentle and don't have small beads in them. I know that we tend to link exfoliating products as the only things that will clean our skin, but these products are extremely harsh. And it is also good to point out the ingredients found in these products. A lot of acne products have either Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid. Personally, I can't use anything with Benzoyl Peroxide because I'm allergic to it. Sadly, it took a couple of years for me to figure this out after going to a dermatologist. I try to find products with Salicylic Acid instead so I can treat my existing acne. Just make sure that you listen to your skin. A burning sensation doesn't always mean the product is working. It can leave marks and worsen any existing acne scars. I noticed this recently when using Shea Moisture's African Black Soap. Many people swear by this product and its natural ingredients, but it left my skin extremely itchy and drying after some time. But I still did like the bar soap aspect for a cleanser because it lathers gently onto your skin. For now, this Neutrogena bar soap has been working for me and it's only like $3-$4. You can't really beat a price like that.
After I lather on the soap, I let it sit for a bit on my skin. Then, I splash water on my face to rinse it off. I use a face towel to pat dry. After this I use a cotton pad with Apple Cider Vinegar as a toner. I always dilute the ACV with water before applying it directly to my face or it will burn. The last step is my face lotion. I've been addicted to St. Ives' Moisturizing Renewing Collagen Elastin Facial Moisturizer. It has a cooling sensation as soon as you apply it to your skin. I only use a dime size amount because I don't want to over moisturize my face. And yes this can happen. Applying too much moisturizer can clog up your pores all over again. This is why I stopped using oils on my skin. The oils wouldn't let my skin breathe.
On days where I need a little bit more deep cleaning I like to use one of these face masks. The one I have on in the picture above is the LUSH Product: Mask of Magnaminty. This product has pieces of peppermint in it that makes it look like a scrub but oddly enough the product is extremely smooth. I always like to wet my hands a bit before scooping up the product. It softens up the formula and makes it easy to glide onto my skin. I leave it on for 5-10 minutes. On days that I use this mask I use the facial cleanser right before it, then once I rinse off the mask I use the ACV toner and St. Ives Moisturizer.
The other mask I like to use is the Aztec Clay Mask. I mentioned this mask in a previous skin care post. I still love using it on occasion. When I want to dry out any acne I use this clay mask because it does a great job at giving your a skin a really deep clean. I mix it with ACV and water and layer it on my face. I usually leave it on for 15-20 mins. I typically use this mask if I'm cleaning up around my apartment or doing laundry.
The most important thing I added to my skincare routine is drinking more water. These past couple of months I've been drinking lots of iced tea and juice. I haven't really paid much attention to how much water I'm taking in. So, I decided to cut the juice out and strictly drink water. I use this water bottle to keep me on track. One of these is 24oz equals 3 cups of water so I make sure I drink a couple of these a days. I can't say that water has cleared my skin just yet but it has given my skin a glow, which is something I can definitely appreciate.
What products do you use? If you use any of these products, then let me know how they are working for your skin.