10 Ways To Avoid Acne And Breakouts
A problem that’s more than skin deep, but even so, we’re used to treating the symptom and not the actual root of it. Let’s see what we can do differently to avoid seeing them ever again (hopefully).
- Do Not Pop It!
First things first, when you notice it - don't pop it! I know, the desire to immediately squeeze it is too strong. Instead, clean that breakout area, get a clean needle and pop the acne from the side. In that way the skin is not being damaged since the needle is touching the surface of the breakout. Picking or squeezing may lead to an infection or scars.
- Wash Your Pillow!
On average, we sleep on our pillows between 6 to 8 hours a night. Undoubtedly, pillows inside and out have bacteria. When the time comes to make a contact with our pillow again, that same dirt is transferred back into the face - clogging up the pores. Wash the pillowcase once a week, and pillows themselves every six months.
- Naturally Balance Hormones
Hormones play a huge role in acne, but before consulting with a doctor, try to naturally balance your hormones. Hormones are mainly aggravated by stress. Practice calming the mind and avoiding stressful situations. Consume food that helps balance your hormones such as flaxseed, leafy greens and vegetables that contain Vitamin A as it is helpful for treating skin conditions.
- Have a Healthy Diet
One of the main underlying causes of acne is a gut full of toxins. Avoid processed sugars and too much dairy products, it upsets the microbiome (the balance of good and bad flora in the gut).
A healthy gut can be achieved by using probiotics and changing your bad eating habits to a healthier one. Also, stay hydrated!
- Break Up With Hands And Face
This break up is more difficult for the hands, then it is for the face (sorry hands). Jokes aside, we put our not so clean hands on the face and maybe even that hand cream of ours. Things that are good for the hands are not necessarily good for the face. Try finding a hand moisturizer that’s called “non-comedogenic” (not causing blocked pores).
- Exercise On A Regular Basis
Indulging in regular exercise improves blood circulation, helping the body to receive cleaner oxygen. Sweat that comes from the workout carries out the toxins. However, after a workout session take a shower to get rid of the dirt as much as possible, and avoid using makeup while working out.
- Incorporate Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)
The face is a window to your health according to TCM. Each and every zone indicates what’s happening inside our bodies. For example - the forehead is linked to a digestive system, showing when the body is having a hard time breaking down foods, which leads to toxins increase. In that case, try to eat more antioxidant-rich foods and drinks such as green tea, ginger-lemon tea, citric fruits, and berries.
- Avoid Alcohol
Alcohol has a huge influence on acne. Research has shown that alcohol increases testosterone and estrogen levels in women. Those are the two hormones that we continually try to balance out. In addition, it contains high sugar levels, leading to high IGF-1 and finally to acne directly. Avoid drinking alcohol for good!
- Nurture Your Inner Health
Good skin care does not mean just on the surface. Research has shown that taking collagen supplements not only supports gut health but also helps to heal the wound when the skin is damaged. Collagen is what gives our skin structure and stability, making it a major component. Supplementing with collagen increases its levels in the body and helps structure the skin including elastin and fibrillin.
- Stick To a Routine
If you are being inconsistent with your skin care, your skin is not going to find a pattern to react to, and it's not going to react in a way that you might want it to. Have a solid plan and commit to it. Try your best to use the least amount of products, in that way, your face will not be depended on so many chemicals.
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- Magin PJ, Adams J, Heading GS, Pond DC, Smith W. Complementary and alternative medicine therapies in acne, psoriasis, and topic eczema: results of a qualitative study of patients' experiences and perceptions. J Altern Complement Med 2006; 12(5): 451-457.
- Romano M, Acne vulgaris. In: Williams H, ed. Evidence-based dermatology. London: BMJ Publishing Group, 2014.