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10 Rules to Follow for Clear Skin

Kavya is a skincare enthusiast who shows a keen interest in skincare and skin health.

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Sometimes your skin won't be happy even if you follow a 10 step skincare routine. Every day we’re bombarded by marketing hype for various skincare products, as well as advice from social media influencers and other beauty gurus on how to find the perfect skincare routine for our skin, but oftentimes just a skincare routine is not enough.

So, what does the research say your skin actually needs? What helps and what doesn’t in the quest for clear, radiant skin?

This article will help answer those questions by providing 10 rules to get the clear glowing skin you want.

1. Wash your face twice a day

If you’re prone to breakouts or have oily skin, don’t skimp on washing your face as part of your morning and evening skincare routine.

In a special study that focused specifically on face washing, participants were asked to wash their faces one, two, or four times a day for six weeks.

At the end of the study, there was a significant improvement in the acne lesions of those who washed their face twice a day. The participants who only washed their faces once a day had the greatest increase in pimples.

2.Don’t Pick Your Skin - Popping Causes Problems

Resist the temptation to pop pimples or pick at acne. Doing so could force bacteria deeper into the skin and cause bigger lesions. You'll also spread bacteria and increase the chances of new breakouts. Picking at your skin may lead to scarring. If you want smooth skin, don't pick!

3.Practice Good Makeup Hygiene - Clean Your Tools

Practice good hygiene when applying makeup. Avoiding using your fingers to apply makeup. You could introduce bacteria into the product that can cause acne. Use disposable applicators, cotton swabs, or cotton balls to apply products. If you use brushes or sponges, clean them regularly and replace tools frequently. Makeup applicators can harbor dirt, dead skin cells, and bacteria that contribute to acne. Always clean your face before putting on makeup and use makeup remover when removing it.

4.Get Plenty of Sleep

It’s called beauty sleep for a reason. When you sleep, the skin repairs itself, producing collagen and healing wounds. And if you’re sleep-deprived, not only do you end up with under-eye circles and bags, you’re also more likely to experience increases in acne, fine lines, dehydration, and irritation. Adults need seven hours of restful sleep a night, minimum. So, an hour or two before your new, early bedtime, put away the electronics and get into a nice warm tub or shower. The rise and subsequent fall of your body temperature will make you sleepy and improve the quality of your sleep throughout the night.

5. Eat a Healthy Diet

There is no denying that a solid skincare routine is the key to clear skin. However, there is research supporting the idea that what you eat plays a part in how your skin looks, too. Per the National Institutes of Health (NIH), increasing your water intake can help boost your skin’s hydration levels. Additionally, the NIH also states that vitamin C has been linked to providing anti-aging benefits to the skin. So, why not adopt a clear skin diet with foods such as grapefruits and oranges, broccoli, strawberries, cantaloupe, baked potatoes, and tomatoes, which the NIH reveals are excellent sources of vitamin C.

On the flip side, some foods can wreak havoc on your skin. Per the AAD, consuming all types of cow’s milk (low-fat, skim, and whole milk) can cause acne breakouts to develop. Carbohydrate-rich foods such as bread, bagels, and chips can worsen your acne.

7. Exfoliate and Moisturize

One of the primary causes of acne is the buildup of dead skin cells that clog pores. This leads to a cascade effect: excess skin cells clog pores, creating an ideal environment for the bacteria P. acnes to thrive, which leads to inflammation, resulting in the lesion un-affectionately known as a zit or pimple. Gently exfoliate daily to remove those dead skin cells and keep your pores clear. Be sure to follow up exfoliation with a good quality moisturizer. Keeping your skin moisturized with a non-comedogenic moisturizer will help prevent dry skin cells, which can lead to clogged pores.

8.Use a Cotton Face Mask

Yep, Maskne or mask acne is *actually* a real thing. The combination of sweat, germs, and the rubbing of your mask causes a very specific type of breakout, called acne mechanica. There are a bunch of ways to treat and prevent it, but the easiest is to switch to a breathable face mask made of natural fibers.

9.You need to clean your phone, too

If you're seeing pimples on your cheeks or anywhere near the area where you hold your phone, they may be from your phone. Since it's always in your hand, your phone picks up lots of bacteria, which can then get transferred to your face when you make a phone call. Wipe your screen with an antibacterial wipe often to get rid of germs.

10.Wear Sunscreen (yes, even indoors)

Sunscreen isn't just for summer, your skin needs protection every day, even in winter (and even indoors). There are now sunscreens for every skin type imaginable, even ones that help make your skin less oily, so your face stays matte and pimple-free.

Look for a sunscreen or daily moisturizer with SPF that says it's "lightweight," "oil-free," or "oil-controlling." For the highest level, look for a PA++ rating, it covers both UVA and UVB rays, so you're guarded against everything from burns to future wrinkles!

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2021 Kavya Kamal

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