So, acne. What is it? It is red blemishes that infiltrate your face, puff up, ooze crap and possibly get infected and leave long lasting scars. What acne sounds like is something similar to a relationship with a bad boyfriend; unavoidable to some degree, and once its started you have to get the f*** out, with minimal damage. Yep, the bad boyfriend relationship is an accurate analogy and so is the idea that avoiding them is key.
So many things can trigger a series of pimples, cold sores or blemishes. Recently, I went from being a blemish free beauty, to a skin ravaged freak within a couple of weeks. I have just recovered from two really red spots of infection brought on by a harsh strain of acne bacteria, and a cold sore that would not stop looking gross and diseased until recently. Needless to say, I survived, but not without battle scars. My left cheek now bears two red marks, even after they’ve healed for months, and there is still discoloration from the cold sore on my upper lip that healed just last week. And what have I learned from all of this? Acne and blemishes are something better prevented than treated, like all illnesses.
How I dealt with my adult acne so it doesn’t come back:
- Clean everything and sanitize everything: Wash your hands 20 times a day, try not to touch your face, there are bacteria on your hand that want to infect your pores. Sanitize your make-up brushes by washing them every once in a while, wipe all your make-up surfaces with rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab.
- Boost your immune system: believe it or not, your immune system can fight off skin afflictions. So get plenty of rest, vitamins, minerals and exercise, eat well. Bacteria and viruses cannot take over when your skin is in top form.
- Don’t pop your pimples, or pick at them. The odd pimple I used to have I would squeeze them to reduce swelling. However, I found out this can cause more scarring, and redness, so now I leave them alone.
- Get medication. Most of the time, my acne is mild and will go away without problems. But sometimes medicated oitments and creams help keep the inflammation at bay and speed healing and minimize redness. I like to use anything with salicylic acid, as it is pretty gentle and will still dry out and encourage skin regeneration after a zit has died. But don’t over use it.
- Wash off all traces of make-up at night. I have dry skin, so sometimes I just wipe off make-up with coconut oil and call it a night. While this is very gentle for your skin, it can also leave you with a clogged pore, which if bacteria gets at it, then it is game over. Finding a balance is important. Don’t over strip your face of natural oils and moisture, but also cleanliness is very important.
Have any of you battled with adult acne recently? Wasn’t it embarassing? Mine was followed with a cold sore when my immunity was weak from a cold. Plus with spring coming into Toronto, I feel a whole new batch of germs is following suite. We don’t want to be germ phobic, but really…blemishes are the worst.