Your guide to getting clear skin



BY BOB
A.


When
it comes to fighting acne and blemishes, many people expect that the war ends
after adolescence. In reality, the quest for perfect skin is a never-ending
battle. If only we could hit a certain age and have our skin magically be free
of any issues. It would certainly save a ton of headaches and even more in skin
care product purchases.
Although
the most difficult phase in skin care comes during that time our hormones are
changing, keeping your skin pristine and looking fabulous can be an ongoing
challenge. However, you’re not fighting empty-handed. Here are all the weapons
you need in your arsenal to keep your face looking so fresh and so clean.
Curb
the carbs




A
long time ago, the common belief was that eating greasy foods led to oily skin,
and therefore pimples. It turns out carbohydrates might be to blame instead.
Research has suggested that “the improvement in acne … after a
low-glycemic-load diet suggests that nutrition-related lifestyle factors may
play a role in the pathogenesis of acne.” In non-science terms, that means
in their clinical trial, the people who ate fewer carbs had better skin. They
weren’t quite sure why, but hey, the results speak for themselves.
Make
sure you’re getting enough zinc




Research
has suggested that people with acne have lower levels of zinc in their system,
and that taking zinc supplements can improve their skin issues. However, don’t
just go crazy taking zinc supplements without talking to a doctor first. Too
much can cause fever, fatigue, and other problems. Start with a multivitamin
and go from there if you think your diet may be lacking nutrients. A lot of
zinc comes from eating meat, so vegans and vegetarians might run into a zinc
deficiency.
Vitamin
D can help, too




It
won’t prevent you from getting acne in the first place, but Vitamin D helps
bolster your immune system and helps the natural oil of your skin develop
antibacterial properties. Both of these factors may help you recover from a
pimple quicker. So a little sunshine might actually be good for your skin after
all, as long as you remember to wear sunscreen.
Harness
the power of green tea




A
review of 20 studies on green tea found that it is fantastic for your skin
all-around. Drinking green tea “can be effective in the scavenging of free
radicals, cancer prevention, hair loss, and skin aging plus protection,”
and applying it topically can help with breakouts, rosacea, and about a
half-dozen other skin issues.
Not
all water is created equal




One
hidden culprit that may be causing your skin woes? Your faucet. If you have
hard water — water with high metal and mineral content — it can cause “dry
skin, acne, and even more serious conditions like eczema.” Hard water can
even make it difficult to fully remove makeup and beauty products from your
skin, causing further issues. If you suspect your home’s H2O is to blame, you
can grab a cheap hard water test kit at pretty much any hardware store. From
there, you can buy a shower filter for around 20 bucks or look into water
softening options.
Check
your makeup labels




Everyone’s
skin is different, and no two cosmetic products are the same. These truths add
up to one reality: the stuff you put on your face every day might be making
your skin worse. WebMD has a great guide on ingredients to avoid, but one tip
is to look for the term “non-comedogenic.” It’s really just a fancy
way of saying it won’t clog your pores. You should also avoid any cosmetics (or
moisturizers or sunscreens) with benzoyl peroxide. These can over-dry your skin
and irritate it, which is one cause of blemishes. Your body then reacts by
overproducing oil to compensate, thus clogging your pores. Drying your skin out
too much is a lose-lose, even if you think it’s too oily.
Try
changing your pillow cases as often as possible




It’s
one of those things you don’t think of, but makes total sense in retrospect.
Your pillowcase is a repository for dirt and oil. Then you spend eight hours
every night rubbing your face on it, which is not exactly the recipe for clean,
healthy skin.
Avoid
ingredients that irritate




Here’s
a short list to look out for: alcohol, eucalyptus, menthol, camphor,
peppermint, lemon, lime, or grapefruit. There are many more. As a rule of
thumb, avoid anything with alcohol or that is acidic. These ingredients lead to
a cycle of irritation, oil production, redness, and swelling that hurts your
skin and its ability to heal.
Stop
touching your face




Every
time you touch your face, you’re doing every bad thing mentioned in this list
all at once. You’re irritating the skin, transferring all the dirt and bacteria
on your hands, and overall just making everything worse. No popping,
scratching, or wiping! If you must, make sure you wash your hands first to minimize
the damage.





SOURCE: THE LIST
Kayode Ojo
Kayode Emmanuel Ojo is the Co-Founder and Managing Director at SHEFFA Limited. He is presently studying Computer Science at the National Open University, Victoria Island, Lagos.