Beauty enthusiasts say, we are living in a skin care heaven these days. Skincare is not gender bias. So not only the girls, now every other individual is concerned with the science and arts of their skin. Today, I am going to share my Ingredient Based Simple Acne Skin Care Routine.
This skin care regime has been able to transform my dull & acne-prone skin to a healthy & glowing one.
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Skin Care Routine for Acne-Prone Skin – Ingredient Based Regime
Article is divided into the following sections:
- How It Started – Brief History
- What is Ingredient based Skin Care?
- Products I use & How I use Them
- What to Expect from This Routine?
- Additional Tips
Let’s get started!
How It Started – Brief History:
A year and half ago, I came across a random YouTube video. The lady was talking about her skin. She mentioned how her skin is in better condition in her 30s as compared to her teens and 20s.
I always had acne-prone skin alongside lingering dark marks from healed acne. Not one or two, I tried almost every commercially available budget-friendly products that claims pimple, acne & scar-free skin.
But nothing had worked so far. I started doing ‘online’ research on skincare, probably just like you’re doing RN!
Eventually, I found the idea of Ingredient based skin care routine. It took 2-3 months to gain enough information and by this time I used up all my stacked up skin care products.
Finally, I started my new skin care routine on 1st November, 2018. Now, after a little over a complete year, I can confidently say, this is the best skin care decision I have ever made!
It is not that the acne has stopped appearing cent percent. Nope.
But, t has been much better now. For the past three months, I had minimum acne occurrence here & there. I wake up with glowing and lively skin everyday.
Also, a shoutout here, hehe! Those who used to comment on my skin condition, complement me now.
What is Ingredient based Skin Care?
Though we broadly categorize skin types as oily, dry etc; Every single person has certain specialty or variety to their own skin type.
I have PCOD which leads to an acne-prone skin. My skin is combination, I have sun sensitivity and it is prone to red or brown scars but I don’t get scar pits easily.
In Ingredient based skincare, certain easily-available skin-friendly ingredients are identified first, depending on your skin type.
For example, one can select glycerine, honey or butter for moisturizing; zinc oxide for sun protection; walnut or apricot shell powder as exfoliator and so on.
Next, you choose products that contain these suitable ingredients in harmful-chemical free base & replace your regular skincare product with it.
I use skin-friendly acids for my skincare regime as I feel they don’t clog pores or irritate my skin and provide glow.
The ingredients I use are safe, dermatologically tested, easily available and pocket-friendly. Anyone in any age bracket, teens, 20s, 30s or any age can use them.
Products I use & How I use Them:
My acid based Skin care routine is extremely basic (acid-basic, see what I did there!).
It consists of 3 steps only:
- Sun Protection
- I occasionally use serum, mask sheets & nothing else
1. Cleansing-Exfoliating: I use Salicylic Acid for cleansing and exfoliation. Alongside, Tea Tree Oil as a preventive measure against pimple and bacterial inflammation.
Previously, I used a separate oil-control face wash for cleansing & a walnut scrub for exfoliation. The cleanser used to dry up the pimples as well as my skin.
My skin became more and more oily due to excess sebum. The scrubs induced redness and persisting irritation on the face, specially on the sensitive nose area.
Now I use Neutrogena Oil Free Acne face wash that contains 2% salicylic acid. This mild gel based cleanser performs the dual job of both cleansing & exfoliating the dead skin with zero redness.
It takes care of the deep rooted blackheads (hello combination/oily skin here!) and provides a healthy glow to the skin. It also helped a lot in fading old acne marks.
If you have those embarrassing blackheads, you’ll surely love this as it actually helps combat those pesky things! While using any face masks or doing any skincare ritual, you should use this home facial steamer. It helps open up your pores & really helps the products absorb better.
This face wash is an affordable salicylic acid face wash and one bottle lasts 7-8 months.
Neutrogena acne face wash is a good drugstrore option. K-beauty brands like The Face Shop and Innisfree also have salicylic face washes. Do try them if your budget permits.
Tea tree essential oil is a strong anti-bacterial plant based ingredient that suits almost all skin types.
I use The Body Shop Skin Clearing Tea Tree Face Wash. It helps! You can find a list of the Best Body Shop Products for Combination to Oily Skin here.
How to Use:
- I use Tea Tree Face wash in the morning. I take no more than 2-3 drops of face wash and massage it on the damp skin for 20-30 seconds, then wash off with plain water.
Tea tree oil is extremely strong. The more it stays on skin, the more is the chance of irritation. So, timing is crucial here.
- I use Salicylic cleanser at night. I take 2 pea-size product and lather it to my face leaving the eye area and let it stay for 2-3 minutes.
Then, gently massage the skin with finger tips and wash off. Salicylic acid’s performance depends on skin’s endurance and this endurance need to be built.
At the beginning I kept it only for 20-30 seconds as this acid takes at least 20 seconds of contact with skin to start working. I increased the time gradually to the limiting time 2-3 minutes. It should not be kept more than that time.
Helpful Resource: Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser Review
2. Toning-Moisturizing: Some dermatologists say, only moisturizing is enough for healthy skin. It is certainly true for my case.
When I started my skincare, I used only an oil free non pore-clogging moisturizer on freshly cleansed & slightly damp skin.
I have used Johnson’s Baby Rice-Milk Cream and Lotion, Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisturizer for Combination skin, Aloe Vera Gel (love this one) in Summer & in Winter, I use any variant of Cetaphil Creams and Moisturizers.
Except for the gels, all other moisturizers, I mentioned above have Cetearyl Alcohol which is a great moisturizing ingredient. La Roche Posey, Cerave and Avene moisturizers are also great.
4 months ago I started using Hyaluronic acid in my skin care. It increased hydration and glow. I use the hyaluronic acid product immediately after cleansing and then follow it up with my regular moisturizer.
Neutrogena Water Boost Gel-cream is also a good product. Neutrogena one performs equally well as my L’Oreal Genius water.
3. Sun Protection: I use Zinc Oxide based sunscreen as this is the safest sun protection ingredient for skin. It has best tolerance among people in general and it does not require frequent reapplication.
One of the effective Zinc Oxide based sunscreen is this one that has light and quick absorbing formula, suitable for sensitive or acne-prone skin. It is also oil-free & dermatologist recommended.
Salicylic acid peels off skin’s dead cell layer so the fresh skin gets exposed. This skin is quite sensitive and prone to sun damage so sunscreen is a must.
You can buy any sunscreen with Zinc Oxide but avoid those with Avobenzone or Oxybenzone mentioned in their ingredient list.
4. Sheet Masks: This is just an optional step for those days when I am looking for a relaxing ‘me time’ after a long and tiring day.
Instead of using clay based drying masks, I go for gentle paraben free sheet masks from The Face Shop or Innisfree.
I look for ingredients like Aloe Vera, Tea Tree, Hyaluronic Acid, Strawberry or Lavender. You can use any sheet masks that suit your skin.
What to Expect from This Routine?
Salicylic acid has a skin-purge inducing tendency. The first 3-4 weeks down my skincare regime, I had a lot of new pimples as this acid helped surfacing deep pimples.
After that the growth of new pimples started decreasing and same thing happened with blackheads.
Within 2 weeks, I noticed healthy looking skin with substantial glow. The use of hyaluronic acid made my skin plump and fresh.
The glow is still intact and the skin has become baby soft. The dark marks of pimples have faded too a great extent.
Now I don’t even have to use concealer to blur the scars. Just foundation feels sufficient.
- Avoid makeup during the first pimple-purge time. After that you can use makeup but buy only fragrance free and non-comedogenic makeup.
- Remove makeup with coconut or any natural oil and cleanse skin with salicylic acid wash after that.
- Lastly, shift to healthy lifestyle if you haven’t already and increase water intake.