From ages 12 till 26, I constantly struggled and battled with my skin.
What contributed to this was definitely my hormones and this was causing me to constantly break out, mostly in the chin area and sometimes on the forehead. Every period, I’d get more and more spots, they’d clear up slightly afterwards, but then the next one would start and new spots would appear and the vicious cycle continued.
To cut a long story, in those 12 years I had numerous appointments with my GP and Dermatologist and tried it all: about 3 different kinds of birth control about 6 different times, Retinol creams, a very strong dose of Decutan – twice, numerous facial treatments and skin care products. You name it, I tried it.
On the bright side, today I can say that I have been spot free (apart from the occasional one here and there) for about 3 years and have developed good skin care habits along the way.
Skin care is very personal, but one thing I’ve learnt through this, is to just keep things simple. In actual fact, the skin doesn’t need much at all. In fact, less is better as using too much may irritate it and cause more harm than good. It’s easy to get caught up in all the fancy products available, but you’ll be doing your skin a big favour by just using what is necessary.
We all use different products that work well for us, but for those of you have have acne or spot-prone skin, you might want to look into these products. These have worked brilliantly for me and have never let me down. I swear by them, and have been recommended to me by all the GP’s and dermatologist’s I’ve been to.
- Cleanser: La Roche-Posay; Effaclar
This is a soap-free (pH 5.5), purifying foaming gel made with thermal spring water, for oily and sensitive skin that’s specifically suited for people and acne prone skin.
I love this cleanser as it removes dirt and make up extremely well without needing to use much product. It also makes the skin feel truly clean without drying it too much or making the skin tighten. That being said, as this is meant to combat oilness it will dry it out a bit, but if used with a good moisturiser (as recommended) you shouldn’t suffer from much dryness.
Another plus point is that this is colourant, alcohol and paraben-free.
A 200ml bottle costs about €10.80 and lasts for ages. I use this twice a day, every day and it lasts a good 7 months on average. This can be bought off the shelf from any pharmacy.
- Moisturiser: La Roche-Posay; Nutritic Intense
When using the above mentioned cleanser, it’s important to supplement with a good moisturiser as some dryness may occur. Nutritic Intense relieves dry to very dry skin and although this sounds like a very thick cream, it’s actually quite light and will not make your skin too oily.
It’s important to note that moisturising is extremely important even though your skin may be oily or spot prone. The trick is using the right product, and this is specifically for problem skin.
This too is paraben-free.
A 50ml tube costs about €16, and this too lasts for ages – not as long as the cleanser will, but a little goes a long way. This can also be bought off the shelf from any pharmacy.
- Spot Targeting & Oil Control: Differin
This gel is fantastic – it’s perfect for controlling excess oil and minimizing spots.
However, before I continue, I do have to tell you that, at least where I’m from, this can only be purchased with a doctor’s prescription. Even if you can get this without one from where you’re from, please do speak to a doctor beforehand for precautionary measures.
As this gel is so effective, it can also be extremely drying, however if using a good moisturiser then you should not experience any problems. How often you use this is dependant on your skin condition, however it is generally recommended that you use it at night.
Apart from keeping your skin spot free, it also helps to reduce pores and gives your skin a nice, smooth feeling, similar to that of exfoliation.
A 30ml tube costs about €13 and lasts for ages as only a very small amount needs to be applied. Caution: this must not be applied near the eyes.
I am aware that everyone’s skin is different, however if you do have acne prone skin, I do recommend trying these out. That being said, getting advice from your doctor is always more advisable. However, these have worked extremely well for me, so if you’re interested in trying them out, do speak to a GP or a dermatologist about them.
Do keep in mind though that acne can be caused by many different things. Mine was hormonal and stress related, so if you feel that you are in a similar position, and want to ask for more information, just get in touch for more details or bring these up with your doctor to see if these can help you out.