If only we could leave blemishes behind in our teenage years along with awkwardness and bad outfi t choices. Unfortunately, weâ€™re all destined to have a pimple crop up every now and then â€“ and usually, just when you need it the least (date night, job interview). Whether youâ€™re prone to bad skin or just need to get rid of a breakout fast, hereâ€™s your guide to keeping it clean and fl awlessâ€¦
1. WASH! Clean skin is clear skin, so no matter what, ensure you wash your face morning and night, as well as after heavy exercise. Use a cleanser that contains salicylic acid to rid skin of dirt and grime. Make-up may cover bad skin, but when youâ€™re in the comfort of your own home, make sure you wash it off .
2. HANDS OFF No matter how badly you want to pop, squeeze or touch your pimple, donâ€™t go there. You might increase the damage to skin (which could result in more pimples cropping up â€“ or worse, scarring) as well as exacerbating the infection with dirty fi ngernails or hands, making your problem (and pimple) bigger than it should be.
3. USE THE RIGHT PRODUCTS There are products specially designed to treat pimple-prone skin for a reason â€“ they do the job. Look out for ingredients like salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide (2.5 percent or less) and glycolic acid, which have been proved to help clear the skin.
4. TREAT IT If you have a breakout, follow your cleansing process with a spot treatment directly on blemishes to calm the area and dry out the pimple. Then apply an oil-free moisturiser.
5. GO BARE Keep skin make-up free for as long as you can. While foundation and concealer help to cover unsightly spots on the outside, skin is working harder on the inside. Make-up can clog pores and worsen the irritation, so when possible, go make-up free or choose products that are noncomedogenic (meaning they donâ€™t block skin pores).
6. CATCH IT EARLY The earlier you treat a pimple, the better. Often you can feel a pimple cropping up below the skin surface a few days before it becomes visible. Apply a spot treatment to the area as soon as possible.
7. FIND A BALANCE Just because you donâ€™t have a breakout now doesnâ€™t mean youâ€™re in the clear. If you are prone to problem skin, stick with the correct products to keep skin unblemished. But donâ€™t overuse products or over-cleanse â€“ this can lead to dryness and fl aking.
8. STAY SUN-SMART Often the ingredients used to help clear acne can make skin more sensitive to the sun and more susceptible to burning. Look for an oil-free and noncomedogenic sun cream or daily moisturiser with SPF and apply religiously before heading out.
9. BREATHE Stress hormones can trigger additional pimples, due to a rise in oil production, so try to stay calm. Remember, a breakout isnâ€™t the end of the worldâ€¦ Bad skin can really knock your confi dence. If you need additional help, speak to a beauty therapist or a dermatologist for recommendations.