Tough Question, ‘How Can I Get Clear Skin? I haven’t really had to think too hard about this until early this year, maybe because I’ve had bangs for the past 6 years…
This year I don’t have bangs and noticed my forehead was out of control, I didn’t know if it was the extremely cold winter that we just went through or if there was something off inside my body (since your skin tends to show whatever’s going on in there).
I decided to talk to someone who can lead me down a more natural path of healing.. a naturopath (I talked about that here). Not only did I do this but I saw a skin expert who only hand makes natural organic products and on top of all that I did some reading on my own. These were my 3 strong resources:
I saw Kathleen about four times in the span of 5-6 months and Julie about 3 times. I asked a lot of questions, I would annoy them with emails and also do a lot of research on my own with The Acne Diet book. I’ve learned a lot and have come along way from my old routine. I was having issues with a lot of red bumps on my forehead, they were usually skin coloured unless I had just washed my face or taken a shower which would cause them to be bright red. The surface of my skin was not smooth at all and I had never experienced this before. I believe it was a disruption in my stomach mainly (I had taken quite a few antibiotics the previous year) but also a few little things like my skin care routine as well as taking care of myself with the proper vitamins/supplements.
These are a few things I’ve learned from everyone I have mentioned but will mostly try and site the book because it’s all written there and easy to replicate without messing up.
- Issues within like digestion or kidney problems will show on your skin so get those figured out and fixed up.
- Oils are good for the skin, even when you have naturally oily skin. Some oils are pore clogging such as wheat germ, apricot kernel and cocoa but thinner ‘dry’ oils will actually be the best for cleansing, these can be jojoba, hemp, thistle, chia and evening primrose. Oils are great because they don’t contain preservatives to help penetrate the skin and are naturally inflammatory.
- Most lotions, cleanser and sun screen have chemicals that are very irritating. Look out for these chemicals when checking out your product label: sodium lauryl (laureth) sulfate, denatured alcohol, strong fragrances, menthol, synthetic preservatives, 2-bromo-2nitroproprane-1,3-diol, Methylisothiazolinone, Iodopropynyl butylcarbamate, Formaldehyde releaser, Phenoxyethanol, Benzyl alcohol, parabens, sorbates, bezoates.
- Incorporate vitamins like Vitamin C into your daily routine (there are others mentioned in the book as well like Vitamin A, Magnesium and Zinc but I would ask a professional before you choose which ones and how much to take).
- Use natural products found in your kitchen to make exfoliating masks (when you have bumps it’s best not to exfoliate with a physical brush but with an exfoliating mask), do these every other day until your skin starts to clear up. Each mask can do something a little different to cover different areas of need. (some examples below).
- Eat properly. Get enough protein, try not to spike your sugar levels during the day. (In the book she recommends a low GI diet which is what I generally try and stick to and get help with the math by using an app, “Low GI”). Also keep hydrated so you are moving all the ‘crap’ out. :)
- De-stress, take time to relax. Take a bath before bed, read a book or just lie there in peace. Breathing exercises are great for relaxing the body.
I’m sure there are other important points but these are the ones that really stuck out for me and helped me get clearer skin. Listed below are the products, supplements and teas I take and use on a daily basis. I have been trying out different products for about 5 months but I think these are the ones I’m happy with in the end:
*I tried at first to stick with ONLY all natural products but wasn’t really seeing results so I added in the aveda toner and neutrogena spot treatment and find they work and don’t cause a lot of dryness or irritation.
Skin Care Routine
Cleanser: Usually I just splash my face with warm water a few times. I dry my face off with a new face cloth every day from Body Shop.
Toner: Home made Burdock Root & Rose Water with a cotton pad.
Moisturizer: PA Custom Serum or Consonant SPF 15 (for the summer)
Cleanser: One Love Organics Chia Whip Fragrance-free Foam Cleanser along with their Cleansing Sponge.
Liquid Exfoliant: Aveda Botanical Kinetics Exfoliant
Moisturizer: PA Custom Serum
Physical Exfoliant: 2/week, Home made Lavender & Oatmeal mask (if you don’t have lemon peel, just leave it out. Add plain greek yogurt for moisture.). Leave on for 10 mins and wash off.
Chemical Exfoliant: 2/week, Papaya or Pineapple juiced, leave on face for 10 mins and wash off.
For a natural spot treatment, try either garlic (crush some, place on pimple and cover with bandaid while you are sleeping). Or baking soda mixed with water.
If you’d like to purchase a spot treatment from the drug store, try Neutrogena Naturals Spot Treatment.
Supplements & Vitamins
A.C.E.S + ZINC: “So… what’s zinc good for anyway? Zinc is crucial for proper immune system function, triggering the birth of white blood cells. Zinc plays a role in over 300 enzymes in the body, and helps form cellular DNA. It also plays a key role in the proper functioning of insulin, and you’ve got to have a healthy, functioning insulin system if you want clear skin.” (sited from clearskinforever.com) Purchase from Carlson Aces + Zn, 120 Softgels .
Vitamin C + Bioflavonoids: Vitamin C is an antioxidant that slows the rate of free-radical damage — free radicals are unstable molecules that damage collagen and cause skin dryness, fine lines and wrinkles. Purchase AOR Vit C + Bioflavonoids.
Teas & Smoothies
Green Tea: Green tea has natural antioxidants which helps promote healthy skin from the inside out. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, making it excellent for soothing irritated and inflamed skin that can result from acne. Additionally, it helps boost the immune system and balance hormones, which means that your body will be better prepared to fight off acne causing bacteria naturally. I found one type that is low in caffeine but high in anti-oxidants which works for me because I try to avoid caffeine. It’s called ‘Emperor’s Clouds & Mist’ from Teavana. It’s best to try and have 2 cups a day (or if you are having the tea I list below, have 1 cup of each a day).
Clear Skin Tea: There is a great herbal dispensary in Toronto located on Roncesvalles. You can purchase a bag of their clear skin tea for $13.
Clear Skin Smoothie: You can make this one at home, check out my recipe!
Whew! That’s a lot of info, if you have any questions or tips please comment below I would love to hear them!