The Clear Skin Project: Part II

I’ve blogged about skincare before, and I wanted to write an update since I’m still learning more about how to properly care for my skin and prevent breakouts. I’d like to break down my routine in the hopes that it may help someone else eliminate or prevent pesky acne—especially if you experience painful cystic acne, as I do/did. However, since I’ve implemented this new routine, I haven’t had any significant issues with acne, cystic or otherwise. Joy!

Apparently, I’ve been applying products in the wrong order! Here’s the correct order of goodies:

  1. cleanser
  2. toner
  3. acne medication
  4. moisturizer (preceded by serum at nighttime)
  5. eye cream


To remove makeup, I use Peaches And Clean Deep Cleansing Milk by Soap & Glory along with my trusty Makeup Eraser. I cleanse with Face Soap And Clarity Facial Wash, also by Soap & Glory. Both of these S&G products are super cheap and smell amazing.

I’ve used Burt’s Bees Garden Tomato Toner for years, until it was discontinued. Can you tell that I enjoy products that smell yummy? I found it at Wegman’s once or twice several years ago, but I now have to order it through Amazon. I also had luck with Pixi By Petra Glow Tonic when Birchbox recently sent me a few travel samples. If you suffer from acne, the key is not to dry out your skin—otherwise, it will try to hydrate itself by pumping out oil…which leads to breakouts.

Whether I have a breakout or not, I apply Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solutions Targeted Spot Treatment. This product has salicylic acid, which is important when treating acne. I only apply this spot treatment around my jawline, since that’s the only area where I get acne—hormones! Here’s the other factor: I apply this stuff even if my skin is clear. Acne spends some time lurking beneath the skin before rearing its ugly head, so I like to think I’m attacking it before it surfaces.

I used to think that moisturizer goes on the skin immediately after cleansing. Wrong (insert Trump voice here)! Moisturizer helps to lock it all in and make the other products more effective. I use The True Cream Aqua Bomb by belif. This moisturizer is ultra lightweight and refreshing (mild minty scent), and so worth the price from Sephora.

I also use Yes To Cucumber Soothing Eye Gel for my undereye circles. I’ll be honest…I don’t see much of a difference in puffiness, but this gel has a cooling, soothing effect. I recently received samples of Clinique Pep-Start Eye Cream and IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Under Eye Eye Cream—they absorb nicely, but it’s too soon to say whether they’re effective or not.

During these winter months, my skin gets a Rose Face Mask by Fresh a few times every week. Again, if you’re acne-prone, don’t be afraid of an ultra-hydrating mask like this one. Your skin wants and needs that moisture. Also, Fresh is an amazing product line, so do check them out.

Healthy skin is hydrated skin, so always drink plenty of water. I’m currently recovering from a sinus infection, so I’ve been guzzling coconut water, which has some lovely benefits for your skin. I buy Zico, but I’ve never tried any of the interesting flavors they offer, such as chocolate or pineapple.

Get enough sleep, limit your alcohol intake, don’t smoke, and wear SPF on your face every day of the year. Develop a regimen and stick to it—your skin likes routine! If you have anything to add, let me know in the comments section.




One Comment Add yours

  1. Katrina says:

    As a Medical Esthetician who’s read an extensive amount of material in the area of skin care, particularly for those who’ve had the misfortune of suffer from cases of chronic acne, I found this blog post to be one of the most comprehensive and informative pieces I’ve read on the subject. Most notably the emphasis of moisture masks, which can help to soothe and replenish troubled skin, and the use of a salicylic acid spot treatment to target specific problem areas. If you suffer from chronic acne and have found no relief I would definitely recommend incorporating some of these products into your daily skin care routine.

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