How to get clear skin: a question we’ve probably all asked ourselves at some point. After trying our fair share of products that promise to transform our skin overnight, we know the disappointment that inevitably follows when, in 24 hours, we’re still experiencing redness and breakouts. Instead of looking for an overnight cure or magic bullet, try making these small changes each day to get glowing skin in less than a month.
Day 1: Visit a dermatologist. It may seem simple, but many people skip this step and subsequently treat their skin the wrong way. A quick trip to a skin doctor can take out a lot of the guesswork in your beauty routine.
Day 2: Break bad habits by keeping hands off of your face. The bacteria on your fingers is only making your skin problems worse.
Day 3: Wash your pillowcases once a week. Bacteria on your bedding can cause breakouts.
Day 4: Clean off your phone with an alcohol pad. Phones spend too much time near and on our faces to not be clean.
Day 5: Choose a cleanser with salicylic acid, like Kate Somerville Purify Clarifying Cleanser ($32, katesomerville.com). The salicylic acid will exfoliate dead skin cells and help reduce the appearance of pores.
Day 6: Dry your skin with a soft t-shirt, instead of a towel. Some towels are too abrasive and cause tiny tears in the skin, where bacteria makes its way in.
Day 7: After washing your face, use a toner that will clean pores without stripping skin of your natural oils.
Day 8: Limit your retinol products to nighttime, since they become inactive in sunlight. Instead, switch out your skin care routine in the AM for something without retinol.
Day 9: No one can fault you for wanting to cover up evidence of your breakouts during the day, but try to choose makeup that covers, as well as heals your acne.
Day 10: Clean off makeup brushes once a week to keep bacteria from being spread.
Day 11: Don’t neglect your body! After drying off after a shower, spray acne-prone body parts with Glo Professional Back Acne Treatment ($32, gloprofessional.com).
Day 12: Moisturize with a face oil. While those with blemishes tend to shy away from oil, it can stop your skin from creating excess sebum, which causes breakouts.
Day 13: When slathering on sunscreen this summer, choose a non-comedogenic version for your face, like Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 30 ($9.49, neutrogena.com).
Day 14: If you wash your face in the shower, be sure to wash your hair before applying a facial cleanser. This ensures you don’t leave behind any shampoo/conditioner residue on your skin, which can irritate it.
Day 15: If breakouts are located around your hairline, change out shampoos. Your skin might be reacting to the formula.
Day 17: Incorporate lots of leafy greens into your diet, as well as these other skin-clearing foods.
Day 18: Eliminate sugar and dairy from your diet to see if that makes a difference in your skin. For many people, their faces start clearing up immediately.
Day 19: Exfoliate your face with a chemical exfoliating product, like Kaplan MD Clinical Skin Therapy ($50, kaplanmd.com) a few times a week.
Day 20: Use a skin clearing mask once a week, like Origins Clear Improvement Mask ($23, origins.com).
Day 21: Never go to bed without taking off your makeup. If it’s a worse case scenario, at least swipe your face with a Simple Cleansing Facial Wipe ($5.99, drugstore.com).
Day 22: For large cystic pimples, use a spot treatment at night with an aspirin mask. Mix 5-8 aspirin tablets with a few drops of water until it’s dissolved into a paste. Dab the paste onto pimples for an overnight reduction in size.
Day 23: Deep clean your pores with a DIY facial every couple of weeks.
Day 24: Be sure to get enough sleep each night and limit stress, which can cause skin eruptions.
Day 25: Dab a tiny bit of Visine ($7.79, walgreens.com) on bright red pimples to take away the redness.
Day 26: Drink plenty of water throughout the day. It’s amazing how big a difference this step can make in your appearance.
Day 27: Exercise at least three times a week. By maintaining inner health, you’ll help balance your skin.
Day 28: Stay consistent with your skin routine to see the results you want.
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