How To Quit Sugar to Get Your Best Skin Ever

I quit sugar in May 2012. I did this to try and clear my face of cystic acne which was really bad at that time. I had bumps on my forehead that did not heal for about 6 months. Even medical treatments could not fix them. When my acne cleared after quitting sugar, thrilled I continued to look around on the internet on why my acne cleared with this diet change.

The video below was shared with me by my husband.

Continue reading “How To Quit Sugar to Get Your Best Skin Ever”

How to Calm Your Skin when you have a Cystic Acne Flare Up

If you have acne you may have been in this situation many times. Your face suddenly takes a turn for the worse. It looks red, feels inflamed and feels like it is on fire. Normal activities like washing your face, brushing your teeth and going out suddenly become these huge hurdles, you just can’t get past. Your face actually hurts because the acne are deep within the skin and cause pain. Even sleeping becomes a problem as the rubbing can cause further irritation.

So what do you do when you have a cystic acne flare up?

1. No applying products and  hands off your face

Yes, you read that right. No applying any products or any ointment. I’ve been down this road more often than I wanted to and I know that nothing works. Nothing you apply to your face at this point is going to help you. Also no touching to feel your face. It’s a common temptation when you have acne, to touch your acne to see how big they are. This does not help and only irritates your skin further.

2. No makeup

Cystic acne

As tempting as it might be to try and cover up, all you will be doing is irritating your skin even further. It will be worse when you have to wash it off and irritate your face all over again. Makeup at this point is just not worth it. You probably will not be able to cover it up. Plus your skin does not need an added irritant at this time. If you do use makeup not only will you irritate your skin applying it, you will irritate it much more when taking it off.

3. Take a Vitamin C supplement

cystic acne flare up

You need to stimulate your immune system to fight this. The best way is to take a Vitamin C supplement. You can try to increase your intake of it through diet but for your skin to calm down you need a much larger dose, more than you can eat in a day. 1000 mg a day will be fine.

4. Have a Green smoothie or eat lots of green vegetables

The best foods for acne are vegetables. More specifically green leafy vegetables which is the best food you can eat when your skin is acting up. Drink it in the form of a smoothie or add them to your diet, any way is perfectly fine. Green leafy vegetables include spinach, fenugreek leaves (methi), broccoli, kale, cabbage, swiss chard, lettuce, watercress, mustard greens.


5. Drink a lot of water

acne

There is a myth out there that drinking water will get rid of your acne by flushing toxins. I have no idea what these toxins are and I also know that drinking water will not cure acne. But what drinking water does is keep your skin hydrated and bring down the redness on your face.

6. No stimulants

Till your skin settles down avoid alcohol and extremely spicy foods. I am not going to ask you to cut out tea and coffee completely but do restrict the amount you drink to 2-3 cups a day.

7. Skip sugar and dairy for a few days.

Sugar and dairy tend to cause inflammation in some people. Cut them out of your diet for a few days till your face settles down. Little milk and sugar in your tea or coffee is fine but no more than that.

8. Calm your skin with cold water

Your face may feel hot and irritated. Splash cold water on your face whenever needed. Avoid excessive heat and hot showers till your skin settles down. Avoid drying your face and let it dry naturally.

 

9. Relax and Remember that your skin will Heal

cystic acne flare upAcne does tend to make us lose perspective of things and we feel really down and depressed. With a few changes your skin can heal properly. When you have acne you feel that life is unfair to you. This is completely normal. While completely understandable you do not have to give in to these feelings. Try and find something that makes you happy and do that. Give meditation a try. It can be beneficial for your life in general.

 

Home Remedies for Acne Prone Skin

This is a guest post by Sophia from healthandbeautybay.com.

There’s no denying that skincare products can be very costly. That’s why it’s a good idea to use natural home remedies as much as possible. There are a number of different household substances that you can use to help with acne prone skin. In this list, we’re going to go over eight different home remedies that you can use for getting rid of acne and keeping your skin clean and clear without having to break the bank.

Witch Hazel

Witch hazel is an excellent product to use for astringent purposes. The tannins that you find in it are able to create the same effect in a more natural way. Instead of spending a lot of money on an astringent product, it’s definitely worth trying out witch hazel first. It’s recommended that you soak a cotton ball in it and rub it gently on the skin of your face twice per day for about two weeks when you first get started. After that, you can just maintain the habit by using it only once per day.

Yeast and Yogurt Mask

All you have to do to create this mask is to mix together a little bit of plain yogurt and one teaspoon of Brewer’s yeast. You’ll only need enough to create a thin layer to put on your face at most, so be careful not to use too much or it might mess with the effects.

Apply to your skin, paying special attention to the oily spots on your face. Let it sit for about fifteen to twenty minutes so that it can soak in. Then rinse it off thoroughly with warm water. Once the mask is gone, follow it up with some cold water to help close your pores.

Oatmeal

Oatmeal is known to have a number of great effects on your skin and is sometimes used in store-bought skin care products. The most obvious benefit is that oatmeal is able to offer some exfoliating properties that can help clear dead skin off your face. It can also help to absorb oil and even bacteria.

If you mix about a cup of cooked oatmeal with the juice from half a lemon and one teaspoon of honey, you can use it as a mask to help your skin. All you have to do is apply the combination to your face and leave it to sit for about 30 minutes. Then, rinse it off with warm water.

Lemon Juice

It goes without saying that lemons are naturally acidic. Because of that, they can help to clean unwanted dirt and gunk out of the pores in your skin. It can be especially helpful for skin that is very oily, but be careful because using lemon juice too often can also be drying. For particularly difficult areas, you can rub a slice of lemon on the spot and let it sit for a few hours while you do other things, letting the juice sink into your skin before rinsing it off. If using lemon juice alone seems too harsh, then you can also mix some lemon juice with rose water and use that solution the way you might a face wash.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil functions very well as a natural antiseptic, which means it can do a great job of disinfecting pores. It’s recommended that you use only small amounts of it because it can be a strong, drying substance. It’s great for killing off acne-causing bacteria so if you find you’re having a particularly bad outbreak, it can be really helpful for getting rid of that.

Honey

Honey is able to offer moisturization without the risk of making your skin even more oily as well as antiseptic and antibacterial properties that are important for keeping your skin clean and clear. You also don’t need to mix it with anything, while you can create some homemade cleansers and other products with it if you choose.

All you need to do is spread a thin layer of honey on your skin and allow it to sit for about ten minutes, so that it has time to allow the effects to seep into your skin. Then rinse it off thoroughly.

Aloe

Aloe is something that most people know to be a go-to aid for burns. It’s known to be able to soothe and cool the skin, which can actually allow it to help with other kinds of skin conditions as well. If you have problems with flaky skin in combination with oil, you may be able to get some healing effects from aloe by putting a little bit of it on before bed and letting it soak in while you rest. If you’ve never used aloe before then make sure to do a patch test on your forearm to make sure you aren’t allergic.

Turmeric

There are a number of home products that you can use for making masks to help your skin. One of these is turmeric, which is known to have a number of helpful properties. Mixing two teaspoons of turmeric powder with about a half cup of chickpea flour and some ghee or almond oil can create a mask that can help to clear acne and bring some life to your skin. You just leave it on for about five to ten minutes, and then rinse it off well with water.

Conclusion

Each of these products are great in different ways and offer unique benefits for your skin. You might find that some work better for dry skin and others for oils skin. Not all skincare products, natural or otherwise, are created equal for every skin type.

Make sure you are prepared to counteract any negative reactions that your skin might have to certain products, just in case. If you’re worried you might be allergic to anything, it’s always a good idea to test a small amount of the product before slathering it all over your face. Aside from that, have fun trying out new home skincare recipes!

Hi, I’m Sophia Alves. healthandbeautybay.com is where you can find me – my passion is living a full, healthy life and being as beautiful as you can be! I’d love it if you hopped on over and said hello.

How to Get Rid of Oily Skin

One problem that generally goes hand in hand with acne is oily skin. Skin that looks like it has been drizzled with oil. Besides giving you a sticky feel, oily skin looks dull. You might also have this weird combination of skin being dry as well as oily. This is a common problem when you are battling adult acne. Trying to use makeup when you have this dry and oily combination skin can be a bit of a challenge.

Where does this oil come from ?

The oil or sebum is an oily substance secreted by the sebaceous glands. Sebaceous glands are everywhere on your body except your palms and the soles of your feet. Coincidentally there is a greater concentration of sebaceous glands on your face. These glands may be connected to a hair follicle or open up directly onto the surface of your skin. When the pore is filled with sebum or oil it spreads on the surface of the skin to keep it moist and healthy. When the gland keeps producing oil and the pore is blocked with dead skin cells it leads to acne.

Let’s keep something in mind here. This oil to required keep your skin looking good, healthy and protected from infections. Without this oil your skin would be dry and dull and would age faster. What we want is a fresh dewy look but not the sticky and yucky feel that comes with excess oil.

Why does Your Skin Get Oily

Sebaceous glands are controlled by hormones. That is why teens generally get acne as their hormones are fluctuating and since these hormones control the sebaceous glands, excess oil is secreted. This hormonal imbalance sometimes continues or starts in adulthood due to diet, stress, genetics, environmental factors etc. There is no way of knowing which factor or combination of factors causes it. The way I see it, it is generally irrelevant what causes your oily skin or your acne. Focus on fixing the problem.

So How Do We Fix This?

What’s the first thing you do when you have oily skin? Well, wash it of course. A few hours later, your face gets oily again and you wash it again. This cycle continues. You then go looking for face washes meant for oily skin. Face washes meant for oily skin generally tend to be harsher. The cycle of skin being oily and washing continues. This is what I did. Let me tell you that this is one of the worst things you can do when you have oily skin. My skin got sensitive, red and raw. Of course I cannot blame just the washing. I have to put equal amounts of blame on the BP and antibiotics.

There is a lot of advice out there about treating oily skin, that I really do not agree with. The only thing I can say is that all this advice comes from people who have never struggled with either acne or oily skin. The advice ranges from being mildly unhelpful (like do not moisturize oily skin) to completely awful (which says to ask a doctor for Accutane). Using Accutane to stop the oiliness is on the same lines as using dynamite to blow up your house just to kill the cockroaches in it. While washing your face frequently to remove oil may seem like the logical thing to do, it does not really work at stopping the oil. The oil continues to flow to the surface of the skin and the constant washing continues to dry out the skin. The oil can’t just be washed away with a face wash.

How to wash your face

When your face is oily and you keep washing it to remove the oil, the oil glands just create more oil. There are a few ways you can deal with this. One is to stop using face wash completely and just rinse your face with plain water. Of course not everyone will like this method.

I am not sure there is a really mild face wash out there so I suggest using a home made face wash to clean your face.

Plain Honey

Honey is great for acne prone skin when used as a mask or as a face wash. You can apply honey all over your face. Leave it for 15 minutes then wash. If you do not have time just apply a coin size amount all over your damp face, rub gently and wash off. If the honey is too stick mix it with a little water.

DIY Face wash with Honey

Here’s a face wash you can make with honey.

how to get rid of oily skin

1/2 cup honey (preferably organic)

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon jojoba, rosehip, avocado /  1/2 teaspoon tea tree oil

Mix all and keep in a glass jar. Shake well before use. To use apply a coin size amount all over your damp face and wash off.

Oatmeal Face Wash

You can also wash your face using oatmeal. Oats are very soothing to the skin and are often used in creams to provide relief from dry itchy skin. Grind oatmeal and keep it in a jar. Mix one tablespoon of the ground oatmeal in 2 tablespoons of warm water. Rub the paste on your damp face gently and wash off with warm water.

Oil Cleansing Method (OCM)

You can also wash your face using the Oil Cleansing Method (OCM), which although sounds counter-intuitive actually works. This is a bit scary for anyone doing this for the first time. Just keep it as an option though. You can try the above 2 methods for now.

Face Masks for Oily Skin

Honey Face Mask

My favorite face mask for acne, acne scars and oily skin is the one I normally recommend to most of the people who ask me what to use. This is the honey face mask which packs a huge punch.

Clay Mask

how to get rid of oily skin

The other masks that help with oily skin are clay based masks. The best clay for acne prone oily skin is bentonite clay. This clay actually helps control the over production of sebum and unclogs the pores. Over time it even shrinks pores, gives your face a glow and reduces the appearance of scars. Adding green tea to the mask also helps reduce the oil and tone your skin. This is optional.

1 teaspoon bentonite clay

1 teaspoon raw honey

2-3 drops rosehip oil

Water to make a paste ( or green tea )

Mix all the above to form a thick paste. Apply on your face and leave it on for 15 minutes or till it dries. Wash off with warm water.

Do you need a toner?

Most people with oily skin are told that they need to use toner to close the pores to prevent excess oil formation. Most toners contain alcohol which dries out the skin. You do not need a toner. If you feel you really need a toner you can use green tea or rose water. Or try any of the following DIY toners.

Green Tea and Rose Water Toner

To make this toner add equal quantities of rose water and green tea and store in an easy to use bottle in the refrigerator. Use whenever needed. make small quantities as it is better to make this fresh.

Mint toner

Grind a handful of mint leaves and strain the mix. Dilute the mix till it is transparent. Store this in a bottle and use as needed.

Ice Cube

Rub an ice cub all over your face. This has the same effect as a toner does.

Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

I personally would not use this one because I do not like the smell of vinegar. Combine 1 part of apple cider vinegar with 3 parts of water. So for one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar you need to add 3 teaspoons of water.

Does Oily Skin Need Moisturizer?

Many people say that oily skin does not need a moisturizer. Makes sense as your skin is oily enough. But in truth your skin does need all the moisture it can get. So please do use a moisturizer. If you do not want to use it during the day, use it during the night. Any light moisturizer will do fine. Stay away from heavy cream based moisturizers.

Improving Your Diet

Overactive sebaceous glands are due to a hormonal imbalance. This imbalance can be greatly improved by cutting out sugar and dairy from your diet. The side effects of using diet to balance out your hormones are all good – great skin, great hair and good health. Once you cut out sugar and dairy I promise your skin will be a lot less oily.

You do not need to cut out oil from your diet. Oil in your diet does not cause oily skin. Make sure you drink at least 2 litres of water everyday. Adding the juice of one lemon into this water will also help in bringing down the oiliness of your skin.

To conclude it does not take much to reduce the oiliness on your face. A few simple steps go a long way in getting rid of excess oil on your skin.

Rosehip Oil for Acne Scars

Rosehips are the fruits that form on some species of rose plants. The rosehips themselves are one of the richest sources of Vitamin C. I first came across rosehip oil in this article where the author said her friend’s acne scars faded after using rosehip oil. She also said she tried the oil on 3 different people and each of their skin problems got resolved with this oil. I saved the article but never got a chance to try the oil.

Always looking for natural products to make my skin look better, I recently saw rosehip oil on discount at my local supermarket. It was almost half original price. However I did not buy it, thinking I would look at some reviews of it. It was not the brand recommended by the article. However when I went back the discount had gone, but there was another brand of rosehip oil on sale. I quickly did a search for some reviews which were quite good. I decided to buy it.

rosehip oil

It’s rosehip oil with a blend of a few other oils like Tamanu Seed Oil and Lavender oil. The brand is Model Co.

Rosehip oil contains provitamin A and Omega fatty acids which are great for skin in general. Even more so when you suffer from skin issues like acne, enlarged pores and scars. When applied topically they smooth the skin, leave the skin hydrated but not oily, eliminate irritation and flakiness and deliver much needed antioxidants to your skin.

Note that in spite of the rosehips themselves having loads of Vitamin C, rosehip oil does not contain any vitamin C. The oil is rich in essential fatty acids like omega-6 and omega-3. The oil also contains antioxidants. Source

As with everything on my site I always try things out on myself before recommending them to you. So here is my feedback.

The oil itself is very light. You use 2-3 drops on your face after washing. I use it both morning and night after washing my face with plain water. It does not leave your skin oily and gets absorbed very fast. I’ve been using it for a month now and would love to share its benefits with you.

Here is what I have noticed. I have been slipping on my diet a lot recently and have had a few breakouts and clogged pores. So this was an ideal time to try this out.

  1. My skin is much smoother.

This is due to the fatty acids in the oil. The small clogged bumps I had have all gone.

2. My old acne scars are much better now.

I have not used my go to Honey Mask for ages now. Almost a year I think. Blame it on moving countries. But after a month of using this oil I have seen my old scars fade. Even my indented scars are looking flatter. A drop of rosehip oil in the honey mask would work wonders.

3. My face is less red

My face is normally red giving it a very flushed appearance. The redness has not gone but is considerably less.

4. The acne is healing better

I used the oil on my acne as well. They actually healed better. This is a first for me. Before I would never apply oil on active acne. However please be careful with this one. I still do not recommend applying oil on active acne though, especially acne that look particularly sore. These are best healed with honey or left alone.

5. My dark circles are gone

I used the oil around my eyes as well. Generally though I do not use a separate product for the area around the eyes. I use whatever moisturizer or oil I am using on my face. The dark circles have gone, even though I have not been sleeping well.

6. My skin tone is better

My skin looks much fresher and brighter. Note that this is in spite of the fact that I have not been eating great. This is NOT an ad to let your diet slip and use rosehip oil though!!

7. The flakiness and irritation is gone

I had some minor flakiness on my cheeks. This was due to the recent change in climate my skin has experienced. And due to the fact that my old moisturizer was over and the new one does not seem to suited to my skin. Using this oil has completely taken care of the flakiness.

Next time though I am going to use Trilogy Certified Organic Rosehip Oil. I think I would have got much better results from pure rosehip oil. This is the brand of rosehip oil you should use as it seems to be the best and in pure form.

I will also be trying out rosehip powder in the future which does contain Vitamin C.

Do let me know in the comments if you have ever used rosehip oil and your experience with it.