Facial Funk; Skin Issues
“Skin care is like dieting. You have to invest time and effort. There is no instant miracle cure.” -Karen Grant
In my last blog we covered being in a fashion funk. Feeling like you have nothing to wear can really put you in a negative state of mind but I hope the things I’ve learned to do for myself inspired some of you to do the same or find your own ways to get out of that fashion funk. Continuing with my # part series, in this blog I want to talk about skin [dun dun duuunnn]. I want to share my personal struggles with skin issues and the things I do to get out of this particular funk.
Introducing Part 2: Facial Funk
People deal with all kinds of skin issues like acne, rosacea/skin discoloring, psoriasis etc. and this can really put you in a funk because not only are you constantly worrying with trying to fix it but you’re also worrying about other people seeing your skin imperfections [bless those with perfect skin, I envy you]. Personally I have really oily skin and a pimple or two pop up every few weeks, I’m also constantly on the hunt for ways to reduce my acne scarring from years of messing with my face during high school. A few years ago I started working as an Independent Consultant for Arbonne in hopes I could learn about and find products to help my skin issues but I found I didn’t have the time to sell products while also doing a million other things in life, but that’s another story. I struggled with finding good face washes, moisturizers and foundations that worked with my skin issues but with a little bit of research and trial and error I’ve managed to find products that work for me. This isn’t necessarily a product review, although I will share the products I use down below, but I want to share how I went about finding these products and the process it took to find what worked for me.
I started by recognizing the issues I dealt with and researched what could be causing them. My oily skin seemed to just be hereditary. My dad and I have similar skin types and he’s always had that shiny look to him. Natural body oils are actually good for your skin in a sense that it acts as a natural moisturizer and can long term help with minimizing the appearance of wrinkles. Rather than trying to get rid of my oily skin I searched and tried makeup products, moisturizers and face washes that worked well with the oily skin type I have. My routine begins with washing my face so we’ll start with that. I’m a very frugal person so I shop at Walmart, Target and in the clearance section everywhere I go. I’ve tried just about everything from Clearasil and Burt’s Bees to Proactiv+. Proactiv+ was pretty good at getting rid of the pimples but when I would run out of the products before getting my next subscription box in the mail it seemed like double the pimples would pop up. I also was not a fan of the three step system. I wanted just a basic, single step face wash that could do it’s job. I began using the Neutrogena grapefruit foaming face scrub. My skin would glow from the natural grapefruit extract and gentle exfoliating properties while the salicylic acid worked on healing and preventing breakouts- and the best part about this product is that it’s oil free! So far this is the best face wash I have found for my skin type.
The next step in my routine is moisturizer. There’s a common misconception that using moisturizer makes your skin oily but if you find the right product it can help prevent oil breakthrough. Still steering clear of those high dollar name brand products I tested out a few drug store products with the bold ‘oil free’ label. I have two favorites, Cetaphil Pro which is an oil absorbing moisturizer and Acure oil control facial moisturizer. Cetaphil has up to SPF 30 which protects your skin from harmful UV rays from the sun. I like a good sunkissed look like anyone else but UV rays can be very harmful and damaging to our epidermis and can cause premature aging leading to the desire to purchase anti-aging products. Acure is a mattifying moisturizer with natural extracts and when i use it there is absolutely no shine- it literally gives my face that matte look and acts as a perfect primer for foundation. Using just enough moisturizer to cover your face before applying foundation can actually act as a primer to block your pores from soaking in your foundation causing an uneven look. Apply your moisturizer and give it a few minutes to work its way in to your skin before beginning your makeup routine.
Foundation was the trickiest part of this whole trial and error process. In this case I’ve tried name brand and drug store foundations. Most look flawless after first applied but after as little as thirty minutes my face would already become shiny. Doing research on my own is hard especially because I can’t afford to just purchase all these products and toss them out if they don’t work- so I thought, who could I ask that does have the opportunity to work with different products and has seen first hand how they work with different skin types? A makeup artist! I consulted with an artist I had worked with modelling for a bridal magazine. She has done my makeup on multiple occasions and every time I’m floored by the results not only after the initial application of a full face of makeup but also after a full day of shooting different looks. She informed me of a low end product found on Amazon that not only was an oil free product but also provided a decent full coverage look and didn’t use harsh chemicals. Phoera is a liquid foundation that comes in roughly 12 shades. You can find this product for less than $12, crazy right? At first I was shocked at how small the bottle is but I quickly realized the super light foundation went a long way when using their recommended amount for initial application. I’ve recommended this product more times than I can count and anyone who takes the chance to try it has come back to me with raving reviews.
I feel like the most important thing to get your skin in a state that makes you happy and confident is not only what you put on your skin but also what you put in your body. Eating healthy and drinking plenty of water might just be what you’re missing on this journey to better skin. It’s one thing to hear this and agree but when you make a dietary change and experience the results for yourself you’ll be astonished at what healthy eating and increased water intake can do for your skin. I never really grew up knowing the importance of drinking water. When I was thirsty I chose a soda or coffee. It takes a breakout to remind me that I’m not drinking as much water as I should so I would start to drink more throughout the day and my breakouts seemed to clear up quicker. Increasing your water intake can also just make you feel better overall. Our bodies need water to function! I’ve also been blessed with having a petite figure my entire life so I used that as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted but going through these skin issues I decided to make a change in what types of food I was eating. I traded out the dollar menu cheeseburger for a plate of colorful vegetables- doing this also saved me some money and at the same time eating healthier helped my hair look and feel healthier too! Eating healthy and drinking water is not only a short term fix but it can also help reduce the threat of health problems as you grow older, so do your body, skin and future a solid and change up your diet a bit! Talk with a nutritionist or consult the web for reliable sources that offer suggestions and explanations to what you could be changing or adding to your diet to accomplish your goals!
The last thing I want to leave you with is a brief experience with a dermatologist and esthetician. Some people have skin issues that require dermatological care and attention but for the more simple skin issues such as the things I’ve dealt with something as simple as using the right OTC products and switching up your diet can be the cure you were looking for. At one point not too long ago I began dealing with cystic acne just below my jawline, something I never had to deal with before. I was horrified at the tough knots forming under my skin that just wouldn’t seem to go away. I wasn’t covered on insurance so I couldn’t just visit a dermatologist and I had other things to pay for than a $100+ visit for the doctor to then write me prescriptions that would cost even more. I struggled with this new issue I didn’t know how to deal with for weeks before I finally just saved up some money to visit a local reputable dermatologist. She gave me ideas on what could be causing it and then turned around and wrote me a prescription for two different medications [not covered on insurance these prescriptions were going to cost me over $300]. Actually discussing concerns and asking questions with a professional right in front of you rather than just researching online might help you take care of your issues in a more effective way. I listened to what she had to say used that as research for the quest for a cure. I used to drink a lot of coffee, turns out the high caffeine levels in coffee can cause inflammation especially when it comes to breakouts including cystic acne so I cut out coffee and switched to a lighter form of caffeine like green tea. I also looked at the ingredients for the prescriptions she wrote me and found natural remedies that offered the same assistance. After making an effort to include more water in my daily diet, adding healthier food like vegetables, cutting out coffee and doing a natural facial here and there my cystic acne stopped. I thought it was a miracle but I realized that it was just the effort and care I had put in to figuring out my skin and what I could be doing to make it better. I’m still struggling with finding ways to minimize the scarring but I’ve had a dermaplaning facial once before and I think I’d like to continue doing these every other month as the first one seemed to make my skin look fresh and new, and I’ve seen positive results with those who have acne scarring like I do.
Healthy skin is an investment, not necessarily of money but of time and effort. Take the time to use your resources like the internet to research your problems and what others have done in that situation. Make the effort to implement changes in your diet or routine to get the results your looking for. Things like this don’t happen overnight. It might be a lengthy trial and error process but when you find what works for you, you’ll be thankful for what you put in to achieve your goal.