How to Handle Breakouts

Source: flickr.com user coderonin
Source: flickr.com user coderonin

In the world of skin care advice, nothing is more talked about than dealing with breakouts. Whether you suffer from acne, or you only see the occasional pimple, here’s the lowdown on what you should – and should not – do to regain a clear complexion.

Do thoroughly cleanse your skin at night. You should be doing this anyway, but doubly so if you’re experiencing a breakout. At the end of the day, your skin is covered in your own skin care product remnants, makeup, environmental pollutants, dirt, excess oil, and more. In short, it’s kind of gross.

If you leave all of that stuff on your skin, you’re not allowing your pores to breathe and function normally, which can lead to even more blemishes. On top of that, your existing blemishes aren’t able to heal themselves due to lack of oxygen  and compromised function. Simply remove makeup and give your skin a little scrub, and you’ll already be on your way to clearer skin.

Don’t pick, pop, or pile on concealer. The number one enemy to clear skin is picking at it! We are all tempted to pop pimples, but doing so can cause scarring and bacterial infection, not to mention pain and bleeding, which can often make your skin look worse. If you absolutely must pop your pimple, there are a few rules to follow that will reduce your risk of causing further damage.

  1. Only pop a pimple that has come to a head. That is, it’s white/yellow at the top, and raised above the skin.
  2. Take a shower to open your pores, and cleanse your skin and hands.
  3. Disinfect a sharp sewing needle with rubbing alcohol.
  4. Gently prick one small hole in the head of the pimple.
  5. Wrap your fingertips in tissue and use a gentle down-and-in motion to drain the fluid. Stop if the fluid becomes clear or bloody.
  6. STOP! That’s it. Don’t keep going, don’t keep picking, and do not cover your newly opened wound with makeup. If you wish, gently wash it with cool water, but that’s it.

One more note on concealer. It is a wonder product when formulated and used correctly. However, some concealers are very heavy and will make breakouts worse. Instead of just using any old thing, make sure to find a concealer that is formulated with non-comedogenic ingredients (ingredients that won’t clog your pores), or use a skin care product that offers tint, like Atopalm’s BB Cream.

Do use an acne treatment product formulated especially to dry and heal breakouts. Whether it’s a mask, spot treatment, or lotion, utilizing a specialized skin care product will greatly boost the healing process. Just be sure to use gentle ingredients like salicylic acid and willow bark or tea tree, and stay far away from benzoyl peroxide and other hash ingredients.

Do still rock your look. Don’t let a breakout, acne, or one single pimple sap all of your confidence! We’ve all had breakouts, and sadly, will continue to have them. But, that’s ok! Chances are no one cares about your pimple because they’re dealing with their own. And let’s face it, we’re all shallow enough to ignore someone else’s skin care issues in favor of our own. So, put your best face forward with confidence and knowledge that, in a few days’ time, your skin will be back to normal.

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