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Help me with a face routine for my problem skin!

(24 Posts)
mr405 Sat 23-May-15 18:54:48

Since a teenager I've always suffered from spots, not 'proper' acne but many blackheads and usually several red spots/ white heads at a time

Recently though my skin has been bad- at the moment it's probably the worst it's been for at least 2 years. I am taking exams at the moment so I think it's partly down to stress.

I always read posts/reviews about people whose skin clears up within days of using certain products but I have never found this for myself sad but as a result of being in constant hope (especially the last year) I have managed to accumulate MANY products...

(As a side note I am aware people often say use a product for a while before expecting results, everything I have I've used for at least a month without much success)

So I'm hoping some lovely folk can help me get a good routine together to improve my skin? I am trying to remember to double cleanse but am pretty bad at it

Here is a list of products I currently have but if anybody thinks there is something better I can use I am willing to try!

La Roche-Posay Effaclar foaming gel
La Roche-Posy Effaclar Duo + (I read loads of raving reviews for these two but didn't notice a huge difference using them, but only used them at the time without any other products)

Body Shop Tea Tree Toner
Body Shop Tea Tree Gel Wash

Garnier Pure Active Intensive Exfobrusher
Garinier Pure Active Anti-Blemish Moisturiser

Superdrug Brightening Hot Cloth Cleanser

Witch Blemish Gel and Stick

I'm feeling really low about my skin at the moment, I just really want to be as spot free as possible sad

Allie82 Sat 23-May-15 20:53:55

Personally I would ditch anything foaming as they disrupt the ph of the skin, I would suggest something gentle like cetaphil.

F4ttyBumBum Sat 23-May-15 21:02:22

I'm biased when I say this...

...Go and get a Dermaceutic peel/ treatment for problem skin and use their homecare products.

I get great feedback about the professional and homecare treatments/products smile

mr405 Sat 23-May-15 21:32:46

Thanks for the suggestions- Dermaceutic is a bit out of my price range sad

LiDLrichardsPistachioSack Sat 23-May-15 21:40:02

Oil Cleansing Method!

The only thing that works for my spot-prone but not quite acneish skin.
Also, pharmaceutical grade tea tree oil.

CheesyDibbles Sat 23-May-15 21:40:44

I have had problem skin through my 30's and it has been a bloody nightmare. Here are some of the things I have learnt.

Try and strip back all your skincare products to the bare minimum. Just a trusted cleanser to begin with. Look very closesly at your moisturiser and if you use it, your liquid foundation, they can be the worst culprits for clogging your pores. Give your skin a rest and then start adding products in slowly, one by one.

If you keep trying loads of new product you will end up not knowing if you are coming or going. Try one thing at a time and give it at least a couple of weeks. Allow a gap between stopping a product and starting another one.

If you wear makeup, try a mineral powder and use concealer on the bad areas. There's a really good Lisa Eldridge video on makeup for blemished skin. It makes the interesting point that people with 'bad' skin forget that most of their skin is fine and that it doesn't need to be plastered with makeup and that you should just focus on covering the bad areas.

Start researching the ingredients of the products you are using. There is a website called Cosdna where most cosmetic products and their ingredients are listed, it will tell you how comodogenic the products you use are.

Salicylic acid is fab!

These are the products I swear by (have used them all for over a year)

Avene Soapless Gel Cleanser
Paula's Choice Clear 2% BHA (salicylic acid - this is fab, it has no alcohol in it so it's not too drying. Can be used as a toner)
Estée Lauder Clear Difference BB Cream (lifesaver, does not clog me at all)
Laura Mercier Loose Mineral Powder

I also use Differin Gel (a retinoid) prescribes by my GP, but this is something that needs easing into and may not be suitable for you.

I am looking for a moisturising serum to go under the bb cream, but no luck yet.

Sorry for the essay!

CheesyDibbles Sat 23-May-15 21:44:23

..I also use Estée Lauder Double Wear Concealer, v good.

Get rid of anything foaming, including your shampoo if possible. Try the Oil Cleansing Method, this is a good blog on choosing suitable oils for your skin type & explains why. If possible get rid of anything with mineral oil in, it's comedogenic. (Lots of makeup has this in)

You could try natural shampoo as well, if possible you want something with no surfactants in. Depending on budget there are a number available. I buy solid shampoo bars from here but they sell via Amazon. Other shampoos are available!

peachypips Sat 23-May-15 21:55:07

I have found nothing that works on my skin until three weeks ago. I gave up sugar and my spots have totally disappeared. I can't quite believe it as I have had them for half my life.

mr405 Sun 24-May-15 00:45:52

Thanks for more suggestions!

Will certainly give the Oil Cleansing Method a go smile

Telephone I've tried natural shampoo before, it really didn't work for me, left my hair so knotty and greasy! Admittedly I only tried one brand but it isn't something I really want to risk!

peachypips that is interesting about the sugar! Have you completely cut it? Is there anything you followed- a blog or book or something? Sounds very daunting to totally cut out sugar (I am a sucker for sweet things)

mirpuppet Sun 24-May-15 07:13:19

My skin also got much clearer when I went low carb (cutting out most sugar and starches).

It was remarked on and I did not change my skin care products.

peachypips Sun 24-May-15 10:16:21

My skin has been remarked upon too puppet

mr405 - I have read Sweet Poison Quit plan. It outlines the reasons for stopping sugar and then tells you how to stop. The other book that is v popular is I Quit Sugar.

I have completely cut it out. The only sugar I have is in whole raw fruit or veg, not juice or dried or cooked fruit, and the lactose naturally found in milk. I honestly can't believe the difference as I was doing it for my weight not my skin. It is a hard path to take though; I feel sad about trifle and ice cream!! However, I don't crave it anymore.

FrugalFashionista Sun 24-May-15 10:24:47

What Cheesy did - cutting out everything and introducing new stuff one by one has really worked for me. But remember that skincare only helps in the mildest forms of acne. If the LRP products don't help I'd really stop wasting money on skincare: visit the GP and start using prescription stuff. You'll get much better results!

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 24-May-15 11:04:22

I really wouldn't use Cetaphil, it's horrible stuff, no idea why it's recommended so often, it has very few ingredients but they aren't skin friendly at all. I honestly think dermatologists get some kind of back handed from the manufacturer.

mr405 Sun 24-May-15 11:45:30

I've looked at oil cleansing but there seems to be very mixed opinions on it- what oils have people been using?

Frugal I have mild acne but suffer from bad flare ups every so often. I went to the doctor nearly a year ago and was prescribed a cream, used it until it ran out (about 4/5 months) and can't say it had much effect. Might book another appointment though as it's bad at the moment!

peachy maybe cutting sugar is the way forward- I know I probably consume far too much! I might have to slowly cut it out, not sure I can fully go cold turkey at the moment with exams. Have you found it hard eating out?

Interesting that you're willing to try all manner of different cleansers, face washes, different brands etc until you find one that works for you, but won't try natural shampoo because you didn't get on with the first one you tried. Is your hair more important to your sense of your own image than your skin? (Not a criticism, I'm genuinely curious.)

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 24-May-15 13:13:22

Coconut oil is very good for oil cleansing. Some people use a combo of oils plus castor oil but I found that hugely irritating.

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Sun 24-May-15 13:24:45

Telephone- to be fair natural shampoo was so disastrous for my hair too, I'd be reluctant to try it again as it took a month to get my hair back on track, I've never had such dreadful hairgrin

mr405 Sun 24-May-15 15:35:42

Telephone I can see what you are saying but like Dame my hair was really terrible and whilst if my skin is playing up I can disguise that to a certain extent, other than wear a hat everyday there isn't much I can do with my hair

Plus with the way my skin is at the moment I think the risk of having lank, greasy and knotty hair as well would probably cause a slight breakdown!

Fair enough, I totally see your point! grin There is an adjustment period with natural shampoo, it was probably this that you were experiencing. It takes a while to get through before it settles down. And you do need to actually find a suitable product, (they aren't cheap) so it's hard to tell at first if you've got the right one.

peachypips Tue 26-May-15 13:08:29

I haven't found it hard because even when eating out I can say to myself that I can eat WHATEVER I want as long as it doesn't have sugar. You can have dry wine and non-sweet spirits as well.

hippospot Tue 26-May-15 14:33:13

Another vote for I Quit Sugar. There is a thread on the weight loss board. People's skin really clears up (mine included).

hauntedhenry Tue 26-May-15 17:30:06

I second oil cleansing with coconut oil. Remove with a hot cloth (clean one every day), and double cleanse if you wear makeup or sunscreen. I did this a few years ago when my skin was playing up and it really helped. Pure tea tree oil on active blemishes.
I hope you have some success, op. Spots are rubbish angry

hauntedhenry Tue 26-May-15 20:46:41

Oh, and just remembered something else... try fish oil. I use the extra strong one from boots.

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