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My skin is shit and I don't know where to start to improve it

(70 Posts)
Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 12:43:40

I am so fed up of my skin sad it is dull, rough, feels incredibly coarse to the touch and gets very dry but also gets very oily at times. I get three or four spots a month around my period, which is annoying, but I'm not sure qualifies as acne?

I have no skincare regime (just wash my face in the shower) and I know I need to start. This is where I am totally, utterly lost. There are so so many skincare brands and while I'm happy to invest in good quality products like Dermalogica or Clinique etc, I really can't afford to waste hundreds trying them all out.

I would love to see a dermatologist for advice, and would love a facial to kick start everything. But again have no idea where to find good ones?

Where do I start?

Can anyone help?

sheldonesque Thu 04-Jun-15 12:47:51

Shamelessly lurking for tips as I am the same sad

AkkerDemik Thu 04-Jun-15 12:50:31

Come on over to the Style and Beauty board!

And google Caroline Hirons. Her methods have improved many a complexion - she's a star of the S&B board, but can be a bit overwhelming when you're just starting and the posters on the board will help you work out where to begin.

TheWitTank Thu 04-Jun-15 12:55:14

Okay - how is your diet first of all? I noticed a HUGE change in my skin when I cut out refined sugars and dairy about 6 months ago (the texture, brightness, no spots).
I use Cleanse & Polish by Liz Earle which I love, and also Clinique products. I don't load up on make up and I religiously take my make up off every night and moisturise and use an eye cream. Over all, I would say though that the biggest factor in having great skin is diet. And drink lots of water!

PaperBox Thu 04-Jun-15 12:56:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ememem84 Thu 04-Jun-15 12:59:07

I use clarins which I love. It's improved my skin so much.

I also stopped eating so much meat and more veggies. And started drinking more water and this I think has helped too.

I'd suggest going to a few counters and asking the ladies for their help/advice/ a few samples.

Melonfool Thu 04-Jun-15 13:00:10

I found that taking fish oils really helped my skin - I took it to help my eyes, which it did as well, but found my skin was better, softer, less oily and less dry.

kissmethere Thu 04-Jun-15 13:02:27

After washing moisturising so important if your skin is rough and dull. That's where to start especially at night. Nivea is good to begin with.
Definitely get over to style and beauty.

Bunbaker Thu 04-Jun-15 13:09:31

"Over all, I would say though that the biggest factor in having great skin is diet."

And wearing SPF and not smoking.

I have been told that I have excellent skin by a beauty therapist who was doing a facial. She examined my skin through a magnifying glass and she knows what she doing. I am 56 BTW.

What have I done to acheive this?

Always used moisturiser (since the age of 15)
Never gone to bed without cleansing my face
Not worn make-up every day
Not over exposed my face to the sun
Kept myself well hydrated (not always water - that is a myth that has been debunked)
Never smoked

I have never used expensive skincare brands either and have chopped and changed between Boots no 7, Aldi Lacura, Superdrug Naturally Radiant, Olay, Virgin Vie, Bodyshop vitamin E range, l'Oreal, Garnier, other Boots brands and various other skincare brands.

I really rate the Superdrug skincare products - Naturally Radiant works better for me as the vitamin E range is too rich and I suggest you start with inexpensive ranges first and work your way up.

Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 13:14:33

Thank you!

Ok, will check these out, and will also post on s&b as well.

Diet's reasonably good in that I get plenty of veg and protein but unfortunately do have days where I also have far too much sugar and alcohol - ie weekends.

Are the bigger Boots stores and places like Debenhams the best places to ask for advice when it comes to products and brands? Do they give free mini samples usually, or is it only if you buy one product?

Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 13:19:38

I use either body butter or Simple rich moisturiser, every day.

But my skin feels so incredibly hard and rough. I keep getting urges to use a scrub every few days but don't do this because it irritates the skin, but then I'm still stuck with a face that is coarse to the touch sad

I drink a lot of water and tea, am rarely dehydrated - probably only a couple of times a week does my wee look dehydated (sorry for TMI) after a stressful day running around like a headless chicken when I don't get time to drink enough. Then I automatically chug loads of water again so while it's not ideal to be dehydrated at all, it's not for very long.

I drink alcohol about twice a week. I smoke when I'm drinking (this is a recent development) but my skin has been like this for years, long before I started to smoke.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Thu 04-Jun-15 13:24:21

Water - drink lots of it.

Regarding skin care, I'm prone to broken capillaries and I swear by 'Skin Doctor', it's not too expensive and is very effective for me. There are different products for each 'problem', mine is called 'capillary clear'. Would really recommend a browse, OP.

LavazzaLover Thu 04-Jun-15 13:27:33

Cheaper stuff can do wonders.

Dont use soap.

I use Nivea Wipes. Avon Reversalist day and night cream. And drink plenty of water.

plumstone Thu 04-Jun-15 13:29:08

I would heartily recommend the S&B threads and Caroline Hirons, and spf every day and water. CH has changed my whole outlook skin I actually now happily leave the house make up free!! Lots of friends in RL said its too time consuming so I started to look at it as a hobby - really enjoy the morning and evening cleansing rituals (it sounds like a cult probably is a bit

RE Beauty counters, I go armed with a list of products I've read about or seen mentioned on here, and they are usually really good about letting you try.

silveracorn Thu 04-Jun-15 13:34:23

Alcohol and sugar, especially chocolate really wreck the skin's appearance.

Liz Earle's Cleanse and Polish is gorgeous, but if you are daunted by the expense, there are loads of great cheap products on the market. I use Garnier soft (v gentle and cheap, smells great) as a cleanser because lots of more expensive ones make my skin flare up. Then Nivea Q10 is a great anti wrinkle all round moisturiser.

Cheap but effective face masks are the Superdrug clay range - less than £1. Put one on in the bath. It gets rid of blackheads, white heads, and makes skin feel very soft and clean. For oily patches of skin my DC use Clearasil gel. It smells good. For spots at time of the month Freederm Rapid shrinks them quickly. (Worth the extra £2 for the rapid action version. It works and lasts.)

Get out in the sun if you have that English greyness to the skin. And exercise. When I run, I notice the skin over my cheekbones and around the jaw is tauter too.

GiantGaspingSatanicCyst Thu 04-Jun-15 14:22:33

My skin was dreadful until recently (also dull, dry and oily, prone to blackheads/breakouts), despite having good diet and hydration etc. Things that have made a big difference are hot cloth cleansing, serum under moisturiser and eye cream. I don't use expensive products - Superdrug Vit E eye cream is fantastic.

My skin looks a thousand times better than it ever has smile I've always felt unhappy and ashamed of my skin, until now.

Loads of good advice on the S&B threads, but don't get too overwhelmed by it. I did initially but picked out a few things to try at a time and stuck with what I found worked best for me.

Melonfool Thu 04-Jun-15 14:34:45

Is hot cloth cleansing different to applying cleanser and washing it off with a warm flannel?

KateSMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 04-Jun-15 14:41:25

The style and beauty boards have changed my face for the better <glows>

We're just going to punt this thread over there so you can get lots of advice OP.

Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 14:46:51

Thank you!

I did also put a post on style and beauty.

grin at the cult-like status of CH. I am happy to embrace it if it works!

Yes to what exactly is hot oil cleansing?

Cheap stuff I don't have a problem with, but have read so much about eg scrubs just making tiny rips in the skin and not being good. And have tried different masks and still my pores look clogged.

lisaloulou84 Thu 04-Jun-15 15:06:52

OP forget that comments about rips in the skin!
Exfoliators are essential because they gently scrub away the top layer of skin which is actually just dead dry skin. They also help to lift the dirt out of open pores which is what causes blackhead.
I'd start really basic, you need something to take your make up off, a facewash to use after this and first thing in the morning and a light moisturiser and eye cream. I'd then get an exfoliator and use this in the mornings twice to three times a week. It's quite a big deal to start a routine from scratch so you might not want to spend loads on getting expensive products if you find it difficult to get into the habit of using them. If it was me I'd get the garnier cleansing water, their soft wash, their basic moisturiser (the one in the orange tube) and maybe the Superdrug vit e eye cream. I'd splurge on the exfoliator as I've never found the cheap ones work as well as I'd like, the benefit refined finish is really good. All of these things are pretty plain on ingredients too so should you find something irritates you, it won't be a waste of money.
I worked for a beauty brand for 8 years until mat leave last year if that helps so know my stuff!

LazySusan11 Thu 04-Jun-15 15:20:10

I'd start with a good cleanser and double cleanse, with a flannel. Body shop have decent ones, Clinique have a take the day off balm which is also good. Then use an acid toner such as Pixi glow tonic or the FAB radiance pads. Then whatever moisturiser you feel your skin needs. You need the basics first because no product will do anything if your skin isn't prepped properly. A lot of people use water that is too hot on their face which leads to redness and irritation. Also please don't be tempted to use a foaming cleanser it makes the skin alkaline and bacteria will happily breed!

I agree that Caroline Hirons is great have a look at her blog

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Thu 04-Jun-15 15:20:13

I was just about to post about exfoliating your face - twice a week but at bedtime not in the morning.

My DD adds sugar, salt, or coffee to olive oil to create a skin scrub. She'll then massage the scrub onto her arms and legs then rinse with water to slough off dead skin.

Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 15:30:06

Ok I have some dumb questions -

Is the Superdrug Vit E cream an eye moisturiser? For delicate bits round the eyes?

Why are hot cloths so good?

Is double cleansing just doing it morning and evening?...

Urgh it is all quite complex! Thank you for the input, I'd be totally lost otherwise!

Dullygreygirl Thu 04-Jun-15 15:31:07

One more dumb question -

when people say a flannel do they mean just a normal one? or a special face regime type one?

MyCatIsAGit Thu 04-Jun-15 15:35:14

I use Boots No 7 facial cleanser for Dry/Very Dry skin, scoot it on, then wash off with a face cloth (just normal towel cloth) then moisturise. Usually do the first bit in the shower.

It's cheap, exfoliates a bit but not too much, and my skin doesn't look bad. It would look better if I work SPF more and moisturised more!

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