Let’s face it: dealing with acne can be socially embarrassing at any age (take it from someone who’s been battling their skin since age eleven).
Not only do you stress over your breakouts, but sigh in exasperation over how dry such topical medications like those containing Benzoyl Peroxide or Salicylic Acid, make your skin look and feel”especially in the winter months. It can be pretty hard to apply makeup, let alone wear any, when your skin is flakier than a French croissant!
The good news, though, is that there are products and ways to keep your skin hydrated and supple while ingesting or applying such drying medications.
All the following products can be found at your local drugstore, but of course, you should always consult your doctor should you want to try anything new.
Once you begin a new acne treatment, it’s important that you switch-up your facial cleansing routine. Look for products that contain no fragrance or other irritants such as dyes, lanolin and parabens. Spectro Jel’s Blemish-Prone Cleanser ($15), deep cleans while protecting your skin’s natural moisture (it can also be used to cleanse your entire body), while La Roche Posay’s Effaclar Purifying Foaming Gel Cleaser ($20) is specially formulated for those undergoing dermatological treatments.
Of course, the key to really keeping your skin hydrated while undergoing an acneic treatment is to keep your skin moisturized. Contrary to common belief, over applying moisturizer will not result in more breakouts; in fact, extremely dry skin will begin to produce more oil (sebum), actually resulting in more breakouts.
Cetaphil, in particular, has an ultra-light, Non-Comedogenic Moisturizer ($17) formulated for acne-prone skin, but if you’re currently on a more drying method of acne medication such as Accutane, look for more concentrated formulas like Cetaphil’s Moisturizing Cream ($25), or La Roche Posay’s Effaclar H Compensating Soothing Moisturizer ($23), for oily skin made fragile by over-drying skincare. You can also lightly spray your face with Avene’s Thermal Spring Water Mist after cleansing, to provide your skin with extra hydration prior to applying moisturizer. Also remember to drink plenty of water throughout the day!
Now that we’re in the middle of winter, another important tip to remember will be to hydrate your lips, and in more extreme cases, your nostrils, especially if on Accutane. The easiest way to keep your pucker soft and supple is to apply an ultra-hydrating balm throughout the day, and at night, smother your lips in a thick coating of Vaseline. The same can be done to your nostrils to prevent them from painfully drying out.
Lastly, keep your head high! Sure, it may be a struggle to constantly battle your unpredictable skin, but as cheesy as it sounds, people really do focus more on the inside.