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Skin Care Situations

February 3, 2011

I have dabbled back and forth many times on what is the best solution for my skin care needs

A brief history of my skin: as a young teenager, I had typical acne that comes along with puberty. By the time I hit high school, my skin didn’t matter to me as the only thing I focused on was being a 3-season Varsity Athlete. I spent six out of the seven days of the week running, scrimmaging, and practicing plays. In my ‘free time’ I worked on my photography, hung with my friends, and traveled to the local inter-school dance. Now that I look at pictures of my HS years, I see that my skin was in the best condition. It was healthy, luminous, and very rarely did I break out save for ‘the time of the month’. I couldn’t tell you what I used on my skin, but I do remember  it was always an acne fighting scrub and I switched from Ambi, to Neutrogena, to Proactiv or whatever was on sale. I will not pledge allegiance to any of the aforementioned lines, but will say that my combination of vigorous exercise and water intake was probably the most beneficial contributor to my skin being as healthy as it was.

 

Now, a few years removed, I am analyzing my current skin situation. I’ve noticed for the past 2-3 years I break out very randomly along my T-zone and jaw line. My dermatologist informed me those areas are central spots for hormones, but for me that wasn’t enough. Breaking out every month is so not my style. I’ve made a few changes here and there, trying to assess what will work best for my situation.

I have naturally dry and sensitive skin all year round. After 3 years of trail and error, I have learned some key things about my skin:

  1. My skin care routine must change from season to season. The process is still the same but depending on the climate intensity I reevaluate how often I complete it.
  2. Speaking of process, mine includes: washing, toning, moisturizing 1x a day. 2x a week I exfoliate, 1x a week I wear a face mask. Every.Single.Day I wear sunscreen. Skin must be protected.
  3. If I fall asleep with makeup (no matter the kind), I’ll wake up with craters on my face. No way around it so I always wash makeup off before bed.
  4. Give it time to heal itself. When my skin started acting out 3 years ago, I felt like the world had crashed on my body, but the only thing I could do (and can do now) is give my skin time for the hyperpigmentated areas to fade. No way around it.

Now as I try my best to use the best things on my skin, a little thing called Oil Cleansing Method  (OCM) caught my attention. I first learned of this on the lovely and always informative nappturality forum. The premise of the OCM is you apply with a mixture of oils [my mix is 50% Grapeseed Oil and 50% Castor Oil and a few drops Lavender/Tea Tree Essential Oil] to dry skin, message it in to help remove dead skin cells. Then you place a clean towel which has been held under hot water and rung out over your face. This will help open your pores and the castor oil will draw the impurities out of your skin. With nothing to lose, my 50/50 concoction of Castor Oil and Grapeseed Oil worked wonderfully. My healthy glow came back!

Then, the breakouts returned and I ran back to my trusty Aveeno Positively Radiant Cleanser. From time to time I would re-try to OCM determined to make it work for me, only to feel beaten down by small acne flairups. For the past month, I decided to put two and two together, realizing  I can’t OCM exclusively yet the pros of Oil Cleansing outweighed what I considered negative. The pros: luminous, glowing, soft skin. The cons: More susceptible to break outs. During my initial OCM trails, I neglected to exfoliate and apply my face mask. I found this the reason my acne could not be controlled!

For the last month, I’ve used the OCM the same as I did above and now I tone with Witch Hazel daily. I exfoliate twice a week using Origins Modern Friction to remove dead skin cells and do a deep cleansing mask once a week using my bentonite clay to clear my pores. Alternating using this routine has helped my acne stay away and I can still benefit from the OCM. Now my skin isn’t perfect, but it is clear and healthy. I’ve got my glow back!

♥ Chinye

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. February 3, 2011 8:39 pm

    I really like the layout of your blog. You do a good job and your pictures are beautiful…

  2. February 4, 2011 11:52 am

    Your skin is glowing!:)

    Bentonite clay is a gem! I do that once a week to detox and wash my face with black soap. At one point, I did use an oil mix, but it would break me out, so I just stuck with my normal routine. Also, Alba advanced Deep Sea Facial Mask is REALLY GOOD for preventing flare ups.

    Drinking at least 8 glasses of water and vitamin E are extremely necessary for clear skin. Detoxing once a week, by just drinking veggie juice or Yogi skin deTox tea. I am going to start a channel on youtube or vimeo just to talk about skin care soon!:)

    • February 14, 2011 1:27 pm

      Thanks lady! The OCM really helps with my glow (that and eating well). I am going to try the tea. I’ll let you know what I do. Also, do the youtube channel! I’d watch!

  3. mangomadness permalink
    February 6, 2011 10:45 am

    Nice post and beautiful skin! 🙂

    My skin regimen is similar to yours and I, too, have dry skin. Once a day I…wash with African Black Soap, tone with a water/aloe vera gel/Tea Tree EO/Eucalyptus EO spritz and moisturize with a shea butter/aloe vera gel/honey mix. Once a week I…do a bentonite clay/aloe vera gel/honey mask. I exfoliate with an EVOO/sugar scrub when ever the mood strikes.

    My skin has been glowing ever since I started using natural skincare products. 🙂

    • February 14, 2011 1:26 pm

      Thank you! I think finding what works is such a great feeling isn’t it?

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