How many of you made a New Year’s resolution this year? How many of them lasted longer than the leftover food? Ah yes, I sense your guilt 😀 Now that it’s Spring, the season of new beginnings and all that, it’s a good time to get organised and spring clean your home (always a lot of fun), your wardrobe (definitely a lot of fun) and your skincare regime.
I’ve been meaning to write some skincare posts for a while, but before I get started on reviews and all that, here’s a little about my skin history so that you get an idea of what my skin type/skin concern is. It ended up being quite wordy >.<
SO. As a teenager I never had spots or problems with my skin. My skincare “routine” was to wash my face .. and done. When I went to University, I started using Aloe Vera products from the Body Shop – for no particular reason other than I thought it was ‘about time’. I graduated, started work. Skin was fine. Some months later I had an unexplained break out of spots. I guess the years of my friends cursing my flawless complexion had finally taken ahold. It wasn’t just 1 odd spot, it was 2-3 in a continuous cycle. I was pretty desperate and I started using a whole host of products to try to clear up my skin. Clinique, Philosophy, Vichy, Lancome, Estee Lauder, Lush, not to mention brands like Garnier, Soap & Glory and Simple which are sold in Boots. I even tried applying tea tree oil and Sudocrem. (For those that aren’t familiar with Sudocrem, it’s supposed to be this amazing cream which is used for nappy rash but also heals spots/performs other miracles. IT DOES NOT, IT IS INTENDED FOR APPLICATION TO A BABY’S AR*E, Please do not apply it to your face.) To cut a long story short, I discovered Decelor. I make it sound like I discovered the Holy Grail, but seriously their products are amazing!!
I (now) consider myself to be quite fortunate that I didn’t have “acne” (search in google images, you’ll see what I mean), and at least my skin is under control now. There is hope after all!
For my fellow sufferers, to start off, here are a few things I’ve learned along the way:
-If your skincare works for you, don’t change it! Throw out products that have passed their expiry date. It’s easy to be tempted to try out the latest super-amazing product, but if you’ve found something that works, why swap it for something else?
-A skincare routine requires commitment. I should enjoy caring for my skin, but it can feel like such a chore at times. If you don’t think you can keep it up, don’t buy a bunch of products that you won’t use consistently! It’s a waste of money and you won’t see results.
-Give it a chance. Don’t believe stories about how something will clear your spots in a few days. If you’re dealing with persistent break-outs, expect to see results in a few weeks. Similarly, don’t give it a chance if it makes your skin worse. I don’t buy the “your skin is adapting to the product” idea.
-Don’t buy cheap. Cheap products use cheap ingredients, don’t skimp on something that you’re applying to your face. I’ve found that buying cheap products is also something of a false economy, because if they don’t work you’re more likely to abandon them after a few uses and move on to something else. By the time you end up in the £20/£30 price range, you’ll have wasted a lot more money on products that didn’t work. Of course, more expensive doesn’t always mean better which is why you should…
-Always read the label! Don’t expect to understand everything on it, just look out for the nasties like mineral oils, parabens, fragrances and alcohol. Alcohol strips your skin, fragrance can irritate it. As I understand it, mineral oils aren’t close to the skin’s natural oils so they’re difficult to absorb (= clogged pores). Parabens have been found in breast cancer tissue, which sounds horrifying, but to some extent I think it’s the media scaring us by labelling ingredients as evil. Who knows what the long-term effects are, but if you can avoid them, why not? And obviously, ask about the active ingredients 🙂 There are far too many for me to even attempt to list them now.
-Don’t fall for the hype! I’ve made the mistake (many times) of reading great reviews about a product in magazines or online, checking the rating on sites like makeupalley and buying it if it got good reviews. (Garnier’s grapefruit facewash, anyone?) These reviews are often about a one-time use and not continued use or the skin type or concern might be different. The reason I included my little sob story earlier on is so that you can relate to me (or not). I classify my skin as sensitive, abnormally spot prone but otherwise normal. If you have dry or oily skin, or know why you suffer from break-outs (e.g. PCOS), some/a lot of what I have to say might not be relevant. I know Decelor products work for me which is why I woulnd’t hesitate to recommend them. Whatever you’re thinking of buying, always ask the brand consultant to recommend something specific for you, and always ask for samples. Why should you spend money on something that you’re not sure will work? There are plenty of other brands out there waiting to take your money.
My next post will be about what I use to keep my skin in balance. I think this post is long enough!!
p.s. if you’re interested in what I have to say (harhar), do subscribe for updates. By next week you may forget about me boo -.-