Are you pissed off by the fact that your face keeps breaking out? Pretty sure over 50% of you will say ‘yes’ and other will say, ‘only during that time of the month.’ We are guessing you have already spent a ton of cash on anti-acne products that promised to clear out your skin. But with time you have come to realize that it was all a wastage of money that did little to no help. The good news is, there are numerous natural ways to avert future breakouts – and that too, without costing you a penny.
Ways to Prevent Acne Breakouts
Acne breakouts most often occur due to changes in daily routines or habit. It can be the usage of a different brand of soap, shampoo, face cream or even laundry detergent. These are the biggest and silent catalysts of acne breakout. To keep your skin radiant follow these simple tips on ways to prevent breaking out.
1. Choose Acne-Friendly Makeup:
The kind of makeup you use and the quality of it impact the health of your skin in a major way. It must be frustrating to know that the products we spend money on to look good, could potentially clog our pores and encourage the formation of pimples which leave dark marks all over. Unsafe makeup can cause breaking out on the jawline, T-zone, and cheeks. Those who are prone to acne should look for products that read “non-comedogenic” on the label. These products are specifically formulated not to block the pores which are one of the root causes of breakouts. Dermatologists often recommend oil-free, lightweight and water-based products that won’t clog pores. Always, avoid heavy, oily makeup products as they often contain ingredients like cocoa butter and mineral oil which in turn spur pimples.
2. Change Your Pillow Case Weekly:
You might be spending a bomb on anti-acne cream every month which has left you less than satisfied. Now little did you know that changing your pillowcase regularly could have prevented a whole lot of breakouts? All of the dirt, sweat, and residue of makeup from your face is transferred to your pillow night after night. So every time you hit the bed, all the dust particles from the last couple of days come in contact with your face to hamper your skin health. The pillowcases should be sent to the laundry regularly so that dust particles from a couple of days ago don’t stick to your face and clog your pores while you are asleep.
Many times those suffering from acne skip the moisturizing step as they fear it might aggravate the breakout, and this assumption is totally flawed. If you are using any acne products to combat outbreaks (and we are pretty sure you are), then moisturizing the skin regularly becomes a vital component of your daily skincare routine. Most acne products are composed of ingredients that dry out the skin. In want of essential oils, the skin starts secreting more oil that clogs the pores. Hence keeping your skin hydrated with water and then following up with a moisturizer becomes a necessity. If the acne treatment prescribed by your dermatologist contains benzoyl peroxide or any other drying ingredients that strip your skin of oils and moisture, applying a light moisturizer with glycerin or hyaluronic acid will help lock the moisture in your skin and prevent further drying, redness, and flaking.
4. Check Your Shampoo:
Are you experiencing a little too much of breaking out these days than, say, a couple of weeks ago? Just think back and check if you have gotten yourself a new shampoo. Shampoos and conditioners with strong chemicals and fragrances can cause the skin to irritate leading to breakouts on the forehead, neck, jaw, and back. It’s always better to consider products with no or minimum fragrance. Be sure you rinse off all the shampoo and its micro-particles from hair and wash your face thoroughly before stepping out of the shower. Try using organic products that don’t have added oils, chemicals, or fragrance to wash your hair. They leave a sweet lingering natural fragrance without causing breakouts. But washing your face well even after using an organic shampoo is a must, nevertheless.
5. Stop Touching Your Face:
One thing common among all those who suffer from acne is the habit of touching their faces – and the frequency is pretty high. Most of the time, it is the touch that causes their face to break out. Our hands that constantly touch laptops, phones, furniture, door knobs, currency, food etc are not in their cleanest state round the clock. The microparticles containing germs get transferred to our face every time we touch it. We get it, keeping the hands out of your face is literally the hardest thing but you would have to practice not to do it. If you bear in mind that the more you touch your face, the more breakouts and irritation it results in, keeping your hands and fingers off your face wouldn’t be that big a challenge. This would cut down a big portion of bacteria that was getting on to your face and help eliminate future breakouts.
6. Check Your Laundry Detergent:
Much like shampoos, laundry detergents too play a huge role in causing breakouts. If you’re experiencing more breakouts than usual it could have a link to the ingredients in your washing detergent as many of them, just like shampoos, contain harsh chemicals and fragrances which can irritate skin when the clothes come in contact with your face. Worse is that a full cycle wash might not completely rinse away the residue of laundry detergent. Especially if the water in your area is hard water. Try switching to a non-fragrant detergent with lesser or softer chemicals or one that has more natural ingredients. You will see a visible slowdown in acne.
7. Go Easy On The Makeup:
We know, this is going to be hard – especially if you go out regularly, maybe to college, or work, or have a very active social life. But lightening up on makeup will certainly help to control your breakouts. Ingredients in most of the makeup products are not necessarily bad for your skin but applying makeup also means touching your face, with hands or the same old brushes that lead to breakouts.
But for those who love wearing makeup, try adding a little liquid foundation to a natural moisturizer. This would give your face a tint and keep your skin hydrated instead of drying it out like other makeup products would do. Also, don’t miss to give those makeup brushes a good rinse every once in a while. The best way to beauty is washing, cleansing, and moisturizing your face every morning with lightweight and water based products. Leave your face makeup free as much as you can so the pores remain unclogged and breathe easy.
8. Stay Out Of The Sun:
Our body needs a little bit of sun every day to absorb vitamin D from it. The sun is also known to have healing properties when it comes to acne. But only a little bit and we say meet with the morning sun from 7 to 9. As the day progresses the harsh sun can cause severe damage to the skin and also prompt a breakout. Planning to spend a weekend at the beach? Be sure to load up on a sunscreen with a higher SPF and a light moisturizer. These will keep your skin hydrated as well as protected from the harsh UV rays of the sun which will prevent breakouts this summer. The “face” specific sunscreens don’t contain harmful chemicals, oils, or fragrances that put a heavy layer on the skin and clog up the pores. Clogging pores means more breakouts, so no clogging equals no breakouts.
Exercising daily not only help you get into shape or feel better, it will also slow down the frequency of breakouts. Working out increases our blood flow and this makes our skin radiant with a healthy glow. Working out also means a lot of perspiring that flushes out the toxins, dirt, and chemicals efficiently from the skin pores. Sufficient perspiration will effectively prevent acne. The more water you drink the more chances of pore blockage, oiliness of skin, and breakouts will reduce.
10. Reduce Stress:
Happiness begets happiness, and this has been witnessed in case of pimples and acne also. Staying calm and happy helps control breakouts while acne shows up when one stresses out on something. We say do everything to keep yourself calm and stress-free as much as you can. Try meditating as it is an amazing way to keep stress at bay. Dermatologists at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, indicate that acne-prone individuals experience acne flare-ups when exposed to taxing situations. Though emotional stress doesn’t trigger breakouts, it may aggravate an existing skin disorder.
11. Eat Healthily:
An unhealthy food habit has forever been linked to acne and health experts have repeatedly agreed that a healthy diet goes a long way in averting breakouts. An allergy to some selected foods (dairy products being a common one) often sparks acne and other skin problems. Reducing the amount of your dairy intake, going easy on French fries, greasy burgers, chips, and soda will certainly help eliminate your unwelcome breakouts. Plus, touching the face after enjoying a good serving of greasy, oily foods will inevitably result in an acne attack.
12. Quit Smoking And Drinking:
Hopefully, this won’t be a big deal because we hope most of you are not even entertaining any of these habits, to begin with. Both smoking and drinking have disastrous effects on your beauty. Smoking especially dries out your skin, darken the skin tone and makes it prone to breakouts. Alcohol, on the other hand, dehydrates your body and strips your skin off the natural moisture. Eliminating these habits from your routine will only help your skin keep flawless and body stay healthy. Now that’s a win-win situation for you. Don’t you think?
13. Drink Water:
Drinking water is an easy and equally cost-effective way of keeping breakouts at bay. Drinking water hydrates your skin and eliminates all unhealthy toxins from your body, some of these toxins could have resulted in breakouts. Experts emphasize on drinking at least 8 glasses of room temperature water a day to keep your skin radiant and flawless. Combining healthy hydration with regular workouts will flush out unwanted toxins and oils via perspiration. Your skin will become healthier, less oily, less dry, and less prone to pimples as a result.
14. Clean Your Phone:
Teenagers spend almost the entire day on cell phones. Now, these are the years when breakouts are at their peak. What they don’t realize is that this cellular device is one of the newest and most dangerous reasons for acne breakouts. It keeps collecting dirt and germs all day and then transfers the same dirt, germs, and bacteria to the face, triggering acne and pimples. Also, the makeup that rubs off on the phone from prior use is transferred back to our face the next time we use it. To prevent breakouts, clean the screen of the phone that touches our face with a dry tissue regularly.
15. Use Over-The-Counter Acne Treatments:
Instead of expensive treatments, try some over-the-counter (OTC) acne treatments. They often help zap pimples effectively and faster. If you start using them really early they could slash out the odds of them even occurring. Go for anti-acne creams that have salicylic acid, benzoyl peroxide, or sulfur. You can use it as an OTC treatment to spot-treat pimples or as a precaution to control outbreaks in future. To help prevent redness, dryness, and other irritation, precisely follow the instructions written on the booklet inside.
16. Try Tea Tree Oil:
Tea tree oil is a popular remedy for acne and pimples. As the Mayo Clinic puts it, it may “reduce the number of inflamed and non-inflamed lesions.” To use tea tree oil for treating pimples, apply a few drops directly to the affected area with a cotton ball. You may also put a few drops to your toner, cleanser or moisturizer. But before you start using tea tree oil on your face, we recommend a patch test done on your elbow or knees. You may also rub a few drops on your neck or behind your ear and wait several hours to see if it causes any irritation. You can dilute the tea tree oil with olive oil in a 50:50 ratio.
17. Use Antibiotics:
Antibiotics are known to reduce inflammation and kill the bacteria. They may also be applied topically to the skin surface or taken orally. To take it orally, however, should be the last resort, in case topical application didn’t do much of a help. Long-term use of antibiotics increases the risk of developing antibiotic resistance. Talk to your healthcare professional to see if he recommends antibiotic therapy for acne, have a detailed conversation on side effects and risk.
18. Don’t Be A Pimple Popper:
As tempting as it may appear to squeeze out that unpleasant whitehead sitting right on the tip of your nose, listen to us when we say – don’t. Popping pimples will cause bleeding, followed by severe scarring, and at times, infection. It also causes inflammation and clogs surrounding pores, and worsens the acne problem further.
19. Sleep On Your Back:
Yet another cost-efficient and effective way to keep breakouts away is to sleep on your back so the face doesn’t come in contact with the fabric of your pillow or bedsheet. It also remains free from fingers and hands. Sleeping on the stomach, keeps your face pressed against your pillow which at times irritates the skin.
Try and sleep on your back. The easiest way of staying away from pimples is to not let your face stay pressed against your hand or fabric of any kind, instead, let it be free and breathe.
20. Managing Pimples:
Many of the tips listed above that help you prevent pimples can also be used to manage them. For instance, reducing stress, eating right, and keeping your hands off the face and not popping pimples will also dictate how long these pimples will stay.
If you suffer from a bad case of acne despite taking all the above precautions, we say it’s time to visit a skin specialist.
One of the medicines dermatologists recommend is topical retinoid. It is derived from vitamin A and helps prevent clogged pores.
Antiandrogen agents or oral contraceptives reduce the hormones which increase sebum production on our skin.
Oral isotretinoin, also known as Accutane is one of the most widely used acne medicine. It is basically a retinoid that kills bacteria, prevents clogging of pores while reducing inflammation and sebum production at the same time.
Prescription-strength treatments may also cause some serious side effects. Have a detailed discussion with your dermatologist who can help you weigh the pros and cons of the treatment and help you zero down on the right treatment for you.
A Point To Remember:
There is no one who has not suffered from pimples, be it in teens or in the twenties, some battle them in their thirties also. It could be due to hormonal imbalances, stress, genetics, or faulty diet. Sometimes particular medications trigger breakouts. Some leave permanent scars that often ensue more anxiety and depression. Yes, we know, pimples are annoying. But prevention is always better than cure.
To leave you with a quick tip that works like witchcraft – a dab of benzoyl peroxide shrinks a pimple overnight. I tried it once upon getting a breakout on my chin just a day ahead of my sister’s wedding. You can use it before attending weddings or any special event that needs you to look flawless. But for a long-term solution, a healthy lifestyle and perseverance are a must. If you found this article informative and helpful please give us a thumbs-up in the comments box below.