By Kaitlyn Baldini
From middle school all the way to my junior year of high school makeup was such a big part of my life. Every paycheck would go to some new makeup item. I focused on the makeup that I was putting on my skin rather than my skin itself because, well, I never got acne. But that all changed once I hit 11th grade. It’s almost like the acne hit me out of no where. I went from clear skin to a face covered in red bumps. I still continued to do my makeup, really caked it on. I did that because I loved wearing it, but also because I wanted to hide the acne. As it got worse, the makeup got heavier to try to hide it.
I decided something needed to be done about this. The summer going into senior year I saw a dermatologist for the first time. They prescribed me two different things. One was the Stridex Med Pads which can be bought over the counter. They told me to use those in the morning. I still use them today if I feel like my acne is a little worse than usual! Next they prescribed me a cream that you can get with a prescription, and instructed me to use it at night. The final instruction they gave me was to stop wearing face makeup. This was a hard one for me. I didn’t feel as confident, or even like myself at all, without it. But, it was doctor's orders so I listened and only left the house with eyebrow product and mascara.
By the end of the summer I finally saw improvements! Senior year was great because I didn’t have to wake up at 6 A.M. everyday to put a bunch of product on my face, and I actually slept in.
But then college hit. Slippery Rock is known for its water, and let me tell you, that water didn’t do my skin any good. Luckily, it wasn’t as bad as in high school, but I worked so hard to get it to where it was, I didn’t want to see it go back. I started using a ton of skin care products on my face. Toners, face masks, multiple face washes, oils, drying lotions, etc. You name it, I used it. Nothing seemed to help. Then by the end of the first semester, I started getting lazy with my skincare because of finals. I only used one face wash and a toner. All of a sudden my skin started clearing up! I looked into this more and it turns out, using too much on your face can strip it and lead to more breakouts. Everything I knew about skincare changed. I may have been using the best of the best skin care, but it was TOO MUCH. I started noticing the friends who were doing as much as I used to couldn’t shake their breakouts. So I decided to relax on my face, and just use the basics. Less is more. Here’s what I use:
When I get in the shower, first I wash my hair, then body. My last step is my face. That way I can wash off any soap or conditioner that is on my face. The only soap I use on my face is the Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild. The normal size runs for about $18.50. It’s the most expensive item on my skincare list, but it lasts a long time if you only use 1-2 pumps. I apply the soap to a silicone face scrubber that I got from the dollar store. I really like using it to wash my face because it makes the soap extra foamy. It really gets it into my skin.
After my shower I use Thayers Natural Remedies Witch Hazel Toner ($6.70) to get off any excess makeup that may be left over on my face. I also use it in the morning sometimes if I didn’t get enough sleep or my skin looks dull and needs a pick-me-up.
Another product I really like using is the Mario Badescu Facial Spray. Currently, I use the rosewater one, but I really don’t have a preference on which one I use - I like them all. I use this in the morning as another facial pick-me-up, or to help my makeup blend flawlessly into my skin.
Once a week I like to use the Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay Skin Care Powder. You can find this on Amazon for around $5, and you get a whole pound of it. This stuff will last you forever. I wouldn’t recommend using it more than once a week. This stuff is super abrasive, but it really works on pulling any toxins out of your face. I really like this because I have oily skin, and when I use it, my face doesn’t produce excess oil for about 5 days.
Once I do all that, that’s really the end of my skincare routine. Like I said in the beginning, if I’m breaking out more than usual I’ll use those Stridex pads before I go to bed. If I happen to be getting an acne on my chest (which always is a result of me accidentally spraying perfume on my chest) then I’ll repeat the same skin care on my chest.
I hope this helps someone achieve the skin they’ve dreamed of. I still get a few pimples here and there, but that’s normal being in college. I’m no doctor so if you are struggling I highly recommend seeing a dermatologist to start getting on the right track. If there’s any take aways from this, I would say always remember that less is more!