Did you know that you have a lot more power to control acne than you may think. Even if you are genetically predisposed to have acne, you can change the course of how acne develops.
Thanks to the new sciences of epigenetics (non-genetic factors that affect our health) and microbiome, you can now enjoy natural & safe alternatives to target mild to moderate acne - without ANY side effects. Your skin doesn't need to go through the unnatural process of ‘skin purging’ or sensitising.
We all want a solution that is UV safe, improves the skin quality and provides cellular protection. We want products that don’t contain any harmful ingredients for the skin. And of course, skincare products that are certified free of endocrine disruptors would be a bonus. Welcome to Skin Diligent.
Our acne-prone skin range targets acne and blemishes while improving skin health. Acne and blemishes are not isolated skin conditions, they are linked to the deregulation of hormones as well as stress, health condition, potential toxins from skincare products, medication, food and pollution, among others.
We share 12 simple steps to improve skin health, nutrition and stress management.
1. Avoid harsh cleansing agents like sulphates SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulphate) and SLES (Sodium Laureth Sulphate). Why? Because they strip your skin of the natural protective oils required for the skin, leading to parch dried skin. Dry skin worsens acne. These harsh detergents are also popular in shampoos and body washes. Shampoo runs down your face and can have an effect on your facial acne. Harsh body wash can affect your body acne.
2. Rince well after using facial cleansers, including micellar water. Even gentle cleansers contain cleansing agents so make sure not to leave any residues on the skin or hair. Make sure you rinse them off well with plenty of water. Contrary to popular belief, micellar water also contains cleansing agents, so rince it well too. Residue of these products on the skin continue to dry your skin. Using cold water to wash your face is recommended. If you can't take cold water, use lukewarm but never hot water.
3. Moisturise your skin, even if you have oily skin. Moisturisers contain a balance of water and oil based ingredients, both of which are needed by the skin. Some oils can cause more acne (as a quick rule of thumb, comedogenic oils are heavy saturated oils like coconut oil), but not all oils are the enemy of acne. And in many cases, certain oils can be extremely helpful as they heal, nourish and soothe acne-prone skin & sensitive skin (like hemp seed oil).
4. Always choose non-irritating skincare. Skin irritation is a clear sign that the product is going against the health of your skin. The skincare products that cause irritation can lead to sensitisation of the skin. In turn, a sensitised skin can lead to breakouts, allergic reactions, thinner skin, damaged skin (skin damage can be on the surface, the skin barrier, and on the cellular level below the surface). A damaged skin aggravates acne.
5. Reduce sugar consumption, including refined carbs like pasta, bread and rice, sweeteners, processed syrups in sugary drinks, biscuits, etc. These food items can quickly increase blood sugar levels, which increase insulin. Insulin makes androgens more active and boosts sebum production. Try adding lots of vegetables to your pasta, rice and bread measl - tomato sauce, hummus, pesto, and some healthy proteins (not processed meat).
6. Reduce dairy consumption. Cow's milk naturally contains many hormones. Think about it. Organic and non-organic milk both are produced by pregnant cows who are producing more hormones precisely to produce milk. Milk is known to contain oestrogens, androgens, insulin like growth factors IGF-1 and many other hormones. IGF-1 increases insulin that makes androgens more active and boosts sebum production. If you are already suffering from hormonal imbalance, consumption of milk can clearly trigger breakouts.
7. Don't skip your breakfast. Filling your energy tank in the morning will reduce sugar cravings as it will help you avoid the peaks and troughs in blood sugar level. These high and lows lead you to a vicious cycle of craving for high glycemic index food (high sugar content food) which in turn, aggravates acne and imbalance hormones.
8. Feed your microbiome by eating fibre. A healthy and diverse gut microbiome will produce hormones, vitamins and other important by-products to help you fight acne and regulate the body's immune system. Fruits, vegetables and oats contain lots of fibres.
9. Supplement with probiotics. Probiotics play an important role in health and acne. Whether you've had none or several courses of antibiotics, rebalancing your gut microbiome can be extremely helpful. Your microbiome is responsible for 70-80% of your immune system and has a direct and indirect role on your acne.
10. Exercise and wash off sweat. Sweating is good as it releases the toxins from the body. But washing off the sweat is equally important. The mix of dried sweat, toxins and sebum lead to more acne on the body (and around facial hairline). Washing off the sweat immediately after sweating is important, but if you are at school or work and can't shower, try applying Multilayer Serum on your facial and body acne in the morning. The Multilayer Serum creates an invisible and breathable film on the skin. This 'Second Skin' will protect your acne spots by absorbing part of the excreted sebum and toxins.
11. Learn techniques to manage stress. Chronic stress or sustained periods of stress cause health and skin problems. The body produces cortisol as a response, which boosts the sebum production. Breathing is probably the quickest way to calm your mind and body, as oxygen helps send a calming signal to the brain. We recommend inhaling for 5, holding for 5, exhaling for 5. Try for 2 minutes of this breathing exercise to give you the important break you need. Practice daily.
Why not do this exercise while you wait for the Serum Multilayer to dry (remember you have to wait for 1 min to dry before applying the Regulating Cream), so add another minute and it's perfect!
12. Sleep better. Lack of sleep also causes the body to produce more cortisols, which boost sebum production and increase breakouts. If you are finding it hard to get a good night sleep, try an app like Calm or similar. A regular sleep pattern is essential to reduce the stress hormones that aggravate acne and to allow the body to repair during the sleep.
All these steps improve health, skin health and stops acne breakouts. Take that first step and the next, and the next! One step at a time.