My favorite clear skin products

18 Aug

It’s no secret that magazines airbrush the crap out of models and celebrities.  But HELLO this doesn’t mean I’m not going to try and achieve the clearest skin I can.  I am constantly on the prowl buying, testing, new products that entice me.  I also visit my dermo a couple times a year to have her to evaluate my skin and keep me up to date on products.

Working with my dermotologist these are the products that I have found to work great for me (of course, everyone’s skin differs so something that I like may not be something you agree with).  If you have combination skin like me, you may really benefit from some of these products.

My number one product

My absolute #1 can’t live without product that I have been using for a little over a year  is Tretinoin cream or gel-I have both.  You may be more familiar with its “street name” Retin-A.  According to my derm, this baby will reduce any fine lines and wrinkles you may have and keep future ones from creeping up at bay.  It also should help clear up blackheads and whiteheads HOWEVER, she did say this would take 3-4 months to see a noticeable difference.

What are some side effects? Beauty doesn’t come without a little annoyance.  Here are my verdicts:

a.  Slight peeling in the beginning of usage because your skin isn’t used to it.  My advice: use every other day to start.

b.  Wear sunscreen! The top layer of dead skin cells are coming off so you are going to have new softer skin that is suseptible to burn and damage.

c. If you wax your brows, DON”T do it in the first couple of weeks, your skin will come off ( a warning from the derm).

Great for treating blackheads, breakouts. Use in conjunction with a lighter cleanser if you have dry skin.

Onto cleansers….TRUST when I say I’ve tried everything.  I’ve tried everything from high to low end all the way to proactive and everything in between.  I have found that I like to switch between two cleansers.  I like to use Cetaphil, mostly in the winter months when my skin is more sensitive.  In the warmer months, I’ve really seen a difference in the clarity of my skin using Neutrogena‘s Oil-Free Pink Grapefruit Cream Cleanser.  It’s 100% naturally derived from grapefruit and contains salicylic acid which is great for reducing oil and fighting breakouts that you currently have as well as fights future breakouts.  If you struggle with dry skin, I suggest you use this off and on as it could dry you out.

With all this washing of the skin, be sure you hydrate accordingly.  Again, I have to switch the degree of hydration with the changing of the temperatures.

My favorite summer cream is:

Clinique Moisture Surge or Garnier Moisture Rescue Refresh is a good alternative if you’re on a budget.

Non-greasy moisturizer

only $7.99

For winter, I usually like to use Aveeno Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer which reduces redness and won’t clog pores.

Perfect for winter

Ladies, don’t forget about taking care of the delicate skin around the eyes too.  In this department I have been really loyal to my Clinique All About the Eyes cream but if there is an alternative that you are crazy about, I would love to hear about it.  I like All About the Eyes because it diminishes puffiness, gets rid of dark under eye circles AND reduces fine lines so it’s on TRIPLE action.  Remember, apply with your ring finger as your other fingers may press too hard and damage the skin.

$29.00 a splurge, but worth it

So, for the days that you wake up with an annoying zit that “popped” out of nowhere, you’re going to need some serious spot treatment action.  My favorite spot treatment is Mario Badescus’ Drying Lotion.  Maaaajuuuuuh.  Dab some of this on a cue tip at night and dab it on your zit, in the morning it will be barely noticeable! (Natalie Portman raved about this once…she was right).

This stuff is seriously fab

Another product I like to use on its own, under my moitsurizer (if I’m not using the Tretoin Cream) is Tea Tree Oil.  I love it because it’s all natural and kills the bacteria on your face hence, preventing and healing zits, blackheads etc.  You can buy this pretty much anywhere now. I got mine at Duane Reade for about $5.00.

Last but not least, I like to do a monthly if not weekly face mask.  Firstly, I like to steam my face.  All I do is boil some water in a pot, turn off the heat and put a towel over my head and let the steam penetrate my skin.  This will loosen all the “junk” in your pores and allow the mask to work its’ wonders.  Do this for at least 5 minutes.  The best face mask I’ve used (and have been doing so since college) is Queen Helene Mint Julep Mask.  This is a really great product.  It is really inexpensive and it lasts FOREVER.  It helps shrink and clear your pores and ease tension lines on your face and neck.  I swear, my skin literally glows after a steam and this mask.

Around $5.40

There you have it.  After many years of trying this, trying that, switching products etc etc this seems to be the most favorite products that live in my bathroom.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not DONE buying products these are the tried and true thus far.  If there is something that you can’t live without let me know! X


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