After years of suffering from devastating acne, I finally figured out the major mistakes I was making.
I wrote Clear Skin Unlocked: The Ultimate Guide to Acne Freedom and Flawless Skin to save you from making the same mistakes.
Clear Skin Unlocked is the most comprehensive acne program I have ever come across, period. I made sure it was when I wrote it, so that I would be certain to help you the way I finally helped myself.
Not only that, but I have written countless blogs on acne and how to eliminate it. I have a tight relationship with acne, and aim to share all of my tools and knowledge with you.
Between my program, Clear Skin Unlocked, and my knowledge of acne and health, we can work towards eliminating your acne for good.
Click here for my free comprehensive post on acne to start whittling down the causes of your acne.
The Three Primary Parts to Acne :
Conventional dermatological wisdom is that bacteria is the primary cause of acne. This has a grain of truth to it, since bacteria do play a role, but it is minimal compared to the internal conditions that start acne in the first place. Acne in reality develops in three steps. First, male sex hormones can cause excess oil production in the dermis layer of the skin, which clogs pores (though surface debris can also clog pores, rendering hormones less important in this case). Second, inflammation attacks the clogged pores. Third, bacteria infect the clogged pores and cause low level inflammation to increase to large, painful, irritated pustules. The two primary causes of acne are hormone balance and inflammation, and bacteria are only a tertiary concern.
Acne is perhaps the most visible symptom of systemic inflammation. If you have significant acne, there is inevitably at least some amount of inflammation in your blood.
For this reason, healing your gut and cooling inflammation is perhaps the most powerful step you can take to overcome acne. Focusing on antioxidants, which fight inflammation, in your diet (such as those found in fruits and vegetables) and in your skincare routine will also go a long way toward soothing your acne.
Both supplemental and topical antioxidant use has been shown to reduce breakouts by as much as 50 percent. For some of my favorite topical solutions to acne, check out the antioxidant cleansers, serums, creams and topical probiotics I use, including the new Countercontrol Line.
Counterintuitive as it might sound, one of the best things you can do for your skin is to stop washing it.
Much like with food, today’s culture has this idea that skincare products designed in a laboratory are better for us than natural methods. The chemical barrage to which we subject our skin on a daily basis is unnecessary and often harmful. First, consider the fact that benzoyl peroxide, one of the most popular topical acne treatments available over the counter, reduces antioxidant activity in the skin. Antioxidants are crucial for reducing inflammation. Consider too that the skin has natural oils and cleaning and healing processes that work delightfully well on their own. Washing the skin removes those natural oils, so the skin often dries out in response. With dry skin, women often turn to lotion. However, the skin also tries to rectify the dryness on its own by increasing oil production. At this point, both you and your skin are engaged in efforts to increase lubrication. Too much lubrication clogs pores, so your washing and moisturizing routine is counterproductive.
The act of washing your face can make it either too dry or too oily, depending on how your skin reacts. Keep in mind that these can change with the seasons, your body may produce more oil in the summer and less in the winter, therefore your cleansing routine may have to change with the seasons. Rarely does washing leave it in tip-top shape. And moisturizers that contain unnatural chemicals often don’t heal the skin; they just cover it up. Many natural alternatives to washing and moisturizing, such as apple cider vinegar, baking soda, coconut oil, lard, cod liver oil, and vitamin blends provide real healing to the skin and can be protective in times of dryness or oiliness.
In all fairness, there are probably some manufactured toiletries that do not aggravate your skin. It is not absolutely necessary to “go all natural” and expressly forbid cosmetics. It is only important to note that they can be problematic, and to do your best to find a product—natural or not—that works for you.
In my experience, the only way to know if a lotion, if you choose to use one, is a good match for your skin is to try it for a few days and see. A different, more specific test is to apply lotion to one side of your face and not the other in order to witness its effects, or to apply it to the sensitive skin on your wrist or neck before using it on your face. I do not forbid using any manufactured cosmetic products—in fact, I use the Countermatch Adaptive Moisturizer Lotion. But it took me a long time to find one that did not irritate my skin. I opted to use it because it has white tea extract in it, and white tea is a powerful antioxidant. Applying antioxidants such as white tea, green tea, vitamin C, and B vitamins to your skin can help reduce inflammation in your skin as long as you are certain that you have found a lotion that does not aggravate your skin.
Another way to aggravate your skin is to pick at it. Just as with scabs and wounds, the skin does best when it heals on its own. Have you ever noticed that breakouts often occur near each other? This is because wounds act as beacons for inflammatory molecules. The more aggravated a wound is, the stronger the inflammatory response becomes, so pimples become bigger and nastier the more you touch them. Even worse is the fact that picking causes new pimples to crop up around old ones. Keeping your hands off your face is one of the harder habits to practice, but the less you touch your zits, the more your skin will thank you.
Even the simple act of touching clear skin can lead to the development of acne. Fingers carry all kinds of bacteria, dirt, and oils. When you touch your face, you put these dirty oils directly in contact with your pores. When I was in high school and college, I always had acne around my mouth, particularly on the right side of my face. It took me years to realize that I was breaking out because I rested my chin on my hand while I studied. Once I broke that habit, the acne faded away.
The New Contributor to eliminating your acne for good
I have recently been discussing how I have been using Beautycounter to slowly replace my drugstore and conventional makeup. This is because the quality is amazing, and not to mention the products are safe for our skin. Beautycounter has released a new line geared towards clearing acne and healing scars, called Countercontrol.
What is Countercontrol:
Countercontrol is a powerful regimen for oily and blemish prone skin without the irritation that can result from conventional treatments. Approximately 70% of people between 15-29 experience oily skin or moderate acne. While teens and young adults often have oily skin and acne, it can affect people of all ages and ethnicities: ~50% of the population ages 20-40 have oily skin or acne. Additionally, as women age, adult-onset acne can occur often due to a combination of factors including menopause, medication, hormone imbalance, genetics, and stress.
Why is It Safer Than Other Acne Products
Unlike conventional acne and oil control products which can strip skin of both bad and good bacteria, leaving it red dry and irritated, Countercontrol treats the main causes of acne while maintaining skin’s healthy microflora to keep skin in balance. Additionally, Countercontrol is formulated without potentially harmful ingredients such as harsh surfactants, benzoyl peroxide, and sulfur commonly found in conventional acne products. Instead of these ingredients, we’ve formulated Countercontrol with a proprietary blend called SkinBalance Complex, a combination of two extracts:
- Natural salicylic acid from wintergreen helps exfoliate dead skin cells and restore the imbalance of bacteria to a healthy level
- Rosebay willow helps reduce irritation and decrease sebum production
So what are the benefits?
- Controls oil
- Clears breakouts
- Purifies pores
- Helps prevent future breakouts
- Balances skin and keeps it comfortable
The Hard Up Facts
In an independent consumer study, after four weeks of using Countercontrol*:
- 95% said skin looks clearer
- 100% stated skin feels healthier
- 100% said skin clarity is improved
- 95% said skin looks less red *Based on independent 24-subject consumer panel study after four weeks with twice daily usage of Clear Pore Cleanser, All Over Acne Treatment, SOS Acne Spot Treatment, Matte Effect Gel Cream.
What About Blackheads?
Yes, Countercontrol works to treat blackheads. Salicylic acid exfoliates and promotes cell turnover which helps reduce blackheads.
Countercontrol is designed to treat oily skin and moderate acne. Cystic acne is a severe form of acne that requires a medical treatment. People with cystic acne should consult a dermatologist or physician or start with my Clear Skin Unlocked Program.
I am offering Clear Skin Unlocked for 50% off when you purchase the Countercontrol line. I want to make sure we eliminate your acne for good.
Part of the reason why I have always been successful getting rid of my acne is because I use research, facts and actual experience. So I want to hear from YOU regarding this Countercontrol line. Is it helping you the way it’s helps others I have worked with? Is it better for your teenage daughter than you, or does it fair best on your skin?
I know our bio individuality varies amongst everyone so I really want to capture how this product is treating you.
Please send me an email or DM if you have any questions! You can get the new Countercontrol line here.