In an effort to recover from your skincare sins of the past, oil and water (and soap) for once work together in our search for ways to cleanse, restore, and heal our skin. It’s about time we indulge in lathering up, and here's how:
1. Wash your face.
The main culprits behind things that are not supposed to grow on our faces but do anyway are, surprise, those extra layers that shouldn’t naturally be there. So while we love our foundation and sunblock, the skin isn’t meant to be suffocated, and when it is, it’s bound to protest in the form of zits. So give your skin some love and clean up well with a cleanser that corresponds to your skin type and the amount of product you’ve applied onto your skin.
IMAGE Bioderma, Bobbi Brown, Sephora
Oily: BIODERMA Sebium H2O Purifying Cleansing Micelle Solution, P1170, Watsons; Dry/Sensitive: BOBBI BROWN Soothing Cleansing Oil, P2300, Rustan’s; Combination: ESTEE LAUDER Perfectly Clean Triple Action Cleanser/Toner/Makeup Remover, P1900, Rustan’s
2. Don't forget to exfoliate.
This is when you’ve balanced out—for making sure there’s absolutely no buildup even if you’re diligent with cleansing, toning, and all that jazz. (Those newly healed from inflammation can skip this step for now.) Keep in mind to do it only when necessary (i.e., once a week, once every two weeks, or once a month), even if, yes, the scent of this La Mer Refining Facial (P4900, Rustan’s) and how clear it makes skin look is hard to resist.
IMAGE La Mer, Glam Glow
LA MER Refining Facial, P4900, Rustan's; GLAM GLOW Power Mud, P3300, SM Beauty
3. Don't panic.
Admit it: When you see a blemish, you do anything and everything to make sure it’ll be gone the next day. But as you probably already know—and likely defy—you shouldn’t touch it, unless a) it’s to dab on a blemish-clearing gel, or b) it’s a dermatologist that does the job.
IMAGE Human Nature
HUMAN NATURE Tea Tree Oil, P199, Beauty Bar, Power Plant
4. Let it recuperate.
So your blemishes are gone, but now they’ve left spots from all the picking (don’t lie) and inflammation. You need to let your skin heal before trying to lighten the discoloration, as most lightening products may trigger a reaction or two. The key is to cleanse and moisturize so your skin doesn’t compensate for the drying effect of the former by producing too much oil. We’ve found that a gentle cleanser like Kiehl's Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash and its matching alcohol-free toner are perfect for prep, followed by the Midnight Recovery Concentrate to calm your skin down and plump it.
KIEHL'S Calendula Deep Cleansing Foaming Face Wash, P1725; Calendula Herbal Extract Alcohol-Free Toner, P2425; Midnight Recovery Concentrate, P2895, Greenbelt 5
5. When all else fails, run to your doctor.
We admit to obsessing over promises of instant results, but Dr. Aivee Teo really delivers. You've heard about RevLite, but what about a laser facial that clears pigments, evens out and improves skin texture? The once-a-month Excel V (starts at P8000/session, The Aivee Clinic) is a little 20-minute miracle that helps revitalize your blemish-riddled skin with a downtime as short as two hours.
*This article originally appeared in Preview Magazine February 2015 issue.