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Sunday, September 19, 2010

Acne-Prone: 4 Super/Weird Tips to Avoid Break-Outs

I'm sorry if I seem to be spamming your Blogger dashboard, but blogging enables me to share some things which I fail to do miserably in YouTube (i.e. tried recording, came out awkward, left out bits & pieces, exceeded time limit, etc).

So, if you've watched my Skincare Routine Video, you would know that I battle with adult-acne. Yup - approaching 35, which I bloody ironic since I escaped virtually unscathed during my teens!

Take note though, that what I'm about to write is based on my own googling and personal experience. It may or may NOT help you, but I sure hope it does ^_~

I attribute break-outs to 4 categories:
[1] Genetics / Hormonal
[2] Skin Care
[3] Cosmetics / Makeup
[4] Various External Factors (the main focus of this post)


- If you like to play around with skincare items, I personally believe that it's best to try out ONE new product at a time. If your skin reacts to it negatively, you can easily pinpoint the culprit.

- Also, check the ingredients list yourself. Some skincare products which claim to be non-comodogenic, I find, still contain comodogenic ingredients, albeit lower down on the list.

- BTW, after almost 6 WHOLE YEARS on the above-mentioned routine, I've currently OVERHAUL-ed it big time by using a COMPLETELY different line. The products are sponsored and I will review the products after using them for a month or so. Today is Day 1, actually, so it's way too early to tell...


- The same goes for this, especially base makeup (i.e. primers, foundations, powders). Experiment with ONE new product at at time. It'll save you a lot of grief.

- Check the ingredients, too .

Some of these "tips" may seem anal or even obsessive, but let me tell you: Break-outs are debilating to anybody's self-esteem. "Prevention is better than cure" - Cliched, but oh-so-true. You may NOT be able to control No. 1, but the rest, ESPECIALLY No. 4, you CAN!

You've probably already heard most of these tips already, but were you able to incorporate them into your lifestyle for them to work/make a difference? Because some of them are not overnight miracles; they may take weeks, or even months to yield visible results.

(1) Drink Lots Of Water
My Way:

- While I'm at work, I loath walking to the pantry just to refill my mug. No refill = no water intake. Out of pure laziness, I purchased a 2.5 liter capacity jug. I fill it to the 2 liter mark every day before I start work and plonk it right behind me on a cabinet. Refill needed, I just swivel my chair around, and voila! Refill at hand. I try to drink at least a liter every work day; if I manage to drink more, all the better :D

- My mom will be the first to vouch that I despise drinking plain water. I insist on some kind of flavouring, no matter how subtle it may be. Eventhough I'm super skinny, it's unhealthy to down a whole jug of sweet, flavoured liquid. Anyway, just a hint of taste does it for me. So what I do is, I dump a sachet of dehydrated herbal drink/red date tea (whatever drink that rocks your boat) into my jug of water. Obviously, the sachet is for a MUG of instant beverage, not a whole JUG, but like I said, it's still way easier to down than plain ole water. The lemon slice thing did occur to me and looks mighty chic floating in my jug ^_^, but I heard that it causes weight loss?!?! That, people, is the LAST thing I need on Earth, so no go! Well, at least, not on a daily basis...

(2) Change Your Pillow Case Every Day (or Every Other Day, etc)
My Way:

- I don't have enough pillow cases to go round if I were to change it every day because I do my laundry every OTHER day. Anyway, if I'm super-tired and just want to collapse into bed, the last thing I need is to fiddle with my pillow case.

- Again, out of pure laziness, I purchased a one-dozen value pack of el-cheapo hand towels from a hypermart. They need not be nifty-looking or be of high quality; just large enough to cover your pillow's surface where there's contact with your face. Easy-peasy to change: just whip it off every night, replace with a clean one :P

(3) Clean Your Makeup Brushes Regularly
My Way:

- I'm NOT a fan of daily brush cleaners for my face brushes. I follow Koren's recipe to make my own for eye brushes, but some ingredients (hair conditioner, fabric softener, dish washing liquid and all), I can't imagine daily contact with my face. These ingredients may be the cause of your breakouts, who knows?!?!??

- I use surgical spirit/rubbing alcohol to sanitize my face brushes every night. Which is why, whenever possible, I use face brushes made from synthetic bristles. Natural bristles will become scratchy or even break in time because prolonged exposure to alcohol dries them out. So, yeah...That's why I like using my fingers for makeup application whenever possible. Less brushes to clean...

- ALSO, from time to time, I would sanitize the surface of my makeup products, say, blush, bronzer, pump nozzles...

(4) Hair Products May Cause Break-Outs
My Way:

- I rarely use leave-in haircare or hairstyling products in my hair overnight.

- However, to avoid accidentally "transferring" wash-off hair conditioner onto my face after a bath, I designate areas of my bath towel for specific purposes. One small area for my face ONLY; another small area for my CLEAN HANDS ONLY before applying skincare/makeup; the rest is, well, for the rest from head-to-toe :P

Gosh! Does this make me sound like a germaphobe? Well, I AM a germaphobe because I scar so easily. Even zits which I DO NOT PICK ON leave scars which stay for months and months on end T_T

Most importantly, these are factors which are WITHIN MY CONTROL. Why leave anything to chance?

Hope that helps!


  1. thanks for the tips - I think it's weird that amongst my siblings (2 older bros and younger sis) I am the only one that didn't have acne issue and sill don't have acne issue. I'll have a pimple/zit every quarter. not very often. But I do HAVE TO TRY to drink more water...with lemon in it b/c i need to lose weight...like 40lbs!!

    Do you know if the type of foods you eat contributes to breaking out? j/w


    eh ur tips weird but super true! sometimes ppl rather blame it on products but what they don't realise is it could be their lifestyle, hygiene etc.

  3. @Calia
    Wow! You're so lucky. I thought I'd "escaped" during my teens only to be struck down in adulthood, which is even worse T_T

    LOL Well, Bubz mentioned it, I think :P Oh yea! And once I made these practices habits, it's really easy :) So now I can blame everything on products HAHHAH

  4. Helpful! I scar just like you. It sucks! One thing I've been using to keep pimples at bay is aspirin tablets with my cleanser. P&J Whitening Serum/Emulsion has worked for me for reducing hyperpigmention. Fuzkittie brought that to my attn last year ^_^

  5. awesome tips but I hardly do any of those! :p I'm terrible