Teenagers: This skin care routine is for you

What's up, teens? This one is for y'all. 

Managing your skin during the summer months can be challenging⁠—especially as a teenager. Your body is going through changes that can sometimes appear on your face, usually at the worst time possible.

It's frustrating and it can really tug at your self-esteem. First things first: don't stress. Acne and other skin problems happen to many of us, and stress can make things worse. Plus, there are some natural fixes that have worked for centuries to keep skin clear and glowing. Let's get into them.

Common causes of teen acne

OK, yes. Your hormones are a common factor in your skin's behavior. However, there are some sneaky culprits that can worsen the situation if you do nothing, or help your skin if you make a few changes.

Wash your pillowcases frequently. When you use these things often without washing them regularly, oil from your hair and skin can cause build-up on them and then on your skin, clogging your pores. Try washing these regularly.

Stop picking your face. Sometimes our bad skin habits are what’s stopping us from having clear skin. If you’re a face scratcher, a skin picker, if you wear a lot of makeup or use a lot of skincare products, you could be causing blemishes. You also want to be mindful of how much you exfoliate. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells and embedded dirt from our pores, but too much could irritate the skin and trigger our sebaceous glands to produce too much sebum--the natural oil our skin produces. This can do more harm than good. Our faces are the most sensitive skin on our bodies so even though they seem durable, they should be treated gently and handled with care.

Watch what you eat. Fiber is key for cleansing the colon and keeping digestion fluid throughout the body. This aids with keeping your skin clear as some foods can cause breakouts. Junk food that's full of preservatives, sugar, and things we can't pronounce is horrible for the skin. Get into skin-friendly foods like oatmeal, cucumber, carrots, lentils, beans, apples, & pears. Add chia seeds and flax seeds to your smoothies and food for extra fiber. 

Get consistent with your skincare routine

The biggest defense against skin problems is a consistent routine with effective products. 

Wash your face twice a day. Step one is cleansing the skin. No brainer there, but it’s important that you’re washing your face every night and day. Our faces are exposed to all kinds of dirt and grime throughout the day, which is made worse if you have oily skin already. Cleaning your face twice a day is a great way to prevent that exposure from settling into your pores and causing breakouts.

Don't forget to exfoliate. I highly recommend exfoliating in your skincare regimen because it removes dead skin cells, which can cause breakouts, and increases the blood flow under our skin to rejuvenate our skin tone. I recommend you exfoliate every other day.

Exfoliation is also tricky because the skin on our face is more sensitive than on the rest of our body. The layer of skin on our faces is thinner than anywhere else so using coarse exfoliants often can tear the skin and do more harm than good. I recommend gentle exfoliants like oatmeal, cornmeal, or fine brown sugar. Either can be mixed with filtered water and simply rub it on your face like you would any other scrub.

Use a skin toner. After you wash and exfoliate, if it’s that day for you, next is to use a toner to balance your skin’s pH, tighten your pores, and remove any traces of dirt your soap may have missed. Witch hazel and rose water are great toners to use.

Always use a moisturizer. I always recommend using a light moisturizer like a plant-based oil. The point in choosing something light is to not clog the pores after you’ve cleaned them with your soap, exfoliant, and toner. I don’t recommend butters on the face because butters are thicker than oils and more likely to clog your pores. Look for non-comedogenic oils, which is a big word that means it doesn’t clog the pores. Oils like sunflower, olive, and jojoba oil fall into this category. They also resemble sebum, which is the oil our skin produces naturally, so it’s not too dry or too oily.

Natural products for your skin care routine

Handmade soaps. Unscented soaps are an easy pick when it comes to being apprehensive about what to use on your face. I recommend using our oatmeal and honey soap because as I explained earlier, oatmeal is a natural cleanser and exfoliant. Our grapefruit and Himalayan pink salt soap also have bentonite clay which is moisturizing and detoxing. The Himalayan pink salt is also moisturizing and purifying and gives your skin a deep cleanse.  I also suggest our tea tree and Tumeric soap and activated charcoal soap. Those are our top-selling soaps that I recommend for their powerful detoxing properties. The activated charcoal soap is also made with peppermint oil which is an astringent and tightens the pores. The tea tree and Tumeric soap is very anti-inflammatory and helps to even out the complexion. I typically recommend it to treat dark spots, red spots, acne, hyperpigmentation, or oily skin.

Clay face masks. We offer three different natural clays to make face masks. After washing your face, a face mask can help with oily skin, acne, and can be an exfoliant depending on which one you choose. Check out this blog post on the different benefits of clay for face masks.

Calendula and chamomile oil. I recommend this one as a daily moisturizer because we don't make it with any essential oils so it’s a very light moisturizer. Ours has sunflower, jojoba, and olive oils that lightly absorb into the skin without clogging the pores. They also give good nutrients that your skin needs to stay hydrated and moisturized. And you only need a few drops!