Breakouts are a natural part of life, especially if you’re going through hormonal changes or have oily, reactive skin. Fortunately, making a few simple changes in your lifestyle and skincare routine can help visibly clear your skin.
The reasons why we break out are as diverse as we are, but these 12 tips for getting clear skin will lay the foundation for reducing breakouts no matter what’s causing the trouble. Just remember: acne treatments can make your skin behave differently than it normally would. If you’re under a dermatologist’s care, get their approval before incorporating any new formulas into your routine.
1. Wash Your Face Twice Daily
Washing your face twice a day with a gentle cleanser will cleanse away breakout-causing bacteria, excess oil, dirt, and pollution. The key word here is “gentle.” Many cleansers marketed toward people with oily skin and breakouts include harsh cleansing agents that strip the skin of its natural oils.
While too much oil can contribute to clogged pores, too little can cause the skin to become dehydrated, prompting the skin to go into oil production overdrive. Our Amino Aloe Gentle Cleanser lathers into a refreshing foam to deeply cleanse pores and wash away excess oil and debris without overstripping. Meanwhile, soothing aloe visibly relieves redness associated with blemishes and our sugarcane-derived squalane adds a burst of hydration to help balance oil production.
2. Double Cleanse at Night
Double cleansing is like sweeping before you mop. The first cleanse is meant to remove the makeup and debris sitting on your skin at the end of the day, while the second removes the pore-clogging, breakout-causing impurities that can linger even after the first cleanse.
Our favorite double cleansing ritual starts with our Antioxidant Gentle Cleansing Oil. This nourishing cleanser neutralizes free radicals with our innovative antioxidant blend while dissolving dirt and even waterproof makeup, leaving your skin clean and cushiony-soft.
Follow it with our Amino Aloe Gentle Cleanser to deep clean pores ahead of your evening skincare routine. Your skin is left clean, hydrated, and refreshed.
3. Drink More Water
Staying hydrated is essential to your overall health and can also help clear breakouts. Hydrating from the inside out can help head off oil overproduction while also supporting healthy immune function to defend against blemish-causing bacteria.
So how much water should you be drinking? While eight glasses a day is a good start, the Institute of Medicine conducted a study to find out whether that common recommendation is truly enough. They found that most women need to drink about 9 cups a day, while men need about 13 cups a day for proper hydration.
4. Give Your Microbiome Some TLC
The trillions of microorganisms living in the top layer of your skin — otherwise known as your microbiome — make up an essential part of your body’s immune system, helping to keep pathogens in check. It’s crucial to the proper function of your moisture barrier, which helps your skin stay healthy, hydrated, pH-balanced, and protected from environmental stressors such as breakout-causing bacteria.
Simply put, a richly diverse and healthy skin microbiome maintains balance in the skin, keeping inflammation at bay while maintaining optimal hydration and a slightly acidic pH, which also helps prevent the overgrowth of problem-causing bacteria.
Promote a diverse and healthy microbiome with our advanced reformulated Probiotic Gel Moisturizer. Our first-of-its-kind formula includes encapsulated probiotics that burst upon contact with your skin, delivering live probiotics exactly where they’re needed. In consumer studies, 94 percent of participants reported visibly smaller pores after just one use, and 97 percent reported clearer skin after four weeks of use.
Oily skin is often the body’s answer to dehydration as it seeks to lock in hydration with an overabundance of natural oils. Using a nourishing moisturizer can therefore help bring oil production into check.
The weightless sugarcane-derived squalane oil in our Probiotic Gel Moisturizer is one of the few oils that people with congested, oily, or reactive skin can use as it can reduce redness and irritation without blocking pores. It mimics your body’s natural moisture, strengthening the moisture barrier, supporting your microbiome, and locking in hydration for healthy, balanced skin.
6. Don’t Touch Your Face
We touch hundreds of germy objects throughout the day: door handles, car keys, grocery carts, and your computer keyboard just to name a few. Touching your face throughout the day can transfer dirt, irritants, and pathogens from these objects onto your face, causing breakouts.
While we do recommend being more mindful about how often your touch your skin, give yourself a little grace. We all touch our faces regularly throughout the day without even thinking about it. In fact, the average person touches their face about 23 times an hour. Frequent hand washing can help protect you when you subconsciously touch your face. Remember to always use soap and wash for at least 20 seconds to get your hands completely clean.
7. Avoid the Urge To Pick
While it can be tempting to pop, squeeze, or pick at your blemishes, these habits can cause them to take longer to clear. They also increase your risk of scarring and dark spots following a breakout.
If you already suffer from dark spots, our Vitamin C Dark Spot Serum is your best friend, visibly brightening and fading dark spots. Our non-irritating vitamin C boosts collagen production for increased elasticity while white shitake mushroom visibly improves uneven skin tone. In consumer studies, 100% of participants reported improvement in the look of dark spots after just one week of use.
8. Stay Out of the Sun
In addition to causing skin cancer, exposure to UV rays from the sun and tanning beds damages your skin and can make breakouts worse. Sun exposure causes the top layer of your skin to dry and thicken. The body then responds by producing more oil to compensate for that lost hydration, which can lead to more breakouts.
If you need to be out in the sun, protect your skin by using at least SPF 30 every day, wearing a hat, and seeking shade whenever possible.
Healthy skin is constantly renewing itself, as old skin cells flake off to reveal a fresh layer. Sometimes the old skin cells get stuck and begin to accumulate, ultimately causing clogged pores and breakouts.
While scrubs can cause irritation that can cause blemishes in reactive or breakout-prone skin, chemical exfoliants work by dissolving the dead skin cells that are stuck to your skin. A gentle chemical exfoliant is therefore the best way to exfoliate skin that breaks out.
Our 10% Lactic Acid Resurfacing Serum uses lactic acid — a gentle, uniquely hydrating alpha hydroxy acid — to reveal soft, luminous skin overnight and visibly improve uneven skin texture in just one week. In consumer studies, 100 percent of participants reported a visible improvement in the appearance of pores after a single use.
10. Don’t Smoke
Smoking not only causes cancer, emphysema, and heart disease, it can also cause acne. In fact, the correlation is so compelling that there’s even a name for it: “smoker’s acne.”
Chemicals in tobacco smoke can damage the skin the same way they do other organs in the body. In addition, they can alter the amount of sebum your skin produces, making it more susceptible to breakouts. It also causes blood vessels in the skin to narrow, slowing skin cell turnover.
11. Use a Gentle Toner
Toning is an essential skin care step that balances the skin’s pH and prepares it to receive and retain moisture, promoting a healthy balance in oil production. Apply toner as the second step in your skincare routine immediately after cleansing.
Our BHA Pore-Minimizing Toner gently exfoliates to unclog and minimize the appearance of pores for a smooth, flawless look. Our powerfully effective formula includes white willowbark extract, a natural source of beta hydroxy acid that offers the benefits of salicylic acid — a common blemish-fighting ingredient – without irritation.
12. Be Consistent in Your Skincare Routine
When it comes to an effective, science-backed skincare routine, the results are cumulative because the skin renews itself every four to six weeks. That means the appearance of your skin should improve as more layers of fresh skin cells receive the benefits of the formulas you’re using.
With the right ingredients and targeted skincare products, you can get clearer skin over time.