Acne-Fighting Skin Care

Is there anything worse than your skin breaking out? It’s so annoying. The only thing that makes it bearable for me is knowing that it might make me look a little younger. I know, I’m really stretching the limits of my glass being half-full. I’ve tried everything for my often troubled skin, so I know what works and what falls short. Here are a few things to get you through the teenaged skin days without using harsh ingredients that can tear your not teenaged skin apart.

The best thing you can do for troubled skin is to use a gentle daily cleanser so your products can absorb into a calm environment. Purpose Gentle Cleansing Bar, a dermatologists favorite because it’s oil-free, and super gentle on even the most irritated skin gives squeaky-clean results without stripping your much needed moisture barrier.

Keeping your pores clear is key when you’re fighting acne so you need to polish away dirt, oil, and dead skin regularly. Use an exfoliant once or twice a week that isn’t too harsh. Using a harsh scrub could make breakouts worse, but Clean & Clear’s Morning Burst Scrub uses mellow beads surrounded by a gel cleanser that won’t cause redness or additional irritation.

Troubled skin is often times oily skin but you have to resist the urge to go completely sans-hydration. Keep your surface comfortable and smooth by using Murad’s Oil-Control Mattifier SPF 15 to control oil production all day before it can get out of hand and clogs pores.

Of course, you might still see the occasional little visitor every now and again, but when you do, you should have some Trifix Acne Clearing Lotion from Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare on hand. It’s a spot treatment that uses Colloidal Sulfur, a kinder to the skin alternative to Salicylic Acid so the pimple is zapped, but not your skin.

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Yu·Be Foaming Skin Polish

There’s this hierarchy of what to use when shaving your legs for maximum softness, I believe it goes a little something like; soap, shaving cream, exfoliants. Bonus points are alloted for an exfoliant that creates light lather without being too abrasive.

Foaming Skin Polish from Yu·Be is probably the best I’ve found for getting a really close shave since it gives your skin a light foamy coating along with rice bran and bamboo grains to lightly exfoliate dry skin. It’s not a dense, abrasive sort of scrub like the ones that come in a jar, and it’s perfectly packaged in a big, no-mess tube for easy shower use.

Of course it isn’t shave-specific, it’s especially nice when you want to remove dull skin but aren’t into a harsh sugar or salt scrub. It’s more on the soothing side because the  rice grains float in a cleanser rich in ginger root, ginseng, green tea, geranium oil, and camphor that tones, cleans, moisturizes, and refreshes skin like crazy.

$18, Select Retailers Nationwide

Yu·Be Foaming Skin Polish

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Mud Cleansers; Erno Laszlo, LUSH, Olay

Using mud to purify and cleanse the skin has a history that’s several thousand years old. Today, mud based cleansers are used to get a deep clean and remove all traces of oil for a fresh feeling you don’t get from creamy cleaners. Keep in mind that the mud breaks down oils, so if you have dryer skin, these may not be ideal for you. Here are a few I’ve used and really like.

Erno Laszlo’s recognizable Sea Mud Soap is a well-loved best seller. This black bar softens the skin by removing all traces of oil while gently exfoliating at the same time. If you’ve never used a bar cleanser, this one is a great place to start- you’ll be amazed at how much longer it lasts versus a liquid cleanser.

With the success of their blockbuster cleanser Angels on Bare Skin, LUSH has introduced Dark Angels ,  a cleanser packed with Rhassoul Mud and Powdered Charcoal to draw excess out oil. Just a tiny bit works to really exfoliate your skin giving it a radiant glow, and the Organic Avocado Oil gives a little moisture so your skin feels comfortable and not tight.

Purifying Mud Lathering Cleanser from Olay delivers the same quality results you’d get from a 20 minute mud mask in a foaming daily cleanser. It sops up oil so well you may not need a toner after, and the scent is so fresh and clean.

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Best Body Washes

Caress Evenly Gorgeous Exfoliating Body Wash($7) has an intoxicatingly sweet scent from the burnt brown sugar and karite butter used to exfoliate and even out unbalanced skin tones.

$3 buys you a big 13 ounce bottle of St. Ives Renewing Collagen Elastin body wash. It really soothes dry, itchy skin, and the scent reminds me of clean laundry fresh off the line.

I give Crabtree & Evelyn as gifts all the time- they’re beautifully packaged, made with fantastic ingredients, and carry an assortment of original concoctions, especially for the holidays. Put their Pomegranate Citron & Mistletoe ($13) scented Body Wash in the weird-but-works category of inspired scents. It smells like the holidays- cheery, sweet and bright with a hint of the woodsy mistletoe that I wish came in a home fragrance so we could enjoy it throughout the season.

I can understand why REN Morracan Rose Body Wash was voted a best beauty buy from In Style. My over-crowded shower that also serves as a testing ground didn’t include this wash for long. Typically I try multiple things at a time, but once I used this rose-scented wash, I used it exclusively until it was gone forgoing the others in line before it.

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The healing properties of Aloe are not lost on Dr. Abdullah who founded Lexli skin care based on his belief that aloe, and not water, should be the basis of his entire line. 100% pharmaceutical grade aloe is a known anti-inflammatory that they believe stimulates collagen, fights wrinkles, and leaves skin glowing.

They’re also incredibly confident as evidenced by their 100% money back guarantee.

If Proactiv and other breakout solvers left your face needing a little more help, Lexli’s acne line gives a more stable, in-depth solution while adding hydration to the surface of the skin so it doesn’t dry out. I found their Clarifying Lotion to magically shrink and reverse breakouts within days without drying my skin whatsoever.

Their all-purpose show stopper is AloeGlyC, a combination of Glycolic Acid, L-Ascorbic Acid (vitamin c), and potent Aloe to exfoliate the top layer of the skin revealing the new, vibrant skin underneath. AloeGlyC is a blend of both active and gentle ingredients that deliver visible results for all skin types because bringing new skin to the surface improves the look of skin in general.

Although their focus seems to be their acne treatments, the products for normal to dry skin are also quite good and very gentle. I could see most skin types in the Aloe-Based Night Moisturizer because of its silky texture and grease-free hydration. I also like the  Aloe-Based Sunscreen Spray SPF 15- a must for those who avoid sunscreen because of their often heavy feel. Keep this light-as-water spray in your car year round to use on your neck and hands before driving to avoid the sun exposure that inevitably turns into spots.


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June Jacobs

June Jacobs is a 30-year veteran of the spa industry and a visionary in the field of hi-tech skin luxury. She has created around 100 products for skin and body using high-potency hydrosols (essential oils distilled from plant matter), powerful antioxidants, and plant extracts without the use of parabens, harsh preservatives, synthetic dyes, or sulfates.  Her opulent line is used in the most prestigious spas worldwide,  and also offered online for an unparalleled at-home spa experience.

I first noticed the product’s packaging which gives an immediate feeling of relaxation with its charming frosted glass jars, metallic tin lids, and sculpted bottles- even the logo and writing on the containers are neatly arranged and printed. Visually speaking, it’s a line you can’t wait to delve into right away.

Inside of those containers her products are rich in antioxidants, many from food-based sources like cucumber, green tea, grapefruit, lemon, and cranberry, and everything smells like heaven. Her version of what cranberry smells like trumps the actual fruit itself. Her Creamy Cranberry Cleanser and Cranberry Pomegranate Moisture Masque maintain a balanced sweet scent that isn’t too over the top while completely quenching thirsty skin.

Also worth trying is the Lemon Sugar Body Polish that reminded me so strongly of lemon meringue pie that it literally made my mouth water.

June Jacobs

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