GL turns 20: Our 20 best skincare tips
1. Get rid of red
A cotton ball or Q-tip soaked in Visine will help zap the color out of a zit. Hold it on your pimple for a minute or two to make your breakout less noticeable.
2. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Apply a light moisturizer to your face, being careful around any problem areas. Moisturizing the rest your face will keep it breakout free and help your makeup go on more smoothly.
3. Go green
Use a brush to apply a green-based concealer to your zit (don’t freak, the weird shade actually helps cancel the redness). Blend until you have a thin, even layer and top with a dot of foundation.
4. Buff it out
Sweat and heat gunk up pores super quickly. Wash up with a gentle, exfoliating cleanser every couple of days.
5. Tone it down
There’s nothing grosser than that seriously sticky feeling on a hot afternoon. “Using an oil-free toner midday is a great way to control shine,” says Dr. Adam Geyer, dermatologist and Kiehl’s brand ambassador. Doing a quick touchup will also zap away sebum and debris, the prime causes of breakouts.
6. Show your back some love
Fitted clothes and excess sweat can lead to zits anywhere, especially on your back. Opt for a body wash with salicylic acid in it to keep skin clear. It also helps to spritz on a breakout-busting spray before you get dressed.
7. Find a system
Ditch the lazy girl approach to skin. “It can be hard to get in the habit, but most teens respond well to systematic skin care,” says Dr. Michael Gold, a dermatologist in Nashville, Tenn. Look for a kit with a cleanser with salicylic acid, a treatment product that contains benzoyl peroxide, and a lightweight moisturizer with SPF. Can’t shell out for a name-brand system? Search for oil-free drugstore alternatives of each of the three items and, most importantly, be consistent using ‘em. Period.
8. The thyme is right
When it comes to clearing up your skin, all-natural may be the way to go. A recent study found that the herb thyme can help beat blemishes. Explains Rochel Roland, founder of the nature-focused Joyful Bath Co. In Bethesda, Md., “Thyme oil has antimicrobial and astringent properties, so it gently cleans and balances skin.” Try dabbing some thyme oil (available in health food stores) on blemishes before bed. Or find a cleanser with thyme already mixed in, like Skyn Iceland Glacial Face Wash ($30, sehpora.com).
9. Light up the bathroom
There are a couple of gizmos that use light, heat or combo of both to sizzle spots as soon as you spy ‘em. Bonus: They work in a flash and are totally pain-free. The not-so-pretty part? The gadgets are costly, but could be worth it if you’re consistently at odds with your skin (we like no!no! Skin, $180, nonoskin.com).
10. Brush up
Our fave derms swear by facial brushes. Head to the drugstore to snag one (try Olay Professional Pro-X Cleansing System, $30) and use it with the perf potion for your face: Girls with oil or acne should try Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit Cream Cleanser ($7), normal skin does well with Clean & Clear Deep Action Cream Cleanser ($6), and sensitive sweetheart should pick up Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser ($12).
11. Skip the hot showers
We know, there’s nothing better than a steamy bath or shower on an icy day. Truth is, it’ll leave your bod parched. “Hot water washes away natural oils and dries out skin,” says Dimitri James, author of Becoming Beauty. Opt for warm water, and limit your time in the tub to 15 minutes or less.
12. Swap your soap
“Never use a super-cleansing soap like Dial, sulfate-based cleansers, alcohol-based astringents or harsh cleansing gels during the winter,” Dimitri shares. We like Neutrogena’s Gentle Cleanswer ($7, drugstores), followed by a lotion that’s just right for your skin (see below).
13. Show a little tough love
Buffing off dead skin cells keeps your face from lookin’ dull and prevents clogged pores. Pass by super-gritty formulas and wash once a week with a mild exfoliator like Soap & Glory’s Clean Mary Cleansing Milk ($14, Target).
14. Eat right
Vitamins and good fats (like those found in olive oil or fish, like salmon) help keep skin supple. Sipping at least eight glasses or water a day is also key. You can also try green or herbal tea, which are just as fab for your skin as they are for your general health.
15. Get a humidifier
The heat that keeps your room toasty can make your skin cracked and flaky. If your skin is desert-dry, consider buying a humidifier for your crib, which will put moisture back in the air.
16. Wash away your workout
Don’t let the dirt and grime from your workout settle in to your pores. “You must wash your face as soon as you hit the lockers. Do not wait ‘til you get home. You don’t want to allow the sweat, dirt, bacteria and other inflammatory agents to work against your new clear skin regimen,” Scott-Vincent warns. Keep a box of wipes in your gym bag; they make it easy to stay on top of your routine, especially during hectic away games. Clean & Clear Makeup Dissolving Facial Cleansing Wipes ($6, drugstores) do the job without irritating your skin.
17. Slather on the sunscreen
Don’t wait ‘til you’re unfurling your towel to pile on protection. “Apply 15 to 30 minutes prior to going out,” Dr. Malik shares. And no skimping—it takes 1 ounce (about the size of a golf ball) to protect your skin. Reapply every two hours and after swimming or a lot of activity.
18. If you’re oily—Clinique Super City Block Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40, $22, clinique.com
19. If you’re prone to breakouts—Neutrogena Clear Face Break-Out Free Sunblock SPF 55, $10, drugstores
20. If you’re sensitive—Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 55, $9, drugstores
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