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How I Got My Skin Clear After An Acne Outbreak

I've told this story a little before, but it seems so fitting to tell it once more. For science. Towards the end of last year, I ran out of my usual organic face wash. It could only be bought from one place, which was closed the day I needed to replace it. The next day I would be away from home and getting a new face wash wasn't optional. While I was in Target, I remembered "Oh, face wash!" and ran to the beauty section to see what I could pick up instead. My checklist included affordability and minimal nasties. With very limited options, I saw the row of Simple skin care products lined up and thought about how raved the brand is. So, I snapped up a face wash and headed to the checkout. At first, I adored it. It left my skin feeling clean and my blemishes immediately dried up. A pimple died every time I used it, and I thought that was brilliant.
Then I began to notice a new pimple once one had cleared up. Then two new pimples. Next thing I knew, my face had large clusters of small pimples on my cheeks and larger, more hideous ones forming in unflattering places around my mouth and chin. No makeup could cover the pimples, they were painful and looked so bad. This was the first acne breakout I'd ever had, and it scared me. 
It took me way to long to figure out why, and how to stop it. After enough stress, I sat myself down and thought, ok what are you doing now, that's different to before this problem began?
"THE FACE WASH!" I screamed out in realization whilst standing in front of my vanity. This problem started with the face wash. I looked at the back of the bottle, and every ingredient was some sort of chemical, including sulfate. I had to fix this problem, and I had to do it yesterday.

Now, by no means is my skin perfect, not even now that my skin has never looked clearer and is free of the acne I once had. As I'm human, I do get the odd pimple here and there, and I still have some scarring. But my face is nowhere near the state it was once in, as I noticed this morning when I looked in the mirror and let out a squeal of happiness. My face has been much clearer for a few weeks now but I only just let myself notice. 
My skin might not be perfect, and I may not be an expert, but it's clean, clear and I have nothing but my skin care routine to thank. Thank you, skin care routine! 

As soon as I realised what the culprit was, I immediately dropped my face wash. While Simple may work for others, my skin just didn't like it. Upon receiving a new organic facial cleansing oil, I began to use that instead.
Once I saw immediate results, I expanded my products to organic only and started paying attention to my skin. I used gentle products that didn't dry, included oils and began to use face masks.

I started using a rosehip cleansing wash that was completely organic and minus anything nasty. It's gentle and doesn't have any sulfates or parabens. Because my skin freaked out due to it being too dry, I only use my cleanser every second day. 
When I wash with the cleanser, I always follow up with a toner and a moisturiser. The toning step now includes micellar water, and my moisturiser must have some sort of oil or vitamin E in it. The micellar has worked absolute wonders with my skin, and my favourite moisturisers include The Body Shop's Tea Tree & Vitamin E lotions. 

On the days that I don't do the full cleanser-toner-moisturiser routine, I didn't want to leave my skin completely. I was fighting an acne outbreak after all. So, I left those days to using my facial oil and putting on some blemish fighting face masks
I don't have a strict routine for this as I've found switching it up to work best for me, but I have two methods I like to switch around as I feel. 
Method 1: I cleanse my face with my facial oil and remove excess with a warm towelette. Then I put on a peel-off mask, let it sit until ready and remove. That's it really. 
I always use the oil before the peel-off mask because these masks can be quite drying, and the oil helps to retain some moisture. The key for blemished skin. Results are almost instant. This, I usually do once a week and no more as this can be quite harsh if done more frequently.

Method 2: Cleansing my face with a bit of micellar water, I simply cover it in a cooling, blemish clearing face mask. Once I'm ready, I just take that warm towelette and gently wipe away any excess. All done.

My moisturiser is generally kept for whenever I use my face wash as I don't really need it when I use face masks. My second mask leaves my skin soft and nourished, and the oil is a natural moisturiser.

Aside from that, I've upped my water intake and started using a primer underneath my powder foundation.
After months of refining my routine and sticking to it, my skin is so happily clear now. My newer scars will fade over time just as my older scars already have, and new blemishes never stick around for too long. This is the best my skin has looked in months, and I couldn't be happier.
(makeup-less Sheree still needs her red lippy.)

Photos by Sheree Grace

- Sheree

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All photos are taken by ©Sheree Grace for Kindly, Sheree unless stated otherwise. Posts will always have an indication at the bottom verifying photo credits if sourced elsewhere. Photos by Sheree Grace are not to be taken or used without permission and must be credited with a link if given.