Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Skincare Staples

Hello Lovely Readers,

Today is an exciting day, because I'm actually using photos that I took, hence the horrible lighting.The reason everything is staged by the window is because that's the best lighting I could figure out at the moment. I thought I'd write about my staple skincare products. The reason I didn't title this "My Skincare Routine" is because I do not use each and every one of these products every single day. I should probably give you an overview of my skin type: It's dry/combination, sensitive and acne prone with a certain affinity for redness on my nose and cheeks. I've never had serious acne, usually just a few spots here and there or a clear face with the exception of one pimple. However, when I started taking hormones for regulation my face began to break out, drastically for my skin type, though really not that drastically, so I've only recently switched pills in the hopes that my skin clears up.

Here are the products I use on a regular basis:

Here's the rundown: 

Olay Foaming Face Wash for Sensitive Skin

I've already written about this product here, but this is my trusty face wash. I've been using it since the summer and I plan to stick with it, unless someone finds a miracle face wash that reduces redness. That would be nice.

Olay Complete All Day UV Moisturizer SPF 15 for Sensitive Skin

Again, this product was more thoroughly reviewed here. I use this every morning after I apply my spot treatment

Neutrogena Oil Free Moisture for Sensitive Skin

This is my nighttime moisturizer. I generally use it nightly, but I'll skip it occasionally if I don't want to dilute my spot treatment, because products penetrate the pores best at night. Also, my dorm room gets ridiculously hot because of the heating system, so if my face is sweaty I skip the moisturizer. This product is reviewed in depth here.

Finally, onto products I haven't previously reviewed. These are all prescription, so I can't really tell you to head on over to the drugstore and pick them up, but here they are:

Fougera Sulfacetamide Sodium Topical Suspension 10%

I first started using this product in seventh or eighth grade (so when I was about 13 or 14). It's meant to dry up acne and is a sulfur-based product. It tends to be less irritating for sensitive skin than other products. Salicylic acid, clindamycin, and benzoyl peroxide, some of the more common acne fighting ingredients, cause my skin to itch terribly. Reusing a product that's irritating can cause a serious adverse reaction, so I stick to this product. I apply it after cleansing every morning, and most nights. If I'm not using it at night, it's because I'm rotating it with one of two products, which I'll talk about next. This is not an overnight solution, but it does help reduce the size of the pimple within a couple days, and it prevents acne from coming up if you apply it right when the spot starts to show. It's never irritated me and it works pretty well.

Hydrocortisone Cream 2.5%

This is also prescription strength, but the 1% and I think 1.5% are available off the shelves in drugstores. This is an anti-inflammatory, anti-itch creme, and I like to use it when I have a large and/or painful red spot. It really helps reduce itching/hurting and redness. I occasionally use it on my red patches, but not too often because overuse of this product can thin the skin. With any acne product, you need to make sure you're using SPF because they all make skin more susceptible for sun damage. I sometimes use this in place of the sulfacetamide sodium suspension at night, or I'll apply it before or after that product. It really helps reduce the size, color, and irritation of the pimple.

Tretinoin Cream .05%

This is the most recent addition to my skincare family. It's the generic of Retin-A, which is a retinol. It was prescribed to me for acne, obviously, but it is also known to fight discoloration and wrinkles. It helps to reduce breakouts, but I only use it 1-3 times a week or it will irritate my skin. When I do use it, I use it after washing my face at night, and I may or may not follow up with my moisturizer depending on how bad the breakout. I haven't noticed a difference in discoloration, but it does a decent job clearing breakouts. This is the medium strength cream, and there is also a gel sold for oily, acne prone skin.

One last thing that is not pictured is an antibiotic I take twice daily called Cephalexin. It's an anti-bacterial pill which is meant to clear acne from the inside, but honestly I haven't noticed an improvement from this particular item. This may just be because my acne was caused by the pill I was on, so hopefully it will change.

If you made it through all the way, or even halfway, I am incredibly impressed.

Love and the promise of more interesting future posts,



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