Lately I have been stressed. Super stressed. And when that happens, one other thing happens: breakouts. They are the worst. I hate rushing to Dr. Doris Day for a cortisone shot but sometimes I can’t help myself. I realize that in times of stress, my eating and supplementing routine falls off track. It’s a double whammy. The stress hits me, but it’s also compounded by the fact that all my “good” habits go by the wayside. I find myself obsessively googling what I need to do to fix it and it always brings me back to the these 5 basics. So here it is:
Take omegas. Take them and never miss them.
Facialist Zaida Gordons from Skintegrity in Los Angeles says, “I encourage our clients struggling with acne, eczema, or psoriasis to take a high quality OMEGA 3 fish oil as it can greatly improve skin barrier function + inflammation.” I am obsessed with taking omegas for everything from skin health to sexual health, When I discovered high quality omegas in my early 30s, it was life changing for me. In my 30s it helped my hormonal and cystic acne more than anything else I have ever done for my skin, and in my 40s I supplement with it for all kinds of reasons. I take the Sex and Good Oh-Mega Yummy Gummy everyday no matter what.
Double cleanse at night. But not with anything harsh.
Facialist Zaida Gordons also reminds me of this one, “Double cleanse in the evening to ensure all dirt and debri is removed from pores. I’ve suffered from acne myself and highly recommend the Face Reality line to care for skin for those prone to acne. Their Ultra Gentle Cleanser is ideal for acne prone skin. If you have inflamed acne, avoid scrubbing your skin as this can further irritate and exacerbate inflammation. Instead consider using an alpha hydroxy acid serum.”
I love these recommendations. I also keep Garnier Micellar water for sensitive skin on hand at all times. After I cleanse I use this to make sure everything is truly gone. Some people use micellar water before they cleanse, I use it after.
Load up on vitamin A.
Nutritionist Maria Marlowe points out,” Research has shown an association between a Vitamin A deficiency and acne. The worse the deficiency, the worse the acne. In a study which included 200 adults, vitamin A levels in those with acne were about 20% lower than those with clear skin.”
Maria also reminds us that plant-based foods are the best source of Vitamin A. In particular, dark leafy greens (like spinach, collard greens, and kale) and orange veggies (like carrots, sweet potatoes, or butternut squash) are the best sources of carotenoids.
Load up on zinc.
Zinc is one of the many essential nutrients that your body needs. It primarily protects your immune system. Zinc halts the over-production of keratinocytes and helps clear up breakouts. It also helps with the epidermal balance of keratin and collagen to help prevent blockage within the skin. Similarly, zinc is a natural DHT-blocker that lowers the amount of sebum that the skin produces.
Photo credit: The 1996 Scream film directed by Wes Craven. The film stars David Arquette, Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, Matthew Lillard, Rose McGowan, Skeet Ulrich, and Drew Barrymore.
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