However flawless our natural complexion, everybody suffers from problem skin at some time or another. Stress, an aggressive environment and hormonal fluctuations can all contribute to distressing break-outs. But you don’t have to suffer in silence:
• Do not get depressed easier said than done, but angst may lead to more spots.
• Rememberthat not suffering from acne as ateenagerdoes not make you immune for life: many women who were blemish free in their youth suffer in their twenties. This can mean a decade of misery, but the acne generally disappears during their thirties.
• Avoid food with high levels of saturated fat. Treat deep-fried foods as public enemy number one, and do not indulge in too many dairy products, which can contribute to blocked pores and the onset of pimples.
• Drink plenty of filtered water, and eat as many portions of fresh fruit and vegetables as you can manage (five a day is the recommended daily amount). Steamingyourvegetables is the best way to maintain their valuable mineral and vitamin content ifyou do not want to eat them raw.
• Tie your hair back at night to prevent grease travelling down your forehead, and wash your hair regularly. Avoid usingtoo many hair products, as they can aggravate the skin and lead to break-outs.
• Steer clear of any harsh skincare products – they will only exacerbate the problem.
• Resist temptation – make it a cast-iron rule never to pick your spots, as you will inflame the tissue around the blemish and cause infection to spread.
• If problem skin persists, consult a dermatologist. It may be that over-the-counter remedies are doing nothing for you and you should try a Retin-A cream (prescription only), instead. Retin-A can work miracles with acne, but it is also very strong and does have side effects. As a result, make sure that your dermatologist tells you about any contraindications before you start a course.
• Exercise regularly – this is the best way to get your whole system working to its full potential, and also helps the body to eliminate waste.
• Sleep well – there’s nothing quite like eight hours of peaceful slumberto helpyourskin to heal itself, and promote a clear and refined complexion.
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