Acne Prevention -- Oldies but Goodies

Your personal guide to acne prevention

Acne prevention is a multilayered thing. On the one hand, there are some simple tips everyone can follow that will nip acne in the bud more effectively than many acne treatment products. On the other, what causes acne can vary from person to person. Your acne 'triggers' might not be the same as your best friend's, your wife's, or even your sister's.

Still, there are some helpful steps you can take to make acne prevention a reality in your life. Some of them are 'oldies but goodies' -- things you've probably heard before but which bear repeating (over and over and over and... well, you get the idea). Others might be new. Either way, these are tips that can help you get rid of acne for good.

The basics of acne prevention

When it comes to acne prevention, there are some very basic steps to follow.

1. Remember that prevention is the best acne treatment. If you skip steps in your daily regiment (coming home too tired to wash your face, for example) then you'll pay for it with difficult to get rid of blemishes.

2. Keep your hands away from your face. Don't even scratch if you can avoid it. Don't rest your chin on your hands, or rub your forehead, or any of it. The more you do, the more you spread oil around.

3. If you already have some acne problems, don't -- DO NOT -- pop zits. It only makes things worse. I know it's tempting, but trust me on this one. Instead, find an acne treatment that works for you (such as a medicated soap) and use it regularly.

4. Wash your face twice daily with soap and water. Before bed is especially important: that's time when your body can focus on things like healing your skin because it's not trying to keep you up and going.

5. Don't overwash your face. The twice daily recommended above is more than enough. If you start scrubbing every five minutes, you'll dry your face, encourage too much oil production, and make the problem worse.

6. Watch what you put on your face. It's absolutely fine to use sunscreen and makeup, but try to find oil-free products and moisturizers specifically made for your face, or better yet, for acne prone skin.

7. Whoever coined the phrase 'no pain, no gain' wasn't thinking acne. If you're using a product that causes irritation, such as rashes or burning, it does NOT mean it's working. Time to stop and try something else.

8. Eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of water. No, chocolate doesn't cause acne -- but vitamins and other healthy foods can help with acne prevention.

9. Figure out your triggers. What causes acne for you? Does it get particularly bad after a day in the sun, or when you use a certain face cream, or eat a certain type of food? Identifying personal triggers can help you avoid them.

If you follow these nine simple tips, you'll be amazed at how much acne prevention you can do without spending a cent.

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