Let’s face it, some people are blessed with great skin. While the rest of us peasants (myself included) have to toil away to get our skins to behave. Mine definitely has a mind of its own. Whoever said that pimples stop in your adult years was clearly high on some illegal stuff. Because till this day, I continue to have breakouts.
Contrary to popular belief, skin-care involves an investment in time as opposed to money. Also, it doesn’t matter what you do but how often you do it. I follow this facial routine once a week at home and it’s totally worth the investment. The products used are all natural and great for your skin. Trust me, as you would trust your boyfriend on Valentines Day.
5 easy steps to great skin:
- Oil cleanse
- Soap cleanse
Step 1 – Pre-cleanse with oil
Begin with clean hands. I start with a pre-cleanse using an oil based cleanser or any oil of your choice. Jojoba works well for oily, sensitive skin because its composition closely resembles the sebum (natural oil) in your skin. The oil mixes well with the sebum deep into the pores and helps release bacteria trapped in your pores. Other great skin oil options include Rose hip, Avocado, Almond and Tamanu. Some oils can cause breakouts so its best to get a small patch test done prior to use, to determine which oil best suits your skin.
Applied to dry skin, oil removes makeup and bacteria trapped in your skin. This step basically preps your skin for the next step.
How to use – Apply the oil to your face using your finger-tips. Use circular motions on you fore-head, cheeks and upward motion on your neck. Oil is a great eye make-up remover as well. Gently massage your eye area to remove make-up. Step duration – 2 mins
If you’re acne-prone, don’t be afraid to experiment with oils. Read this post to know more.
Cleansing one time isn’t enough as you’re still going to have dirt trapped in your pores. This step helps remove any residual gunk trapped in your skin. Double cleansing with oil and then soap has helped my skin immensely . I learnt about the double cleansing from the popular 10-step Korean skin care routine. Although I find 10 step method quite elaborate and time-consuming, the double cleansing method which is part of the regime does wonders for your skin.
You can use any foam-based cleanser in this step but make sure it’s as natural as possible. I’ve written about natural facial cleansers in this post.
How to use – Check out this video for the perfect cleansing routine. Although the video recommends using your small finger on each hand to cleanse your face, I use all 4 fingers. The idea is to be gentle and do not apply too much pressure on your face. Step duration – 2 mins
Step 3 – Exfoliate with sugar and honey
Exfoliation involves use of a grainy product to clean out clogged pore. It helps remove dead skin skills which then helps reveal brighter skin. In the quest for great skin, do not use scrubs on a daily basis as you can’t scrub your way to good skin. As a natural scrub I use 1 tsp raw honey mixed with 1 tsp sugar (brown or white). Honey hydrates the skin by drawing g moisture from the air into the skin. It’s antibacterial, loaded with antioxidants, enzymes, and other nutrients and therefore nourishes and hydrates your skin. Sugar is a natural exfoliator that removes dead skin cells, allowing new cells to emerge for a radiant complexion. As a combo, they beautifully complement each other.
How to use – Mix the honey and sugar well. Apply the mixture on your skin and massage in circular motion. Massage longer in areas where you’re prone to breakouts like the nose and chin. Step duration – 3 minutes.
Step 4 – Steam
Steaming your face helps open your pores to loosen any blackheads or pimples stuck in your skin. You can steam your face in two ways. Boil a pot of water. Once boiled, take it off the stove. Now place your face a few inches away from the boiled water to let the steam open up your pores.
Alternatively, you can take a small towel and soak it in water. Microwave it for a 1 minute or so till it hot enough to hold. Then place it gently on your face. You will need to do this about 4 times. Ensure the towel isn’t too hot lest you burn your skin. Personally I prefer steaming my face this way as its quicker. Wash your face once you’ve steamed your face.
Since your pores are now open, this is a good time to gently extract any pimples or blackheads using a metal extractor or tissue paper. Do not force any pimple out to avoid scarring. Step 4 should take about 5 minutes.
Step 5 – Mask it with clay
Now that your face is clean, you need to close your pores with a deep cleansing face mask. Mud masks are amazing for oily skin. So I alternate between bentonite clay, red clay or a mixture of bentonite clay and activated charcoal. Take a tsp of the clay with enough water to make a paste. Apply gently over your face using a brush or your fingers. Once the mask has hardened, wash and follow-up with a moisturiser of your choice.
Try this routine once a week and you’ll notice a marked improvement in your skin after 3-4 weeks.
Image credit – kichenmacabe