These are lifestyle changes that I have already made and stuck with that I believe have really improved my skin as far as getting active bumps:
- Switching my shampoo. I have gone from Suave, Pantene, or what have you, to Johnson's Baby Shampoo. A lot of shampoos have harsh ingredients (namely sodium laureth sulfate) that can easily get on your face in the shower and cause breakouts, especially if you aren't careful to wash your face afterwards. Johnson's Baby Shampoo has very few ingredients, none of which are the aforementioned culprit, and it still does the trick of getting my hair clean. I also have cut out using conditioner.
- Not drinking pop or other sugary drinks. I haven't had pop since summer of 2011 and it was a relatively easy change to make. I didn't really crave it and water is always as readily available as pop is, so it's just a conscious decision you have to make. I also would not drink a Powerade or random fruit/tea drink without first checking the amount of sugars in it. I try to stick to drinks that have 0 sugar grams.
- Cutting out most dairy. Dairy has been shown to have a link to aggravating acne, and I have not done too much extensive research on it, but it deals with the hormones that are in the products. Milk, for instance. It was something that, again, was easy for me to cut out because there are other (tastier, in my opinion) options. I realize that milk is not the only dairy thing out there, but guys... I love my cheese. I have cut out most dairy, but unfortunately I can't say all.
- Changing my "pillow case" EVERY NIGHT. Pillow case in quotations because I just use baggy t-shirts over my pillow. This is kind of self-explanatory... Why would you willingly mash your face into a dirty pillow filled with yesterday's grease and hair product residue that will break you out?
- Being conscious of what is touching my face. I used to lean my head in my hand and in school, lay my cheek right down on the bare germ-infested desk. Now, I never touch my face throughout the day unless its a really light scratching of an itch or something like that. I don't even lay my cheek on a pillow or on my boyfriend's shoulder. If I'm wearing a fleece for instance, I make sure that i don't have it zipped up too high where the collar is going to be rubbing on my cheek all day. I'm kind of anal about this one hehe...
- Trying to lighten up on the amount of makeup that I use. I haven't completely succeeded at this because I still use a lot compared to the average girl I think, but I've been consciously trying to use less. I used to cake on two layers of a full-coverage foundation, then concealer, then a powder, sometimes two different powders. Now, when I'm having a decent skin day, I just use concealer on the bad spots and then a translucent powder all over the face. And when I'm having a bad skin day, I still just use the concealer and powder, but I put it on heavier and in more areas.
- Cutting back on fast food and other greasy/fatty foods. I say cutting back not cutting out, because I could do a better job with this. But, I don't remember the last time I just went to McDonald's and got a fry or some nuggets. I still will eat the fries or chicken tenders at Applebee's, Bob Evan's, etc., however. I have tremendously cut back on how often I eat these things though. I also have cut back a lot on chips, crackers, pizza etc.
And my most recent change...
- Cutting OUT benzoyl peroxide and other active acne-fighting ingredients. WHAT?! Yeah... It's my most recent experiment and I'm not recommending it to you guys just yet, but so far it doesn't seem to have done too much for the good, but it also hasn't done too much for the bad. It's kind of in accordance with the Caveman method, except I'm not that extreme. I have replaced these treatments with spreading Dickinson's witch hazel toner all over my face two times a day. At first this new system was doing wonders for my skin, and it still may in the future, but I'm just having a bad skin period right now.