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Feedback please, have I missed anything?

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I've just written a list, or holistic approach I guess of what I did to help treat my skin. I'd love your feedback because I keep thinking I've missed something. I thought about copying and pasting it all in here, but it's easier if you read it from my blog:

*Moderator edit, URL removed - read the board rules.* Blog posted below

You know what I wish ..that I had some really good (or bad?) before shots. I have a couple but they're of my skin when it was recovering. Problem is when my acne was severe I would not let a camera near me.

thanks for your help

Moderator edit, blog post:

I’ve had a lot of questions from readers of my blog and my YouTube subscribers about what I did to treat my acne. So I thought I’d write a detailed summary about what I did to help my skin. This information, or ‘clear skin plan’ is also what I believe to be the best way to start treating acne and problem skin for everyone – irrelevant of age, gender or where the acne is on your body.

Step 1: Stop trying to be perfect

There’s a lot of pressure from the media, from beauty and acne forums, from society …just from everywhere to be perfect and to have perfect skin. In reality only a very small population of people have ‘perfect’ skin, and those who do are most likely blessed with great skin genes so just never get pimples and blackheads in the first place. You can achieve clear skin, but it’s unlikely you will be able to achieve perfect skin. And you know what? It doesn’t matter.

I think my skin is great at the moment. I doubt anybody on the street that walks past me or meets me for the first time would ever think I’ve had a chronic acne problem, even though I have damaged large looking pores in patches on my face from recurring acne, a lot of freckles, a couple of moles, a scattering of blackheads on my cheeks and nose, a few patches of whiteheads and some small pimples on both cheeks and my neck. Did you notice in the last few videos that I’ve recorded? I wasn’t even wearing makeup. Of course you didn’t, because you need to be either in bad lighting or standing close to me to see it. Your biggest critic is yourself so the number 1 step to clear skin is dropping this idea of being perfect and instead just being happy with healthy skin that feels great and looks good enough to keep you confident.

I took that photo (above) of myself yesterday. Can you see any of this bad stuff on my skin that I just mentioned? I’m not wearing any makeup except mascara. My description of my skin is how I see it two inches away from my bathroom mirror. If I was striving to be perfect I’d be depressed and miserable right now, but instead I choose to be happy with what I’ve got.

Also realise that when your skin starts to heal you will forget what it was like when you skin was really, really bad and you may become even more critical of your skin and expect bigger and better things of it. The first part of the healing process is the easy bit. Going from mild acne to completely clear is the most difficult part. I’m still not there myself! You know what I do? If I ever look in the mirror and find myself becoming critical of my skin, I think to myself …if I was a severe acne sufferer I would be so happy to have the skin I’ve got now.

Step 2: Stop picking at it

I’m going to sound like a broken record with this one, and I realise that you’ve heard it a million times from other information sources, but I can’t stress how true this actually is. I only discovered this information the other day – it’s scientifically proven that if you pick a pimple, whitehead, blackhead, whatever spot you’ve got, then it is likely to cause ten more. How? Because you’re spreading the bacteria underneath the skin. It may not happen immediately but you’ll get a patch of pimples around that pimple, or another pimple in the exactly the same spot once it’s healed.

This is one of the very reasons why chronic acne sufferers have a lot of trouble getting their pimples to go away without the use of harsh oral medications or topical creams. Let your skin do it’s job, let it heal in its own way and leave it alone. The redness around a pimple is there for a reason, it’s extra blood your body has sent the pimple to try and heal it. It may look awful to you but it’s actually a good thing! When a pimple forms a head, its your skins way of pushing all the gunk and bacteria out, let it do it in its own time. If you squeeze and pop it, then you’re only putting that gunk and bacteria back into the skin.

Step 3: Be gentle with your skin care routine

99% of the time acne is caused by something in your body that isn’t working as well as it should be, and not by dirt, grime or using the wrong skin care routine. The first thing acne sufferers attack when they get a breakout is their skin, cursing it and punishing it by lathering on harsh chemicals and damaging ‘quick fixes’. Guess what? This is most likely doing more harm than good. Left alone, you skin does a pretty damn good job at taking care of itself. As I explained in step 2, the formation of a pimple – including the redness and the head – is the skin purging or removing toxins. The best thing we can do is to help the skin by using very gentle and natural skin can products that include ingredients that encourage the skin to heal. I’m talking about natural ingredients too, not harsh chemicals like benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid that only dry out the skin and destroy the natural pH balance.

You can read Bel’s article ‘Interview With A Beauty Therapist About Acne & Natural Skin Care‘ for more detailed information on what ingredient to look for in skin care products.

Step 4: Be mindful of your diet

Diet doesn’t cause acne, but it can aggravate it. The food you eat can increase your stress, cause your hormones to go out of whack or even give you a blood sugar spike. Each of these factors can easily lead to pimples if you have a predisposition to getting acne.

I realise this is the hardest step to take, so do it gradually if you can, and don’t be ridiculous about it. Eat well as much as you can then enjoy yourself on occasions too. You don’t want to go from a skin disorder to an eating disorder. I like to live by the 90/10 rule – I eat healthy food for 90% of the time then indulge for the other 10%.

There is a reason why eBooks like ‘Acne Free in 3 Days’ can sometimes work. It’s because they are a fast detox of all the stored up yuck food in your system. I’m too much of a chicken to try a detox so I prefer to do it gradually. You also need to continue to eat well after a detox to maintain that healthy skin. I’ll be talking more about detoxing and diets in a later post. I’ll also be doing a review of Acne Free in 3 Days for those of you that are interested.

If you want to take care of your diet for now, the easiest way is to just follow a typically low glycemic index (GI) diet.

Step 5: Relax!

I have had one case of moderate and one case of severe acne in my life. Both times were a direct result of increased stress in my life. Don’t overlook how important keeping a relaxed and stress free lifestyle is. In some ways, this step can be just as difficult as maintaining a healthy diet.

Everybody has different ways of relaxing, so try to find the one that’s best for you. Whether it be listening to music, going for a walk, exercising, yoga, meditation or spending time with your family …just make sure you do something relaxing every single day. A healthy mind means a healthy body. This has never been more true.

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