not mine//photo credit to owner
Everyone wants their skin to be clear and free of any imperfections, smooth and younger looking, and of course, have a healthy glow. While I envy those who have been blessed with heaven-kissed skin, I also remind myself that there are little things about my facial complexion that I would never trade for anything because they make me, well, me. And through my own skincare battles, I have learned the dos and don'ts of obtaining healthier and clearer,and ultimately younger looking skin.

Now my journey has been a long one, and I'm nowhere close to having the skin I want, but in the past year, I have seen tremendous progress overall in my skin. I have finally found what has worked for me and my skin to clear acne, fade blemishes, scars, and dark spots, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.

Obviously, most of this could have been avoided if I had learned the importance of taking care of my skin when I first started wearing makeup, but we live, we learn, and we grow from all of our experiences and try to avoid making the same mistakes in the future.

So here are my 10 tips for achieving the skin you have always wanted.

    1. Drink plenty of water. Everyone knows this, but I feel like people brush over it and try to search for a quick product fix. I promise you, this is your quick fix, and it doesn't cost you a trip to Sephora or Ulta or your local drugstore. Drinking two glasses of water when you wake up and before you go to sleep really help your body replenish and hydrate your body as well as flush out any toxins. Throughout the day, try infusing your water with different fruits and herbs such as strawberries and basil leaves or raspberries and sage leaves. It's an inexpensive way to . not only benefit your body with vitamins and provide a natural detox that releases fat cells, but it is also a way to help improve the appearance of your skin. Here's where I find delicious recipes: 25 Fruit-Infused Waters for Glowing Skin.
    2. Removing your makeup with olive oil and micellar water. Instead of reaching for your cleanser first, remove your makeup with gentle products such as olive oil and your favorite micellar water. Like products break down like products. Using olive oil on a soft cloth first to remove your makeup will melt away your all day foundation, your stay put brows, and your most stubborn mascara. And even better, it won't clog your pores like coconut oil! For an even gentler touch around delicate skin like your eyes, use a cotton ball and some micellar water to remove any remaining eye makeup. This is especially great if you wear soft contact lenses because the olive oil could potentially damage them over time. After that, then go in with your favorite gentle foaming cleanser, which leads into tip #3. 
    3. Use sensitive, all natural foaming cleansers. I never cared about whether I bought something for sensitive skin or not. I didn't even know what that meant, and I didn't think I had it. But after testing tons of cleansers--both high end and drugstore--I can say that it does matter. Everyone's skin is sensitive in some way or another, and it's better to be safe than sorry when it comes to the delicacy of your face. By switching over to gentle foaming cleansers that are all natural, free of sulfates and parabens, and other harsh chemicals, I saw a noticeable improvement in my skin's complexion, elasticity, and cell turnover. And it washed away any remaining oils, dirt, and makeup left on my face. 
    4. Image result for soniclear brush
      Soniclear Elite Cleansing System- $89-$149
    5. Invest in a Soniclear or Clarisonic Brush. Ever since my mom gifted me a Soniclear for Christmas, I noticed my skin became smooth--free of any clogged pores or makeup induced acne--and stayed pretty clear of breakouts. Only speaking on the Soniclear and how it performs, I can say that the gentle brush bristles allows for a deeper clean without irritating the skin like some exfoliates and scrubs do. It also tells you how long to clean one area of your face, ensuring that each part of your face is ridden away of any unwanted bacteria, oils, or dirt, which tend to build up if not cleaned out deeply. 
    6. Tone and moisturize appropriately. This has become an important step in my routine, and I think it's safe to say that it is especially important if you want an even complexion. Toners ultimately restore and balance the skin's nutrients, putting back key vitamins that you possibly washed away. Depending on the toner, it can also work as a deep pore astringent--pulling out stubborn, unwanted bacteria and dirt that causes acne. After toning, it's important to moisturize with something thick and creamy and that also has good oils, butters, and vitamins in it to restore the skin's hydration levels. Even if you have oily, acne prone skin, it's crucial to find a moisturizer that puts the good oils back into your skin instead of having your skin try and produce them. 
    7. Living a healthy lifestyle. Incorporating more leafy greens, fruits, and light exercises into your everyday routine will promote a healthier you, leaving not only your body but your skin to reap the benefits. 
    8. Wash your towels and pillowcases frequently. Make it a habit to change out the towels you use for your face every other day and wash your pillowcases once a week. These things get dirty quickly and can get into your pores the less you wash them. 
    9. Avoid touching your face. As tempting as it may be, don't touch or pick at your face. Your hands and fingers have oils and dirt that are no good for your face, and picking at pimples can leave nasty scars--something that is not worth having temporarily smooth skin. 
Were these tips helpful? What are some of your own tips for having clear skin? Leave a comment down below and don't forget to subscribe!

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