There's a fine line between being a beauty enthusiast and a beauty hoarder, and two years ago, I crossed it. As makeup and beauty tutorials flooded my YouTube feed, I could literally hear influencers whisper in my ear, "Buy more makeup! So what if it costs half your salary? Buy. It. All!" And like a typical millennial with very little self-control, I did 'buy it all!'
This made my bank balance take a massive beating, but do you know what else suffered damage? My skin. I was slathering on a new foundation, highlighter, contour stick and blush on it every day. Soon, my skin began breaking out, and how did I deal with the problem? You guessed it -- by covering it up with more makeup!
And this started an endless cycle of me breaking out, then covering it up with makeup, only to break out further. When my breakouts started getting worse, I decided it was time to ditch the makeup and amp up my skincare game. It seemed like the logical decision, except that it backfired.
In the quest for crystal-clear skin overnight, I bought every fancy, expensive serum, peel, toner, essence, cream and face oil on the market. I thought to myself--the more skincare products I use, the faster my skin heals, right? Wrong! The excess of products started clogging my pores, irritating my skin and aggravating the acne.
After months of watching my acne get worse, I decided to follow the golden rule of less is more. I completely changed my routine, I threw out all the extra skincare fluff and stuck to the basics--cleanser and moisturiser. On days that my skin is behaving, I might throw in a serum with active ingredients. But on most days, this is what my skincare routine looks like--a gentle cleanser and a gel-moisturiser for acne-prone skin.
First, I cleanse my face and make sure that all the dirt and grime from a long day out is washed off. I begin with wetting my face with lukewarm water, take one pump of POPxo's Glow On Girl Egyptian Rose & Honey Face Wash, and gently massage it in circular motions on my face, working up a little lather. Loaded with antioxidants and hyaluronic acid, it helps fight acne, reduces redness, and maintains the skin's pH balance.
Once I rinse off the lather from the cleanser, I don't wipe it dry. Instead, I simply pat off the excess water, and then apply my moisturiser directly onto my damp skin. This really helps your skin absorb moisture better, and it won't leave it sticky afterwards. I use POPxo's Calm Your Zits Blueberry Face & Body Gel, which is rich in antioxidants & flavonoids, heals damaged skin, fights breakouts and controls excess oil. The gel-based formula is lightweight and leaves my skin soft and matte! And the best part? You can use it on your body as well (we're looking at you, bacne!)
While this two-step routine is my everyday go-to, I do like to treat my skin sometimes with a luxurious face mask or the occasional facial. And of course, I haven't completely sworn off makeup either, I love a good 'no-makeup' makeup look but I'm careful about the products and don't go overboard. If you're struggling with acne and breakouts, I suggest you give this minimalistic routine a try--your skin (and wallet) will thank you!
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