I know it’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted on the blog. I don’t like to share this kind of stuff, though I figured I should let you in on the fact that I have been handling some unexpected health stuff for a while and my focus has been on getting 100% better – I’m almost there!
Now that it’s Fall, I thought this would be a perfect time to share my tricks for keeping skin smooth, hydrated, and blemish-free as it gets cold and dry.
Use a Low pH Cleanser
I babble a lot about pH, but that’s only because it’s pretty much the key to keeping your skin from turning into a dry, patchy mess of dust. Our skin is naturally acidic, about 4.5 to 5.5 on the pH scale. This healthy acidity is how we keep bacteria out and hydration in, which prevents issues like acne or annoying dry patches. Often a quick pH fix is all it takes to make a dramatic difference in the health of your skin. Avoid cleansers with a pH higher than 6.5 – even then I personally prefer to use cleansers that have a pH of 4 to 5.5 at most. Some cleansers test this for you, other times you may have to hunt down the pH online, or test it yourself to make sure what you’re using is good for your skin (more on that later).
My low pH cleanser favorites:
- illi Total Aging Care Cleansing Water
- NIOD Sanskrit Saponins
- Cosrx Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser
- Su:m 37 Miracle Rose Cleansing Stick
For my hands (which are prone to getting super dry) and as a body wash, I actually use a low pH face wash – CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser. You’ll notice it’s not really a green beauty product, yet that’s a non-issue for me now (I have some half-written articles – or maybe I’ll do a video instead? – on why certain ingredients aren’t the monsters they’ve been made out to be).
Hydrate the “Right” Way
There’s some confusion out there between dehydration and actual dry skin as it relates to oil production. You can have oily skin and dehydrated skin at the same time. Dehydration can most often come from using alkaline skin care (see above on pH) and eating a less-than-optimal diet. We’ll address the skin care part today.
Right, so real quick – do not confuse oil with hydration. Face oils and oil-based moisturizers are best used as a final step as an occlusive to hold water-binding ingredients (like hyaluronic acid, which we’ve been seeing a lot of lately) to the skin. Layer your products properly and you’ll be rewarded with plump, smooth skin that you’ll won’t be able to stop poking.
My hydration loves (in order of application from lightest to heaviest):
- Elizabeth Dehn for One Love Organics Vitamin D Moisture Mist
- NIOD Multi Molecular Complex
- KYPRIS Beauty Elixir III: Prismatic Array (or…) KYPRIS Beauty Elixir I: 1,000 Roses
CV Skinlabs Rescue + Relief Spray and CV Skinlabs Calming Moisture are the golden couple of body care, so if you’re prone to dry skin on your hands, elbows, legs, etc. definitely stock up on these two. First use the spray, and while your skin is slightly damp, apply the moisturizer. Heaven.
Extra Help for Blemishes
If you’re struggling with blemishes, it’s definitely important that you eat well, sleep, etc. – you know, all the usual things you hear everyone going on about but may not know why exactly they’re so important or where to even begin. If you have acne and not just an occasional two-pimple breakout, you might want to read my book (you can read it free via Amazon Kindle Unlimited) to get a good, easy plan started before “analysis paralysis” grabs hold of you and you do nothing about it. In the meantime, I do have two quick topical tricks to destroying the occasional breakout and helping to calm existing acne.
My favorite anti-blemish hacks:
As always, thank you for all your support since Epic Beauty Guide began over 7 years (!) ago. Let me know if you have any questions or need help with your skin.
P.S. I’ve been getting lots of questions about Epic Beauty Bar (my hand-picked selection of green beauty products often featured on the blog) lately since there have been some big changes, so here comes the awesome news – there are new plans in the works and we’ll be relaunching something very different. So while those plans are in motion, feel free to enjoy 15% off any order over $49 from now until October 31st, 2016 (plus free shipping if you’re in the US or Canada). Use code NEWNEW at checkout.