Want to Get Clear Skin? Try These 11 Evidence-Backed Tips
It might be challenging to determine the precise needs of your skin in order to keep it in the best possible condition.
We are constantly inundated with advertisements for skincare and makeup products and recommendations from so-called “beauty experts” on social media.
So, according to the studies, what does your skin actually require? How effective are various methods for achieving flawless skin?
This post will cover 11 tried-and-true methods for achieving that dewy, healthy shine.
1. Perform Two Daily Face Washes
For the sake of your skin, wash your face every morning and night if you have little oily or acne-prone skin.
Participants in a study that looked only at how often people wash their faces were instructed to do it once, twice, or four times daily for six weeks.
In the end, the acne lesions of the people who cleansed their faces twice daily improved significantly. Minor pimples were more prevalent among those who cleaned their faces once each day.
2. Go For a Gentle Soap
There is a wide variety of facial cleansers available, and you can find them in the aisles of most drugstores.
It’s difficult to know where to start when trying to decide which option is best.
It’s possible that the priciest cleansers aren’t the “greatest” cleansers.
According to a reliable review of 14 studies, there is little to no difference in the frequency of breakouts regardless of the type of cleanser used.
Cleansing bars, antimicrobial soaps, and cleansers containing alpha and beta hydroxy acids were all evaluated.
You may be discouraged if you’ve already invested in an expensive cleanser, but the lesson here is that simplicity is often better.
It’s unnecessary to spend a lot of money on a fancy cleanser when a simple one that doesn’t contain many extra ingredients and aromas can do the trick.
3. Use a Product Designed To Reduce Acne
The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) states that numerous topical therapies are effective against acne.
Knowing the specific kind of acne you have is essential for selecting the best treatment.
The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) suggests the following acne treatments depending on the severity of your condition:
- Acne with comedones (blackheads and similar bumps). Adapalene gel is an excellent example of a product that contains retinoids that you should look for (Differin).
- Moderate acne. Mild acne can be treated with topical benzoyl peroxide or a topical retinoid.
- Acne with inflammation. The topical dapsone 5 percent gel is the best option for adult females.
- A case of acne that has left scars. Acne and the likelihood of scarring from acne can be mitigated using azelaic acid treatments.
- The AAD suggests combining benzoyl peroxide, tretinoin, or adapalene gel to treat multiple forms of acne at once.
- Combining these treatments might be drying, so applying a moisturizer is essential to prevent skin from cracking and peeling.
4. Use a Moisturizing Cream
To what extent does use a moisturizer aid in maintaining clear skin?
The skin may overproduce oil as a defense mechanism against extreme dryness.
That’s the end product. Breakouts.
Moisturizers, like cleansers, need not be pricey or crammed with exotic ingredients to do their job. Additionally, it would be best if you tried to find a moisturizer that doesn’t clog pores.
This ensures that your pores won’t get clogged up while using it.
You may find that “lightweight” moisturizers work best if your skin produces excess oil.
Cold, dry air can cause the skin to feel tight and dry, so some people find they need to use a heavier moisturizer in the winter.
The accumulation of dead skin cells may be diminished through exfoliation. The longer these dead cells remain on the skin, the greater the risk of clogged pores and subsequent breakouts.
6. Get Plenty of Sleep
Not getting enough sleep may cause your skin to break out more often.
According to a 2015 study, more than 65 percent of participants who felt tired also had acne.
The study’s authors theorized that a lack of sleep could sometimes cause the body to release inflammatory compounds. These compounds could cause the skin to break out or worsen acne.
Aim for seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night to stay healthy both on the inside and out.
7. Choose Makeup That Won’t Clog Your Pores
People who use cosmetics seem to be more likely to have skin breakouts. To ensure your makeup routine is skin-friendly, be sure to:
- Use products labeled “noncomedogenic” or “oil-free.”
- Always wash your hands before applying makeup or skin care products.
- Always remove your makeup before going to sleep or exercising.
- Wash makeup brushes and sponges every week.
- Makeup can cause its form of acne that doctors call acne cosmetica. This condition causes small, raised bumps that usually appear on the chin, cheeks, or forehead.
8. Don’t Pick At Your Skin
It’s hard not to pick at a zit. But, for the health of your skin, it’s essential to resist.
Picking or popping a zit exposes the pore to even more bacteria, including those from your hands. It also increases the risk of infection or scarring.
If you have a pimple that really hurts, see a dermatologist. They can perform specialized treatments to safely get rid of the pimple while also minimizing the risk of infection.
Several studies, including one from 2017Trusted Source, have shown a connection between stress and acne. If you’re dealing with a stressful event or situation, look for healthy ways to de-stress. Some options include:
- exercising at a high to moderate intensity for at least 30 minutes
- doing breathing exercises
- doing yoga
- meditating for a few minutes
- writing it out
10. Go Easy On the Sugar
Although there’s limited research on the connection between your diet and your skin, several studies have shown that foods with a high glycemic index may be linked with acne.
In a large study from 2009, more than 2,000 participants were placed on a low-glycemic diet.
Not only did they lose weight, but 87 percent of the study’s participants also found they had less acne. Additionally, 91 percent said they needed less acne medication.
To cut back on foods with a high glycemic index, try to:
- Limit processed carbs, like white bread and baked goods.
- Cut back on sugary sodas and sweets.
- Eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy sources of protein.
- Limit alcohol consumption.
11. Don’t Smoke
There’s a good deal of scientific evidence that links smoking with a higher risk of acne.
One study included women from 25 to 50 years of age who had acne.
The authors of this study found that almost 73 percent of the participants who smoked had acne, while only 29.4 percent of the women who didn’t smoke had pimples or some other form of acne.
If you need help quitting tobacco, talk to your doctor about quit aids that may help.
The bottom line
When it comes to clear skin, pay attention to what you put on your face — like cleansers, moisturizers, and makeup — and what you don’t — like unwanted bacteria from your fingers or dirty brushes and sponges.
Focusing on certain lifestyle factors, like quality sleep, a healthy diet, and stress management, can also make a difference to your skin.
If you’ve tried several treatments for your acne and nothing works, make an appointment with a dermatologist. They may prescribe treatments like antibiotics or medications to help clear your skin. If you don’t already have a dermatologist, our Healthline FindCare tool can help you connect to physicians in your area.