Acne 101 – Products that really work

Acne 101 – Products that really work

There are a hell of a lot of products out there claiming to zap your zits, and a lot of them are quite pricy. I suffered from acne for a couple of years – don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t severe or anything and I’ve seen a hell of a lot worse, but over the years I tried so many products. A lot of the products I tried made no difference, but some really did. So I’m going to share with you what worked for me, so you can skip straight to trying the good ones.

Before I get into this, I want to be clear that in the end I had to go on antibiotics to clear up my acne, so none of these products completely zapped the whole lot like that. In truth though, that isn’t going to happen – acne is an infection and needs antibiotics (either topical or in the form of tablets) to truly get rid of it. However, I found some really great products along the way that helped heal spots quicker, helped with the dry sore skin that comes with acne, and really helped me to avoid any scarring. It’s now three years since I started my antibiotics for my acne and for the last year my skin has been fantastic – I probably get 1/2 spots a week now, and there’s not a single scar from the acne.

The first product, which I cannot recommend enough, is aloe vera gel. I tend to use the brand Fruit of the Earth or Banana Boat. It is honestly a miracle worker. It’s such a natural healer and can be used for a huge variety of skin problems. My dad suffered from scoliosis on his leg for about 40 years, but after a few weeks of applying this cream it healed up and completely disappeared. I really think the aloe vera made a massive difference to my skin, it was moisturising and at the same helped my skin to heal really quickly. It’s so cheap and can be found in most pharmacists or failing that, on Amazon. It doesn’t make your face look shiny and feel horrible like most products, and I actually used it as a primer under my make-up for years as it really tightens your skin. It’s so worth trying and I swear by the stuff! (Just don’t get it anywhere near your eyes because damn that stuff stings)

Next up would have to be Palmer’s cocoa butter oil. This stuff is great for scars – I recently had some really bad bites on my leg and this has really really helped to fade the scars. I also think it worked really well on my spots. Acne is known for leaving garish scars behind, the bigger the spot usually the deeper the mark – so this was something I was really worried about.

What’s the point in clearing it all up if afterwards I’m still going to be covered in marks? When the antibiotics kicked in and my spots started disappearing I did still have lots of red dots where they’d been for a few months – but when I started using this oil they quickly started to fade and now I’m scar-free. It’s an oil, so obviously its quite greasy. At first I used it day and night, i used to put it on under my make-up – which wasn’t a good look but it was important to wear it as often as possible while I had a chance to reverse the damage. After a while though, I just wore it at night, and now I don’t need it at all! Again, this stuff is available at most pharmacists and isn’t expensive at all.

I couldn’t not sing the praises of good old Sudocrem. My Mom has been an avid Sudocrem user for as long as I can remember – I’d fall over in the playground and I’d have sudocrem straight on that graze, I got sunburn, a rash, a bite.. always Sudocrem. It didn’t fail me when it came to spots either. I’d pop a bit on each spot before I went to bed at night and it would always be half the size and half as red the next morning. However, I will warn, don’t just slather it over your entire face because that will 100% dry your skin out. Even when I was pore spot than clear skin, I’d sit and dot each individual spot – a bit time consuming but by far worth the work.

Boots also do an amazing range of witch hazel and tea tree products that are kind of drying, but in moderation really do the trick. I also found that their back spray is fantastic for spots on your back and chest – I still use it when I get occasional flare ups on my chest and it zaps the lot in a few days so I would 150% recommend that stuff. It’s really cheap too!

Lastly, if you want a hardcore moisturiser that won’t double your spots, Nivea is the way to go. Their everyday oil-free moisturiser isn’t too greasy and won’t make your skin worse at all. You can also get aloe vera moisturisers – like the gel but extra moisturising. Tesco do their own aloe vera moisturiser with a minimum added extras and it’s really great for your skin. I used to slather layer after layer of these two moisturisers on when my skin was super dry, and they always made a huge difference within 24 hours.

I thought I’d also mention some home remedies that I thought made a difference. I tried just about everything from rubbing potatoes on my skin to slathering it in honey – I hope that’s given you a good image of me. There were two things though that I thought really helped, salt water and avocado. I found that Avocado mixed with just a tiny bit of antibacterial honey and milk was a good moisturising face pack. Salt water was also good for healing my skin – just don’t over too it, once a week is plenty, you don’t want to dry it out.

Don’t get caught up my brands with lots of celebs shouting their name – they’ve been paid to love them. I tried lots of popular brands like freederm and Proactiv, but in the end found that the best products were the more natural and less heard of ones.

I really hope this helps anyone out their suffering from acne and you can skip straight to using the products that actually are worth buying. If you know of any great products for spots, let me and other readers know in the comments! Thanks for reading – feel free to check out my previous post ‘LaLaLab – polaroids to your door‘ and use my £5 discount code! Or you can find me over on my Twitter and Instagram!

Top three drugstore lip products

Top three drugstore lip products

If you’re looking for long lasting, pigmented and beautifully packaged lip products then you’re probably going to go straight to MAC or YSL, but actually there are so fantastic drugstore lip products out there that are just as good for half the price!

I’m a big lipstick lover. I haven’t always been, it has only been the last couple of years but my lipstick and lipgloss collections are growing wildly. But there are three lip products I always go back to. These are my top three, go-to drugstore lip products.

NYX Lingerie – I am a general lover of most NYX products really. I love the fact that they look and feel like really high quality high end products but are literally a fraction of the price. In my opinion NYX produce some bloody fantastic lip products, and the NYX Lingerie collection is absolutely no exception. But it’s the Exotic shade that is my absolute favourite. I have to admit, I was bit afraid of the colour as it is a bit darker than what I’d normally go for – however, it just looks amazing on. It’s super matte and super pigmented and it doesn’t seem to matter what or how much you eat or drink, the stuff just doesn’t budge. It is the perfect lipstick for a night out, because you can just guarantee it’ll still be there hours later. I also really like the packaging, just the whole appearance in general is really nice, and at just £6.50 at Boots, how can you even say no?

New Look Pure Colour – When I think of New Look, I definitely don’t think of them for their make-up. I didn’t really hold out a lot of hope when I bought a selection of their Pure Colour lipsticks but I was really pleasantly surprised. If you’re having a dry lip day, which I have most days during the winter, then these lipsticks are a God send. Packed with vitamin E, New Look’s lipsticks are super creamy and moisturising. I love the way they feel when I’ve got them on and I especially love the shade Mink. I’m typically a nude lipstick kind of girl, so this was right up my street. As if it couldn’t get any better, since I bought the lipstick last summer, New Look have totally changed the packaging and it’s now silver (they also sell rose gold ones which I’m dying to buy a bunch of!)

MUA LUXE Velvet Lip Lacquer – I have to admit that I find MUA products very hit and miss, some are amazing and others not so amazing, at all. However, their Velvet lip lacquer collection is definitely in my top three. They’re an absolute bargain at just £3. You cannot go wrong for £3. It is matte and really long lasting, not quite as long lasting as the NYX Lingerie, but it is still pretty damn good to say it only costs £3. More than anything, I really love the colour. I’ve got the shade Harmony, and in the summer this was my absolute favourite lipstick and I’m really looking forward to wearing it 24/7 in spring. The packaging definitely isn’t bad either, I quite like the gold and the font is pretty similar to the NYX Lingerie. Overall, it’s fantastic for its price.

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What are your favourite drugstore lip products? Let me know in the comments. Or let me know if you’ve tried any of these! Thanks for reading, make sure you follow my blog if you liked this post. I’m planning to post a Busy B stationery haul tomorrow as they’ve sent me a bunch of products, so make sure you stay tuned for that – it’s good trust me. Until the, have a lovely Sunday evening!

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