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Don’t Punish Your Skin

As the freedom of summer slips away, responsibility begins to set in. Schoolwork picks up, extra circulars demand your attention and Netflix begins to suck up your free time. It’s easy to get lost in whirlwind of work and distractions until we find ourselves worn out and broken out.

Responsibility is good, don’t get me wrong. Personally, I thrive off responsibility and the stress that comes with it. What I don’t thrive off of is the alarmed response my skin has to all of this. After a stressful week, it’s like an AT&T map across my face. Not cool.

While my skin is just simply trying to coupe with the stress, I add more stress to the situation by attacking it for its bad behavior. The use of harsh products like alkaline bar soaps or alcohol-based soaps may actually make your acne worse. Some ingredients can clog your pores even more, and burn like a…meany. According to WebMD (super official) you should do your best to avoid products that include the mildly fancy words like isopropyl palmitate, isopropyl myristate, butyl stearate, isopropyl isostearate, decyl oleate, isostearyl neopentanoate, isocetyl stearate, myristle myristate, cocoa butter, acetylated lanolin etc. etc.

WebMD also had a handy list of common mistakes to avoid while cleansing your beautiful and delicate skin. For example, try to avoid over scrubbing your skin. The harder you scrub does NOT mean faster pimple relief. You may as well be using sandpaper if you are a hard scrubber, which is basically the same thing. In this case, you’re stripping skin of a protective layer, which causes lots of irritation. No fun.

Another tip? Don’t plow through the entire shelf of products from Walgreens. Choose one product and give it a solid trial period. Dumping a bunch of different products onto your skin is the perfect way to not see results. Products can take anywhere from 3 weeks to 3 months to see results. Patience, girls!

Lastly, don’t be afraid to see a dermatologist. They’re not scary people. They’re actually fantastic and really care about making you happy with your skin. Waiting too long will only delay your road to clear skin. When you do decide to take that step to see the magical dermatologist, I guarantee they will ask you if you wear sunscreen everyday. Your answer should be yes. Ever see those women with saggy, tan skin who look 60 but are really 40? That could be you, unless you use that sunscreen. Keep in mind, the sun’s rays are damaging even when it’s overcast. My advice? Invest in a foundation makeup that contains an SPF in it. It works wonders and is super easy. Appreciate that porcelain skin; you’ll miss it when you’re 50.

You can change your hair and change your clothes but the one thing you can’t change is your skin. Nurture it, take care of it, and love it. It’s like a blossoming flower; it takes love and attention to keep it beautiful. PS, clean eating and water drinking helps too!

Hi guys! My name is Brooke Murphy and I'm an Operations & Technolohgy Management major at the University of Portland. I love fashion, being active and meeting lots of new people. I've been writing for HerCampus Portland for a couple months now and have loved every minute of it! Hope you enjoy what I have to say :)
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