This period of self isolation has been difficult in so many ways, and I know that it's not a vacation by any means or a time that I should be touting my skincare routine.
However, I've realized that I really let the first few days go to waste because I was sulking, and it started showing on me-- I was snacking incessantly which led me to feel out of shape (in addition to not being able to do my previous workouts) and gaining 6 pounds, and my skin was definitely taking a hit.
SO! I re-calibrated to make sure that I wasn't letting these times get under my skin (literally)-- and am trying to truly focus on the things I CAN do for my health, and my sanity— and I can’t expect to be the only one who feels this way, so I wanted to take the time to share with you. We don’t have to be helpless in every aspect of our lives!
Before I start, I'd like to check my privilege and say that I am grateful that I am not immunocompromised, so I would like to caveat my advice here by saying that this is for those, like me, who don't struggle with underlying health issues. And I would like to also say that I'd love to be there for those who are affected by this, in any way-- so please reach out to me if I can be of help.
So I'll get going!
One of the things I'm doing for myself, (which I'll focus on this post), is taking extra care of my skin. I've been already seeing crazy good results, so I wanted to share them with you!
So my biggest skin concerns are:
- enlarged pores
- under eye dark circles
And the ways I've combatted them:
Blackheads / Enlarged pores on my nose
Daily: Tretinoin Cream [Prescription]
2 x a week: Salyclic Acid Clay Mask [Brand: Philosophy]
3 x a week: Glycerin Peel [Aqua Reveal]
Side Effects & Warning
Tretinoin cream and glycerin peel might lead to peeling (sign that you are generating new skin!) Make sure to wear sunblock when you go outside as your skin is new and more vulnerable.
Eye Cream [Brand: Enzo]
Undereye gel patches
Advanced Night Repair Eye [Brand: Estee Lauder]
Full Face Mask
Active Night Fluid [Babor]
Hair growth serum on my balding spots and eyebrows [Brand: Rogaine]
Salyclic Acid Clay Mask
Dab of Tretinoin Cream around the nose
What is tretinoin?
Tretinoin, like Retinol, is a retinoid, but, unlike Retinol, Tretinoin is a concentration of pure retinoic acid. Retinol is converted into retinoic acid only after it's stored its applied and gradually absorbed by your skin.
What does tretinoin do to your skin?
Available as a topical cream, gel or liquid, tretinoin is a retinoid medication that's widely used to treat acne and reverse many of the visual signs of aging. ... Tretinoin acts quickly and effectively to remove acne from the face by clearing skin pores and preventing pimples from developing as they normally would.
Dr. Carl Thornfeldt, the founder of Epionce skincare, also swears by retinoids, but he says that you can up the blackhead-banishing power by adding a few more ingredients in the morning. "The best thing people can do to get rid of blackheads is a combo therapy: prescription 0.1% tretinoin at night and a product containing salicylic acid, azelaic acid and zinc pyrithione in the morning, like Epionce Lytic Plus TX ($54).”
In one study, researchers found that 12 weeks of treatment with tretinoin resulted in “significant improvements in fine wrinkling around the eyes, crease lines around the mouth and cheeks, wrinkling on the dorsum of the hands and yellow discoloration.”
In another study, researchers noted that tretinoin caused a “statistically significant improvement in photoaging” in 14 out of 15 participants when compared to a non-therapeutic vehicle cream.
How long does it take for tretinoin to work?
It takes bout 12 weeks for acne, but quicker turnaround for pore size to shrink!
Glycolic acid is an alpha-hydroxy acid made from sugarcane that's commonly found in chemical peel formulations and is known for its ability to improve the health and appearance of many skin types.
- exfoliate at least 2x a week with glycolic acid peel. put a dab of it around your nostrils and see the top layer of your skin literally melt off.
- use clarisonic brush every other day— make sure you go really deep in to your pores.
- use an oil based cleanser at least 3x a week. many people are under the misconception that oil cleansers will lead to pimples. This isn’t true— the oil actually attracts the oil, and pulls out the oil that’s deep seated within your pores.
- make sure you are using a lot of moisturizer throughout the day, especially during winter seasons. Buy moisturizers with hyaluronic acid in it— hyalurlon can carry water weight 1000x it’s own— and it locks in the moisture, so apply it right after shower.
- DRINK COLLAGEN!!! Think of collagen as gatekeepers of moisture in our cells; and without this collagen "wall" to keep our cells hydrated, our cells increasingly lose structure and moisture, leading to weaker, stretchier, drier and thinner skin. And of course, this is what causes wrinkles, enlarged pores, fine lines, cellulite, and even the loss of structure in your hair follicles (integral to holding on to your hair).
- In my early twenties, when I got severely burned from scalding hot oil. I had to turn to silicone patches, topical creams, litres of bio oil, mederma, and prescription ointments to ensure that my skin would heal without much scarring. When almost nothing worked, I decided to take to the internet’s advice and started taking 20g of collagen daily for its regenerative and healing benefits. And despite hating the taste of it, I stuck to it daily. After about 3-4 weeks, I started noticing a dramatic change — my blister-turned scabs were starting to disappear. But the differences I noticed were not just on my arms, but in my face and hair. My eyelashes, brows and hair got so much thicker, and my skin, once chronically, painfully dry, DIDNT EVEN NEED LOTION ANYMORE!!! And my pores around my nostrils are still there, but so so so much tighter. Embarrassing, but taking a picture of what my skin looks like now, after a year of this regimen.