My Autumn skincare essentials for problematic skin

Let's get this week started on a good note and start feeling great about ourselves. I properly pampered my skin this weekend and love the feeling of waking up fresh and ready for the week ahead.

I think it is so important to take care of yourself everyday, which not only helps our bodies and appearance but also our moods, how we feel and carry ourselves.

Recently, I have been suffering from quite intense acne on my face around my cheek area. This might just be an age thing or what I believe to be something in my diet which I can no longer eat - probably dairy products. I have noticed that since my skin started giving me issues I have become increasingly self-conscious about it - without knowing.

Too much of the time we allow what people think and how we look determine our confidence and our self-image. It's a natural phenomena now because it's what society has taught us - right?

I decided that yes, I have problematic skin and yes it doesn't always look great but this is who I am. Rather than focusing on how the world perceives me, I am going to focus on me and doing things that make me feel good and confident. That is why I have found products that work for me and have helped my skin since I started using them. I also created a skincare routine which I follow every morning and every night to improve the appearance of my skin but also make me feel good.

These are a few of the products I have been using for a few months now and I thought I would share with you , in case you are struggling with your skin. Some are expensive but most are quite affordable and easy to find.

Clinique is known for their skincare, not much of a fan of their make up but their skincare products are quite good. Now that we are moving into autumn / fall in South Africa, my skin suffers from dryness and a lack of moisturisation, which of course agitates my acne.

This Clinique smart night cream is great with injecting the moisture back into the skin. I use it every second night as it can make your skin super oily and uncomfortable if you use it too often.

It's meant to moisten the skin while also replenishing and restoring the skin over night. I like it just as a boost for my skin. This is more on the pricey side. If I remember correctly, it was over R800.00 which is pricey but lasts a while because a little goes a long way and you don't have to use it every night.

If you do some research on how to protect your skin, keep it nourished and youthful for a long time, the first thing that always pops up is protecting it against sun damage. The use of sunblock on your skin does not only apply to when you are on holiday or at the beach, it's important to use sunblock everyday whether you are in the sun or not.

Protecting your skin from sun damage should start in your early 20s and be carried through. Sun spots don't just appear, they appear after years and years of sun damage which builds up and shows itself when you hit your 40s or even earlier.

I would suggest swapping out your day cream every second day with a sun screen to start with. There are so many sun protecting creams out there now which work well with makeup and are comfortable to wear all day. My best are Cetaphil sun blocks and this Uriage one.

Its SPF 50 so it gives you lots of protection, it is thick at first but sinks right into the skin and prevents further breakouts and helps with dark spots. This brand has the most amazing skincare, from sun block to scrubs and face washes - definitely have a look at their range.

Suffering from acne is frustrating and also painful, but leaves the skin with marks and scares once its cleared up. For this I have been using the Dermalogica Emergency Spot Fix.

Its available at Sorbet countrywide and is quite pricey - think this was close to R240.00 but then again most spot treatments are.

I apply this to my freshly washed skin before I go to bed just on the areas of my face that there are spots. It not only helps the marks but also dries up any new pimples which start resurfacing due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

Masks are so important in any skincare routine. I see them as a deep clean or spring clean for your face. Wearing makeup everyday and then removing it every night can be taxing on your skin as well as harmful and washing your face with a cleanser simply isn't enough because dirt does get stuck in your pores.

Masks help remove the dirt that lies below and cleanses properly. My favourite kind of masks are cleansing masks and hence this one from Kiehl's. It's their rare earth deep pore cleansing masque.

Its like a clay mask, can burn at first application but leaves your skin feeling smooth and fresh afterwards. This product is available from Red Square stores and also was about R400.00 but lasts a long time. I would say use a mask that works for you at least two to three times a week.

Some known benefits of Aloe Vera gel for the skin is:

  1. Treats sunburn

  2. It acts as a moisturiser

  3. Treats acne

  4. Fights aging

This is a gel form made from the actual extracts from the plant. Natural products sometimes works the best and are healthier and softer on the skin.

I found this at a health shop and decided to try it out. I swop this out with my moisturiser at night and use it under my day cream. It's soothing to the skin and reduces the redness caused by acne and irritation.

Any plant extract for the skin will be good but aloe vera is recommended.

Cleansing the skin weekly is all good but exfoliating the skin is just as important. Removing the dead skin cells and giving new skin the chance to form is so important especially if you suffer from acne and marks.

i exfoliate my skin with this Gallia scrub, which is a gel with small balls inside, and I rub it into my skin using my face gloves twice a week. They also have their anti-blemish range which will also work wonders for your skin.

Works like a dream and helps reduce the appearance of dark marks. The Uriage face scrub is also really good (refer to my previous skincare post) which I also use.

I had to include this product because it is simply amazing and the best wipes I have used. Its the Neutrogena Visibly Clear pink grapefruit cleansing wipes. The name says it all using all my favourite words.

I don't remove my makeup with this because it can be quite harsh but I use this after I have cleansed as a last wipe through.

It leaves my face feeling soo fresh and revitalised and smelling like pink grapefruits. It calms the skin and properly preps it for the skincare routine which follows.

This is just a bit of products that occupy my vanity at the moment and things which have been helping me and I hope they help you too.

While using the right products helps my skin stabalise I also changed my diet quite a bit and cut out all the crap like sugar and coffee and started drinking tons of water. Which is very important if you want healthy looking skin.

Remember never to feel uncomfortable in your skin. You shouldn't need to hide any imperfections which are out of your control, because at the end of the day we are all human and cannot be expected to be perfect all the time.