How to Treat Winter Acne
Today, the pros here at Clear Skin Solutions are breaking down what you can do to break out less (or not at all!) this wintertime.
#1: Learn the Benefits of Fatty Acids for Acne
If you’re no stranger to our blog, then you’ll know that we bang on about quality fatty acids for acne mitigation and prevention… and for good reason!
Omega-3 fatty acids are considered essential to the body thanks to the several biological processes they’re in charge of; they’re a part of the cell membrane of every cell so, because we can’t make these fats naturally, we have to make sure we’re ingesting enough of them in order to keep those important functions running.
(And if you’re wondering what specific processes we’re talking about? Well, Maintaining skin elasticity, regulating oil production, nourishing babies during breastfeeding, and keeping your brain and retinas happy are just a few of the important roles omega-3 fatty acids play!)
When it comes to fatty acids for acne, the best omega-3 supplements to focus on are those with high levels of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) due to their anti-inflammatory properties. Taking omega-3 supplements can also, alongside regulating hormones and preventing sebum overproduction, prevent the liver from producing insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), which is another common trigger for acne.
This winter, we here at Clear Skin Solutions recommend stocking up on foods rich in omega-3 like walnuts, cold-pressed olive oil, chia seeds, and fresh seafood.
#2: Factor in Those Antibiotics
Whether you have kids, work with kids, or have coworkers with kids, you’re bound to be around at least one sick person this winter. And, with America going through a historically bad flu season, you may even be one of the unlucky ones to have to go on antibiotics to clear up that fever or stuffy nose.
If that’s the case, here’s a little-known fact: antibiotics can mess with our skin, too! If you notice that you break out after or during a course of antibiotics, your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you–there’s an actual connection there!
It all boils down to our gut flora. Made up of over 40 trillion helpful bacteria, gut flora works to maintain your overall health… when they’re balanced!
Just a few factors that can positively impact how balanced your gut flora include:
- How healthy your diet is
- How much fermented food you eat
- How many prebiotics you incorporate into your diet
- How you manage your stress
Antibiotics, on the other hand, wreak havoc on your gut flora by killing them, resulting in gastrointestinal concerns, infections, and, of course, a worse complexion. Since our skin is the largest organ, anything and everything that goes on internally is reflected in it–and that includes a dwindling healthy gut flora count.
To get your gut microbiome back on track after a course or two of antibiotics, we recommend stocking up on healthy foods like kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut, berries, and probiotic supplements.
#3: Keep Your Skin Moisturized
Let’s have a virtual show of hands: when you have an acne breakout, is your knee-jerk reaction to skimp out on moisturizing because you think you’ve been over-lubricating your skin?
If the answer is “Yes” or even “Sometimes”, then know that you’ve fallen into one of the most common skin misconceptions we here at Clear Skin Solutions see our clients believing! We all remember when we were younger and that beach trip seemed to clear us right up for the weekend… only to start another round on the complexion rollercoaster with angrier breakouts a couple of days after coming home. That sun stripping all the moisture from our skin? It was really doing more harm than good!
To keep your skin moisturized this winter:
- Stay hydrated: Six-and-a-half glasses of water per day is the recommendation for women over the age of 14. While staying hydrated isn’t the acne holy grail some make it out to be, it is a crucial component to keeping your skin clear long-term!
- Stay out of that tanning bed: …And while you’re at it, nix those long hot baths and showers too. Anything that dries out your skin leads to your cells overcompensating with sebum, so invest in a humidifier instead if you’re looking to keep your skin at its best during the colder months
- Stay regimented with your winter-ified skincare routine: Adding a hydrating serum to your skin routine, swapping out that lightweight summer moisturizer for a heavier winter-friendly one, and using exfoliating ingredients to keep dead skin cells at bay are all simple ways to winter-ify your skincare routine and keep your skin happy
- Stay focused on hydrating skincare ingredients: Humectants (substances that bind water to the outer layer of the skin), emollients (substances that help with skin barrier function), and occlusives (substances that form a layer on top of the skin to physically block transepidermal water loss) are some of the best skincare ingredients to stock up on this winter (and every winter after!) We recommend hyaluronic acid as a humectant, our Peptide as an emollient, and vaseline or Aquaphor on top of our Balanced Hydration and Peptide+ Moisturizer as an occlusive
- Stay protected from the sun: Especially when there’s a reflective blanket of snow on the ground, sunscreen every day is a must! (Yes, even when you can’t see the sun.) UV rays penetrate clouds and glass, making it so you could be suffering sun damage without even realizing it
Staying well-hydrated bolsters skin moisturization and, in turn, the overall appearance of your skin… both in the winter and every season after!
Start Treating Winter Acne With Clear Skin Solutions Today
Treating pro-aging, skin sensitivity, pigmentation, and, of course, winter acne is our jam here at Clear Skin Solutions.
Whether you opt for our In-Clinic Acne Program or are looking to clear your skin from the comfort of your own home via our Virtual Acne Skin Program, there’s no better way to achieve (and maintain!) your long-term skin goals: our acne program can be accessed virtually and consists of a combination of eLearning, three months of personalized skin coaching with a licensed Skin Therapist, and acne-safe products to get–and keep–your skin clear.
Don’t let winter get your skin down, y’all! The start to successfully treating winter acne is just one click away!