Acne is incredibly common, with around 95% of people between the ages of 11 and 30 being affected to some degree. That’s why it’s important that we start normalising acne and skin texture. We are all likely to experience breakouts at some point in our lives – it’s all part of being human! Still, we understand that teenage acne can be the bane of these angst-ridden years and it’s most bothersome in the peak puberty years. For girls, it tends to be worse around 14-17 and for boys between ages 16-19.
Just because it’s common, doesn’t mean there’s nothing that can be done to alleviate it. Developing a teenage skincare routine that is both gentle and natural is really important. Here we look at the best skincare for oily teenage skin and share the top tips on how to minimise acne.
Life beneath the surface of teenage skin
Acne is most common on the face, but some will experience it on the back and chest too. During puberty there are huge changes in hormone levels. These changing amounts of hormones can cause the sebum (oil) producing glands to become quite overactive. At the same time, a typically harmless skin bacterium loves these new conditions and the result is inflammation and minor infections. In case that’s not enough for your skin to be dealing with, the hormones also cause the lining of each hair follicle to become thicker. This blocks the pores. It’s quite a recipe for breakouts!
There are lots of myths doing the rounds about acne. Whilst some people find that dietary changes help, one myth we definitely need to banish is that it’s all down to cleanliness. It’s not. The biggest issue is hormones.
However, we do know that your skin is having a tough time with the hormonal changes. The overproduction of sebum needs a special approach to skincare.
Teenage skincare routine
Whether you’re struggling with oily skin and breakouts, or acne has you in its grips, the trick is to develop a consistent and tailored skincare routine. The best skincare for oily teenage skin is gentle, natural and tackles the effects of too much sebum.
Wash, but not too often
If the cleanliness myth has got you in its grips, it can be tempting to wash your face more frequently. Wash your face regularly, morning and night, but no more than that. Over-washing can actually irritate the skin and make your acne worse.
Try using our Chocolate Charcoal Chai Soap Bar for your face wash. The activated charcoal is naturally detoxifying and the cacao extract aids circulation. This is a mild soap perfect for those with acne. Use lukewarm water (you may find that cold or hot water actually makes your acne worse).
Remove your makeup carefully
Ideally, you want to avoid wearing too much makeup as it can make the acne worse by adding dirt and grime, and blocking the pores. However, it’s completely understandable that you may want to use makeup to cover up your acne. Try to use water-based products.
Do make sure that you remove your makeup each evening, but do it gently and thoughtfully. An excellent option is the Cleansing Face Balm with Apricot Powder. This is perfect for gently removing makeup and the impurities that build up on your face during the day.
Washing your face twice a day is the optimal amount, but a few times a week you want to do something more.
Firstly, gentle exfoliation helps to get rid of the dead dry skin that can block the pores, making breakouts happen. Choose a natural exfoliator that’s designed for oily skin. Our Herbal Blend Coffee Face Scrub contains tea tree oil and this helps to fight infections and inflammation.
Secondly, a few times a week spend a relaxing 10 minutes or so using the Clarifying Face Mask with Olive Powder. The kaolin clay and olive stone powder are wonderfully detoxifying and help to tackle breakouts whilst minimising pores.
Resist the squeeze!
It can be tempting to get rid of the visible pus by squeezing. However, really try to resist the urge. This can make the individual spot worse, spread the infection to other pores, and may even leave you with scarring. If you’re feeling tempted to squeeze, try applying the Clarifying Face Mask above. It’ll calm things down and stop you making things worse!
Spritz and tone
Your cleansing routine doesn’t need to be complicated, but after you’ve washed your face, reach for some refreshing toner. Our Face Toner with Mandarin and Chamomile is perfect for teenage acne-prone skin. The chamomile soothes and calms, while the green mandarin water is naturally anti-inflammatory. It’s also got hyaluronic acid in it which hydrates your skin without exacerbating oiliness. You can spritz throughout the day too.
Showers and hair washing
Exercise is great for your wellbeing and boosts your mood. However, as soon as you’re done, hop in the shower so that the sweat doesn’t have a chance to irritate your acne. Wash your hair regularly and try to keep it off your face. This is because it can transfer dirt and grime, especially if you’re touching it often, and it can introduce even more sebum from your hair.
Food and drink
Try to reduce the amount of processed and sugary foods you eat whilst introducing lots of antioxidant rich foods to your diet. Blueberries, kidney beans, almonds and avocado can all help reduce inflammation. At the same time, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water regularly. Your liver is where the hormones are being produced and your liver needs water to function properly. Drink at least two litres every day.
Get a little bit of natural sunlight
Just a very quick sit in the sunshine of around 15 minutes each day can do wonders for acne-prone skin. Not only will you boost your Vitamin D levels, which are important for growing teenage bones, but it can also help to dry out the oil on your face. Don’t stay in the direct sun too long, and do wear sunscreen to protect your skin.
With the right skincare routine and products you can help heal your teenage acne. Plus, it’s possible to do it in a vegan, cruelty-free way that’s just right for you. Just remember that acne and breakouts are very normal parts of puberty – as annoying as they may be, it’s all part of the hormone-induced growing up process!