If you’ve known me for awhile, you’ll know its more of a rare occasion to see me with make up then without.
Taking care of my skin naturally & being comfortable with my appearance has been inbuilt in me since childhood (due to my mother) because I suffered from eczema quite strongly (as do lots of Asian children) all over my body. I became so used to saltwater baths/wading into the ocean (salt dries up the wetness of the eczema which lets it heal over quicker) and the stinging that if I ever get an ulcer in my mouth now - I just straight up put salt on it to kill it - it stings unbearably for a couple of seconds but then its over.
Generally my mother & I treated my eczema with all natural products for my entire childhood like saltwater, aloe vera, eating healthy, drinking loads of water etc, only if it became ridiculously bad - did I ever resort to cortisone cream. I still remember my dermatologist telling me that (back then) “don’t use this cream ever on your face, as its like poison - it kills the bad skin but also kills the good skin!”. That has stayed with me forever, and made me realise a lot of the formal medications being prescribed for any sort of ailment had a lot of power to not only do good to your body but bad too.
So don’t get me wrong, I do love splurging on the “natural skincare cosmetics” you can find in beauty stores to help take care of my skin, but I believe first that you have to have good basic foundation of healthy natural, ingredients intake and just live by a some simple rules. I’m not a dietician, licensed beautician or anything like that - these are just my experiences in taking care of my skin.
DRINK WATER & KEEP ON DRINKING WATER!!
I cannot emphasize how much the simple act of consuming drinking water is soooo good for your skin! Our bodies are made up of roughly 60% water and the skin is the largest organ on our body. Organs require water to function, you can see straight away when your skin is feeling dehydrated because our skin become dry, flaky, scaly & gross. Dry skin is more prone to wrinkling too.
Even as I type this - I have a large glass of water right next to me which I’ve been steadily drinking (and which is probably due for a refill!). I probably drink about 2-3 litres (plus) a day - I don’t actually religiously monitor it - but I know I drink a lot.
SO DRINK THAT WATER!!
I get it though - some people find water boring too drink - so add some fresh slices of lemon/cucumber/fruits/a splash of apple cider vinegar to it - water doesn’t have to be boring. I’m a bit lazy so I only add little extras when I’m consciously thinking I want to create a fancier water.
WHEN YOU HAVE A PIMPLE/SPOT - DON’T COVER IT WITH MAKE UP!!
To me this is just basic, whenever I get a spot (or can feel one under my skin) - I NEVER EVER cover it up with concealer/foundation! I never understood why people cover it up with make up.
The reason you have a spot is because your pores are blocked with oils/dirt etc - if you cover it up you’re just adding more to it and making it worse! Your pore needs to breathe & get that dirt out of it!
SO HOW DO YOU GET RID OF IT?
When I do get a spot, I tend to alternate between a few natural remedies which I have found work well for me. I generally do these mini treatments, after I’ve showered/washed my face/about to go to bed/steamed my face.
organic apple cider vinegar
I swear apple cider vinegar works for almost everything! I include it in my daily life so much (from putting it in tea/water/salad dressings/hair rinses/hair masks/toners etc ). It deserves a post of it own which I will do one day. For pimples/spots/skin blemishes, tho I tend to just get a little bit of it on the finger & dab it onto the spot directly. You can dilute it with water & put it in a spray bottle too as for some skin types - it can be a bit harsh. My laziness just kicks in, and I apply it directly. I use Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar (get it in a glass bottle rather than plastic!)
Now I can be a bit of a pimple popper… *whoops I know its the worst thing to do - hubby always scolds me* & then it can scab a bit… I googled “how to get rid of a spot/scab quicker naturally” and a lot of blogs mentioned cutting a garlic clove & rubbing it on the spot. I thought why not… so I tried it and my goodness it worked well!! So as long as you don’t mind smelling like garlic - it does work well for spots/scabs! I read some recipes that people minced the garlic & mixed it with honey (which has great anti bacterial properties!) to make more of paste to leave overnight on the spot…but that required more effort than I wanted to do…
tea tree oil
Tea Tree oil is very popular to dry out spots/pimples. I actually don’t use it too much as I find it then dries out the skin area surrounding the spot too much and when that happens I have to apply aloe vera gel over it. However it works really well for my hubby, so each to their own, as everyone’s skin type is different.
LET YOUR SKIN BREATHE
Good skin is clear pores, if you’re wearing make up every day - you’re blocking those pores and increasing the risk of filling them with dirt, oil & other gross things. Generally, I’m not wearing make up at all - I only put on make up if I’m shooting my outfits, kimonos in the studio or if I have an event to go too.
Even when I wear make up, I only cover the bags under my eyes with concealer, and perhaps a few little skin blemishes to even it all out, do some eye make up and the occasional red lippie. I never coat my face all over in concealer, foundation - you can still see my freckles (sunspots as my mum calls them! haha)
Letting my skin breathe like this has definitely helped me in maintaining clear skin.
If you can’t go out fresh faced (because of work or whatever) try and minimize what you put on your face - a tinted moisturizer/concealer with SPF - only cover the areas you really need too.
Moisturizing your skin is also helpful to keeping it hydrated. There’s lots of creams available obviously and I’ve yet to find an absolute favourite but what I have started to love for my skin moisturization is oils! I love alternating between different types of organic oils as its great to give your skin a change every now and again. I will do a more specific post about oils later but these are the ones I have used/still used.
vitamin C serums
I have a love-hate relationship with suncream & SPF.
The smell, the greasiness, the heaviness of many of them just makes it feel so gross upon the skin & takes days to scrub off. A few days of wearing suncream on my face - I could feel my skin breaking out because my pores were so filled with all of the suncream oil - I HATED IT. It would also make my eczema flare up at times, because again my skin was so blocked with sun cream oil - it would get itchy and I would get an ezcema patch.
Growing up in Australia however, I’m fully aware of the dangers of skin cancer (thanks to the SLIP, SLOP, SLAP campaign! anyone else remember that from their childhood?!) and I can’t wear a hat too well as I have so much hair that it just becomes sweaty so quickly! So for those days, I’m at the beach, generally I still wear SPF 15+ (I know its really low!) on my body (plus I’m of Malaysian heritage - I actually rarely burn - have that darker pigmentation gene in me) and for my face I either cover it with a hat/towel.
It’s only recently that I finally discovered an SPF 50+ that I can wear most days on my face (however I still give my facial pores a break - I don’t wear it every day). There are two brands I like, one Korean & one Japanese that don’t have that highly chemical/alcohol smell and still feel light & lovely on my skin.
However I’m still researching suncreams, as I would like one that I know for sure is made with natural ingredients.
6. EAT SOME ROASTED/RAW UNSALTED NUTS
There’s a reason why so many beauty products boasts the use of ingredients such as macadamia oil, walnut oil, almond oil, cashew oil… because those nuts are great for your body especially supposedly walnuts for the skin!
So why not incorporate some of them into your daily diet! literally a handful of them a day are great for your appetite, digestion and its such a healthy snack! Though I do mix mine with dried cranberries & a bit of chocolate… haha that’s my kind of trail mix.
That ends the first installment of my skincare stories. Future installments will cover my use of organic natural oils/serums for my skin/face. Favourite facemasks, hairmasks, toners etc. Is there anything you would specifically like me to write about first? Please let me know in the comments!
Hope you enjoyed the read!