Take good care of the skin you're in

Feb 27 2012 - 10:42am

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Illustration by EDEN PARKINSON/Bonneville High School/clearing-soma@live.com
Illustration by EDEN PARKINSON/Bonneville High School/clearing-soma@live.com

As teenagers, most of us are stressing about school, dances, friends, and just life in general. Boys and girls get acne! Having all this stress can cause our skin to freak out. We've all had it happen, wake up in the morning with a huge zit in the middle of our forehead.

Well, there are definitely ways to prevent that. Here are some skin care tips for everyone:

1. Find your skin type

There are three main skin types, oily, combination and dry. Before buying a facial cleanser you want to make sure you know what skin type you have. If your face is oily all over and you tend to break out all over, you have oily skin. If your face gets oily in your "T-zone" -- forehead, nose and chin -- and is dry on the rest of your face, you have combination skin. And if your face is dry all over, you have dry skin. Each skin type deserves special care.

2. Oily skin

Oily skin is the hardest to care for because your face is constantly producing oil which may cause more acne. When choosing a cleanser, you might want to go for something with salicylic acid. This will help clear the skin, and make it stay clear, according to an article on skin care tips at WebMD (www.webmd.com).

Another good thing to use on oily skin is a toner. A toner helps to wipe away all the dirt or oil that washing might have missed and it may also help to clear up acne.

The last step is to moisturize. You may be thinking, "I have oily skin, I can't use a moisturizer!" but actually, using a moisturizer is the best thing you can do for your skin when it's oily. The moisturizer will help stop your skin from producing excess oils, which contribute to acne. Water-based moisturizers that are labeled as "noncomedogenic" are good for oily skin because they don't clog pores, according to information on skin care from the Mayo Clinic.

Instead of using a lotion moisturizer, you'll want to use a gel. Clean & Clear has a really good moisturizer for oily skin. Or if your face gets shiny throughout the day, you can also use blotting papers. You can buy these at ULTA, Walmart or any other store that might sell skin-care products; the tissue-like papers absorb oil off your skin.

Finally, you'll want to get a spot treatment for those zits that pop up overnight. Clean & Clear, for example, offers a few different types that you can get for about $5 that will help minimize the pimple's appearance.

3. Combination skin

This is the most common skin type among teenagers. Most of us tend to get the majority of our acne around the T-zone. Our skin produces the most oil in this area.

You'll want to use a cleanser that will control the oil, but won't dry out the areas that aren't oily. You'll want to use a cleanser for "normal skin." There is a huge variety at the drugstore to choose from.

A toner is optional, but only use it in the T-zone, again, to prevent drying out the areas that aren't oily. You'll definitely want to moisturize your skin too, especially in the areas that are a little bit more dry. Use a spot treatment for any zits that pop up.

4. Dry skin

Dry skin can be a pain to care for because it can look flaky. But a misconception is that people with dry skin don't get zits. That's 100 percent not true. Skin that is too dry can cause your face to produce a ton of bad oils that cause acne.

You'll want to find a creamy cleanser that says "for dry skin" on it. This will help your skin get a little bit of extra moisture, but will still wash away any impurities. You probably won't want to use a toner because it will cause your skin to get even more dry then it already is.

And you'll want to find a moisturizing lotion; lotions with ceramides, glycerin, lanolin or petroleum jelly help the skin retain moisture, according to WebMD tips. Lotions also help reduce flakiness.

5. For all skin types

* If you wear makeup, remove it before washing your face. If you don't, washing it is only removing the makeup and not actually cleansing your pores.

* Drink lots of water. Doing so will help your skin stay hydrated and glowy.

* Avoid touching your face as much as possible. When you touch it, your hands are transferring the oil to your skin.

* Wash your face twice a day. Easier said than done, but try your best -- it can make a HUGE difference in your skin.

* Play around with different cleansers, toner, moisturizers and spot treatments. It takes trial and error to find something that will work the best for your skin. Remember, everyone's skin is different.

* Wear sunscreen, even in the winter and especially if you ski or snowboard. The sun is always out during the day, so we need to always protect our skin. Sunburns can cause earlier aging, wrinkles and skin damage.

Morgan Sewell is a junior at Bonneville High School. She loves Justin Bieber, makeup and fashion. Email her at pinkdaisy009@gmail.com.

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