If you’ve found yourself shouting into the mirror “what’s with all these breakouts?!”, this one’s for you.
Whilst every skin tells a different story, even the most disciplined skincare routines can’t work their magic if you’re repeating these breakout blunders on the reg. If breakouts are popping up unexpectantly, it’s time to take a holistic look at your skin health habits and find out if one of these unexpected contributors could be playing their part.
How’s your sleep game?
A good night’s sleep does wonders for us all. It helps us to be on our A-game throughout the day, leaves us feeling rested and recharged and also allows our skin the time it needs to replenish. When we don’t get enough sleep or the quality of our sleep is poor, our skin can suffer.
If you’re in bed all night scrolling, liking and sharing, it’s likely you awake the next morning feeling like you’ve barely slept at all. Your skin feels the same! Poor sleep habits stop your body’s natural circadian rhythm from beginning and causes your skin to think it’s not time for sleep and that it doesn’t need to repair and replenish itself. This causes your breakouts to continually form with a much slower and longer healing process.
We recommend checking out our blog on healthy sleep habits to learn more about the skin-sleep connection and how to establish a nightly routine that works for your skin, not against it.
The role of stress
Stress can create a vicious cycle when it comes to breakouts. Stress causes breakouts, breakouts cause stress and suddenly, we feel like we’re stuck on a spinning hamster wheel! When we’re feeling overly stressed and anxious, our skin can produce more stress-related hormones such as cortisol. Cortisol can be directly linked to the overproduction of oil as it encourages your glands to make testosterone. This results in clogged pores and ultimately, breakouts.
We get it, lowering your stress levels can be much easier said than done but knowing it’s connection to the skin seriously opens your eyes to the root cause of your breakouts. It comes down to finding outlets of stress relief that prevents that release of stress hormones.
There’s no right or wrong answer to how you manage your stress. For some, it’s all about exercise where for others, meditation, mindfulness or even completely going offline for a while works a treat. Take the time to find out how you best unwind so that you can start to build a toolbox of skin-loving and stress-relieving solutions.
When was the last time you washed your pillowcase?
Go on, be honest. If you can’t remember the last time you gave your pillowcases a good wash, this could be a leading contributor to your breakouts.
Think of it like this. Each night, if you’re heading to bed without properly cleansing your skin, the days dirt, grime and oil are making their way onto your pillowcase. When you wake up in the morning, those impurities are still on your pillowcase, waiting for you at the end of the day to, you guessed it, build up with that days’ worth and transfer their way onto your skin! Yep, for real.
Needless to say, it’s crucial to wash or switch out your pillowcases every few days, especially if you’re experiencing breakouts. Also, if you haven’t made the switch to a silk pillowcase, these breakout truth bombs may just seal the deal. 4.5x more breathable than cotton and designed to destroy 99.7% of acne-causing bacteria, our 100% Mulberry Silk Pillowcases are the bedtime switch your skin and hair will thank you for.
Balance your skincare routine
Most forms of breakouts are triggered by an overproduction of oil. The root cause of the overproduction varies from person to person but one of the most common causes is a lack of moisture in the skin.
When the skin is experiencing severe dehydration, it overcompensates with an oil called sebum. When there’s too much of this oil, it has nowhere to go and builds up on the skin. This is what leads to blackheads, whiteheads and congestion. As a result, we need to have our essential skincare steps covered to ensure our skin can find the balance it needs.
It’s not uncommon to see people intensely scrub and dry out their breakouts, hoping they will fade away, but this could be exacerbating the condition even more. Instead, keep things simple and switch to a thorough double cleanse to effectively remove all dirt, makeup and impurities before exfoliating with a salicylic acid-based exfoliant 2-3 times per week.
Switching to chemical exfoliation takes away the aggravating scrubbing and instead, focuses on treating where the breakouts originate. Salicylic acid-based exfoliants have a very light molecular structure which means they can travel down to the foundation of breakouts and dissolve the pore-clogging debris. It also helps to calm the redness and inflammation that comes with active acne.
When it comes to the treating stage of your skincare routine, look for products that are non-comedogenic, otherwise known as non-pore-clogging. Products that are too heavy for your delicate skin or intensely drying are not your friend. Instead, you want to find products that welcome much needed moisture into the skin and support slowing down your oil production.