Nicole Keen
Nicole Keen
@keenmachine

My Fave Skincare Routine for Clear Skin

When it comes to achieving clear skin (#lifegoals), I’ve learned there’s no such thing as a quick fix. As much as I’d like to tell you about a miracle mask or serum, I just haven’t found one in all my years of searching. The key to clear skin, as I’ve discovered through much trial and error, is consistency. Not only that, but you’ve gotta be flexible; there’s not necessarily one skincare regime that’s going to work for eternity. As you’ve probably noticed, your skin can change from season to season, and year to year. Not to mention the havoc that hormones can wreak on your skin. In fact, my most recent obstacle to clear skin is my pregnancy hormones. I’m expecting my first child in December and while I initially noticed the legendary “glow” everybody talks about, it was quickly followed by the less-welcome appearance of several large pimples. That was one new arrival I wasn’t too jazzed about. I ended up going back to an old faithful skincare regime that had never failed me in the past. And guess what? It works. Really, really well. The only thing is: I have to follow this skincare regime religiously—even when I’m exhausted (another less than pleasant pregnancy side effect).

Cleanser
NeoStrata’s Acne Clear Clarifying Gel Cleanser is gentle enough for my sensitive skin, but contains just enough salicylic acid (2% to be exact) to stop pimples in their tracks. My skin has noticeably improved since I started using this cleanser twice a day (morning and night). Bonus: A little goes a long way, so it takes me quite a while to work my way through a 200 ml bottle.

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Cleansing Device
I have to admit that I was really gung-ho about my Clarisonic Mia when I first got it, but it eventually fell by the way side: Partially because it was time for me to replace the brush head and I wasn’t sure I was willing to spend the money, and partially because I wasn’t totally convinced it was making a huge difference to my skin. However, as soon as my face started breaking out I decided to charge up my Clarisonic again. I also bit the bullet and bought the brush heads. (FYI: Shoppers Drug Mart sells a two-pack that’s actually really good bang for your buck). With consistent use, my skin started changing—and clearing up. And I noticed that way less dirt was left on my face after cleansing.

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Toner
Last but not least, I really credit NeoStrata’s Acne Clear Clarifying Solution with keeping my skin clear. While it’s sometimes tempting to skip this final step (after a late night out, let’s say), the payoff of regular use is undeniable. During the winter months, I find this toner a bit too drying on my irritable skin, but it’s been essential this summer. Thanks to hot, hazy weather, I’ve definitely been feeling sweatier and grimier than usual, and one swipe with a toner-soaked cotton pad makes me feel infinitely better!

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