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THE SOLUTION:
The road to clear, healthy glowing skin

DON'T OVER WASH

Although keeping your skin clean is the most important part of any skin care regimen, it is important to not over-do it. Excessive washing of the face can lead to dryness and irritation. Medicated cleansers especially tend to promote dryness. In choosing a cleanser you should keep the following points in mind:

1. Avoid deodorant soaps or so-called acne soaps. They are generally too drying.

2. Avoid cleansers that contain fragrances or dyes. These tend to irritate the skin.

3. Choose a cleanser that contains an anti-bacterial agent such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.

4. Don't use harsh, abrasive scrubs. Avoid scrubs that contain apricot kernel granules.


ABOUT TONERS

Toners are often helpful in removing residual oil or impurities left behind by a cleanser. They can also help exfoliate the skin while refining its texture. However, some toners are often portrayed by advertisers as doing more than they actually do. For instance, toners will not reduce the size of your pores. Important things to consider when choosing a toner:

1. Avoid toners containing SD Alcohol 40, which over-dries the skin's surface while actually promoting oil production. The result? Oily, flaky skin. Choose a toner with witch hazel instead.

2. Use a toner that contains an exfoliating agent such as glycolic or salicylic acid to unclog pores.

3. Choose only dye- and fragrance-free toners.


SHOULD I USE A MOISTURIZER?

If you have oily skin, chances are you don't need a moisturizer unless you live in a very dry climate. If you have combination skin, it is advisable to apply a light, oil-free moisturizer to those parts of your face that tend to become dry. Drier skin types prone to acne should incorporate a water-based, hydrating moisturizer into their daily skin care routine.


THE BIG COVER-UP

There are many misconceptions about covering up breakouts. For example, it has been said that applying makeup, such as foundation or powder, will cause further breakouts. This need not be the case, as long as your makeup is oil-free and labeled "non-comedogenic". Non-comedogenic means that the product will not clog pores. Here are some important points to remember when covering up blemishes.

1. Less is better. Layering too many products can lead to more blackheads.

2. Always wash off your makeup before you go to bed. It is advisable to wash your face twice to make sure you've removed all traces of makeup.

3. Choose a light foundation that contains sunscreen to protect your skin from UV rays. A great foundation is Photochrome Light Adjusting Compact Makeup SPF 15 by Prescriptives with titanium dioxide.


WHAT ELSE CAN I DO?

The right choice of product is only part of the answer to acne. Additionally, there are several things you can do to improve the condition of your skin. Here are some important ones:

1. Don't pick or squeeze your pimples. This causes the pimple to rupture internally and spreads the infection from the hair follicle into the surrounding skin, prolonging healing. It can also lead to scarring. Instead, apply some benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid once or twice a day directly to the pimple.

2. Don't pick at scabs. This can cause scarring.

3. Don't over-use prescription products. Using them only as indicated. Exceeding the recommended application may only irritate the pimple. It may not necessarily speed healing.

4. Drink plenty of water to help flush toxins out of your system (6-8 glasses a day should do it). Cranberry and carrot juice are also great for the skin.

5. Watch what you eat. Although foods high in sugar and saturated fats do not necessarily cause acne, they can make it worse. There are indications that iodine-rich foods such as shellfish and seaweed, as well as iodized salt, may cause flare-ups.

6. Relax. Be positive. Try to minimize stress, a known contributor to problem skin.

7. Consider oral contraceptives, which in many cases have been shown to lessen acne breakouts. Ortho-Tricyclen is a birth control pill frequently used in the treatment of acne. Talk to your doctor about it.

8. If you still need more help, talk to your doctor about oral antibiotics. Minocycline is most frequently used in the treatment of acne. Keep in mind that prolonged or improper use of oral antibiotics can diminish their effectiveness.


CLARIFYING SYSTEM

A Skinterra exclusive, the Clarifying System offers a sound, effective, comprehensive answer to acne-prone skin. This advanced line of products consists of a gentle antibacterial cleanser, a conditioning toner and a breakout control lotion. Effective at treating immediate skin problems, these products are gentle enough to become a permanent, everyday part of your skin care routine.