New Year, New Skin: This year I’ll have spot-free skin…

So we’re well and truly into the midst of January and the start of a new decade. With many amongst you making new year’s resolutions and trying to better yourselves. We at The Gay UK have decided to help you along the way. If your skin has ever caused you insecurities, carry on reading. Our grooming expert Thomas Swallow will have you skin-confident in no time!

This year I’ll have spot-free skin…

Like everyone, we’re all prone to the occasional spot and there are lots of factors that cause the appearance of our little red friends. Some of these are out of our control unfortunately and I’m sorry to tell our younger readers, that hormonal acne is something we can’t get rid of. There are steps we can take however, to keep our skin spot-free and manage hormonal breakouts. The main two are nutrition and our skincare regime. It goes without saying really if we eat a healthy and balanced diet our skin will reflect this. This means cutting down on processed food and instead basing our diets around nutritious whole foods. Don’t be alarmed if your skin seems to get worse when changing your diet. Things like this always seem to get worse before they get better and your skin is no exception. Persevere and reap the rewards.

When it comes to skincare however, it is a little more complicated. The main focus here is controlling your skin’s oil production and there are many ways to go about this. My top 3 tips though would be…

To cleanse your skin twice daily with a lightly exfoliating cleanser

Probably the most important factor in keeping our skin spot-free is to keep it clean. The easiest way we can do this is to wash our face twice daily. Now there’s a myriad of cleansing products out there, all with ‘miraculous’ benefits and selling points. The best way I’ve found of ensuring the product I’m using is doing the job I need it to however, is to make sure it is a lightly exfoliating cleanser. Now when I say this, I don’t mean it’s physically exfoliating my skin twice a day but that there is a chemical exfoliant present within the product, that helps break down all the dirt and oil. Which when living in London, is a godsend!

My current go-to cleanser is Fresh Wash by Monuskin, that uses papaya enzymes to lightly exfoliate the face. Leaving my skin clean and fresh but not stripped.

Available at: www.monushop.co.uk

Use a mattifying moisturiser during the daytime

One of the biggest misconceptions people have when dealing with oily/spot-prone skin, is that they shouldn’t moisturise. This is such a big mistake to make. No matter what your skin type, your skin needs moisture and by all means, I’m not telling you to slap a thick cream all over your face each morning. You do however need to apply something to your skin or it will just became dry and irritated. In the case of oily/spot-prone skin instead of leaving this step out, opt for a gel/mattifying moisturiser. Not only will this keep your skin moisturised and healthy, it will help control shine/oil production throughout the day.

My personal favourite is Recipe for Men’s Anti-Shine Moisturiser. This beauty has seen me through the hottest of London heatwaves and tube rides. Always keeping me shine-free and looking fresh. If you’re familiar with the Central Line, you know this is no easy feat.

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Available at: www.mankind.co.uk

Incorporate a clay mask into your weekly skincare regime

Finally masking to many people is a luxurious and unnecessary step in a skincare regime. If you have oily/spot-prone skin however, I think this step is a definite must and by no means does it have to be expensive. By incorporating a clay mask into your skincare regime once a week, you can drastically improve control over your skin’s oil production. The clay mask absorbs excess oil and impurities, leaving skin purified and shine-free.

A great option for this is Bulldog’s Oil Control Face Mask. This inexpensive and effective mask will leave your skin clear and control oil production, when used on a regular basis. Plus it won’t break the bank balance, always a selling-point!

Available at: www.bulldogskincare.com

Want more tips from our grooming expert? Make sure to follow him on Instagram and Twitter (@urbanmaleuk) and look out for his next article, where he’ll tackle the age-old question of how to eliminate dark circles.

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