Chocolate may not cause pimples (well, there was this small study), but damn if it doesn’t feel like it’s emanating from our pores post-Easter. Amiright?
Three double chocolate hot cross buns, 12 Easter eggs and zero exercise later; my face has erupted into 10 million pimples. I figured I might not be the only one in need of a quick skin fix, so here’s what to do about those pesky pimples and stubborn whiteheads that are camping out on your face.
While pimples, and more serious cystic acne, can occur due to hormone changes in the body and genetics (dammit!), one of the reasons your skin might be getting congested right now – aside from eating your body weight in chocolate- is from being lax with your skincare routine. I know it’s boring but regular exfoliation is the key to preventing whiteheads and blackheads from occurring in the first place.
1. Get acquainted with the Konjac sponge.
I love the Konjack sponge. I’ve been telling everyone I know about the Konjac sponge. As in “How’s your Easter going, Nic?” “KONJAC SPONGE.” Because that’s how much I love the Konjac sponge. Originally from Japan, the sponge is made from the vegetable fibre of the Konjac plant with added French clays or bamboo charcoal. It’s a super gentle exfoliator, it’s 100 per cent biodegradable (you can put it in the compost bin when you’re done) and it’s terrific for congested, oily and acne-prone skin – particularly the bamboo charcoal versions.
I’ve been using Appelles’ Bamboo Charcoal Konjac Sponge $15, which is intended for the body, on my face because that’s just how I roll in the shower – one product for all! – and my sensitive rosacea-prone skin is immediately smooth with zero irritation. You can use these in conjunction with a cleanser but it reduces the lifespan of the sponge, so I remove my makeup, cleanse, then exfoliate while I’m in the shower. It’s gentle enough to use everyday but I stick to three times a week or whenever I remember – whichever happens first. Flora Organica also stock Konjac sponges, which have currently sold out but the owner informs me they’ll be back in stock within a few days.
2. Whiteheads? Make friends with salicylic acid.
You don’t make friends with salad but if you suffer from congestion in the form of whiteheads, your face will thank you for making friends with salicylic acid.
are pesky little buggers that refuse to die form when dead skin cells, oil and bacteria are trapped within a pore. Since these clogged pores have no infection, you want to exfoliate these out rather than using harsh acne products as that will only make whiteheads worse. What you can do (along with fortnightly at-home steams) is use products with salicylic acid. Salicylic acid helps to prevent blemishes and penetrates the pores to clear out impurities – it’s also excellent blackhead zapper.