I finally found my ideal skin care routine

I’ve switched up my skincare routine recently and I’m so amazed by the results that I HAVE to share this with you.
I have normal to dry skin, super sensitive and annoyingly acne-prone. In spite of gingerly skipping through a pimple-free adolescence, once I hit my mid-twenties my skin exploded and I spent the past five or so years struggling with recurring, painful acne.
Needless to say, I tried everything: from drugstore remedies to dermatologist-prescribed medications, from stress-reducing meditation to mind-emptying running. Nothing worked. I had a brief acne-free window around the time I got married (THANK GOODNESS), but since I moved to New Zealand the zits irremediably came back.

Living Zero Waste and as minimal as possible also made me reconsider my approach to skin care. I didn’t want my bathroom drawer to be cluttered with dozens of creams and masks and cleansers. I did made an attempt at making my own face cream, however I wasn’t very pleased with the end result, plus I still have a bunch of products I’m trying to finish up, so basically I never got round to use it consistently and ended up abandoning the idea.
Then, about a month ago I had enough. I decided I was done spending time lathering my face with sunflower oil every morning, double cleansing every evening, spending endless hours looking for the perfect combination of moisture, glow and zit-repellent agents.

So I adopted a new skin care routine, which involves ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

I wash my face with lukewarm water in the morning, just enough to remove eye boogers and wake me up. In the evening, I only wash it again if I’ve been sweating or if I feel like I’ve accumulated excessive dirt. I pamper myself with a face mask once in a while mainly because I still have two face masks that I like and I want to finish, but once they are gone I probably won’t purchase more.

The result of all this is that I haven’t had a single pimple since I stopped torturing my face. I still have some acne scars that are slowly fading away, but other than that my skin has never felt better. I went through a phase where it felt really dry and tight for maybe two weeks when I first stopped using products, but now it’s smooth and clear and I can’t fucking believe it.
I am currently going through my first PMS with clear skin since I can remember, which makes me wonder what hormones have to do with all this.
Another thing I’m doing – and I have no idea whether this is contributing to my skin improvement – is chugging a litre of lukewarm water with ginger and lemon juice every morning (and sometimes evening, as I quite enjoy it). Other than that, I have been trying to reduce my coffee intake (although I’m writing this in a Starbucks) and to incorporate plenty of hydrating foods, however I’m still eating shit most of the time which led me to the conclusion that probably food has little to do with what my skin looks like.

So there you have it. If you’re struggling with acne, I would highly recommend that you try leaving your skin alone for a while. It might do wonders – plus think about all the money you’ll save or how much lighter your toiletry bag will be next time you travel!

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Seven Things – Week 2

  1. Take a break
    I finally found a job, which I’m hopefully starting tomorrow (these Kiwis do take their time to confirm stuff), so I decided to take a break from job hunting and just CHILL. I will need to find something else at some point as this job is only 10 hours a week, but for now I’m just going to enjoy my free time and relax.
  2. Rye flour
    I switched from regular shampoo to *drums* rye flour. My curls have never been so fluffy and defined.  I buy rye flour in bulk so there’s no packaging involved, and I can fill a whole jar for $1 #winwin
    (More on this topic soon.)

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  1. Buy a book
    I’ve been borrowing books from the library since we moved to New Zealand because I already have SO MANY and when you travel as much as I do you don’t really want to ship thirty boxes of books from one side of the planet to another every time. But on Tuesday I was wandering around and ended up in this awesome second-hand bookshop and just couldn’t resist.

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  1. Don’t be dull
    When you open the fridge and all that’s inside is radish and spring onions, you can still make it look like you’re having a fancy lunch.

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  1. Talk to old friends
    Not a day goes by without me missing my friends and family at home, so I always make a point of texting as many people as I can every day and keeping in contact. Thatmakes it feel like there’s no 18,000km in between us.
  2. Get better
    Last night we had our basketball semifinals, and I was EXTREMELY nervous because last time we played that team I had a very bad game. This time, however, I was very happy with how I played. Conclusion: failing once doesn’t mean you’re always going to fail. You can always get better.
  3. Be patient
    I ran out of incense a while ago and I haven’t bought new sticks yet because they all come in a plastic package plus I can’t find my favourite flavours. I was getting annoyed because I burn incense every day and I was missing it. Then my friend came back from Bali and brought me some! Unpackaged, exactly the flavours I like, and with a complimentary bracelet.

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Seven Things – Week 1

Happy Friday beautiful readers, and welcome to this new segment of my blog called SEVEN THINGS.
What was that? Could I not pick anything less inventive? I know, but I spent a whole week trying to come up with a more original title (like Seven Sins, Seven Dwarves, Seven Minutes in Heaven), however I wasn’t gonna write about eternal damnation, midgets, or people making out in a closet. So I thought I’d just go with the most straightforward version.

Seven Things is a weekly segment (posted on a Friday) that involves me listing seven things that got me through the previous week.
The two reasons behind this are:

  1. I’ve been slaking too much recently and I’m struggling to find out ideas to write about, or rather I do have ideas but some of them are taking a long time to develop so I need something to fill the gaps in between and keep me motivated to post regularly;
  2. I love lists.

So without further ado, here are the first Seven Things that helped me survive the past seven days.

  1. Get tired
    I signed up for a half marathon in June and training has officially commenced. I’m up to 8.5km so far and back to the good old post-running feeling. To be completely honest I don’t really like running itself, but I love how tired my legs feel afterwards, and the fact that I can bake three dozen cookies and eat them all in one sitting without feeling one bit guilty.
  2. Rhymes
    I’ve never been a fan of poetry, but I’ve been reading a lot of Sylvia Plath, Margaret Atwood, Allen Ginsberg and Kurt Vonnegut thanks to my shiny library card. I’m not sure I really get it, but it’s been good to alternate rhymes and fiction.
    (I have the feeling that this will be a recurring point, since I’ve been camping in the library every single day and checking out dozens of books at a time.)

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  3. Strumming
    I’ve added two songs to my five-song repertoire on the ukulele (they’ll probably be up next week). I’m making an effort to find new tunes I can cover which is great for singing too!
  4. Make yourself useful
    I spent my Saturday volunteering for a couple of causes I’m strongly passionate about: waste minimisation and animal rights. It wasn’t fun to stand for six hours in the freezing cold, but I met heaps of cool people and got to go to the Gay Pride festival, so.

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  5. Get rid of stuff
    I never seem to be satisfied with the amount of stuff I have nor with the amount of stuff I donate, especially regarding my clothes. It’s going to be a while before I manage to build The Perfect Wardrobe, but in the meantime I shall see you soon, local charity shop.
  6. #morningsareformaking
    Thank you Kate for inspiring me to get out of bed at 5.30am and get stuff done. I’ve been reading, writing, running, translating, and felt creative and productive in general, plus I’m surprised by how not tired I am during the day in spite of getting less sleep than usual.

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  7. Find a purpose in life
    Currently that means finding a job, personally. I’ve been sending CVs like there’s no tomorrow, and I’ve got a trial at a café on Sunday. Well, it’s only 10 hours a week over the weekend, but I could use some pocket money (I sound like a 13 year old).

There you have it. Talk soon, peeps.