So in the past few months I've gotten really clear and smooth skin with this skin regimen that I've been following. I've found that it works really well for combo skin, which is what I have.
Cleanser- any wash that has benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl Peroxide helps to rid your skin of bacteria, plus it takes off stuff like makeup too. My sister uses the cleanser from Stridex which has like 10% benzoyl peroxide, but I'm using a dermatologist wash, its basically 5% benzoyl peroxide.
At first, this cleanser is going to be a bit drying, so it's important to moisturize. Also, you might want to build up the amount you use and start off with a pearl-is size first before increasing the amount.
Scrub/Exfoliate- First off, I have to say that St. Ives scrub is probably the worst scrub ever. It mislead you into thinking that its working by giving like 5 minutes of smooth-ish skin, while the huge granules in the scrub are basically scraping away at your skin, and not in a good removing blackheads way.
I would suggest using the aspirin mask. To make it you put 4 tablets of aspirin (you can get 100 tablets for 99 cents at Walgreens). Then sprinkle several drops of water onto them, make sure not to put to much, otherwise they will get all mushy and useless. When they have dissolved (this wont take long) add one or two squirts of honey to the powder and mix it together. The honey helps keep the aspirin from flying everywhere when it dries. Remember not to get any aspirin in your eyes and nose (it just makes sense). Apply it to your face, let it set for maybe a few minutes and then in a circular motion scrub your face to exfoliate. The aspirin is gritty, but it is not sharp and damaging. Aspirin is actually a natural product and is not man made, so its not dangerous to use (the native Americans used it!).
To get even better results you could get the Clarisonic set ($195) but its way pricey so you could also just purchase an electric toothbrush (i recommend Crest Spin Brush Pro) but make sure to get the soft bristles because you don’t want rough things on your face. If its not soft enough for you, run it over a pumice stone a few times. Then, use the brush and scrub your face with it in a circular motion, avoiding the eyes.
Finally, you could also use sugar scrubs, there is a pretty good one at missha.net it's called the black sugar scrub and it's 19.99 but they may have it on sale at the stores. It really helps remove black heads and it smells great!
Mask- One of my favorite masks to use is the Burt's Bees Pore Refining Mask.(7.99) Even if you don't have huge pores, this scrub is still amazing. It really helps suck out all the nasty stuff in your pores either right after you wash your face or it helps loosen the really hard to get at blackheads so you can attack those. The instructions on how to use it are on the side, basically you put one tbs of the powder (or less, depending on how much you need) and mix it with one tbs of water. You can also use toner (extra pore tightening) or other fruit juices. It really refines your pores and gives you a really great glow. This scrub works because it is made from both natural clay and also French green clay, both of which have been proved to remove impurities from peoples' faces and bodies.
If that mask is too expensive, there’s also the Indian Healing clay (btw both of these can be found in Whole Foods Market. This mask is intense, you can actually feel your face pulsate! But after it, your face just feels so much better. The instructions are also on the container for this one, but basically you mix one tbsp of apple cider with one tbsp of the clay. You get a huge jar for about 8 or 9 bucks and it is totally worth it.
An even cheaper mask that is just as efficient is the egg white/yolk mask.
Use the egg white for whiter brighter skin and clear pores. Just seperate the yolk from the white and then whisk the whites seperately in a bowl until they are frothy. Apply to your face with fingers. Leaven on for about 10 minutes and then wash it off
The egg yolk is also fro healthier skin (because it contains nutrients) and you prepare it the same way. However, try not to use this one too much because your skin might become resistant to it and it wont have any effects for your skin anymore
Toner- Toner is so important! I never used to use it, but I realized after I started using it just how much gunk was still left on my face! I use Nivea Moisturizing Toner (5.99)because it doesn’t leave a sticky residue, it just cleans your face gently and it smells great!
Makeup Remover- I love love love Missha's Clear Eye/Lip Makeup Remover (4.99). It is amazing! It will actually remove all your makeup without stinging your eyes. Plus it wont leave your eye or lip or whatever area oily and it smells really good too (yeah smells are important to me)
Day Moisturizer- A really great moisturizer is Neutrogena Healthy Defense Moisturizer with SPF 45. This is a really highly rated moisturizer because it has great SPF and it won't be oily or get oily. Its very smooth and just a breeze to use.
Night Moisturizer- Again, Neutrogena. I know it's gonna sound weird, but I use the Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti Wrinkle Cream with Retinol. I'm young, but it's never too early to start using this stuff. Plus it's got retinol which helps tighten up your skin (read: pores) and also, it is really moisturizing. On days when I haven't used it my skin is just really dry.
Breakouts- Right now I'm using Differin and it's working pretty well. Differin is good for those gross cystic pimples and also for those run of the mil pimples you might get when you're nearing your period and also for those random whiteheads.
If you guys have any problems with breaking out, please let me know!
I have tried so many products and I've done loads of research so I'd be glad to help you if you just comment with your specific skin problem or just email me, I'd be glad to help. Pimples suck, and we're way too beautiful to be held down by anything like that.