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Perfecting your skin care is never easy. For my acne-prone skin, I went through a lot of trial and error before I found products and a routine that worked.
The truth is, I didn’t always take care of my skin. I was the type of girl who went to bed with makeup on and carelessly touched my face throughout the day. But getting acne three years ago changed everything.
From that time on, I became very selective with products I used. I reached for products designed to help clear up acne, especially those with benzoyl peroxide. I tried the cult-favorite Clean and Clear’s Continuous Control Acne Cleanser with 10 percent benzoyl peroxide, but to no avail. I also indulged in higher-end products such as Caudalie’s Vinoperfect Anti Dark Spot Serum to treat my dark spots and acne scars. For $78, I didn’t think it was worth it.
While it’s easy to become obsessed with fast results and scoop up whatever serum or oil is currently trendy, that’s not always the answer. The true path to a glowing complexion is understanding your own skin — and paying attention to product ingredients, no matter the brand name.
That’s part of the reason I have a simple, but effective, skin care routine now. These five products are all under $30, but they have helped me tremendously in fighting acne and transforming my skin. Now, my secrets are yours to enjoy, too.
Shop: CeraVe Hydrating Facial Cleanser, $14
If you have dry skin, this is a holy grail cleanser. It’s gentle and doesn’t strip away my skin’s moisture like most foam cleansers tend to do on dry skin. Not to mention, it’s Certified by the National Eczema Association and perfect to use on other parts of your body.
Shop: CeraVe Salicylic Acid Cleanser, $11.99 (Orig. $18.99)
Another CeraVe product worth considering is this CeraVe Salicylic Acid Cleanser. It’s an exfoliant that helps soften and smooth the skin. It also contains a mix of several key ingredients including vitamin D, hyaluronic acid and salicylic acid to help gently remove dead skills cells. I personally use this two or three times a week as a follow up to my cleanser and to get rid of any buildup from makeup.
There’s a reason why this exfoliant has over 24,000 ratings on Amazon. The product’s 2 percent dose of salicylic acid helps target a lot of specific skin issues, including unclogging pores, fighting blackheads, and uneven skin texture. It also has a very thin, watery consistency so it absorbs easily into skin.
Shop: Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating Daily Face Moisturizer, $13.94 (Orig. $16.97)
If you’re looking for a moisturizer to help keep your skin hydrated all day, this is one of the best floating around the beauty space. Part of the reason for the hype is that it’s oil-free, non-comedogenic and loaded with hyaluronic acid.
Shop: Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion, $12.88 (Orig. $14.99)
If you can’t get the Neutrogena moisturizer, this Cetaphil Moisturizing Lotion is a good alternative. It has a lot more product (literally more bang for your buck!) and is great for using on your entire body. Additionally, it’s lightweight, non-greasy and contains vitamin E and vitamin B5 for more intense hydration.
If you like this story, check out 6 fragrance-free moisturizers that don’t irritate sensitive skin.
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