Before buying any kind of skincare you need to see if it is made to cater to your skin’s needs. Being South Asian myself I need to be careful with what i use as not everything will be made to cater skin of colour.
I started noticing around my late teens that I had some rough and bumpy skin on my upper and lower arms that would be discoloured at times and would flare up. It would sometimes be super itchy and sometimes be barely visible. I later researched and came to the conclusion it is Keratosis Pilaris. Keratosis Pilaris is when the hair follicle is blocked due to the build up of Keratin, which can become itchy and red sometimes. it is a very common skin condition and is mostly found on upper arms, thighs, cheeks, and buttocks. It affects round 40 percent of adults. There is no cure for it however there are ways to control and minimise its appearance.
What to avoid
- Avoid scrubbing the skin – The number one mistake I made and should be avoided at all costs was that I used a scrub to exfoliate this area. Even though this did nothing for me I have now found out that it is the worst thing I could have done, thankfully for me it did nothing good or bad to my skin but I feel like everyone should know never to do this, it will cause further inflammation.
- Avoid Bar Soaps – what I have done now to help clear my skin which is making a difference is that I avoid bar soaps altogether and use a wash instead for sensitive skin. Bar soaps can cause pores to block further so this should be avoided.
- Avoid taking hot showers – this can also cause increased redness, try and calm the skin instead with cooler showers.
- Drying the skin too much – this can exacerbate the skin and worsen the Keratosis Pilaris, ensure the skin is always moisturised in those affected areas.
My current routine
1. In the shower use Cerave SA smoothing cleanser which is fragrance free and contains 2% Salicylic acid. This is an effective way to exfoliate the skin without getting rid of the protective skin barrier. It helps clear pores and builds elastin and collagen.
Ingredients: Aqua/Water, Sodium Lauroyl Sarcosinate, Cocamidopropyl, Hydroxysultaine,Glycerin, Niacinamide, Gluconolactone, Sodium Methyl Cocoyl Taurate, PEG-150 Pentaerythrityl Tetrastearate, Ceramide NP, Ceramde AP, Ceramide EOP, Carbomer, Calcium Gluconate, Salicylic Acid, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Lauroyl, Lactylate, Cholesterol, Phenoxyethanol, Disodium EDTA, Tetrasodium EDTA, Hydrolyzed Hyaluronic Acid, Phytosphingosine, Xanthan Gum, Ethylhexylglycerine.
2. After this when coming out the shower I would use Cerave moisturising cream all over my body whilst my skin is wet. Cerave is a great moisturiser and it also contains ceramides which should be a vital part of our skincare routine.
Ingredients: Aqua/Water, Glycerin, Cetearyl Alcohol, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Cetyl Alcohol, Ceteareth-20, Petrolatum, Dimethicone, Phenoxyethanol, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Potassium Phosphate, Ethylhexyglycerin, Sodium Lauroyl Lactylate, Disodium Edta, Dipostassium Phosphate, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Phytoshingosine, Cholesterol, Xanthan Gum, Carbomer, Sodium Hyaluronate, Tocopherol, Ceramide EOP.
Ingredients : Aqua/Water, Urea, Cetyl Al Glyceryl Stearate SE, Cetearyl Alcohol, Niacinamide, Butyrospermum Park11 Butter/Shea Butter, C12-13 Alkyl Lactate, PEG-100 Stear, Glycerin, Behentrimonium Methosulfate, Dimethicone, Triacetin, Ceramide NP, Ceramide AP, Ceramide EOP, Cerbomer, Sodium Lactate, Salicylic Acid, Hyaluronate, Cholesterol, Phenoxyacetophenone, Citric Acid, Lactic Acid, Phytosphingosine, Xanthan Gum, Ethylhexylglycerin.
I have done this for a few months now and can see a difference in the flare ups of my Keratosis Pilaris. It is barely visible sometimes!
*This is a routine and products that have worked really well for me, this may not work for everyone. Please seek a professionals for any further skincare concerns.
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With love A.