New hallways to navigate. New teachers to impress. New locker combinations to memorize. The start of a new school year is full of stressful situations for teenagers. Worrying about their skin shouldn’t be one of them. Help your high schooler put his or her best face forward on opening day with these back-to-school skincare tips that make the grade.
Get With the Program
If your teen’s skin has been acting up this summer, start them on an acne-specific skincare routine. Start with a bacteria-busting cleanser containing salicylic acid and/or benzoyl peroxide (we love Image Skincare Clear Cell Salicylic Gel Cleanser), followed by a water-based moisturizer (Olay Fresh Effects Dew Over Hydrating Gel Moisturizer is one of our faves), which keeps the skin delightfully dewy without clogging pores. Summer activities have you on the go? Try Neutrogena Rapid Clear Daily Treatment Pads Salicylic Acid Acne Treatment, which lets you wipe away dirt and oil without skipping a beat.
Food for Thought
Your face isn’t the only place you should be attacking blemishes—it’s time to wage war in your belly, too, starting with the foods you eat. Cut down on foods high in carbohydrates and ease up on sugary sodas and sports drinks, all of which can lead to increased inflammation. And while milk might do a body good, studies have shown that diets high in dairy can be a contributing factor in acne flare-ups.
Life is all about picking your battles. Picking at pimples is definitely one you’re not going to win. To help minimize and deflate bumpy blemishes fast, wrap a few ice cubes in a paper towel and press it gently on the area for 30 seconds. Trust us, it’s easier to cover up a deflated pimple with a bit of concealer or oil-free, mineral-based foundation (Neutrogena and Oxygentix both make great ones) than it is trying to camouflage a scabby one.
Still seeing some spots just days before school’s back in session? Reach for a mask containing kaolin clay, like Environ AVST Hydrating Exfoliant Masque, which gently removes dirt and oil for instantly clearer skin. For particularly pesky pimples, try a spot treatment—Mario Badescu Drying Lotion and Clearasil Ultra Rapid Action Treatment Gel are two great ones—and leave on overnight.