Blemish busting manifesto
Date: 19 july 2017

Tired of playing join the dots? Our 3-step guide will help you zap pesky zits and the ghosts they leave behind - By Parizaad Khan Sethi

1. Paws off

Ugh, trying to not pick at a flaming zit is one of the hardest things we’ve ever done. We’ve failed many, many times, only to pay the price—deep brown spots and hollowed out scars. If you think active acne is difficult to get rid of, then be warned that post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (sexy talk for brown spots) is way, way harder, while scars are near impossible and will be on your face forever. Instead of picking, dab the zit with a spot treatment like Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions Clinical Clearing Gel. Keep the acne-prone area hydrated with an oil-free moisturizer, as dryness causes more discomfort, redness and peeling.

2. Hats on

Never has ‘use SPF’ been more critical advice than now. If your skin is already forming pigmented spots due to acne, sun exposure will darken them, making the situation far worse. Use a sunscreen with UVA and UVB filters, like Kiehl's Ultra Light Daily UV Defense SPF 50 or Clinique Super City Block Oil - Free Daily Face Protector Broad Spectrum SPF 40. If you’re ever tempted to skip the sunscreen, apply a lightweight BB cream like Clinique Anti-Blemish Solutions BB Cream Broad Spectrum SPF 40 and then dot and blend a sunscreen just over your acne spots.

3. Regime change

The acne-prone need to adopt an attitude of prevention rather than cure. That means your skincare routine needs to be reimagined—a gentle, non-irritating regimen with the right active ingredients will keep acne from developing. Pick a gentle, low-foaming cleanser, an oil-free moisturizer and a sunscreen for daily use. Add a gel or cream containing salicylic acid, an ingredient which fights acne eruptions. As a weekly treat, slather on a clay mask like Clinique Anti Blemish Solutions Oil-Control Cleansing Mask, to absorb excess oil.

If your acne doesn’t clear up with OTC products, consider seeing a dermatologist to help ID the underlying causes for it.

Blemish busting manifesto
Parizaad Khan Sethi

is a beauty and wellness editor based in New York. She was the former beauty editor at Vogue India and now serves as a contributing editor for the magazine. At age 5, Parizaad fell in love with an old cream blush she found in the back of her mother’s drawer, and has been in awe of the transformative power of beauty ever since. When she’s not writing about beauty, she researches advances in skincare as a hobby, and is constantly guinea-pigging herself in the name of beauty.