How to Prevent Pimples – It's Not As Hard As You Think!
Step aside everyone, I am here to tell you the acne-related tea once again. Oily skin and pimples go hand in hand, and I have my fair share of experiences and advice. So you’re sitting here with your bomb *ss skincare ritual already in place. And once you get a zit, you already know how to treat it. But do you know how to prevent pimples in the first place? Follow these easy tips for the ultimate pimple prevention.
Table of Contents
- Keep your hands, hair, and sweat off your face
- Take your makeup off at the end of the day and clean your brushes
- Be proactive with a good skincare ritual and regular exfoliation
1. Don’t Touch Your Face
I’m not kidding. Don’t do it! Whenever I touch the side of my nose to scratch at it, I immediately get a pimple there the next day. Touching your face transfers all of the oil, bacteria, and other gunk your hands touched right back to your face (4). Seriously, think of how many things your hands touch every day! If you feel the need to scratch an itch or rub your face, I would recommend keeping tissues nearby so that there is a barrier between your hands and face (4).
I honestly cringe in those romantic movies when lovers cup each other’s faces. I can’t help it! But if you stop touching your face, I promise you that you will see a decrease in breakouts.
2. Practice Basic Makeup Hygiene
Practicing makeup hygiene is also super important when it comes to learning how to prevent pimples. Sometimes, you just want to pass out in your bed after a long day. Me too. But the consequences of not removing your makeup before sleeping are not fun at all. All that dirt, oil, bacteria, and other environmental factors will clog your pores (1).
Besides breaking out, you might develop:
- Irritated/infected eyes
- Earlier signs of aging
So no matter what, remove your makeup before you sleep. Double cleanse to get your skin nice and clean. You can even try giving your skin a break from makeup once in a while.
Another factor to take into consideration is your makeup brushes. (I know I’m guilty of neglecting my brushes sometimes.) Clean your brushes as often as possible, or once a week at the very minimum. And not to share your tools because that can spread bacteria.
And last, but not least, throw away expired makeup to avoid allergic reactions! It’s tempting to hold onto your old products, especially if you’ve only used them a few times. But the risk of bacteria is no joke. True story: because of the old foundation, I broke out in hives for a whole week. It was terrible. My face was burning and itching.
3. Wash Your Face After Sweating
Regardless if you’re just finishing a workout or you’re just sweaty in general (I relate), you always want to clean your face after sweating. Sweat + oil + dirt = ideal conditions for clogged pores and acne. If you’re sweaty from exercising, the best way to prevent pimples is just to carry out your normal skincare routine. Side note: never workout with your makeup on.
If a full wash isn’t possible, try those toning pads that have salicylic acid and a facial mist for hydration (2). Salicylic acid will break down the dirt and oil on your face.
4. Beware Of Your Hair
Our hair has oil, bacteria, and basically soaks up environmental pollutants (3). And for my hair twirlers out there, your hair has all the gunk from your hands as well. For this reason, you want to keep your hair off your face. Keep it in braids, throw it up in a ponytail. Even when you sleep, putting your hair in a loose braid might help you reduce breakouts (3). If you do prefer to sleep with your hair down, then make sure to wash your pillowcase often. Your hair might be the secret catalyst behind your breakouts.
5. Exfoliate On The Reg
Exfoliation is key to understanding how to prevent pimples. Why? Exfoliating removes the dead skin cells, which means your pores are less likely to get clogged. Just make sure not to over-exfoliate. May I recommend Paula’s Choice 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant? (I know I should shut up about it, but it significantly reduced my breakout frequency)
6. Update Your Skincare Lineup
The best prevention is a solid skincare ritual already in place. If you do everything above and you’re breaking out pretty often, I would reevaluate your products. Are you having a bad reaction to one of your products? Maybe your cleanser isn’t that effective or your moisturizer is clogging your pores. Are you even using a moisturizer to keep your sebum glands in check?
Pimples are a natural part of life, and with your acne-zapping skincare ritual in place, they’ll eventually go away. But knowing how to prevent pimples will save you both time, energy, and products. I challenge you to follow these steps for a month and see how your skin changes!
Written by Jessica Lu