Up your vitamin D intake
Ever notice how soft and clear your skin seems after a few days of soaking up rays at the beach? Something about being in the sun for hours on end makes those red, inflamed pimples simmer down, and those clogged pores disappear.
That “something” could be vitamin D. When your bare skin is exposed to the sun, it creates vitamin D. The more sun your skin sees, the more vitamin D it makes.
So how does this help fight acne? Well, vitamin D has been shown to impact oil excreting cells by producing proteins that have antibacterial properties, according to the Vitamin D Council. And antibacterial = acne fighting!
But unless you’re living the good life out in Cali or down south, you might not be able to expose any bare skin to the sun for the recommended minimum of 10 minutes. And even if you can get those 10 minutes, if you live north of Atlanta in the wintertime, you still won’t reap the sun’s natural benefits — the sun never gets high enough in the sky for its ultraviolet B rays to make it through the atmosphere, down to your skin.
The solution? Supplements — specifically vitamin D3, the most powerful form of the vitamin. Available at most drugstores and on Amazon, vitamin D3 also strengthens your immune system. There’s nothing not to love about this acne-fighter!
Scrub with dandruff shampoo
While most acne is bacteria related, sometimes those nasty little bumps are caused by something completely different — fungus.
If you’ve tried over-the-counter products containing bacterial acne-fighters like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, but saw no improvement in your skin, your breakouts may be the result of a fungal infection.
Fungal acne can look super similar to bacterial acne — see examples here. It’s usually itchy, and most commonly occurs on the back and chest.
Risk factors for fungal acne include:
-Living in a hot, humid climate.
-Wearing tight clothes while working out. (Side note: Never stay in your work out clothes once you’ve finished exercising. Take those bad boys off right away, and only wear them once between washes to prevent all types of acne!)
-Stress and fatigue, which can cause an overgrowth of yeast (fungus).
-Taking oral antibiotics, or being on the Pill.
So, think your acne might be fungal? Try subbing out your usual body wash with dandruff shampoo. Dandruff shampoos like Selsun Blue and Head & Shoulders contain fungicides, which (as you may have guessed) fight fungus. These shampoos are surprisingly gentle on the skin, so squeeze a little on your washcloth (or your Salux towel if you’re looking for something extra exfoliating), lather it on, then let it sit for about 30 seconds to give the fungicides time to work their magic before rinsing.