Mariga’s top tips for reducing congestion in your pores and skin.
Congestion, bumpy skin texture, blackheads and whiteheads are a very common skin complaints. I split them into two categories – surface congestion and deeper issues.
Surface congestion is when your skin feels rough with tiny bumps that you can feel more so than see. This usually happens when your skin needs a little extra TLC such as after outdoor exposure such as sun or ski holiday, after illness has depleted your reserves of water in the skin or during winter when surface dehydration is common. The simple fix for this problem is to do an Enzyme Exfoliation to boost your skin’s processes and smooth surface texture. You can do this at home using a product such as our Enzyme Exfoliator or have a treatment with one of our skin therapists. This type of congestion is generally temporary and will be well on the road to gone after your first home or clinical treatment. To prevent this kind of surface issue from occurring this winter have a look at my tips here.
Pore congestion is deeper and ranges from an occasional blocked pore such as a single blackhead through to multiple involvement of pores with open and closed comedones (blackheads and whiteheads) with a bumpy, uneven texture over much of the face. Often this texture is made worse looking by attempting to cover it with makeup.
Congested, bumpy skin can be ongoing if not treated properly with appropriate homecare and clinical treatments. As there may be many or multiple causes unique to every person a skin analysis is advised in this case to personalise advice and recommendations for you, but there are a few things you can do/use that will be common to most people with this skin issue.
1. DO NOT try to extract blackheads, whiteheads or milia at home. It is easy to cause scarring, pigmentation and infection when you try to DIY it.
2. Always cleanse gently, over stripping the skin with foaming cleansers, hot water, scrubs or too-frequent exfoliation will all cause dehydration and inflammation, a recipe to congestion and dry, bumpy skin.
3. Drink plenty of water and get lots of good fats in your diet. Salmon, avocado and nuts all help. A healthy digestive system plays a huge part in healthy skin
4. Have professional treatments to get you going. Acid peels, enzyme peels and/or extractions will be necessary to deeply clean and reboot the skin to prepare it to absorb and use active ingredients daily for prevention.
5. Then move on to daily prevention.
Ingredients to look for in your products:
Salicylic Acid is the first ingredient to look for. It is a BHA (beta hydroxy acid) which is oil soluble, as opposed to AHA’s such as glucolic or lactic acids which are water-soluble. Being oil-soluble, salicylic acid can make it’s way into pore and effect deep pore cleansing. From the Skin Essentials by Mariga range choose Salicylic Cleanser which also contains zinc to reduce inflammation which can contribute to congestion too (pore swells when skin is inflamed, trapping debris), as well as skin-healing vitamins and minerals.
Vitamin A is a must for skin health regardless of your skin type or issues. It has extra benefits for congested skin as it speeds up cellular renewal, helping to minimise formation of blockages inside the pore. From the Skin Essentials range choose from:
Blemish Control Cream for skin that has congestion AND acne.
Age Slowly Serum for skin that has mild congestion with a tendency to comedones.
Overnight Repair Cream for skin that is over 50 and still getting occasional breakouts or comedones.
Note: salicylic acid and vitamin A can be contra-indicated for use during pregnancy or breast-feeding. For best advice on this or any medical issue always check with your doctor.
Have a skincare question? Call us on 053 9145981 or just drop into our skin clinic in Selskar, Wexford for advice.