I Finally Found the Cure for Blackheads
I have blackheads (bad blackheads). I have acne scars. I have loads of wrinkles (laugh lines) and I have sun damage. My skin is uneven and doesn’t have a great texture…..
And I have always looked after my skin.
It seems that unless you have lived in the dark all your life, you too will have some or all of the above as well. And it is disheartening as a 43 year old woman that I still get volcano like pimples during ‘that time of the month’ and blackheads on my nose, no matter what I do or what I use.
It is the blackheads that bother me the most. I’ve tried those strips that rip them out. I’ve popped them, poked them, used clay masks and tried just about every product out there.
I’m certain I’ve also spent thousands of dollars on skincare over the years that promise the earth and delivered fuck all. For about three months now I’ve been trying out a range of skincare containing AHA’s. I have a love/hate relationship with AHA skincare. You see; twenty years ago or so I did try out AHA’s when they first came became popular. Being unaware of exactly how they work, I went for the strongest range possible and ended up burning the crap out of my skin. I had gaping, painful bleeding and welts on my chin that took about six weeks to heal. I swore I’d never use them again.
Just a note: This is not a sponsored post, I did not receive any product in exchange for what I’m saying, I have NO relationship with the skincare companies and I purchased these products on my decision alone – with my own money!
Alpha-H Normal to Dry Kit
Fast forward twenty years. I’m still not happy with my skin, no matter what I’ve tried. Six months ago, I started on a range of AHA skincare after reading about them, and my skin looks, well, glowing. It certainly isn’t perfect. I still have wrinkles, discolouration and acne scars, but my skin certainly looks fresher and brighter. I have fewer blackheads on my nose and cheeks and my complexion isn’t dull anymore. I must say that I’m impressed with the results.
Best of all – just about all of my blackheads have GONE!!!!!!
I still have a few smaller ones – and a few of those really stubborn blackheads on the side of my nose – but they are 85% better. And I’m stoked!!!!!
What Are AHA’s?
Alpha-Hydroxy Acids are just that – a type of acid! They are derived from sugar cane and lactic acid (which is from milk). They are all the rage as they have teeny tiny molecules which can penetrate the skin easily. The good thing about AHA’s are although they are acids and are exfoliating your skin, they are also moisturising and generally ‘melt the glue’ that holds dead skin cells together.
In the past, I’ve always used abrasive exfoliants (scrubs with little bits in them), which just makes my skin go bright pink because it’s irritated. Abrasive exfoliants seem also to exacerbate my constant acne problems.
AHA’s are meant to be the bee’s knee’s for anti-ageing and congested skin.
Chemical exfoliants, when used correctly, are more gentle, and they very very slowly remove the dead skin and blocked pores without drying out your skin.
BUT – And there is always a BUT, AHAs also have a downside.
They are expensive:
I purchased a range of AHA products, cleanser, day moisturiser with a sunscreen, night cream and a serum. I also have a ‘peel’ that I use a few times per week. It cost a freaking fortune. So they certainly aren’t a cheap skincare range – no matter which brand you’re looking at.
Skinstitut Moisture Defence – Ultra Dry
The problem with AHA’s is that you need to continue using them to see any results. If you use them for months, then stop; your skin will go back to how it was before. You have to start at the beginning again and that can be very frustrating. GAHHHH.
Dermalogica Age Smart Skin Resurfacing Cleanser (150ml)
You Need to Build up the Strength Slowly
You need to ‘build’ up the strength with your AHA products. This is the BIG mistake I made when starting with these products all those years ago. If you immediately go for the strongest available AHA skincare, it will end badly – that I can promise you. Skin takes a while to get ‘used’ to AHA’s. Start on say 2% for a week, then slowly increase the strength as your skin starts adjusting to the usage. If your skin tingles slightly, that shows it is working. If it feels uncomfortable or burning, it’s far too strong. If you do experience any burning, you need to rinse with cold water immediately and decrease the AHA strength.
I used one product from the range, waited a week and then incorporated another. I think taking it slow really makes a difference as I’ve not had any ongoing tingling (except for putting it on after waxing my ‘stauche’ – that freaking hurt!).
Alpha-H Beauty Sleep Power Peel 50ml
It Does Take A While to See Results
This has always been a problem for me. I tend to ‘give up’ on skin care when I don’t see any change after just a few weeks. Considering I’d spent on bomb on these products, I was determined to give it a good crack. I was going to use every last drop to make sure I got my money’s worth. I can honestly say that it took a good two months to see any difference in my skin. I had a LOT of ‘build-up’ (dead skin etc), so I suppose it took a while for the acid to work its way through all that crap on my skin.
So if you want results, be patient.
Alpha-H Liquid Gold (100ml)
You Have to Wear Sunscreen Or You’ll Burn the Crap Out of Your Skin
Initially, I wasn’t going to bother with the day moisturiser (which was also 50+ sunscreen). I am super sensitive to sunscreen at the best of times, so thought I should maybe give it a miss. I find sunscreen always feels really claustrophobic and it tends to really upset my skin. But I’m really glad I reconsidered and added this product to my regime. You will seriously need to avoid as much direct sunlight as you can when using AHA’s. The reason being is while the product is working its magic your skin is a lot more sensitive and will burn quite easily. The moisturiser/sunscreen I used I was actually quite tolerant to. Although; by the end of the day it did make my eyes start to sting. The sunscreen/moisturiser product also contains a very low dose of AHA’s, so it works during the day (albeit very gently). So trying to avoid the eye area is a good idea. If it does make your eyes sting, flush with water.
I would highly recommend obtaining a sample first where possible if you too are sensitive to sunscreen. It will ensure your skin can tolerate the product before you go shelling out the cash.
I also bought a tinted zinc sunscreen to wear over the top. This gave me a bit of coverage for my skin (cause it’s a tad bit pink at the moment) and also ‘double’ protection from the sun. Even though I work indoors, just walking out the car I’m exposed to the full Queensland sun. Even though only for a few minutes it’s important to cover up, so protect, protect, protect. I’ve also started wearing a hat (OMFG!).
Asap Anti-Ageing Night Cream 50ml
Well; I’ve loved it so much I just invested in an AHA peel. I can use this product with my other AHA skincare two nights per week. My skin looks clearer and cleaner every day. Sure my pores will never be smaller, they will always be potholes on my face, but at least they aren’t full of crap which makes them look more obvious than they are.
I’m pleased that I don’t have to ‘scrub’ my skin to make it feel smooth. It feels baby soft in the mornings. I really feel like my skin looks the best it has in ages. Sure the money is a kicker, but I’m happy with the results and it certainly beats going in to pay for laser resurfacing, which to me seems quite scary and invasive.
BUT; the biggest thing was that other people noticed.
If you’re unhappy with your skin and have suffered from skin problems like I have for years, seriously consider giving it a red hot go. It’s totally worth it and feeling good about something that’s bothered you for so long, really does give you a little boost of confidence. And every mum deserves to feel good about herself.