Different Anti-Acne Skincare Routines You Can Try, Based On The Number Of Steps

From a simple three-step routine to super extra K-beauty!
PHOTO: istockphoto

>With all the skincare trends and ingredients coming out, it may seem almost impossible to figure out which routine or products will work for your skin. It can be even more challenging for girls with acne-prone or oily skin since it feels like one wrong product or step can lead to the worst breakout of your life. There may be no one-size-fits-all routine that will work for everyone, but here are some anti-acne routines you can try that might just be what your skin is looking for:

3-Step Routine

If you opt for a minimalist, fuss-free routine, it's important to choose hardworking products with active ingredients like AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids) or BHAs (beta hydroxy acids) and vitamins. Just make sure to check if these ingredients work well together and to slowly introduce these products into your routine to avoid any adverse effects.

  1. Cleanser: Happy Skin Beauty Skin Smoothening Gel Facial Wash

    One way to help get rid of blemishes is to make sure your skin is free of dirt, excess oil, and perspiration. The Skin Smoothening Gel Facial Wash does that and more—it contains salicylic acid (a BHA) that eliminates surface bacteria, vitamin C that brightens the skin, and centella asiatica that aids the skin's healing process.

    Happy Skin Beauty Skin Smoothening Gel Facial Wash, P499, Lazada

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  2. Toner: Pixi Glow Tonic

    This brightening toner contains glycolic acid, an AHA that gently exfoliates the skin to reveal radiant, healthier looking skin. It's no wonder it's a cult favorite both here and abroad!

    Pixi Glow Tonic, P1,050, Lazada

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  3. Spot Treatment: Mario Badescu Drying Lotion

    For pimples that won't go away (or if you don't want to wait for your acne run its course), use a spot treatment like Mario Badescu Drying Lotion. It features salicylic acid, sulfur, and calamine—these make up the holy trinity of anti-acne products.

    Mario Badescu Drying Lotion, P1,280, BeautyMNL

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5-Step Routine

If you have more time (and energy!) to maintain a more comprehensive skincare regimen, consider adding an anti-acne mask and moisturizer to your routine. The mask will serve as another acne-fighting product in your routine, while a moisturizer will keep your skin fresh and hydrated.

  1. Cleansers: Pond’s Perfect Care Cold Cream + Céleteque DermoScience Hydration Facial Wash

    Whether or not you use makeup on a daily basis, your skin will benefit from double-cleansing, a.k.a. removing makeup, bacteria, and oil before actually washing your face. The key here is to make sure to use products that won't dry out your skin. For the first step, melt away all the nasties with a cleansing balm like Pond's Cold Cream, and then wash your face with a water-based cleanser like Céleteque's Hydration Facial Wash.

    Pond’s Perfect Care Cold Cream, P131, Lazada

    Céleteque DermoScience Hydration Facial Wash, P99, Lazada

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  2. Face Mask: Origins Out Of Trouble 10 Minute Mask to Rescue Problem Skin

    Applying an anti-acne mask on bad skin days will help heal your current pimples while preventing future breakouts. Try the Origins Out Of Trouble 10 Minute Mask, which contains zinc oxide, sulfur, and camphor that slough off dead skin cells, get rid of excess oils, and refine rough texture.

    Origins Out Of Trouble 10 Minute Mask to Rescue Problem Skin, P1,250, Lazada

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  3. Toner: Herbivore Botanicals Jasmine Green Tea Balancing Toner

    Bring oil-moisture balance to acne-prone skin with a toner like Herbivore Botanicals Jasmine Green Tea Balancing Toner. It's formulated with skin-loving ingredients like jasmine green tea, willow bark, and aloe vera to help soothe and clarify the skin.

    Herbivore Botanicals Jasmine Green Tea Balancing Toner, P2,160, Sephora

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  4. Moisturizer: In Her Element Rose Gel Serum Moisturizer

    Apart from keeping the skin fresh and supple, the Rose Gel Serum Moisturizer from local brand In Her Element minimizes the appearance of pores and fine lines, brightens the complexion, and fades dark spots. The best part is its light gel texture—it doesn't feel sticky on the skin!

    In Her Element Rose Gel Serum Moisturizer, P895, Lazada

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  5. Spot Treatment: COSRX Clear Fit Master Patch

    For daytime use, try a hydrocolloid patch like COSRX Clear Fit Master Patch. It's practically invisible so you can wear it under makeup or on its own!

    COSRX Clear Fit Master Patch, P200, Lazada

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Natural-Based Skincare Routine

When shopping for products to complete a ~*cleaner*~ skincare routine, the general rule is to make sure they’re free of the following: sulfates SLS and SLES, parabens, formaldehyde, phthalates, mineral oil, retinyl palmitate, oxybenzone, coal tar, hydroquinone, triclosan, and triclocarban. You must be label savvy to avoid these controversial ingredients.

  1. Cleanser: Human Nature Balancing Facial Wash

    This organic facial wash cleanses the skin by gently unclogging pores of excess oils and impurities. Its key ingredient is elemi, an ingredient native to the Philippines. It is known for balancing sebum, cutting down bacteria, and reducing skin redness.

    Human Nature Balancing Facial Wash, P200, Lazada

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  2. Toner: Thayers Original Facial Toner

    A popular natural toner, Thayers Original Facial Toner cleanses, tones, moisturizes, and balances the pH level of skin to bring out your natural glow. It’s formulated with witch hazel, an ingredient known for its antioxidant and antibacterial properties.

    Thayers Original Facial Toner, P695, Healthy Options

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  3. Moisturizer: Andalou Naturals Argan Stem Cell Recovery Cream

    Made with fruit stem cells, this moisturizer promotes a clearer complexion by clarifying the pores, curbing bacteria, absorbing excess oils, and fading dark marks. It also hydrates and calms inflammation of the skin.

    Andalou Naturals Argan Stem Cell Recovery Cream, price unavailable, Healthy Options

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  4. Spot Treatment: The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil

    For beauty emergencies, simply dab on some ethically sourced tea tree oil from The Body Shop to soothe and disinfect pimples without drying out the skin!

    The Body Shop Tea Tree Oil, P495, Lazada

Korean Skincare Routine

With the rise of K-beauty a few years back came a slew of “weird” ingredients” that eventually became really popular ingredients in skincare today. Apart from the additives, one thing that sets Korean skincare apart from Western skincare is how it’s highly customized and intensive: Each routine is tailored to one’s skin type, double-cleansing is a must, and skincare goes beyond the products with facial massages and exercises.

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  1. Cleansers: Banila Co Clean It Zero Original + COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser

    To ensure your skin is clean and ready to absorb all the Korean skincare products, first use a cleansing balm like Banila Co Clean It Zero and follow with a facial wash like COSRX Low pH Gel Cleanser.

    Banila Co Clean It Zero Original, P945, Lazada

    COSRX Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser, P540, Lazada

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  2. Toner: Son & Park Beauty Water

    A popular toner in South Korea, Son & Park Beauty Water is a multi-benefit toner that improves skin clarity, offers all-day hydration, and maintains the skin’s pH levels.  

    Son & Park Beauty Water, P450, BeautyMNL

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  3. Serum: SOME BY MI AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Serum

    This powerhouse serum is formulated with a host of chemical exfoliators (AHA, BHA, and PHA) and centella asiatica to slough off dead skin cells, strengthen the skin barrier, soothe troubled skin, and lock in moisture.

    SOME BY MI AHA BHA PHA 30 Days Miracle Serum, P990, Lazada

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  4. Sheet Mask: Leaders Insolution AC Balancing Control Mask

    A Korean skincare routine wouldn’t be complete without a sheet mask! Try one that goes beyond acne care like Leaders Insolution AC Balancing Control Mask. Apart from preventing breakouts, it also hydrates your complexion, lightens acne marks, and soothes irritated and sensitive skin.

    Leaders Insolution AC Balancing Control Mask, P59, Watsons

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  5. Moisturizer: Klairs Midnight Blue Calming Cream

    Perfect for oily, acne-prone, and sensitive skin types, the Klairs Midnight Blue Calming Cream moisturizes the complexion and soothes red and irritated skin. The cream is formulated with guaiazulene, which is a potent skin-calming ingredient extracted from chamomile oil.

    Klairs Midnight Blue Calming Cream, P1,280, Lazada

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