Six Easy Ways to Unclog Pores, and Pull Off No-Makeup Makeup


The ‘barely there’ makeup trend is still very much here, but for those of us with less than flawless skin, it’s a gorgeous but unreachable pipe dream. Though you can’t fake good skin, you can get it – you just need to know how.


The no-makeup makeup trend is completely gorgeous, but there are a miraculous few of us with poreless, lineless skin and the immeasurable powers of Adobe Photoshop. Though not completely phobic to running for an early train, or stopping at the corner shop, sans slap, many of us are not entirely confident braving parties, interviews or going out for lunch without a dab of tinted moisturiser and a little bit of mascara.


With new technologies in highly pigmented, undetectable foundations and concealers, faking a flawless complexion is more achievable now than ever – but it can’t work miracles. Jumping on that ever-enticing no-makeup makeup bandwagon requires tackling the core of the pore problem: a well-honed, educated, and regular skin care routine. It takes work, but with a few minor additions and subtractions to your skin care lineup, you will be seeing good results in days, and you’ll be dotting that concealer only where you need it in no time.




  1. Make time for a massage


Ever had a great facial? That plump glow your skin has for the next few hours is most likely due to a face pummelling by an experienced facialist. Effective massage stimulates blood circulation, flooding your complexion with oxygen, and deeply hydrating the skin so pores can turn over dead skin cells effectively. Massaging also drains congested lymph glands of toxins (along the jaw and neck), to leave skin clearer and less puffy. Don’t splash out on costly treatments either, as it’s so easy to do with any oil on your own. Lisa Eldridge’s step-by-step guide is so simple to follow in real time, and by giving your skin this TLC treatment once a week, congested pores will have a major clear-out, and you’ll be fresh and glowing in no time.




  1. Maintain a good skincare routine

It’s obvious, yet so easy to take for granted. A thorough double cleanse every single night with warm water and a flannel will have you seeing notable skin-clearing results in days. By removing dirt, old moisturiser, SPF, and makeup, good cleansing provides a clear canvas for any serums, spot treatments, or moisturisers to absorb more effectively, rather than sitting atop the dirt of the day and blocking your pores even more.




  1. Machines are a worthy investment

If the warm steamy flannel or splash-off technique isn’t cutting the cleansing mustard, it’s time to invest in a sonic cleansing tool. Gentle enough to use morning and night, the feather-soft bristles deep cleanse with the same technology as a sonic toothbrush. It gently yet effectively sloughs away dead skin, debris, and pore-clogging nasties that cling to the face throughout the day. Plus, with a handy timer for each section of the face, it’s so easy to use – just be sure to let the brush do the work. There’s no need to buff. With an ultra gentle cleanser without any scrub, glide the brush over your face for silky smooth skin.




  1. Monday = Mask-day


Remember those ‘3 for £1’ masks from Superdrug we used at 17? The night before prom, in a panic, that just made everything ten times worse? The artificial fragrance and cheap ingredients really weren’t doing anything for those A-level-breakouts. However, a good quality once-a-week mask can be an affordable treat in maintaining clear skin. Because they’re used less often, you can justify splashing out a little for better quality ingredients – or even make your own at home (but please, no baking soda!). With one for every skin type, slot in the odd hydrating sheet mask to soak dry, flaky skin (Korean brands are affordable and full of skin plumping ingredients), fruit-based masks with AHAs or BHAs to gently exfoliate breakouts, or slather clay on oilier areas to draw out impurities.




  1. Minus the fragrance


It’s still a wonder that 90% of skincare products are chock to the brim with fragrances. Whether they’re artificial, or swish expensive essential oils, fragrances are known to irritate skin, especially sensitive skin, causing redness, angry flare-ups and blotchiness. If your skin seems angry, tight, and red, and you don’t know why, seek out fragrance free products specially designed for sensitive skin, to calm the redness down and prevent further flare-ups.




  1. Make a date with face oils

Healthy skin produces oil, or sebum. It needs it, yet many still get twitchy about putting oil on their faces. However, especially for oily skins, the right face oils help to rebalance the face’s status quo and prevent breakouts caused by panicky, oil-stripped skin. Skin-loving oils can also be sparingly (one to two drops should do it) mixed into oil-free moisturisers to balance combination skins and amp up the ethereal glow. Scope out the oils that are as organic and natural as possible, with skin soothers such as rosehip, avocado and mangosteen, to even out skin tone, fade scarring and break-outs, and inject softening moisture.


What to add:


Water: Your organs need water, the vital ones more so than your skin. So when you’re dehydrated, the first place your body will drain for much-needed H20 is your skin. Drinking your recommended two litres relieves dry, dehydrated skin and flushes out toxins and acne-causing bacteria, so drink up.


Anti-oxidants: Not all fruit and vegetables are created equal. Some, like citrus fruits, lychees, and mangoes, contain high amounts of sugar that can aggravate break-outs. Opting for anti-oxidant rich fruits and veggies like kale, spinach, blueberries and papaya aren’t just for the clean-eating converts, they work wonders on unhappy skin too.


What to subtract:


Acne-causing ingredients: In this case, what you don’t know will hurt you, or at least clog your pores. If you’re prone to blackheads and acne, ingredients often found in cheaper products like mineral oil, shea and cocoa butter (often found in moisturisers for dry skins), or alcohol and foaming agents like sodium laureth sulphate and sodium laurel sulphate (SLSs), can be making your skin worse. When skin care shopping, scan your ingredient lists and steer clear of these acnegenic ingredients.


Caffeine: Though caffeine may be your sleep-deprived brain’s lifeline, it’s your skin’s worst enemy. Triggering an adrenaline surge, caffeine messes with your insulin levels, and makes sebum levels spiral out of control, thus causing acne. Switching coffee for tea (green is best) and avoiding Red Bull like the plague could work miracles on hormonal break outs.


Good luck on your clear skin quest. With these simple switches, you’ll be rocking that ‘Off-Duty Kendall Jenner’ look in no time.


Words: Mimi Davies


Tags: #NoMakeupMakeup #Makeup #Skincare #Pores #Cleansing #Oily #Acne #Blemishes #Clear #Clogged #Beauty

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