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Monday, January 26, 2015

Should You Use Baking Soda For Acne?

Short Answer: NO!
Re the baking soda: DON’T DO IT. Contrary to what most people think, extreme cleansing such as you’d get with with baking soda, a household cleaner, by the way, can actually aggravate acne.  This is because you need some moisture in your skin to add a barrier to bacteria, irritants and infections.  Over-cleanse your skin, and you lay yourself open to more acne, not to mention rebound oiliness.
Don’t you want a perfect complexion like Jaehyo?  Bet you a 100 won his dermatologist and beauticians aren’t letting any baking soda near that creamy-smooth skin. 
Alkaline v. Acid
And, baking soda makes your skin more alkaline.  But, you actually want a your complexion to be at its natural 4.5-5.5 acid level because that acid mantle kills bacteria and protects you. If you make your skin more alkaline with a product like baking soda, you reduce your skin’s own protection against acne-causing bacteria. 
Personally, I find images like this gross, but it makes the point. 
A Plan
What would help more for exfoliating and cleansing, is to use a cleanser with a skin-level ph, such as Cerave* followed by a salicylic toner and then a water-based moisterizer.  If your skin is really oily, try OCM instead of a regular cleanser to get it back in balance, but still use the salicylic toner and the water-based moisterizer.
There are alternatives that I’ll get into in later post.  But yes, the basic mix is castor & olive. 
A Second Plan
Another alternative, should you want to do mask treatment, is plain yoghurt.  I recommend the full-fat from happy, grass-fed cows kind, because a happy cow will produce healthy dairy. For a yoghurt mask, after cleansing, just rub yoghurt into your skin - in fact, you can do this all over before you shower - and then wait about 20 minutes.  Then wash off, and continue with your skincare routine, salicylic toner and moisterizer. Yoghurt has the same ph level as skin, 4.5-5, and so it’s good for helping your skin to its perfect ph. 
We all need a happy cow in our lives.  
Don’t cleanse your skin with baking soda!  Just don’t.  Follow the basic skin care plan described above - I’ll write later on how to fine-tune it more - and strengthen your acid mantle so you can smile like Jaehyo here.
*With all products, patch test them first. Put a dab on your wrist or just by your ear where any reaction won't show, and wait 24 hours.  If you have sensitive skin, do it a few days in a row to be sure. 

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