Like many founder stories, I started Pore House to solve a problem that I was personally affected by. Just as millions of people before me, I have spent most of my adult life struggling to maintain healthy, balanced and clear skin. After more than ten years working in the beauty industry obsessively searching for that one holy-grail skincare product that will solve all of my problems, it finally occurred to me that healthy skin cannot be achieved with products alone (I know, I’m sorry, I wish it was that easy too). Your skin is a window into your overall health and for many of us—myself included—it takes years of searching to uncover the root cause of your issues and then piece together a routine that works for you.
My skin health journey is a long one, and I am really going out of my comfort zone showing pictures of my acne without makeup on the internet for everyone to see, but if just one person reads this and feels helped, it will all be worth it. So, here is my routine that I am constantly tweaking. Keep in mind that every person is different, so I encourage you to book an appointment with a Pore House dermatology provider that can help guide you along the way.
Find a Dermatologist that you connect with
For me, this is probably been the biggest factor in the success of my skin health journey: finding a Dermatologist truly cares about my well-being and acts as my trusted guide as I piece together different parts of my skin heath routine. No one knows your body better than you, and no one knows the skin as intimately as a Dermatologist or Nurse Practitioner—it’s the perfect team. They can help you find the right combination of oral and topical prescription products and some may even be able to recommend diet and lifestyle habits that impact the health of your skin. Not to mention, they can perform life-saving skin checks once a year.
For me, my dermatologist prescribed me Spironolactone after identifying that my acne stems from a hormonal imbalance and they perform a head-to-toe skin cancer screening once a year which is so important because I have had pre-cancerous lesions removed in the past and a history of skin cancer in my family.
Pick the right products for you
The million-dollar question—which skincare products should I use? I think this step requires a lot of personal trial and error unfortunately, but I do think there are some guiding principles that can be used to help weed out a lot of the bad products:
- Stick with reputable brands that are backed by science, take pride in their formulas and use well tested, active ingredients. I love SkinCeuticals and SkinMedica and my co-founder Alexa has a handful of clean brands she loves like Naturopathica and Zoca Lotion.
- Start by filling your routine with tried and true products that are clinically proven to have an impact on your skin. Dermatologist’s top product recommendations are usually in this order: a mineral based sunscreen, a retinol (if you’re not pregnant or nursing), an antioxidant like Vitamin C and a good chemical exfoliant like an AHA or BHA.
- Sometimes less is more. Sounds counterintuitive for a beauty industry veteran to say this, but sometimes, when your skin is angry and irritated, the best thing you can do is to stop using anything except a gentle cleanser and let your skin reset before adding new products.
Make adjustments to your diet, lifestyle, stress and sleep habits
This change takes the most dedication and hard work, but it will have a big impact not just on your skin, but on your overall quality of life. For me, I found that cutting out diary and reducing the amount of sugar and processed foods I consumed had a positive impact on my skin. I also put a renewed focus on self-care by prioritizing work-life balance, a full eight hours of sleep every night and yoga classes to get my body moving. At first, this can feel overwhelming, so I suggest taking an inventory of your worst habits and slowly working your way down the list to make improvements over time.
Want professional results? Incorporate professional in-office treatments
Last, but certainly not least, is one of my favorite not-so-secret anymore beauty secrets—injectables and in-office treatments. I personally get Botox every 4 months on my crow’s feet, eleven lines and forehead and see such an incredible difference in my skin. Not only are my wrinkles relaxed, but my eyes look lifted and brighter. I believe women should feel empowered and not ashamed of their beauty choices and hope that Pore House can be a welcoming place for all patients, no matter where they are the beauty spectrum.
Your skin health is a constant journey
One of the hardest, yet most helpful, things that I heard from one of my favorite Dermatologists after a failed course of Accutane was that caring for my skin was going to be a lifelong journey—there was never going to be one magic product, one magic pill that fixed everything. It sounds weird, but once I realized that I was in it for the long haul, I could finally relax.
We created Pore House as a place to connect with real skin health experts like Dermatologists, Nurse Practitioners and Aestheticians (sorry beauty bloggers) who have spent years studying the skin so you can have a seasoned coach to guide you in uncovering the root cause of your skin concerns and creating a custom treatment plan that is unique to you.
Ready to start your skin health journey? We can’t wait to welcome you to our house.