how to get clearer skin

I Stopped Washing My Face And, Lo And Behold, My Skin Is Clearer Than Ever

A strict skin care routine isn't always the right decision.

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Acne is something almost everyone in the world has struggled with. Personally, I have combination skin and typically would get cystic acne spots around my jawline and chin. When I was younger, I struggled with acne on my forehead, as well as my shoulders and back. I was always really insecure about it, to the point where I don't even have any pictures of it because I couldn't even look at myself. Even today, I still have scars all over my face and body from years of scratching, popping and picking at pimples.

To try and help clear up my skin, I tried so many different skin cleansers, anything I could get my hands on. I tried everything from Neutrogena to Clean&Clear;, I even got a Clarisonic facial brush so I would get a deeper cleanse and not have to use my hands anymore. I tried facial masks and toners, benzoyl peroxide based cleansers to target my cystic acne, vitamin E based everything. I probably changed my skincare routine every five or so months because it just wasn't working, I was still breaking out and I felt like I would never be able to achieve clear, flawless looking skin. At least not without layers upon layers of foundation. Eventually, I just grew tired of it all, I felt like I was doing more harm to my skin than good.

If you had asked me a year ago if I would be one to not use a facial cleanser every day, twice a day...well, I probably would've just given you a really weird look and moved on with my life. But now, it's almost ridiculous how quickly my skin cleared up. The number of spots that I get has reduced drastically, and my skin looks healthier than ever. All I use is some cool water, and a clean face rag. If I'm in the shower, I always remember to cool the water down and sit in the cold for about thirty seconds before rinsing my face and getting out.

Personally, I think the fact that I didn't really wear makeup or sweat all that often was a key reason why cleanser wasn't really helping my skin. There wasn't really anything for it to clean, so it irritated my skin more than it should have. Thus, causing acne.

If you're struggling with finding a perfect skincare routine, I would suggest giving this a try and cutting the detailed routine altogether. Maybe your skin is like mine and just needs a break. In fact, I highly recommend it! Or at least a water-based cleanser rather than a chemical-based one.

And if you already do only use water to clean your face, take a moment right now to appreciate the fact that we don't need that extensive routine. Some people just have the skin type where they don't need to do a whole bunch of stuff to clean their face, and we should be grateful for that because not everyone is blessed enough to be in that situation.

Elizabeth Clark I'm on the right side, no filter and no makeup! Bare skin and all!! Elizabeth Clark

Note: While my routine has simplified, I do still keep my Clarisonic and face cleanser around for when I wear makeup since I know water is not going to do my skin justice in that situation.

Cover Image Credit:

Elizabeth Clark

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20 Small Tattoos With Big Meanings

Tattoos with meaning you can't deny.
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It's tough to find perfect tattoos with meaning.

You probably want something permanent on your body to mean something deeply, but how do you choose a tattoo that will still be significant in 5, 10, 15, or 50 years? Over time, tattoos have lost much of their stigma and many people consider them a form of art, but it's still possible to get a tattoo you regret.

So here are 20 tattoos you can't go wrong with. Each tattoo has its own unique meaning, but don't blame me if you still have to deal with questions that everyone with a tattoo is tired of hearing!

SEE RELATED: "Please Stop Asking What My Tattoos Mean"

1. A semicolon indicates a pause in a sentence but does not end. Sometimes it seems like you may have stopped, but you choose to continue on.


2. "A smooth sea never made a skilled sailor."


3. Top symbol: unclosed delta symbol which represents open to change. Bottom symbol: strategy.


4. "There are nights when the wolves are silent and only the moon howls."


5. Viking symbol meaning "create your own reality."


6. Greek symbol of Inguz: Where there's a will, there's a way.

7. Psalm 18:33 "He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he causes me to stand on the heights."


8. 'Ohm' tattoo that represents 4 different states of consciousness and a world of illusion: waking (jagrat), dreaming (swapna), deep sleep (sushupti), transcendental state (turiya) and world of illusion (maya).


9. Alchemy: symbolizes copper, means love, balance, feminine beauty, and artistic creativity.


10. The Greek word “Meraki" means to do something with soul, passion, love, and creativity or to put yourself into whatever you do.


11. Malin (Skövde, Sweden) – you have to face setbacks to be able to go forward.

12. Symbol meaning "thief" from "The Hobbit." It was the rune Gandalf etched into Bilbo's door so the dwarves could find his house.


13. “Lux in tenebris" means “light in darkness."

14. Anchor Tattoo: symbolizing strength and stability, something (or someone) who holds you in place, and provides you the strength to hold on no matter how rough things get.

15."Ad Maiora" is translated literally as “Towards greater things." It is a formula of greeting used to wish more success in life, career or love.


16. A glyph means “explore." It was meant as a reminder for me to never stop exploring.

17. "Aut inveniam viam aut faciam," meaning roughly, "Either I shall find a way, or I will make one."


18. Lotus Flower. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives forth the flower's first and most literal meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment.

19. The zen (or ensō) circle to me represents enlightenment, the universe and the strength we all have inside of us.

20. Two meanings. The moon affirms life. It looks as if it is constantly changing. Can remind us of the inconsistency of life. It also symbolizes the continuous circular nature of time and even karma.


SEE ALSO: Sorry That You're Offended, But I Won't Apologize For My Tattoos


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3 Essential Tips To Creating The Ultimate Natural Beauty Look

Bringing out your inner glow with a touch of makeup can boost your confidence through the roof.

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The key to achieving natural beauty is not applying too much makeup in the first place. You don't need as much product as you think. Honestly, when it comes down to it, all you need is a moisturizer, a touch of concealer, blush, and mascara. Anything else is going to make you look too caked up when you're going for a natural look.

1. Use a light hand

It can be easy to go in with a heavy hand but in doing this, your end result will look too heavy. When you use a heavy hand, you'll end up looking like a clown. By lightly applying your makeup, you'll be able to see your beauty in all of its glory. Be sure to tap off any excess product off of your brush before applying it to your skin. This will ensure that not only will the product not be stamped onto your face, but instead, seamlessly blended onto your skin. Little stippling motions with either a beauty sponge or a foundation/ concealer brush are the easiest way to do the trick.

2. Use as much natural light as possible

By using light that is toned a different shade, your makeup can look all sorts of messed up. Typically these kinds of lights have a yellow tone in them, which can impact how you see your initial base foundation/concealer. It can turn your view into seeing your skin in a different shade, forcing you to apply either too much makeup or too harshly. I tend to do my makeup in at my kitchen table near a window, or in a bathroom with bright lighting. As long as you have a mirror and natural light, you should be good to go!

3. Use the right products

This can vary from different skin tones, textures, types, etc. Everybody has a different combination of products that works effortlessly for their skin. This can be achieved by the process of trial and error, but once you find that stellar combination, nothing out there will be able to beat it!

While playing in loud eyeshadow colors and sharp contour lines can be fun every now and then, natural beauty is key for an everyday look. Bringing out your inner glow with a touch of makeup can boost your confidence through the roof.

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