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Understanding Your Skin & Tips For Fighting Acne

Tips For Curing Acne

As a professional makeup artist and now a makeup artistry educator, I say this to my students time and time again – makeup only looks as good as the skin it’s on.

Think about it. The better the skin is cleansed, hydrated and primed for makeup, the smoother the makeup will glide over it. The end result will be a face that looks clean and glowing. The makeup will compliment the woman, but not overpower her.

makeup only looks as good as the skin it’s on.

So what to do when the skin isn’t cooperating? Let’s start by first understanding your skin type. Defining your skin type is the first step to caring for it and maximizing its appearance. Here are a few guidelines to help you first identify the skin type you have.

Tips For Curing Acne


  • No/few imperfections
  • No severe sensitivity
  • Barely visible pores


  • Almost invisible pores
  • Dull, sometimes rough complexion Redness from being dry
  • Less elasticity
  • More visible fine lines from the dryness


  • Enlarged pores
  • Dull or shiny depending on how much surface oil there is
  • Blackheads, pimples, whiteheads or other blemishes especially in the t-zone


  • Can be dry in one area of the face and oily in another Typically oily in the t-zone
  • Blackheads, blemishes
  • Dry cheeks or forehead

Acne Prone

  • Redness
  • Topical dehydration often brought on from using harsh products Bumpy & lackluster appearance
  • Blemishes & irritation


  • Redness
  • Itching
  • Burning
  • Dryness

Once you understand what type of skin you have, you can then decide on a skincare routine. Caring for your skin with a wonderful skincare routine will make all the difference in the world when you apply your makeup. For all skin types it is my personal and professional opinion that all natural skincare products are amazing at keeping the skin clear, clean and hydrated.

Next, it helps to understand the basic principles of what our skin essentially is. The skin is a living breathing organ. It is, in fact the largest organ of our bodies. The skin is comprised of layers. The outer layer is called the epidermis. This is the layer that we work with when we apply our makeup and skincare. We want the epidermis to be plump and hydrated so the makeup appears smooth. The dermis lies under the epidermis. This is where collagen lives. Collagen is what makes the skin elastic and helps it to retain moisture within it’s cells. Collagen wanes with age, so mature skin can tend to look less hydrated and plump.

The skin is a complicated structure with many functions. If it is not functioning properly we will see things such as rashes, acne, rosacea, dryness and pigmentation disorders to name a few.

Tips For Curing Acne

One of the things we get asked about a lot as makeup artists is how to deal with acne prone skin. Having skin that is breaking out is upsetting and people that suffer from acne are always looking for solutions that lead them to clearer skin. Stay calm, regardless of what’s going on with your skin, it’s important to know that there are always ways to optimize your skin’s appearance.

As a makeup professional, I have seen it all – blemishes, acne, large pores, redness, whiteheads, rosacea – you name it. Acne can be characterized by bumps, redness & blemishes, which can occur in people of all ages. Cystic acne has bacteria trapped in the pores, has cyst like bumps and is often the most difficult to treat. People that are dealing with acne are acutely aware of the issue and want to know how to best maximize their appearance. There have been countless times I have been in the middle of a makeup application only to have the client well up with tears because they were upset about the condition of their skin. Because of this, I became obsessed with skin & skin care so I could help my clients look their very best. The one thing that I found is that acne prone skin is truly sensitive. Most treatments for acne include drying it out with harsh medicine and chemicals. Most of the time, these treatments rarely work and they leave behind skin that is red, irritated and badly dehydrated.

Tips For Curing Acne

There are more acne treatment products out there than can ever be discussed in one article. I have seen miraculous results when people leave behind the harsh treatments and chemicals and cross over to gentle and all natural skin care products. Even more effective can be oil based products as they can deeply clean the skin without stripping it. For oily and acne prone skin this can be a godsend as the skin stays more cushioned and therefore does not signal the oil glands to produce more oil. Yes, I realize that this is counterintuitive. It reads for the kind of thing that nightmares are made of, but the truth is that oil is the one thing that can actually cleanse & calm skin that’s upset. I’m not talking about just any oils here. All oils are not created equal. You will want to make sure that you search for products that are high in quality and offer a mixture of vitamin enriched carrier oils and essential oils. These carrier oils ensure that the healing properties of essential oils all play nicely with each other and work hard to calm and clear the skin.

If oils scare you, that’s ok. I still encourage you to find all natural skincare products that will nourish your skin, clean and brighten it. The power of Mother Nature is amazing and just like how your body feels better when you eat vitamin and mineral enriched foods, your skin will look and feel better with nourishing skincare that is all natural.

Once the skin is calmed and hydrated, the stage is set for the makeup to glide on smoothly. Whether you choose liquid foundation, powder foundation or no foundation you want to feel proud of the face your are putting forward. The best way to enjoy the results from your daily makeup routine is to first truly show your skin some love by giving it the same attention and nutrition that you give your body. For that reason I always suggest all natural skincare products that are cruelty free. The results they provide are nothing short of amazing!

Dina Altieri