For years leading beauty columnists have told us to quit sugar, paste our faces in toothpaste and to take constant medication for increased stress however for many of you who have read beauty junkies posts about the BB creams that give full coverage or what masks to use, that unfortunately if you struggle with breakouts leaving you red, irritated and with blackheads for days these advice columns don't offer much help. As a modelling agency we value clean healthy skin - models are human and can have breakouts too but perhaps spot breakouts aren't only from clogging up pours with last nights make up or helping yourself to a four pack of mars bars, no there are many 'root causes' that are quite hard to believe. For many acne is like that one dodgy Tinder date who never quite disappears, with acne there’s always that same vague fear they might turn up at the morning of a shoot, or at a major casting however here at IMM we are going to uncover a few causes that aren't spoke about often enough.
1.) Your mobile phone - Yep your phone, one of the most important items in your life is secretly betraying your skin and not to mention your phone can hold up to 18 times more bacteria then a mens flush (ewwww). If you're a model your phone is your source of communicating with casting directors, photographers and the bookers in the agency - your work phone triggers the relationship between flare ups and stress. Dermatologist Stefanie Williams explains Stress releases hormones such as cortisol which increases oil production and inflammation, many leading dermatologists will focus on relaxation therapies however a must have to always have in your bag is anti-make up wipes - perfect to clean your gadgets and use headphones for calls to minimise bacteria spreading. IMMs top tip is to grab a pack of Bioderma Sensibio H2O Micelle Solution Make-Up Removing Wipes; Bioderma's famous Sensibio H2O micellar water now comes in face wipe form, with fatty acid esters that leave skin soothed and ready for the next step of your regime.
2.) Conditioner - pots around your hairline and shoulders? Your haircare products could be to blame. Gels and hairspray tend to be the most irritating, but it’s the oil-based products that trap the most acne-forming bacteria. Panthenol in particular (found in conditioners) is often a culprit so avoid in areas in contact with the skin such as fringes and tie your hair up before bed. In addition one beauty product for those with thick hair that causes plenty of issues is coconut oil, if using make sure to use in small doses - We advise Moroccon oil running it through the ends of the hair and roots, give it a quick blow dry before bed and leave tied up.
3.)No, it’s not just from that unbearable tense feeling you get after watching Making Of A Murderer or the up roar anger towards the war on drugs documentaries. It’s that your viewing gadget stops you from sleeping, and lack of sleep equals - you guessed it, spots, thanks to increased cortisol levels. “Electronic devices such as laptops and electronic readers used before bed can upset our circadian rhythm (our internal body clock),” warns Dr Williams in her latest health column for leading magazine InStyle, The solution? We advise you to stop looking at your screen two hours before you bed in order to prevent short-wavelength-enriched light’ which informs your brain it isn't sleepy time. For a medical solution that hasn't proven positive amongst those who suffer insomniac and even for models who fly long haul for shoots, Try This Works Sleep plus+ Trouble Shooter 120ml, £35 - an item for all models travel bags
4.) According to dermatologists many are experiencing hormonal imbalances later in life thanks to a history of taking birth control pills which have essentially delayed their acne, many individuals can be on the piss for years and once they come off experience a harsh case of acne in there later years. The solution? Is to take the combined pill, due to genetics some people have more hormones on their oil glands which makes them more sensitive to fluctuations in androgens and oestrogen, certain birth control pills will help top block these receptors. Wit the pill unfortunately side effects may occur - so if you aren't comfortable going on the pill we suggest observing your diet and stress levels however to help with those pre period zits we suggest, Neutrogena’s Visibly Clear Rapid Clear Treatment,£3.69.
5.)Fact of the day - Your skin doesn't care if your bag is a vintage Chanel off the shoulder piece or a hammered tote bought at your first gig resting on your shoulder - it’s the resting bit that’s causing the issues. 'Like phones, your handbag can be a breeding ground for bacteria - think about it on route to a casting in London you are constantly on public transport and constantly dumping your stuff on studio floors, therefore if you do struggle with spots on your shoulders/back make sure to have barriers between your bag and body and invest in good anti-bacterial body wash. Another issue with being a women and acne some develop symmetrical patterns of acne from sports bras. Some bras are made of cheap elasticated rubber and combined with increased sweating and rubbing this can cause inflammation and breakouts.” Solution? We say invest in a good sports bra - choose Nike Sportswear over Primark any day and the ProActiv’s Cleansing Body Bar, £17, Proactiv+ post-gym
6.)“Say ‘oil’ and most acne sufferers freak out, but we’re learning about the idea of good and bad oils; Stated by skin specialists at Neutrogena. Conducting a year long-study into the importance of oil in acne-prone individuals, over that year the result demonstrated "What we found is that the ratio of good to bad oils in people suffering from acne has totally flipped and although we’re still struggling to find out why, it means we can start to tackle the problem by rebalancing rather than removing the oils.” Cleansing is your first step, but beware as cleansing the skin to much can over-stimulate the skin causing an over-production of sebum. The solution? The best products to select are ones with ingredients designed to micro-clear sebum such as salicylic acid, we suggest Acclenz Deep Action Blemish Serum, £49 and Murad’s Advanced Acne & Wrinkle Reducer, £45 however for a cheaper alternative look for tea tree oil infused products as found in boots.
7.)A fan of a skinny cappuccino? Well according to leading doctors, the healthier option may be a reason for sudden outbreaks; From a recent study 30% of all adult acne cases are down to diet with dairy (low-fat in particular) being the biggest culprit. “There’s now some good scientific evidence to show that exposure to the hormones found in milk can also trigger acne in humans.” Especially that skimmed milk is worse as it has a higher GI index than full-fat milk, sugar being the second most important skin offender; So dairy milk is defiantly a no no. In addition gut issues can certainly be a trigger either due to the overuse of antibiotics causing an overgrowth of microbes; our advice is to invest in Terranova’s Probiotic Complex with Prebiotics 100 Capsules, £26, (www.naturisimo.com) to help support the gut and improve the digestive system.
As our models have clear, glowing dewy skin we have selected our three top girls of the moment; From NYC beauty curve model V who will be landing in London next week, channelling her 70s vibe in her latest shoot, stay posted! To Darcey already shooting with renowned fashion photographer Julia Underwood and soon to be appearing in leading editorial ans we can't forget the beautiful curve model Poppy who has recently appeared in Plus Equals,for there latest campaign. Check out who we are crushing on below.