Most women tend to be silent about their skin problems until the problem increases and it cannot be ignored anymore. It is like having a headache and hoping against hope that it will disappear on its own without any help. It will not go away so you have to do something about it. Most of the specific problems that we are going to deal with are those which crop up from time to time. There is nothing known as a permanent skin problem and if you really look after your skin you can solve most of them.

This is one of the most distressing and depressing problems faced mostly by young women. It is usually a result of hormonal changes and an irregular and increased production of oil by the sebaceous glands. Overactive sebaceous glands lead to a greasy looking skin and thickening of the pores. They become blocked and after a while from pimples. Many times these get infected, become red and have pus in them. Keeping your skin scrupulously clean is the magic word and it is important that you do not touch or squeeze the pimples. I knew of a young girl who, once she started her treatment, kept touching the pimples every five minutes to see if they were still there. They do not disappear so easily and it takes time, a very disciplined lifestyle and a regular skin care routine to clear it up.

Acne is a common teenage problem. A clean stomach and regular bowel movements are very important to keep the skin clear and I would advise most teenagers to be careful about this. Constipation must be avoided at all cost and the easiest way to do so is by taking lots of green vegetables like spinach, cabbage, beans, peas, fresh fenugreek, lettuce, etc. Raw foods are a must and a salad and fruits should be served at the beginning of every meal. The reason why we are emphasizing salads and fruits at the beginning is that these raw foods will fill your stomach and there will be little appetite left for the rest of the items. Also important is the fact that raw foods are easily digestible and lessen the chances of constipation. Drink at least ten to twelve glasses of water every day and avoid surgery foods, fried stuff and aerated drinks. Please avoid all junk food. Never make exceptions when you are depressed.

I have come across many people who try to make themselves happier by eating all the wrong things – Sweets, chocolates, junk foods, regretting it later. Even if you do give in to temptation and tend to go overboard one day, you must make sure that you resist all further temptations for the following week. Go in for regular skin cleaning sittings at a good professional salon where the beauticians know what the skin is all about. So many people have come to me after having ‘Peeling’ done on their acne and ending up worse than before. Peeling and scrubbing is to be avoided in the case of pus infected acne or pimples as it will only aggravate the infection. Use natural clay absorbing face packs after cleaning the skin with ice cold rose water. An excellent remedy for acne-prone skin can be made by mixing 1 teaspoon ground cloves with 2 tablespoons fullers earth and ice water. Another effective remedy can be prepared by mixing 2 tablespoons neem paste with 2 tablespoons fullers earth and 2 tablespoons mint paste and then used as a face pack.

Exercise is a must to improve blood circulation. You will see the result of a regular exercise programme being reflected in the way your skin looks. Whenever you return from an exercise work out, rub an ice cube all over the face and neck. Many times dandruff may cause acne especially when the acne is more prominent on the forehead and cheeks. For this it is important that the dandruff be treated alongside. Keep hair away from the face and those of you who enjoy hot oil head massages must wash their hair after a couple of hours and not leave it on overnight.

Acne must be dealt with extremely carefully and there is no harm in young mothers trying to make their teenage children more aware of how to take care of their skin from an early age. I would definitely prevent the anguish and torment most teenagers go through.