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What To Do When Your Skin Is Acting Up

People often find Osmia because they’ve been doing too much to their skin for too long. If you have a routine with 15 products, or you switch up your routine frequently, it’s nearly impossible to figure out the culprit when your skin starts behaving differently. If your routine is simple and steady, with only a few products, you’ll have more clarity about what needs to be adjusted, and an easier time tracking the results of any changes you make.

Remember: your skin WANTS to be happy! When it’s not happy, it’s telling you that something in your life is not supporting your skin, and it’s up to you to slap on your detective hat and start solving the problem. We often try to fix our skin issues by trying new products, or adding steps to our routine: scrub away the dry skin, dry out the oily skin, add an acid toner, do another mask! But more often than not, what your skin really needs from you is less. 

What does your skin need less of, though? It probably involves your skincare routine, but it’s smart to start by zooming out and looking at the whole picture, making a list of everything in your life that could be affecting your skin. Once you’ve looked at things from bird's eye view, we can zoom back in on your bathroom shelf! 

Which foods cause the most skin issues?

This question is so hard to answer, because every human being is a unique machine. We know that dairy and sugar tend to cause the most acne, and that gluten and corn can cause inflammatory conditions like dermatitis and eczema, but these generalizations aren’t true in everyone. If you can trim your menu down to a wholesome, plant-rich diet, you can experiment with the specifics from there. Skip soy and see what you notice. Avoid dairy for a week, and see what happens when you add a small amount of organic dairy back. Most importantly, remember that your nutrition is the single most important investment you can make in your health; take the time to understand and nourish your body well, and you’ll end up spending a lot less on skincare products and doctor's appointments! Click here for some recipe inspiration, or here to hit the reset button!

What common household chemicals affect your skin?

We use tons of products in our homes, and many of them are upsetting to our skin. The most common offender is sodium lauryl/laureth sulfate, a foaming agent found in shampoo, body wash, face wash, laundry detergent, dish soap, liquid hand soap, and toothpaste. Even many natural brands use SLS, but if your skin reacts to sulfates, it doesn’t matter if you’re using the naturally-derived version or not—it’s got to go! The same goes for synthetic fragrance, which often contains hundreds of undisclosed chemicals that act as allergens and sensitizers on your skin. Fragrance is sometimes listed as Parfum on a label, so don’t forget to scan for that word. 

Effective house cleaning products are often as simple as lemon juice, vinegar, and water, so if you’re the DIY kind, just google “DIY house cleaning products,” and you’ll find loads of easy recipes. If not, here are some of our favorite household brandsMolly's Suds, Branch Basics, Supernatural, Common Good, Jason, By Humankind

How does stress affect your skin?

More importantly, how doesn’t stress affect your skin? Stress causes inflammation, breakouts, delayed healing, and reduced hydration. That is, unless you treat stress management like it’s your job. 

Stress, in its endless forms, is unavoidable, and our bodies are designed to respond to stress in order to survive. But in our current, endlessly connected lives, stress is becoming a constant stream instead of an occasional spike. Back when we relied on the rhythms of the sun and moon to regulate our activities, we had natural stress release points built into our days; the sun went down, and we gathered over our dinner plates in simple gratitude for a good day’s work. Now, with constant access to news, social media, and podcasts, we all carry far more than our share of the world’s stress. In some ways, it empowers us—we can join forces and voices to create change near and far. But it takes a toll, and passive stress management is no longer an option. We need to build active stress management into our days, creating time and space for it as we do for meals, exercise, and hydration. The easiest way to start takes just five minutes a day

Can your hair products affect your skin?

Yes! Even if you’re careful not to let your shampoo rinse down over your face, some of those ingredients will end up there! Your shampoo and conditioner need to be free of SLS and synthetic fragrance, as well as any leave-in products you apply after washing. Here are a few clean hair care brands with fewer, better ingredients to investigate: Josh Rosebrook, Innersense, Ursa Major, GM Reverie, Rahua, Evolvh

    Which skincare routine is right for you?

    Your skin does not fit one “skin type” for your entire life, but you can usually pick one issue or concern that best fits your skin in a given month or season. Check out the "skin type" tab at the top of our website, and if you don't see the skin issue that seems relevant, click "view all" to see more options. Start with two or three products to suit your skin, and take it from there. Remember to start using new products slowly, and give your skin a few weeks to adjust! If you're not sure which products seem right, please shoot us a note at and we'll point you in the right direction.

    Remember to zoom out anytime you notice your skin acting funky. Ask yourself where MORE (Stress? Ingredients? Sugar??) might have snuck into your days, and where you can do LESS to support your wellness. Your body is a brilliant machine. So is your mind. But like all machines, they suffer when they get clogged with unnecessary things. So step back, take a huge breath, and figure out where and how you can say yes to less.