There is a time in our lives where we are led to believe that if something's burning, that means it's working. That time is usually during early pubescence, when we're encouraged to slather alcohol-heavy toners and tonics onto our newly blemished pre-teen skin in the hopes that burning away the bacteria will make us look "clean and clear and under control."
Thankfully, I learned early on that those ingredients made my sensitive, dry skin recoil in horror, and I chucked their containers to the back of the bathroom cabinet. I learned to baby my face — but that didn't stop me from treating the skin below my neck like wood that need to be sandpapered.
Over the years, I've scrubbed my back, arms, and legs into submission in an attempt to have the smoothest extremities possible, and this behaviour increases even more so when it's warm out — more of my bod is made visible to the masses. That's also when razor bumps, ingrown hairs, and random blemishes are encouraged to the surface thanks to humidity, sweat, and all the general garbage in the air.
After a recent breakout of bumps and irritation on my legs due to plucking errant hairs that have yet to be obliterated by my lazy attempts at lasering, I headed to the drugstore seeking a fix.
Tend Skin popped into my head, but it was nowhere to be found — and besides, overall that seems pretty pricey for a product that is mostly salicylic acid and alcohol anyway.
Instead, I reached for Clearasil Ultra Rapid Action Pads, which were on sale for a few pounds but usually retail in the US for around $5.
Every night, I swipe a pad over my legs, chest, upper back, and the backs of my arms. The bumps on my legs have diminished, along with the redness. Furthermore, the skin everywhere else is smooth and free of blemishes.
While I wouldn't recommend these pads for the face, much like the gritty apricot scrubs of my youth, I can confirm that they do a body good. (And for my mug? I'm obsessed with Pixi's Glow Tonic right now.)
- What products from your teens do you still love?
- How do you deal with razor bumps and ingrowns?