Ashley Tisdale Credits Her Clear Complexion to Being Dairy-Free for 5 Years

"Skin never looked so good," the star said as she showed off her skin on Instagram

Ashley Tisdale‘s secret to clear skin is in her diet.

The actress and singer, 34, revealed that she’s struggled with breakouts in the past, and the one thing that has truly helped with her blemishes was cutting out dairy.

“Skin never looked so good ✨ I would love to say it’s just the products I use but I’ve been dairy free for 5 years and I swear it changed everything with my skin,” Tisdale said on Instagram alongside a video of her complexion.

Ashley Tisdale/Instagram
Ashley Tisdale/Instagram

She continued, “I barely break out, I know it’s hard to give up something but when you do after awhile you barely crave it and I feel healthier.”

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N.Y.C. dermatologist Dr. Yoon-Soo Cindy Bae tells PEOPLE that studies have shown that high glycemic index foods can contribute to acne. “There are theories that the hormones in milk affect our sebaceous glands by way of increasing other hormones related to glycemic index. There is also an inflammatory component that plays a role,” she says.

While there are many factors that can cause breakouts, cutting out certain foods can be a good indicator if it is a problem.

“Some may notice if they eat a particular food they get more acne so I suggest trying to decrease consumption of that particular food to see if there is actually a correlation,” Dr. Bae says. “I would give it a few months to notice any changes.”

Dr. Y. Claire Chang of Union Square Laser Dermatology in N.Y.C. also says she has patents who commonly report that milks and cheese trigger acne flare-ups. “I counsel all my acne patients about the potential link between diet and acne flares. I recommend that my patients pay attention to their acne flares and their diet,” she says. “Acne can also be associated with high sugar, alcohol and processed carbohydrates but clinical studies are needed to establish this connection.”

Lately, Tisdale’s been using Neutrogena’s Bright Boost line for her skin (she’s an ambassador for the brand), but said she doesn’t love to pile on a ton of products each night. “When it comes to products and skincare, I am not a big believer in having twenty things you need to do to your face at night. I am a big believer in quality over quantity and being very specific to what your skin’s needs are,” the star told Haute Living in December 2019.

To make sure she stays hydrated all day long (she tries to drink 1.5 liters a day) she carries “a big bottle with me throughout so I know how much I drink.”

She added: “What you eat and finding out what you are sensitive to food wise is important, too, because your skin is a reflection of what you are ingesting. So if something breaks you out, doing a journal of what you ate that day and seeing how your skin reacts is helpful.”

Tisdale has also showed off some of the other skincare products she loves on Instagram.

Ashley Tisdale/Instagram;Inset: Tibrina Hobson/Getty

Her ride or die favorites include plenty of products from La Mer (like The Moisturizing Soft Lotion, Crème de la Mer Moisturizing Cream and The Eye Concentrate), Sisley’s All Day All Year Essential Day Care cream and products from dermatologist Christie Kidd’s line.

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