My Struggle With Acne
The first sign of high school for me was the first zit. I saw it and popped it like every kid does. Unbeknownst to me, I started a zombie apocalypse to my face with each pop.
I had fairly mild acne around the age of 13 and 14, and it didn't really start taking over till 15. Once the stress of friends, boys, and life started taking over, so did the complexion infection.
At 16, my face was so bad, that I would be in excruciating pain because the acne had become cystic, affecting the nerves on my face. I tried every different wash and "system" from every different tv commercial and dermatologist recommendation. I was even prescribed acutane which isn't (and shouldn't be) for everyone. I think it has been recalled since I took it, just to give you a little insight. Acutane dried me up like the Sahara desert, to the point of cracked, bleeding lips and horrible man-like dandruff. I used Aquaphor on the hourly and lotioned up like a hand model.
After acutane, I was the perfection of skin tone. My freckles were picture perfect, and my face was blemish-free.
Then, life happened again.
I stressed, washed my face with chemical-ridden products, dated too many ass holes, and worked 4 jobs at once.
My acne became so bad, that people started asking if I was okay. I would cry if I accidentally brushed my face in a way where it nicked the tiny volcanoes.
After dating, being engaged, and marrying my husband(and best friend), I still had pepperoni pizza skin. My husband decided one day, to tell me to just stop. Stop washing my face and stop putting on makeup. No more Esthetician, no more dermatologist, and no more counseling(yes, I went to someone to help me de-stress to see if it helped my face).
I stopped wearing make up and washing my face for two weeks, and it was as awful as it sounds. I was so self-conscious and felt so greasy that it was uncomfortable. I made a promise to myself to not touch my face to pop, scratch, or even rest my hands.
And then, the numbers went down. I counted one less breakout per day, at the very minimum.
The breakouts became smaller, less painful, and less noticeable. What I began to notice were the scars, unfortunately.
The indents and the dark splotches were extremely evident, so I began wearing makeup again. But this time, I looked at the ingredients:
Cetyl alcohol, acid, some ingredient I can't pronounce, etc., etc..
Nothing was good for you, and everything clogged my already large and swollen facial pours.
I began being extremely picky as I studied the makeup aisle. I couldn't believe that I settled for drugstore makeup. I also realized why so many other girls had horrible acne.
The ingredients in half of the things we feel the need to put on our face, SHOCKS me. These products are literally burning your skin, ladies. Beauty is NOT worth the pain.
You may ask "what do you use now?", and I'm totally happy to tell you!
Organic Coconut Oil.
I use it as a moisturizer after showers(keep in mind, I don't use face wash) and as a makeup remover(however, I just ordered Urban Organic's Makeup Remover, and I'm stoked to try it out!). Just soaking a cotton ball and going over your makeup takes everything right off, including eye make up!
I also use this as a makeup remover, or if I really need a deep clean on my face.
Less is more. The more products you use, the more irritated and aggravated you will make your already sensitive skin. Why would washing all of the natural oils off while rubbing, toning with an acid-based toner, then moisturizing it with a lotion that has alcohol in it, be good for you? You are not born with acne. The products and diet we subject our body to, causes it. It is not some incurable disease that plagues the helpless. We have the ability to take care of our bodies by just simplifying what goes in them and on them. Don't settle with bad skin.
Just like working out and eating healthy gives you the body you want, eating healthy, drinking water, and simplifying your products will give you the skin you want.
I will always struggle with acne. If I mess up my digestive system by cheating on my plant-based lifestyle, if I become stressed out because of life's happenings, or when shark week never fails to make it's appearance, I will break out. I have just learned how to attack it at the source, and approach it more naturally so that my skin doesn't completely hate me later.