My Battle with Adult Acne…. *ugh*
*NOTE… there are some F bombs in this post*
I won’t lie to you I’ve stared at this post for weeks now. I’ve cried, been scared, humiliated, embarrassed, you name it I’ve felt it. For those of you that have never experienced acne in the sense of having more then one pimple at a time you may not fully understand the feelings that goes along with the word “acne”. To me the word, acne, has a horrible meaning only because I’ve battled it for nearly a decade and it FUCKING SUCKS!!!!!!!
I’d like to skirt this subject under the rug and pretend that no one sees the acne and scars hidden underneath my make up, but let’s be real here. People notice, and I sure as hell remember that it’s there so why hide in shame? I watch youtube videos of beautiful women flaunting their skin and talking about how hard it is to battle acne and I feel for them. I empathize with them cause I know how hard it is to keep your self confidence and self love up.
This is me… the real me. Freshly showered, no make up, acne scars, pale skin, no filters and no bangs.
When I was in my teens my skin was actually awesome. I had a pimple here or there every once in awhile, but nothing a dab of drug store concealer couldn’t cover. It wasn’t until I turned 19/20 that it got out of hand. I’m not sure if it was a mirage of things… stress, partying or unhealthy diet. I had no idea where it came from and that was the hardest part.
For 10 years, I can count on one hand the amount of times I’ve left the house with no make up on. I will not. I won’t go swimming, I won’t lay out on the beach without some sort of cover up on, for the longest time I wouldn’t let anyone besides my parents and sister see me without make up on. I was embarrassed. I had red angry cystic bumps on my chin, vibrant red scarring on my fair face, and I fed into it, I cried when looking at myself in the mirror and told myself I was gross and ugly. I totally fed into my skin being awful. It was my main focus and how could it not have been? It was on my face!
During that time, I tired nearly everything. At one point I seriously talked to my doctor (without my family knowing) about going on accutane. I just wanted it to be gone and I thought by getting rid of it all I would be pretty and love myself again. I used to scrub my face day and night with pro-activ which in turn made me more pale and bleached all my towels, sweatshirts and pjs that I wore. It made my skin raw and smell like sulfur. GROSS. I used pro-active for 3 years. The pro-active kiosk sat in the middle of the freaking local mall… HOW EMBARRASSING! I would make my mom go to the kiosk to purchase it for me because I was too paranoid someone I knew would walk by and judge me. I finally realized it was doing more harm then good.
After giving up on pro-active, I moved into a more natural approach. I did a cleanse, it helped, after making it much much worse at first. I got allergy tested, started acupuncture, infrared sauna, did yoga, stopped partying, cut out wheat, dairy and refined sugar, did a candida cleanse, only used natural skincare, and began taking vitamins. All this helped…. it did, but didn’t cure it. It just make it more manageable.
Same gal as the one above? You betcha!
In 10 years, I’ve tried many many things. Silly things like putting Neem oil (ugh.. ew) all over my face at night. Neem oil is gross and smells like ass so my pillows needed to be washed daily and I swear the smell never came out of my nose. I put Emu Oil on my face, did nothing for me and if you know where the emu oil comes from …. its gross….at least to me. I used to do a raw egg mask, gross… again nothing but dried out my skin. I used to drink 5-7 cups of green tea A DAY because I was told it helps cure acne…. I actually feel it made it worse and I was fucking awake… ALL THE TIME!
What I can tell you is finally in my late 20’s I’ve come to terms with my skin for the most part. I’m still not comfortable going makeup-less in front of people (working on that), but that’s mainly do to the scarring. I breakout not very often and have a skincare routine I actually think is helping in so many ways. My diet isn’t perfect but I eat as clean as I can on weekdays and drink plenty of water. I think what changed my skin the most was when I stopped being obsessed with it. The moment I got distracted and stopped crying over it, and stopped saying negative things to myself on a daily basis it began to clear up.
For those struggling with acne, you are not alone… there are roughly 17-20 million Canadians that struggle with it at some time in our life. For some it lasts a long time, for others it vanishes quickly.
If you’ve never had acne, you are lucky and remember that. For those people that post nasty comments on peoples blogs, social media, youtube channels, etc and says untrue awful things about their skin, you have no idea the battle that goes on inside someone struggling with acne. Most of the time it takes a giant pep talk and a lot of tears before leaving the house to meet people when acne is at its worst, so your negative comments are not needed. I’m sure those that have battled the worst skin conditions can tell you that your words cannot hurt us more then our own that we tell ourselves daily. I do want to address one thing: having acne does not make you unclean. For those that say wash your face more, take a shower, etc. That’s the farthest thing from the truth, if anything we’re likely the cleanest because we make sure every ounce of makeup, pollution, oil, etc is off our face each day. Can’t get cleaner then that! And… lastly, for those that say stop eating greasy foods. Yes, you are right greasy foods are not good for anyones arteries or organs (including skin), but just because we have acne doesn’t mean we sit at Mcdonalds 3 times a day or eat a basket of fries and then rub our greasy hands all over our face. COMMON!
I’m not saying I have the answer to cure all acne sufferers, but I do know what worked for me to get it under control. I will be sharing my skin care, diet, and even mentally what I’ve done to move forward from acne.
I know I’m not alone out there and I know many men and women have overcome adult acne and I know there are those that are struggling. I hope these upcoming posts help you maybe try something different in your routine and I pray it works as well as it did for me!