Finally seeing improvement with this
I'm 20 years old and have always had light acne. I'm talking a couple of zits of a good day, around seven small ones of a bad day. I've never really thought much of it and it's always been easy to cover with makeup. I used Neutrogena face scrub daily and that was pretty much all I needed.
Right before I left for London four months ago, my face started breaking out pretty bad around my chin and mouth. The whole time I was there, it only got worse. It was red and embarrassing and I had no idea why it was happening. I figured once I got home things would clear up.
However, things only got worse. I got an acne facial which completely dried up my skin. For days I was flaking everywhere and it was disgusting. Afterwards, the acne on my chin and mouth area got better but I got cystic acne all over my cheeks and jawline. At one point, I counted my pimples which is neurotic but I had over 50! At least 10 of them were cysts. I bought Exposed which seemed to help but after 30 days, my skin was not clear as promised. I went to the dermatologist and was prescribed tetracycline and BP.
The antibiotics made me extremely sensitive to sunlight and I would become red and itchy all over if I was in the sun too long. I stopped using that because I also just don't feel like antibiotics are sustainable in the long run. I really wanted to try to handle this the natural way. I feel like breaking out in acne out of nowhere is not normal and that has to be your body telling you that something is not right inside!
I became obsessed with my skin. My whole day depends on how my skin looks. I am completely depressed, socially withdrawn, and unmotivated to do pretty much anything. It's so sad because I still have no idea why this happened. To have cystic acne all over my cheeks made me feel like I didn't even know how was looking back at me when I looked in the mirror. I hated myself and still have such negative thoughts.
Well, I got about 8 cortisone shots for the remaining cysts. It worked for most of them, but about 3 are still present and small. About 2.5 weeks ago, I started researching how to cure acne more naturally. I changed my diet by cutting out all meat except chicken, eating more seafood, no milk, less cheese, I drink fruit smoothies with kale daily, and eat as many vegetables and fruits as possible. I also drink two glasses of green tea with lemon and honey every day. I started taking 50 mg of zinc, 1000 mg of b5, and a multivitamin daily (I've been on birth control for many years and continue this). Twice a day I wash my face with the same scrub I've always used, then follow up with diluted tea tree oil. I spot treat with tea tree oil in the morning and BP at night. Every night I also use a mask of either organic honey and lemon or strawberries and honey.
I can't say my skin is amazing. It's very dry in the two remaining problem areas on each cheek but I have naturally oily skin so my derm told me to try to stay away from moisturizers. However, I can say my skin is getting better. I used to look at my face at an angle to see the texture of my skin and look at all of the bumps across my face. It used to look like the Rocky Mountains. Now, there's only a couple of much smaller bumps on each side. My skin's still red, scarring is inevitable, and I can still feel bumps deep down in my skin that haven't yet fully disappeared and are causing the discoloration. I still also get a new zit here and there, but nothing I am not used to.
I think my biggest hurdle now is getting my confidence back. My acne is getting better but I'm still acting as if I look like the elephant man. I guess the hardest thing about acne is going from feeling good about yourself and never really thinking about your skin to obsessing about it and thinking everyone else is doing the same. I'm terrified if someone I know sees me now, they'll think what happened to her? I hate lights, mirrors, bright sunlight, seeing people I know, going out, getting ready, getting up, using the bathroom because of the mirror---This isn't normal people! I know it's not but no one can understand how deeply acne affects your mind until they suffer from it, too.
I hope everyone finds what suits them best! For me, medication was not the way to go. It wasn't helping and it was just stressing me out. Oh, and I've also found yoga to be helpful is soothing the stress. We all know stressing only makes things worse but sometimes we can't help it. My advice to anyone would be examine your diet, look into b5 and zinc, and tea tree oil is your friend! Trust me, I've spent HOURS on the internet obsessing over how to heal my acne. This is what I've found works for me and I'm sticking to it. I don't expect crystal clear skin because I've never had it. I just want my normal skin back so I can go back to being happy, healthy and productive. It just doesn't seem fair that this can happen to some people, ya feel me?!
Btw I use Physicians Formula makeup--Never broken me out.
P.S. My best friend said something today that made me feel so great. She told me, "You are so beautiful. No one is looking at your skin. They are looking at your pretty eyes, your gorgeous smile, your amazing hair. Everyone has imperfections, and no one is perfect." I also think it's important to remember positive energy and positive thoughts show through our faces. I know more than anyone how hard this can be- I am so negative lately. But I am trying to become more positive because being negative does no one any good.
Good luck to you all in your search for happiness and clarity.