I don’t have the best skin — it’s not clear and it doesn’t glow like I wish it would. It’s not that bad, though, when I think about it. I’ve always been concerned with it. The blemishes aren’t that big of a deal when they’re small but the cyst, they drive me insane.
Fun fact: Acne is not because you don’t wash your face. You’re not dirty.
Please don’t suggest that to a person. I have heard it all like people suggesting a better soap or regime is all that a person needs. That’s wild. And, those people are wrong.
Acne can be caused by a lot of things and sometimes, there are tons of steps to figuring it out. From a dermatologist to hormone tests to food allergies to internal battles and etc. There are so many things people don’t consider because they want to lecture someone rather than listen to their battles and just listen.
I have cystic acne. I have gone to my dermatologist for seven years. I have taken multiple prescriptions for antibiotics. I have cut things out of my diet and I have added supplements.
So, I know a thing or two when someone tells me to just wash my face. It’s not that easy. I have hormones and sometimes, they’re imbalanced. It happens.
Here are five things I had to go through to balance my skin whenever I get the chance.
I was on Accutane for a year
Accutane is supposed to be a savior. It’s supposed to be the golden ticket to clear skin. I was able to get through one year of Accutane and my skin did clear up. After a year, the acne came back and I know some people go through with two rounds but I don’t think that is in the books for me. It’s not terrible but it is terrible on your body. I’m glad I went through it but I’ve realized that I didn’t need to go through it. My acne might have seemed terrible to me but it was minor compared to other cases. Sometimes, I look back and realize that it was triggered by stress and terrible eating habits. There were things that I could have changed but I just wanted an easy cure — not that Accutane is an easy cure. I wanted an out so that I wouldn’t have to do all the work. Accutane is a ton of work on your body. It dries you out and brings all your zits forward so it gets worse before it gets better. You take blood tests every month to check your liver. You’re getting tons of Vitamin A in your body and you’re cracking from how much you have been dried out.
I changed my diet
I don’t think we realize how much our diet can affect our skin and hormones. Maybe you can eat terribly and still have great skin but I can not. If I overload on sugar then I can expect to have a few cysts pop up and take over for a week or two. With this knowledge, I had to stop just snacking on whatever and start thinking about the things I put in my body. Now, I won’t say I’m the best at this. I have a bowl full of Halloween candy sitting across from me so there’s no way that I cut all these things out or gave them up. I just learned to indulge in more vegetables, fruits, and almonds. I had to stop resorting to chicken tenders and fries every single day (I was in college so yeah, this was easy to buy in the cafe). Also, I took a nutrition class and it totally helped me realize the importance of veggies.
I give my face a break
Some people can wear make-up every day and not have to worry about breakouts but I can’t do that. Make-up clogs my pores and dries my face every once in awhile. I had to learn that it’s okay to leave the house without makeup on. Who cares about your face? If someone is trying to say something about your face, you better tell them to mind their own. I’ve dealt with a person who would point out a cyst or blemish and just rolled my eyes because it’s none of their business. You have to let go of the shame of acne and that’s what I did. I have scars and sometimes, I’m self-conscious but I’m not trying to impress anyone. The people that I need to impress could careless about my blemishes and those are the people I want in my life. Give your face a break, it’ll thank you later.
I drink a lot of water
If you don’t have Plant Nanny in your life and you need to have something to help you track your water intake, this app is great. I have realized how great drinking water is for my skin. I drink half of my weight in ounces and it’s amazing to see the difference. I can tell when I haven’t had enough water because I break out and my skin looks horrible. Don’t overdo it with water but make sure that you are getting enough in your system especially as the cold season is upon us. We all know the benefits of water so we should utilize those benefits. I really would give props to water helping me out with my skin and hydration levels. It’s definitely a blessing.
Warm Compresses are your best friend
If you have a giant and sore blemish on your face, compress will help you out. You might not see the results at first but they help out. When you’re on Accutane and all those cysts are pulled out, you need to find something that will give some immediate relief. I prefer warm compresses but cold compresses will help too. I use a warm compress whenever I have a cyst on my face especially when it is big. You have to do whatever to get rid of that baby. Sometimes warm compresses will bring your blemish to a head so it can be very helpful.
Eventually, it will get better.
Even with these steps, my skin isn’t perfect.
Just remember that everyone is different and if you are over it, go to a dermatologist and see what solutions they might have for you.
I don’t know if there is a remedy out there for hormones that can 100% get things together. I don’t really want to try with a fear of setting other things off balance.
But, there’s no shame.
Don’t let your acne keep you hidden and make you avoid things like going out.
P.S. Below are pictures of me on Accutane. Obviously, I look like I’m in pain because dry skin and dry lips are no fun.