I’ve had ‘bad skin’ or Acne for the longest time, probably about 13 years now. It started when I was a teenager and at first I expected it to be a short lived problem, just another hormonal trial! After probably about a year I sought help from my GP and spent the following 3 trying every topical cream and antibiotic available via the NHS. Nothing helped, occasionally I noticed a mild improvement for a while but there was never a cure and often the side effects were uncomfortable.
I’ll be totally honest here, in my late teens and early 20s I didn’t do everything I could to give my skin the best chance of clearing up. I went out at night, fell asleep with makeup on, didn’t wash my brushes often enough – all that normal but slightly gross stuff.
I’ve been quite lucky I think in that I was never bullied because of how my skin looked. That’s not to say it hasn’t got me down and affected my confidence. There’s been no shortage of well meaning suggestions and promises of miracle cures that have left me feeling gross and unhappy.
Over the years I’ve swung between accepting my skin won’t change so I need to learn to cover it up and feeling like I need to take action. At one point I managed to get a referral to the hospital dermatology department and undertook rigorous tests. Finally after around 8 years of acne the Dr agreed it was serious enough to warrant Isotretinoin, a very strong drug with potentially serious side effects which absolutely cannot be taken while you’re pregnant. I thought I’d finally found a way out until two days before I was due to start my prescription when I found out I was pregnant.
Fast forward to the present day and I’m 27 years old with skin like a 17 year old. Frankly, I’ve had enough. Over the past six weeks I’ve implemented a new skincare routine, gradually adding more products to make sure they’re agreeing with my skin. I’ve already seen a big improvement and I’m working up the nerve to share some barefaced photos and talk about all of this a bit more. It’s majorly nerve-racking and a little bit embarrassing – which I know is silly!
Something else I’m experimenting with at the moment is changing my diet. I’ve read a lot of research about how eliminating dairy can help improve acne and that Isotretinoin or smoothies can help too because it’s got powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. I’ll definitely be sharing the products which are working for me with you soon and some more info about how I gradually introduced them so if you also suffer from adult acne keep an eye out for that.