I’ve been meaning to write this blogpost for a while now as I didn’t get the chance to gather my thoughts and finally review my skin experience earlier. After suffering from acne for quite a while, I would say around a year (which felt like a lifetime!) I did find myself struggling to find the perfect skincare regime that best suits me. I thought now would be a good time to share my personal experience of how I cured my acne, what really flourished my passion for health and ways I maintain it now.
Growing up, my skin was totally okay; hydrated and clear. Then around the time I was leaving sixth form, my face began breaking out pretty severely. I was advised to seek help from my GP whereby they gave me (pretty strong) doses of steroid creams which aggravated my skin even more and worsened it, leaving it with scars and a lot of redness. Meanwhile, I didn’t particularly follow a healthy diet; packed with a lot of processed foods, junk, sweets and featured A LOT of dairy chocolate!
I had already tried every acne product on the market. At times, some of it worked temporarily, but it would eventually stop working and then the acne would get worse
Some days I stayed at home because there just wasn’t enough confidence in me to go out and show my face in public. I’d cancel on my friends and make up any excuse to just not leave the house and show up. Some days I wanted to scream and rip my skin off because I hated so much what I saw in the mirror; and I know for a fact a lot of both girls and boys struggle with this daily.
I felt ugly and gross. Other women had beautiful, glowing skin and I looked like a pizza-faced teenager. I’d heard the term “adult acne,” but I never expected to experience it myself, especially with the skin I had as a child.
Then one day, after feeling so emotionally and physically drained out, it occured to me to finally visit a skin specialist and it was the best decision I made. The impact one person can have on your self esteem really is life changing. I was told by my dermatologist to get a few health checks (things like blood tests, ultrasounds, thyroid function tests, fasting glucose tests, lipid level tests, etc.) to aim to eliminate the possible causes and really get to grips to what I actually suffered from. The results all came out normal but what turned out to be the cause was a food intolerance which happened to be dairy. I was also told a bacteria (that came from the outside environment) worsened the skin problems I already had.
I was given temporary medication to help cure this and was advised to cut out all dairy from my diet. At first, that sounded like absolute hell because Galaxy chocolate was basically what kept me sane! Little did I then know, my health obsession came about. I told myself that junk food shouldn’t keep me happy and that I should use this opportunity to really branch out and try out new foods. Foods I was always so afraid from; greens, veggies, natural sugars, yummy complex carbs, etc. Since I was on a gap year too, I had more time on my hands to read and research. I later discovered it was the funnest most enjoyable thing to do ever.
And amazingly, without even trying, my acne was clearing up. It was clearing up! It was like a miracle happening right in front of my eyes.
When I reintroduced processed food and dairy into my diet after the elimination period was over, I immediately saw my symptoms—and acne—return. Amazed and so grateful, I cried. I finally had the cure for my acne.
Don’t eat chocolate or greasy food, sure, I’d heard those acne tips before. But removing dairy? News to me. They certainly didn’t mention that in all the magazine articles I’d read about “getting rid of acne for good.”
Now I’ve been dairy-free and acne-free with a more plant-based rich diet for almost two years, and I’ve never felt or looked better in my entire life.
I know that one shoe doesn’t fit all and I am definitely not saying that you should try this to help cure your acne or skin insecurities, but this is what worked for me and what really did help build up my self esteem again.
Post clearing my face up, I began looking into natural skincare and ones which contained the least amount of foreign tongue twisting ingredient names. My love was now natural skincare and experimenting new things to put on my face. Luckily, none of which caused any skin irritation or sensitivity (I mean, they were all pretty much earthy and natural products) which was great!
So, today I’m sharing what I’ve been absolutely loving; I also accidentally passed on this obsession to my sister and mum (and they have not looked back!!); they both really love the switch to natural skin products and they’ve noticed significant improvements.
Rata & Co eye serum
During exam season, sleep was a myth and this was my savour. Even though nothing can actually completely disappear the dark under-eye circles because of 2 hours worth of sleep, this did help reduce it significantly. It simply has chia seed oil and coconut oil in it, so smooth to apply and doesn’t cause any eye irritation which can happen when you use other under-eye serums. This is my favourite skin care product and won’t ever change it (until I find a better product with a better job)!
Sukin face moisturiser
After my Neals Yard rose moisturiser ran out, I decided to try this new Australian brand out. This is amazing and I definitely can’t stop using it (at least for now)! It’s made of awesome, organic ingredients like shea butter and aloe vera. It makes your skin so so soft and it smells delicious. I try to use it twice a day to keep my skin soft and not too oily either.
Neals Yard rose toner
This is my one true love, and it’s an added bonus that it happens to be rose based (my favourite!!!) It’s so moisturising and seems to instantly hydrate any dry skin. It’s made of just a few ingredients, which I love. So it’s full of goodness! I use it on my face and oh my it works wonders!
Manuka Doctor serum
Days where I feel my skin is feeling a bit dull and not necessarily breaking out, I like to rub a bit on areas around my cheeks and near my forehead. I put it before I go to sleep and the next morning I see amazing results; my skin much brighter and clearer.
When the weather gets dryer this is my skin’s saviour! I put a little on every night and it makes me so happy. It smells quite subtle and it really helps to keep my skin glowing. It’s a really lovely thing to go to sleep with, but not regularly; I’d say twice to three times a week is more than enough for good results.