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My Story: My Neverending Battle with Acne

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Hi everyone. 🙂 Today, I’m going to talk about a topic that is very close to my heart. This is something I’ve been dealing with majority of my life. It has greatly impacted me on how I view myself and the world. It’s my neverending battle with acne. Within this post, I hope it will help enlighten people the effects acne can have on a person physically, mentally, and emotionally. Acne is not just a skin condition. It can negatively impact a person’s overall well-being and life.

I have acne-prone skin, and it sucks.

I started battling acne when I was a teenager. When I was a teen, my skin wasn’t too bad. I would get a pimple here and there out of the blue. The overall condition of my skin was pretty good. It was clear and bright. Looking back, I took what I had for granted.

That was just the beginning. My acne got worse when I got older…

I started developing very bad acne in my early 20’s. All of a sudden, my skin raged. It was the worst type of acne — cystic acne. I would keep breaking out no matter what I did. During that time of my life, I was very stressed out. My acne could have been from a combination of factors — stress from college, stress from my relationship, eating a crappy diet, not exercising. I did all that I could to treat my acne. I purchased all different kinds of skin care products from drugstore to expensive high-end brands. It didn’t matter how expensive the product was. I was willing to shell out money for anything that worked. Any product you could imagine. I probably used it before. Sadly, none of them worked. I still broke out like no other. I’ve tried home remedies too with no results. I decided to completely stop using any skin care product on my skin including makeup. That didn’t work either. My acne worsened.

My parents suggested that I go see a doctor about my acne. I gave in. That’s what I did. My doctor put me on birth control for acne. It worked. Birth control did weird things to my body — I gained weight. It made my breasts larger though (lol). I couldn’t continue taking birth control any longer. I couldn’t stand the dramatic weight gain. I at least put on 10 lbs or more on birth control, and it wasn’t a good sight. I didn’t feel good about myself. I was unhappy.

What happened after that?

Once I stopped birth control, my acne came back in full vengeance. It was much worse than before (before I used birth control for my acne). I slipped into depression. I didn’t want to go anywhere. I didn’t want to look anyone in the face. I didn’t think I was an unattractive girl, but the acne made me feel really unattractive. I would say UGLY. That’s the only word I could think of. I felt horrible about myself.

I couldn’t pull myself out of my depression. All I could think about was how ugly my skin was. My ugly skin made me feel ugly.

Acne is more than a skin condition. It’s difficult to explain it to someone that has clear ‘good’ skin because they haven’t experienced it or will never go through it. They’ve been blessed with a clear complexion. They. Just. Don’t. Understand. Acne affects a person’s self-esteem greatly. It makes a person feel very self-conscious. It hurts. It not only affects the person that has acne, but it also affects their relationship with others as well.

Once that treatment failed, I went back to my doctor to try something new. I was put on antibiotics, Differin 0.1, and prescription BP. I hate the idea of antibiotics for acne, but I was desperate for something. Anything. And it worked. It took 3 months for my skin to clear up. I was ecstatic! My skin was not only clear. My skin looked softer and smoother in appearance. Family and friends were envious! I received a ton of compliments! I was finally happy in my own skin! I was confident! I lived life to the fullest.

Note: My treatment was not easy at all. I had the worst side effects from the antibiotics. The initial breakout on Differin was terrible. The breakouts made my skin feel sore and painful to touch. My skin dried out. It was red. It peeled. Prescripton BP also dried the heck out my skin. My skin was literally a mess.

Did my skin remain clear?

Not at all. Differin 0.1 stopped working. My acne came back. I thought I was free of acne for once in my life. Oh, silly me! This time, when it came back, my acne wasn’t as bad as before. Thankfully. Still, the acne was painful. Helloooo cystic acne! It’s the worst! And I have that type of acne. I was put on another round of antibiotics, Differin 0.3, and prescription BP this time. It worked. As time went on, Differin 0.3 stopped working on my skin. I would use Differin 0.3 continously but with no results. You guessed it. My acne came back.

Why can’t acne just leave me alone????? 😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡😡

My doctor suggested I go on accutane. Accutane should be the last resort to treat acne. I didn’t think my skin was THAT bad to go the Accutane route. But, it was a suggestion, and I thought about it. I decided against it due to the side effects it can have on the mind and body. I’ve done so much to my body already from antibiotics. It was a no-go.

This is why this blog exists! 🙂 🙂 🙂

Yes, this blog exists because I wanted to help others that suffer from acne too. I wanted to share my own personal experience with everyone. I know what it feels like to suffer from acne. I’ve been there. It may not look like I have acne, but I do. My skin type is still acne-prone. I thought I would grow out of acne as I got older. People have told me that I would. No way, that never happened. It doesn’t seem like it’s happening any time soon either. I still have acne, and it sucks.

Soooo I tried other retinoids, exfoliants, tons of other skin care products. None of them worked long-term. I would get results, and the results never lasted even with consistent use. My acne is very persistent. I had to find something else to tame my acne.

This is what I did.

I went vegetarian. I ate lots of vegetables. The more vegetables I ate, my skin became clearer and clearer. The more dairy I ate, the worst my skin became. I learned that dairy is not good for my skin. So eat your vegetables! It’s good for your skin! This was the BEST my skin has ever been that I decided to go vegan! Not just for my skin but for the animals and the environment. My diet wasn’t just vegan. My lifestyle was too. During that time, I hardly dealt with acne. My skin was crystal clear. The clearest it has ever been. Even though I’m not vegan anymore, there is a possibility I might go vegan again. I still have this guilt hanging over me when eating animal by-products. :/ I try not to eat too many animal by-products and stick to vegan foods most of the time.

Nowadays, my skin is decent. I get breakouts when I use the wrong skincare and makeup products on my skin. For the past 2 months, I’ve been trying to unclog my pores. I used a Vitamin C Serum that clogged my pores along my jawline, cheeks, and forehead. The acne has been very stubborn. Deep under the skin. It’s been tough, and it has made me feel very self-conscious about my skin. I’ve been wearing more makeup than usual because of it. It’s crazy because my skin was 100% clear before this happened. I didn’t wear much makeup during the summer either. My skin was good. Well, lesson learned. All I can do is stick to my current skin care treatments. My skin has been improving day by day. I’ve been weaning off the makeup considerably too. I’m on the path to clear skin, but it hasn’t been fun. It’s a constant battle that never really ends. I’ve had people ask me why I have such a strict skin care routine. Well, there you go, that is the reason why.

If you’re suffering from acne, I want to let you know that you’re still beautiful with acne. Acne isn’t going to change that. You will get through it like I did. You’re not alone in this. Keep your head up and cheer up. You can always message me or leave a comment if you want to talk. I’m here. ♥

Thank you for reading my long story. I hope it helped anyone struggling. ♥

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%, Day 3

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The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%
The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%

It’s Day 3 of The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out. I started to get nasty clogged pores. I had to stop using it. BLEH! It was going sooo well! I think the silicones in this skin care product got to me. If you have acne, be aware that this product can make you break out. It may or may not work for you. Try it yourself. It just didn’t work for me by the 3rd day. I really wanted it to work but meh. I’m over it. I’m going back to Cos de BAHA Azelaic Acid 10 Serum.

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%, Day 1

The Ordinary Azelaic Acid Suspension 10%, Day 2

Love, Jen

© Jennifer Nguyen