How I Cleared Up My Skin

Monday, 20 April 2015




Last night I tweeted a picture of my naked face (shock horror) and said how happy I was that my skin was finally very nearly almost clear. I've mentioned my battle with acne on here before and shared a few tips, but a lot of you said on Twitter that you'd like to know what products/routine I used to clear it up, and with the 140 character limit on Twitter (damn you!), I thought it might be easier just to do a post on here. Firstly, a little bit of background info...

So for those of you who don't know, I got acne when I was about 12 and throughout my teens it was quite severe and never ending, and I mean this literally...12 years is longer than some murderers get in prison, yet I wasn't let off for good behaviour, no matter how well I treated my skin. As I've gotten older, so the last two to three years, my acne has eased up significantly, but it was still quite bad and starting to develop into adult acne, as I'm almost 22. However in the last couple of weeks I've really managed to clear my skin up and seen a significant improvement in the overall condition of my skin. I still have very large pores and some red patches on my skin which are scars from where I had acne previously, I'm quite lucky that these aren't raised or sunken in scars, so they can be easily covered up with makeup and hopefully these will fade with time, but as you can see my skin is nowhere near perfect.

Needless to say, this is just what worked for me and may not necessarily work for you, as everyone is different after all. Also, just a little bit about my skin type before I start as I always find it useful to know how similar my skin is before reading these types of posts. I have oily, dehydrated skin which is also seriously sensitive to most products, which means that I can't really use any of the products specifically targeted to acne as they either burn my skin or dry it out which in turn, causes more spots. 

Coming Off The Pill

I've been seeing my doctor about my skin since I was about 13, which was when it really started to get bad, and after trying every form of topical treatment and antibiotics there was out there at the time with no luck, my doctor suggested that I go on the pill. I was about 15 at the time, which I know is a little early to go on the pill for most, but really I had no other options left if I wanted to clear up my skin through medication. I started off taking Celeste which is one of the better pills for skincare concerns (I also took it to help my severe migraines which are caused by hormonal fluctuations), and my skin did improve while taking Celeste. However, due to medical reasons I had to stop taking Celeste and transfer to a different pill with different levels of oestrogen which was when the problems started happening. My skin didn't instantly get a lot worse, but during the last 6 months I started to notice that when I wasn't taking the pill during my 'week off' my skin dramatically improved, then when I started my next pill packet I would develop painful cystic acne, so I knew something wasn't right. I went to see my doctor about this and he suggested that I trailed coming off the pill and seeing how it affected my skin, and I'm pleased to say that it's made a huge difference. Not only has my skin cleared up but my migraines have decreased, which let me tell you, is a huge relief. 

Now I understand that this form of treatment isn't for everyone, but I just thought that I would share my experience, as if you too were put on the pill for skincare reasons years ago and are no longer seeing the benefits, it may be worth talking to your doctor about coming off the pill. However, this really is something you should talk to you doctor about - don't just take my word for it! 

Skincare

Over the past 6 months I've also been making some changes to my skincare routine. I'd like to point out that I didn't just completely revamp my skincare overnight, my skin would have totally freaked out had I done that! Instead, I changed one product at a time, as that way my skin could adjust to the new addition and also if I had a reaction, I'd know exactly what product had caused it. Firstly I strted with my cleanser. Instead of using harsh cleansers targeted specifically at oily or acne prone skin, I swapped to the Simple Gentle Foaming Cleanser which also has added moisturisers. I know a lot of skincare guru's are completely against foaming cleansers, however I find that on my oily skin they work really well for me and this one seems to work well with my sensitive skin, without drying it out or causing irritation. It's not a fancy cleanser with tonnes of scientific claims, it just does what it says on the tin which is what I really like about the product. 

Alongside this cleanser I've also been using the Magnitone Lucid which is a cleansing brush, and I'd say that this brush alone was 80% the reason why my skin has cleared up. I'll be posting a full review of this soon once I've tested out all of the different modes, etc but for now I've just been using it on the sensetive mode to cleanse and gently exfoliate my face every other day. I've seen a dramatic improvement in my skin since using this, and the difference was noticeable after using it for about 3 days which is just amazing. It is a little expensive, but I can see it lasting me a good couple of years and when it comes to my skin I don't mind paying for products that work. 

I haven't really found a toner that I like at the moment, so I've been skipping straight to moisturiser. The most recent addition to my skincare has been the Bioderma Hydrabio Sérum Moisturising Concentrate. I did a full review of this about two weeks ago, so just skip back a few posts to see that, but it essentially is a light weight moisturiser (so it won't clog up your pores or leave you feeling like a greasy mess) which targets deep within your skin to produce moisture and also lock in moisture at the surface. It really is an amazing product and it's perfect if you have dehydrated skin like myself. Ive found that since my skin has been better hydrated, its been producing less oil and has therefore been a lot clearer. 

Obviously, this is just what worked for me and it may not have the same results for you, although I really hope it does! I've seen a lot of videos on this subject saying that you should go out in the sun and use harsh acidic products to 'dry out your skin so the spots clear up' and I honestly would really recommend that you don't do that. It may take slightly longer to do it the gentle/hydrating way but your skin will thank you in the long run and will feel so much smoother, softer and generally happier if you don't dry it out like the sahara - trust me, I've been there! 

I'd also just like to point out that the photo above is unedited so that you can see what my skin really looks like now. You've probably noticed that I rarely (read: never) post pictures of my face without makeup on and it took quite a lot for me to be able to post these. I know my skin isn't perfect and I seriously need to get my brows done, but these were taken pretty much as soon as I woke up (hence the pyjamas) so you know, what you gonna do. Unfortunately I don't have any 'before' pictures as my acne made me so self conscious that there's literally about 5 years of my life where I'm not in any photos at all. I really regret this now as I feel that there's so many memories that I didn't capture with people who are no longer with me, but thats what acne and bullying can do to someone I guess. 

Lots of Love,

Becky x x

27 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing your story. I know everyone has their own struggles in terms of skincare but it is great to know what worked for you. I know a lot of people who have found the pill helpful with acne and blemishes.
    the-creationofbeauty.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you Shannon, yes a lot of my friends have had success using it to treat acne :) xx

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  2. Thank you so much for this post! Im 18 and whilst I haven't had acne since I was 10, I've recently got cystic acne which sucks; this post helped me so much xx


    http://www.perks0fbeingnazia.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Aw I'm sorry to hear that, it's horrible isn't it? Just remember that you think it looks way worse than everyone else does, they probably don't even notice it! xx

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  3. I have found since i started using foam face washes that they have helped my skin alot! x
    Emma | Emmys Blog

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    1. I think they're great for oily skin, I'm not sure why everyone is so against them! xx

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  4. This is incredible! I began struggling with acne when I was 11, and I still have it ten years later. I'd love my fresh face to look this clear, you look fantastic! I'm really happy for you :)

    x

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    1. Thank you Mel - I hope you find something that works for you soon too, I know how much it sucks to have to fight a constant battle against acne! xx

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  5. Your skin looks so amazing now. I would love to have such a clear face. I'm so happy that you've finally won the battle against acne. I've been suffering with terrible break outs lately and it really knocks my confidence. A thorough skincare regime has really helped me too xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

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    1. Thank you Jessie! Ah I know how much it knocked my confidence so I completely understand what you're going though - I hope you find something that works for you soon! xx

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  6. Your skin is fantastic lovely :) I think you would love the Elemis Soothing Apricot Toner ( It's my fave )

    ❤ The Jewel Beauty Blog ❤ || Chanel Beauty Haul

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    1. Thank you India! I think I tried a sample of that ages ago actually and quite liked it - I'll give it a go! xx

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  7. So happy for you that you found a skincare routine that works for you <3 I had lots of blemishes as a teen then developed adult acne which was awful so I know what it's like. xx
    www.surelychar.com

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    1. Thank you Charlotte! I think its such a common problem, we shouldn't let it get us so down :( xx

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  8. Such fabulous results, you must be so happy!

    Stephanie xxxx
    http://missstephanieusher.blogspot.co.uk/
    https://www.bloglovin.com/blogs/hope-freedom-love-3436251

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    1. Thank you Stephanie, I definitely am :) xx

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  9. It must be the best feeling finding a routine that works for you. And I did find for me coming off the pill was a skin turn around!

    Annabel ♥
    Mascara & Maltesers

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    1. I never even thought that the pill could be making it worse, it's so strange that the thing that originally helped it started to turn against me! xx

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  10. Love this post, im trying to get my skin to be acne free and im using witch products to help =]

    emyii90.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Thank you! Are they working for you? I found them a little harsh for my skin :( xx

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  11. Aw good for you hun, I can't imagine what an achievement it must be to post a perfect makeup-free photo after suffering so many years with your skin! xx

    Magpie Jasmine | Zoeva Brush Set Giveaway

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    1. Thank you Jasmine - it's the best feeling! xx

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  12. ive been struggling with my skinproblems formonths now:( and i feellike i really didnt change anything in diet or beauty regime to make it happen :( i am trying everything but i feellike the key is to invest in goodcleaning brush :)
    xx
    http://suzannemaried.blogspot.co.uk/

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  13. Your skin looks so lovely and fresh! I have quite acne prone skin and the worst part is the scarring which makes it look like I have way more spots that I have and take an age to disappear! Might look into the Magnitone as I've heard so much about it, thanks for sharing! xo

    Catherine | Pretty Little Beauty Blog

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  14. Well done for putting up this photo - it must feel like such an achievement. I've had mild acne and my skin is still very breakout prone, so I know how it can affect you and hard it can be to deal with xx

    Ramblings of a Beauty Bird | Beauty Blog

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