So, I’m going to be real with you guys. ACNE SUCKS, haha. So many people, men, and women suffer from acne every day. This is such a popular topic in our world because our bodies go through so many life changes, from puberty to adulthood, every single person’s acne story is different. I wanted to take the time to share a little bit about my journey with acne, what I’ve done and what I am going to do from here on out to take care of my skin and to adhere to what it needs.
All throughout high school, I had the clearest skin. Ask any of my high school friends; they used to tell me all the time, “Wow Sami your skin is flawless, or wow how is your face so clear!” I would just respond with “it is?” lol I had no idea how clear my skin was until acne started to pay me a little visit when I turned 20. In high school, I played competitive volleyball and I was always playing at tournaments on the weekends or playing at games throughout the week. I would even wear makeup while I played! My skin never showed any glimpses of a blemish, or black heads or whatever. I would have thought that acne would have appeared during those times and not the times after I finished playing when I was growing out of my teen years. I remember some nights in high school when I was so tired and just wanted to sleep after a long day of school and sports, I would just go to sleep with makeup on my face. Seriously, I was so bad at washing my face at night, it was such a drag for me to do it, plus I was a lazy teenager.
All that being said, I could never understand why my face decided to be so clear when I never cared about it and now when I do care it flares up. After I graduated high school I moved to Southern California for College. I attended California Baptist University and I was so excited to finally be in college, meeting new people and having a little more independence/freedom. I began to notice only small changes in my skin, starting with minimal pimples here and there that would pop up. I never experienced mountains of pimples in certain T-zone spots or anything of that sort. So I would casually treat a pimple or pimples with an over the counter on the spot acne cream. For the most part, it worked well, and I would see the little sucker disappear within a few days of applying the cream. Some would say that the little bit of pimple flare ups was due to stress, I was in my first few years of college and so I could have been a tad stressed; needless to say, it continued going down hill from there!
Gradually, I began to notice more and more acne appearing when I turned 20. It was crazy because I remember Quimi telling me that when she hit her 20s her body started changing and it was just so odd. So now that I look back on when I began to get acne, I feel like that could have been a part of my body changing. I had recently moved home to Turlock after attending CBU for 2 years. Our family was about to embark on a whole new life change in the next year. We were going to move to Houston, Texas. I moved back home to live with my mom during that year while my dad went a full 9 months ahead of us. My face started to experience extreme acne, as I would call it. Mountains on acne started to appear out of nowhere on my chin and around my mouth, and my forehead. It was horrific!!! I had no idea what to do and I was only getting angrier; this was absolutely new territory for me!
I could see my face changing right before my eyes but was helpless in dealing with it because I had never had acne before. I just kept thinking, “What the heck is going on???” It was tough for me to grasp at first but I decided to take control and figure out how to best get rid of all the acne.
I first started by looking into some over the counter spot creams and cleansers to wash my face at night. None of it really seemed to work all that great. So my mom and I decided to try Proactive. Okay, at first I really wasn’t too excited about trying Proactive because I had heard so many people say it didn’t work, at this point I was desperate, and the acne was seriously everywhere! I really just wanted to treat my face in a way that it would be cured. So here we go trying Proactive and immediately I break out in a red rash that started to appear on my cheeks, it hurt so bad and I remember telling my mom that I knew it was from this hydrating moisturizer that Proactive carries in their package. So instantly I stopped using Proactive and was still stuck not knowing what to do.
I didn’t want to continue wasting money on skin care products that wouldn’t work just like Proactive. So we thought let’s try going to my doctor to see if he could recommend a dermatologist. I went to my doctor and had him take a look at my face. He examined it and said that I definitely needed to take something to help it, but that it didn’t look so bad to where he would need to refer me to a dermatologist. He prescribed me an antibiotic called Doxycycline that I would take it every day twice a day until the whole bottle was done. I didn’t really like that I had to take pills to try and get rid of the acne but it was all I could do at that time.
And…The pills worked! They lasted about a month and a half and my face cleared up splendidly! I remember thinking, woahh…the antibiotics did their job well and I was so happy to have a clear face again.
Sadly, not too long later, my acne started to reappear. By this time, I had moved to Houston and I think it had been almost one full year without any bad acne. So as it started to come back I began to think of ways to try and get rid of it without having to go back on antibiotics. By this time I had established a regimen of washing my face every single night and be more caring of my skin.
Within all that, I decided to look for a dermatologist in Houston. My mom was able to find a dermatology center that worked with our insurance and I had my first appointment with a really sweet lady to talk about my acne. She looked at my face and touched the spots where the pimples were and she also asked me multiple questions on how long I’ve had it and what I’ve done to treat it up until this point.
So here I go back on the antibiotics for the 2nd time! I really hated to feel dependent on the pills but I was hoping that it would be the last time. I was on the same pills for another month once again, and she also prescribed me some creams to put on in the morning before applying makeup, and at night before heading to bed. I followed through with everything she gave me and by the end of the first batch of pills I went in to see my dermatologist. She noticed that a little bit had cleared up but not all of it and so she prescribed me another dose of the antibiotics. Guess what? The antibiotics worked once again and I had my clear-skinned face back!!! I was so pumped to have clear skin again and be okay with not wearing makeup in public. I felt like a new girl and it was amazing.
So I have had clear skin for a good 6 or 7 months now. I haven’t noticed any pimples or blemishes in a long time, my skin has been clear. I’ve kept with my Night-time regimen; yet, just a few days ago, I started to notice a few more flare ups. I really thought that I was at a much better place with my skin, I wash it every single night and I even started using a makeup called Cover FX, that is specifically for acne prone skin.
Well, I guess something went wrong and now I am experiencing more pimples. I was a little upset when I started to notice them coming back, but I didn’t want to make a huge deal about it and just try to see what I could do differently this time than the previous times. I definitely do not want to be on antibiotics again. So, I’ve decided that I am going try to find a new makeup that is natural, organic and has minimal ingredients. I feel that this could be one of the reasons why my face flares up every once in a while, and I have heard so many great things about natural makeup working for other girls. So that will be my next move and I am hoping that it will help my face clear up in a natural way with no pills or any medicine!
Here are some of the products I have been using for the past year or so and they seem to maintain my acne pretty well. This is the Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser.
I just started using this CocoKind Cleansing Facial Oil and it makes my skin feel so smooth! I definitely recommend this facial cleanser and I will be trying more of their products soon! Here’s a little pro tip, I bought mine at Marshalls about a few months ago and it was 7 dollars off the original price that you’ll see linked here, just in case you are trying to save money, haha.
Do you have a similar skin care journey? Do you have any products or tips that have worked for you? I’d appreciate any input & feedback. Please share what you’ve tried that works!
Wherever you are in your skin journey, always remember that you are fearfully and wonderfully made! Acne and skin blemishes may try to steal our confidence or make us feel self-conscious, but don’t let it! You are beautiful and are not defined by your skin – your beauty shines from within. So shine on, baby!
Read more on my Skincare Journey: