Day 9: Skin Nightmares

Over the past few years, I have become DEVOTED to my skin care regimen. I had a case of 24-years-old, drink too much, never sleep right, or wash my face acne. I thought I needed antibiotics and that was that. I was used to the dermatology grind, as a child of a skin-cancer ridden family. I believed what they told me, took the drugs recommended, etc…all by this person who barely took 5 minutes to look at me. I don’t doubt their ability to detect, diagnose, and treat cancer or serious skin ailments, but they should just be honest when  it comes to cosmetic issues. They should have told me to start washing my face twice a day and starting up a preventive regimen. But, that is not what happened.

About a year after starting a low-grade antibiotic, which I still have skeptical thoughts about the safety of, I wanted to go on a birth control. The birth control pill I wanted and the drug I was on didn’t really work well together. I told my OB what I wanted, and I told my dermatologist what I wanted. They didn’t chat or really provide much insight, in case you were wondering. Meanwhile, I learned whatever I could from google, and I came to terms with the reality that most of us make healthcare decisions with pretty minimal information or understanding. My dermatologist thought it was silly and my OB didn’t offer any opinions. After a year of no acne medication and using the pill, I had found some skin care bloggers (*ahem* Caroline Hirons) that changed my life and perspective. These bloggers helped to place the control back into my own hands. My skin could be good or terrible based on my own efforts, thank god.

I started with a serum, a moisturizer, face wash, and most importantly a routine. This went well, and as I grew confident, I experimented. Around the time I found these bloggers and started experimenting with cosmetic products, rather than antibiotics, I noticed some side effects from the birth control, that if I was honest had been going on since I started it. I was having ocular migraines multiple times a month and spent most afternoons wrapped in a blanket of tears and unexplainable sadness. I had some life changes that could account for some fluctuation in emotional state, but NOTHING to explain what I was experiencing. I decided to go rogue…no birth control and no skin care antibiotics. Give me whatcha got acne!

To my surprise, and probably due to my keeping up with a skin care regimen, my acne remained status quo, which was primarily non-existent. Skin issues surfaced from time to time, but they always had. I had found my way to control. Nowadays, my process has changed and is heavily dependent on AHAs, serums, and of course washing and moisturizing, morning and night. It has become one of my favorite self-care activities and am always excited to try a new product I hear about or to treat myself to something lovely. It has become something of a passion for me, so despite my annoyance at the process to get here, I am passionate about helping others find a better way to take care of themselves, especially young girls or women who have NO idea that a few small things can change their relationship with their skin and their face.

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