The first time I noticed I had acne was when I was 14 years old. I struggled with acne on my face, chest and back the rest of my teen aged years and into my twenties. I tried every cure people told me about, from Aloe Vera to sulfur soaps but nothing worked. The bumps were always there. Another thing that was always there were the insults. Some of them out of malicious intent but some out of sheer ignorance. Anyway, that is another topic for another time.
Today I want to share what I did to get and keep my acne under control.
The first time I ever saw my acne go away was after a treatment prescribed by my dermatologist in 2013. I had had it and decided to try the dermatologist route. He prescribed Deriva which is 0.1% adapalene. It is same ingredient in Differin.
Along with the Deriva Gel my dermatologist also prescribed a benzoyl peroxide cream which acted as and antibacterial to help heal breakouts more quickly. I do not remember the exact name but they are relatively easy to find.
My skin care routine consisted of:
1. Washing my face with a salicylic acid based cream cleanser that cleansed my face without drying it out
2. Next I toned with a gentle toner.
3. After washing and toning at night applied the Deriva gel,followed by the benzoyl peroxide cream. In the mornings I skipped the Deriva gel since wearing it in sunlight could cause skin irritation
4. Finally I moisturised with an oil free moisturiser.
5. About twice a week I did a lime juice mask to lighten the dark spots that old breakouts had left. Which just consisted of plain old lime juice that I applied to my face and rinsed off after about 15 minutes.
For the first time since I was fourteen years old I did not have to worry about the way my skin looked.
That all changed when I got pregnant towards the end of 2013. I was no longer able to use the Deriva gel because of the possible contraindications with my baby.
Needless to say I did not have the smooth, glowing pregnancy skin. My acne was not horrible however, and I was so focused on having a healthy baby that I did not care what my skin was doing. After giving birth I still was not able to go back to my old regimen because I was breast feeding and there is a posibility that any chemicals I used on my skin could get into my breast milk.
A few months later (early 2015) I started taking birth control. Yasmin to be exact.
Not too long after, I started noticing a significant reduction in my acne. For the most part now I have clear skin except when I allow myself to get dehydrated.
In addition to taking birth control, my current regiment consists of:
1. If I am wearing makeup I use either coconut or olive oil to break it up and wipe with a baby wipe before I start cleansing.
2. Wash with a gentle cream cleanser. I am currently using the Neutrogena Deep Clean Long-Last Shine Control Cleanser Mask which I mentioned in my last favourites. I have recently started cleansing with the Vanity Planet cleansing brush, which helps to cleanse my face better than my hands alone can
3. After washing I tone. I am trying out a new toner which is the Neutrogena Pore Refining Toner with alpha and beta hydroxy acid.
4. The next step is to treat with Neutrogena on the spot, acne treatment.
5. At night I moisturise with the Neutrogena Ageless Intensives Night-time moisturiser and in the mornings I moisturise with the Clean and Clear Morning Glow Moisturiser with SPF15.
6. I stopped using lime juice for a while but a few days ago I started using it once a week for brightening and exfoliation. I also physically exfoliate once a week using the exfoliation brush that comes with the Vanity Planet Spin for Perfect Skin Brush.
This is how my skin looks at the moment. Unfortunately I do not have any blog worthy before pictures of my bad acne days to share. I was not thinking about sharing this with the world back then. (Goes to show how hopeless I was).
I hope you all find this informative. I am planning on incorporating more anti-aging products into my skin care so I will do an updated skin care routine soon. Let me know in the comments whether you struggle with acne and what you are doing to keep it at bay.