Growing Up With Acne And How I Got Rid Of It

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Welcome to the story of my face!  I wanted to share my skin story because I find myself posting more about skincare than anything else. It’s the one thing I’ve spent the most time, tears, and sweat over since I was … I don’t know like 11? I’ve had to deal with acne since puberty came knocking. Since I want to focus more on skincare, I figure sharing my profile will give background when I do product reviews. So, what is my 30yr old skin like now? I have combination oily skin, large pores, texture issues due to acne scars (box car, ice pick, and rolling), a few fine lines around the eyes, and a couple sunspots. When it’s winter time, I dry out like the Sahara. Yaaayyy... :(

My war history with acne has been a long, tiring, and painful one- as most are. Puberty blessed me with excessively oily skin and pimples in middle school. It was the worst time since you know how mean kids can be. The jokes were endless and the insecurity leech just grew bigger and bigger. It’s also doubly worse when you’re Asian because you know how Asians have no filter. They say exactly what they think without considering people’s feelings. “Oh my god, what happened to your face?!” I heard that one over a million times over the years. Ugh.

Fast forward to high school and that is when things blew up. My acne became out of control-I had huge red patches all over that looked like a rash, but instead of all little bumps they were large cystic ones. By this point I had been to several Chinese doctors, drinking lots of bitter medicines and taking crushed pearl powder. I was also a regular at the dermatologist’s office who started me on topical creams and ended up telling me that my only option was to start Accutane. Did I mention that my brother had really bad acne too? He cleared up with Accutane, but my parents did not want me to go through that due to the side effects and harm it did to the body. I also forgot to mention that by this point, I had tried every product at the drugstore targeted for acne. Literally. Every single one. Noxema, Clearasil, Clean & Clear, Neutrogena, Oxy, ProActiv, Stridex, Murad, etc. I even went the gentle route with Cetaphil, but my skin was SO sensitive that it reacted to everything. I was using something new every week or two because it was so reactive. It sounds insane, but it really was that bad. Relatives and family friends felt bad enough for me (because I was a girl) that they would drop off products for me to try. NuSkin, Shiseido, Clarins, Clinique, I went down all those routes too.

Ok, for any angst ridden female teen this sounds like the end of the world, right? I was mortified to leave the house and I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup either so it really felt like my life was over. Sophmore year of high school, my dad read an advert in the Chinese newspaper (my parents were constantly on the lookout for acne treatments) about facials for acne treatment. He asked me if I would try it and being desperate of course I agreed.

My first facial in my life was the most painful experience I ever had. I was there for about 4 hours and I cried for 2 hours straight during the extraction process. My acne was very severe so it took time for the esthetician to get through most of it. By the time it was over I was covered in tears and sweat and my face was SO swollen. It looked like I took a beating. After that experience, I told my parents that I never wanted to go back. BUT, the next morning my parents were in shock when they saw the difference. Although I had large scabs that formed, my skin showed a dramatic improvement. Significant enough that my parents were convinced and signed me up for a package of 12 treatments. Beauty really is pain. Eventually my pain tolerance went up, I got used to it, and my acne became under control. By the time senior ball rolled along, I was 80% clear. I could see that the scars had formed, but the esthetician claimed they would disappear later on (I should’ve known at that point…). I kept up my visits to maintain my skin, but I stopped a few years later in college when they said “I think you need stronger products because you’re still getting spots.” The moment I stopped getting facials is when my skin stopped getting beat up and it had a chance to heal. The best part is I stopped getting those spots. I was actually breaking out because of what I was putting it through. Too many facials, too many harsh products. Maybe that’s why my skin is so incredibly sensitive now. Funny thing that my parent’s friend said to me when my skin was already so much better: “It was worse than this? I can’t imagine it could be any worse! I don’t believe it!” <- Asians. Ugh.

So after years of abuse, I’m now trying to give my face as much TLC as possible. I’ve been through a lot with my skin, and I’ve done the research and tried countless products along the way so I want to share my experiences and knowledge I’ve gained through the years. I hope that If I ever have children, they won’t have to suffer as much as I did (my dad said the exact same thing). I made a long story very short and can go on and on about the treatment process, and what I do now, but I’ll save that for later. (Bacne anyone?) If you’d like to know more, drop me a comment! Thanks for reading and have a good day. :)

 One of the few bare faced photos I have. You’ll see a few others in my makeup related posts too!

One of the few bare faced photos I have. You’ll see a few others in my makeup related posts too!

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