Wednesday, August 7, 2013

What Did (And Didn't) Help Clear My Acne!

Hey, y'all! Today, I'm going to be talking about something that has always been one of my biggest insecurities.


I was that unfortunate kid who had really bad skin. My face never got this bad:

BUT from age 12 through now, not a single day has gone by where I didn't have several pimples/blemishes all over my face, neck, shoulders, and back. Not only is my skin really oily and acne prone, but it's also very sensitive, and has a tendency of getting over-dried quickly and easily. And on top of that, my skin has a horrible reaction to Salicylic Acid, which is the active ingredient in most acne treatments. So basically, I have the most frustrating skin ever. 

Throughout the years, I've gone through many different acne treatments, trying to find one that worked and didn't leave my face flaking off. Also, I've probably forgotten several products I've tried, only because I've tried SO MANY. So, if you're like me and have acne prone, yet sensitive skin, listen up!

First off, let's talk about the acne treatment that we all constantly have shoved in our faces in commercials.
Let's get this out of the way now. If you have sensitive skin, this is NOT for you. The cleanser, toner, and lotion all have active ingredients for knocking out acne. The cleanser and lotion both have Benzoyl Peroxide, and the toner has salicylic acid. That's way too powerful for sensitive skin. I've found that if I'm going to use powerful acne treatment, I at least need to counter-balance it with moisturizer. And the lotion and toner still have active acne-treating ingredients. It just wasn't right for me. I'm not at all saying that it doesn't work, because it does work, it just wasn't the right thing for my skin. I also didn't like that I couldn't choose when I got more. I always had plenty of product left when I got a new batch. I will say, though, that I used it back in 2007 before they had this "new formula," so their new formula may be better. I do still have a bottle of the Repairing Lotion, and when I use just that solely on acne, it works great without over-drying my skin.

After I finished with Proactiv, I decided to try the Clean & Clear Advantage Acne Treatment, which is a cleanser, moisturizer, and spot treatment. I used it for quite a while, but had to substitute things, because once again, it over-dried my skin. I think the worst part was that the moisturizer had acne treatment in it and for my sensitive skin, it totally defeated the purpose! The moisturizer actually dried me out MORE because of the acne treatment in it! I didn't realize that the moisturizer was causing me problems until I started applying more every day to try and keep my skin from getting too dry... and it just got worse. So i had to stop using it. 

If the active ingredient now is the same as it was when I tried it, it had salicylic acid as well. I think that using this was kinda what showed me that my face doesn't take to salicylic acid well. Once again, this didn't really help my acne very much. The first couple days, I could see it getting a little better, and then it completely dried out and didn't improve anymore. I think I went through an entire tube before actually ditching it, though. 

While it lives up to being gentle and good for any skin types, it really just didn't do anything to help me get rid of my acne. It didn't last too long.

I'm pretty sure I've used every cleanser made by Skin by Ann Webb. I really liked the Mellow Melon cleanser. I used that one for quite a while. When the store I always bought it at was out, I got the coconut water, and found some success with it. I really like it, because it's all natural ingredients, has a pleasant smell, and actually helped my acne! The only problem was that after a while, my acne just didn't get any better. That's why i stopped using it. I used the peppermint and spearmint as well, and those weren't really as good as the other two. I really love the pomegranate moisturizer. I squeezed every little drop out of it when I had it. I would still use it if it wasn't so expensive and if I lived somewhere that was near a store that carried it. The lavender silk scrub was good for a little more power in the cleanser, but sometimes, it was just a bit too much. The cucumber sage mist was also nice for refreshing the face.

Even though I don't use this anymore, I actually do like this. Once again, as with the Skin cleansers, it helped to get rid of some of my acne, but after a while just stopped working. I actually went through 2 bottles of this before moving on.

My Routine NOW:

Within the last 2 months, I've been using some new products that are actually helping. My forehead is completely clear, and my cheeks are really getting cleared up as well. Really, the only part of my face  that is still pretty broken out is my jawline.

I use this every night before I go to sleep. There is actually also a "sensitive" formula of this, but I decided against it because the active ingredient was... guess what? Salicylic acid! So, I got this, which is comparable to Proactiv, but uses totally Benzoyl peroxide, and the repair lotion is more potent (3.5% Benzoyl peroxide rather than 2.5%).

Because my aunt sells Mary Kay, I get to try out a lot of products, and these are some of them. I use this in the morning as a counter-balance to the harshness of AcneFree. It's all very natural, without fragrances, and the hydrate is so light and just great. I also love that it's targeted toward people with oily AND sensitive skin. Usually that doesn't happen.

While I've used these two, my skin has cleared significantly. I'm hoping for it to continue improving, but for now, I'm just keeping on with what I'm doing. I hope that this helped you to see what is good for sensitive, acne prone skin. Hopefully, I gave you some ideas and introduced you to some products that you hadn't seen before. Let me know your opinions on some of these products! Have you tried them? Did they work for you? Let me know in the comments! Thanks, and I'll see you next time!


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