I have very sensitive and dry skin.
In the colder months, I have very sensitive and very dry skin.
So let me start with middle school. I had very clear skin except for the occasional, regular pimple. As I went from middle to high school, my skin gradually got worse as most people’s skin does in this time. The pimples I was getting were mostly hormonal, on my cheeks and chin. I had not figured out proper skincare yet – I didn’t even moisturize…which is a literal sin for me now. My sophomore year semi-formal was coming up and my skin was going absolutely haywire. In a panic, I started using Proactiv to clear my skin as much as possible as fast as possible. It worked wonders in the short amount of time I had, but I quickly found that the harshness of Proactiv was not a good fit for my ultra-dry skin. If I didn’t moisturize enough, the skin around my chin would crack and flake off and my face would feel like concrete. Not a good look…
I then moved onto trying different face washes and acne medications. I tried all the popular products like Neutrogena Oil-Free Acne Wash and Clean & Clear Persa-Gel 10, but I still just did not feel like they were completely right for my skin. Everything with acne medication in it irritated my dry skin, but I had pimples and wanted them gone, so I was feeling pretty hopeless.
Next up, birth control.
I was 16 or 17 and had had a boyfriend for about 8 months – I am still dating this boy now, in fact! – and my mom let me go on birth control. Not only was it necessary for my age and boyfriend situation, I desperately hoped it would clear up my acne. Listen…when people tell you birth control makes your skin worse before it gets better, THEY’RE TELLING THE TRUTH. My face blew up with tiny, hormonal pimples that were visible but not pop-able. It was so bad I would just lay in bed and cry because I couldn’t look at myself.
My mom suggested I get facials to solve the problem, so that’s exactly what I did. I went to the woman that did my eyebrows at the time who also did facials and she saved me. She really put in work on my face…when I left I looked like I had the chicken pox. BUT once all the redness went away my skin was 1 million times better. I went back a few weeks later and that was that, my skin has been amazing ever since.
I feel the need to mention that also around this time, maybe 2013-2014, I began getting random hives all over my body every single day. It was also common for me to wake up with such a swollen face that my eyes wouldn’t open. My parents took me to multiple doctors and specialists and no one could find a cause. There are definitely pictures of this somewhere, but they are honestly too graphic to put on the internet. It would often get so bad that I would have to lay in bed naked and have my mom rub Cortisone ALL over my body, because I was COVERED in hives and itchy skin bubbles. Eventually one doctor decided it was Urticaria or chronic hives, which is basically when you get extreme hives for no reason at all. I took a strong antihistamine every day for a year and one day it just stopped happening. That’s when I realized my skin was so, incredibly sensitive.
Unfortunately I have no pictures of the process with my face, because I was absolutely traumatized. Above are pictures of my skin as it is today, no makeup or anything. I still occasionally get redness and irritation around my nose and mouth, but I control it with some amazing products – post on that coming soon ;). You can also see on my right cheek that I have a crater that looks like it’s from chicken pox. Nope, it’s from my acne phase. I got a cluster of pimples in that same area so many times that it just turned into a hole, basically.
Anyways, if my skin sounds similar to yours, please stay tuned because I’m going to be posting about all the products that saved my skin! My only goal is to help anyone that is feeling as hopeless as I was when I couldn’t control my acne.
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