Recently reading Jessie Van Amburg’s own personal diary on Women’s Health about being a Beauty Editor with shitty skin, I just had to put my own journey out there because I also feel that being in the industry I am, everyone expects me to have beautiful skin.
Periods, birth control and all hormonal changes are usually the cause of frequent break outs and all the changes you see in your skin but as a very late bloomer in the period department (I was 16!), I felt as if I was getting all of my hormonal changes since the age of 13 and was starting of my own acne journey. Whilst the other girls in my class were starting to get their periods and having to deal with such a massive change, I was left in the background not knowing anything or even relating to what was happening. All I could remember was getting spots and marks on my skin that just wouldn’t go away.
Why was this happening to me? At that age I barely knew anything about skincare, make-up and other ways around blemishes and pigmentation and most of the girls didn’t even seem to suffer so I couldn’t really ask for advice, or was just too shy to even ask. Even now with more knowledge, more product understanding and having a general idea on how to manage acne, I still suffer, at the age of 26, with acne scars, blemishes and my biggest concern, pigmentation. Some weeks I felt as if it was getting under control and others felt like I’d be thrown back to the beginning with no progression whatsoever. I can’t really remember the first pill I was put on at the age of 16, because when I had my first period it seemed like my only one so in the attempt to regulate I was put on the pill straight away. Then, once I turned 22, I decided to be put on the contraception injection (best thing ever!). It didn’t really improve my skin but it didn’t get worse either. I was left to my own devices in order to get rid of my acne.
Two and a bit years later I came off the injection, purely because I didn’t have the time to visit the doctors every three months – I was working in London and living in Wiltshire so my extra time was spent commuting. Still, nothing happened to my skin. I had regular breakouts at the time of the month just like normal and by this time my scars and pigmentation were just, well, normal I guess. It didn’t go anywhere and nothing seemed to have worked to help reduce them.
I was then put onto Lucette because the doctor told me it was the best pill for acne. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t really notice anything, even after six months. The only thing I noted in differences was that I was getting constant migraines and let me tell you, having clear skin under those circumstances was just not worth it! Of course once I told my doctor he prescribed me a completely different tablet and even though it’s been two months since, I want to go back! How the Cerazette pill works is that every pill is an active one and there are no breaks – you take a pill everyday. First off, I was getting a period, or spotting every week. EVERY WEEK. I was exhausted. After six weeks things started to calm down but one thing that I’ve noticed, even from week one, is that I’ve had so many blemishes I didn’t even know what to do! Even as I’m writing this I’m supporting a full face of spots that hurt so much I have to be careful with what I put on my face. I have literally stripped back my skincare routine and has slowly started to introduce treatment products. With my acne taken out of the equation, I still have to deal with my combination and sometimes sensitive skin so in hind sight stripping back my skincare has worked wonders for my complexion, just not for my blemishes.
Having adult acne has got to be one of the most embarrassing things I have ever endured. With my career, it’s meetings, events and always meeting new people and when you’re introducing yourself as a beauty PR professional with acne, it seems like I’m a joke and I obviously don’t know what I’m talking about. How can the products I’m trying to push be any good with skin like mine?
I’ve been testing out some new products focusing on certain ingredients to see if I can get my skin back to its healthy-looking self before the contraceptive pill happened. I’m also going to be writing about my experiences with laser, collagen supplements and other products to feed back what’s working and what isn’t for me.
Coming Monday 9th July: what are collagen supplements and did they help with my acne and did laser help with any scarring and pigmentation?