Thursday, March 13, 2014

Update and Good News

Hello Readers! 

Seems like it has been forever since I posted, I've been very busy with school but I've finally declared my major! (International Studies and Italian Studies Double Major with an Environmental Studies Minor) Anyways I have some VERY good news! My skin is the absolute best it has been in years, I can't remember a time when it was this clear and even toned (and not red).

This can be attributed to a couple of things:
1. My amazing hormone specialist doctor who has been working closely with me for the past three months, she even went so far as to give me her home number!
2. Dietary changes 
3. Vitamins
4. Makeup changes 

So firstly I always knew that my problems were hormonal and could be cured from the inside out, it was never that I had "dirty" skin. My doctor listened to my complaints, looked at my skin, and prescribed a regime of topical and oral hormones to balance my body. WOW has it worked, I have seen amazing changes in my skin and health. 

Second, I have cut out wheat and dairy for the most part. This is crucial for me because I have always had a sensitivity to both. It has greatly brought down inflammation and redness. 

Third, vitamins. I take a protein shake in the morning as well as Neem, Tumeric (for inflammation), Probiotics, Vitamin D, Vitamin B, and Potassium. 

Lastly, makeup. I have very very SENSITIVE skin so most makeups really break me out. I have found one that I love that has no gluten, GMO, titanium dioxide, mica, talc, bismuth oxychloride, etc. You name it. The brand is a small one based out of Missouri called EpicMineralBeauty. I HIGHLY recommend them and had the chance to talk to one of the gals who runs it. So sweet and helpful! Their brand is honestly amazing and I can't thank them enough for what they are doing. I use both the powder foundation and powder blush. 

As for scarring, the doctor I am working with has me doing a round of glycolic peels with TCA. I have done 2/3 now and the results are pretty unbelievable, it even gets rid of the pitted scars. Definitely recommend! 

So I can safely say, my six year journey is coming to a close. No more cysts at all, tiny breakouts if I get them at all. Can't wait for the end results. As for my blog I will keep posting about products I like and past experiences. 


Sunday, January 26, 2014

Food Allergies and Skin

So this is the "inside" of my blog title, which is sometimes the most important to get the outside looking the way you want. 

So I used to be allergic to wheat/gluten, dairy/casine, soy, peanut butter, it was miserable as you can imagine. The most often question I would get was "so... what DO you eat??" The worst was seeing other kids eat all of the things I wasn't allowed to have, because as a kid you really can't comprehend that you're not allowed to have something that everyone else gets. So yes it did suck, but my parents (mostly my mother that cooked) tried to have alternatives for me. However as I got older and we went out to eat (especially at italian restaurants) I kept hearing the phrase "just eat a salad." Now don't get me wrong I love salad, but it definitely made me angry that they would suggest that I just have a plain salad while everyone around me had decadent pizzas and pastas and various desserts. 
Anyways, getting to the point. Food allergies have a lot to do with our skin and affect our skin in a major way. If you are allergic to wheat (for example) and you eat it, it can cause inflammation which shows up in our skin, and anything you can't process will be let out through the skin (which is where most of our toxins that our body can't process end up being excreted{in the form of acne}).
Now getting to the real main point, four years ago- after doctors had told me I would NEVER outgrow my allergies- my tests came back clean. I was beyond excited, I didn't really indulge in dairy because I never had it and it just didn't look or smell appetizing. But wheat... being italian I went crazy, I indulged every once in a while in pasta and pizza and such, it was delicious. Now four years later my doctor told me it may be causing inflammation in my skin and back (wheat/gluten and dairy/casine), after being a couple weeks clean I have no back pain (which is great) and I think my skin is a bit better, I will have to see after 60 days how it looks. It definitely sucks but I'm working on getting alternatives to have at college and I am working with dining services to have more options (because it is somewhat impossible to eat in the caf with my food allergies).
If you haven't been allergy tested and have acne I would really recommend it, food plays a big role in our skin and body in general. Also if you suspect digestion issues (not just food allergies) then I would recommend digestive enzymes. I know people who swear by them. 

Until next time! 


Top Tips
Hormones and their role + my treatment

Friday, January 10, 2014

My Acne Story- A Six Year Journey

So over the years my skincare routine has changed so much, I've tried home remedies, natural products, and even medicated/prescription products. I've literally tried them all, or at least it feels that way.

Let me share with you what DOESN'T work
(For me anyways)

So for me nothing the derm ever prescribed or tried worked
this includes:
clean and clear
benzoyl peroxide
tazorac (tazrotene)
cortison injections
beta peel

As you can see it's a pretty comprehensive list, the only thing missing is accutane (isotrentinoin)which I was not about to use after my terrible experience with the other oral medications.

It was at this point I took skincare into my own hands 

products I tried that didn't work:
tea tree oil (too drying)
regular bar soap (too drying and not effective on acne)
tata harper (too abrasive)
tatcha (too abrasive and not effective)
first aid beauty cleanser (not effective) 
murad products (not effective)
Asian brand cleansers (I can't even remember the names but not effective)
Vampire facial
Chinese medicine
various vitamins and supplements
obagi (nightmare!!!)
ole henrickson

and then I tried the caveman routine, literally didn't do anything to my face except wash with water and put aloe on, even THAT didn't work! 

So you can imagine I was pretty fed up

I then tried birth control, which made the situation much worse. 

Now, what has worked?
Well nothing has quite worked completely (YET) but it has gotten so much better with my current routine. 

First I saw a hormone specialist, because I new hormones were probably at least part of the problem (and I was right)
From that doctor I am taking some hormones that will specifically address my personal deficiencies and abundances of certain hormones. 
Second, I consulted an esthetician that I trusted. The woman in question has had very bad eczema for much of her life. And in addition to recommending products she also recommended digestive enzymes, because food has SO MUCH to do with our inner and outer health and it really does affect the skin.
And third, I stopped using my makeup, and my skin improved SO MUCH. I have found out that I am allergic to a lot of ingredients found in most makeups (mica, bismuth oxychloride, talc, titanium dioxide, and parabens)

So my current routine is this, they are all Naturopathica products (by far my favorite and most trusted brand)except for the creams from my doctor.


Aloe Cleanser
Cream from doctor
Calendula Moisturizer
Lavender honey balancing mist (optional)

Sweet Lupine Cleansing Cream 
Cream from doctor 
Cassis Moisturizer 
Botanical Skin Brightener
Moss Blemish Treatment (overnight)

I also take a couple of supplements: Iron, Vitamin D, B12, and something called Hormone Protect. 

I have ordered a makeup from Epic Beauty Minerals that contain none of the things I'm allergic to, I will update on how it goes! 

Why has it worked? My skin needed natural but effective products that would calm my irritated and sensitive skin. I mean if I was my skin I'd be pretty irritated at me for throwing all of those products at it that were completely wrong. Anyways. 

Until Next Time!!


Up Next:
Makeup Talk
Do's and don't of sensitive acne-prone skin