As I explained in the entry about the gluten-free diet, Seppo Pussa (Acne Genius) teaches how to combat acne from every angle, inside and out. So I thought I would take some time to talk about what I use topically to help clear my skin.
Like anyone who has struggled with acne, I have tried my fair share of face washes, creams, gels, toners, lotions, you name it. And you know what? A lot of them work, up to a point. As I found out much later, because a large factor in my acne was caused by my diet, no matter how much I did topically, I was always going to have breakouts, regardless of the stuff I used topically. Maybe those things would work better now, now that I have also found out what’s going on inside. BUT, I don’t think I’ll use any of those anymore, as I’m trying to avoid chemicals and synthesized products.
This is something I want to emphasize now too: if you are someone who has been struggling with acne for a long time, past your teen years, you’re going to have to learn how to deal with it for the rest of your life. This is something that I’ve been learning to accept over the past year – because no matter how careful I am, I could go out to a restaurant, and food gets cross contaminated, and I could end up with a nice, big pimple on my cheek. However, having a great topical regimen can help clear up your skin, to make it easier to eliminate those individual spots that pop up every once in awhile.
Now, I know that girls/women especially will want to wear makeup to cover up blemishes, uneven skin tone and scarring from acne. I have known a few men who do too. I remove my makeup before I wash my face, as a face wash never fully removes all my makeup. So I use straight coconut oil. I’ve tried a couple of different things, made mixtures of coconut oil and jojoba oil, or coconut with essential oils, but straight coconut oil is the easiest. I use a small scoop to take some out of the jar (it’s solid), and rub it on my face. (Coconut oil is liquid at 75 degrees, so in the jar, it stays solid, but as I rub it on my face, it becomes liquid.) I started using coconut oil to remove my makeup after using makeup removing cloths for about a month, and my skin broke out like never before, in spots that I hadn’t had breakouts at all. I knew I wanted to use something natural, and found a lot of bloggers using coconut oil. Using oil sounds counterproductive, I know – but think about it – water doesn’t cut through oil. Oil cuts oil. So I rub the coconut oil on my face, and use a washcloth or tissues to wipe my face off. Then I wash.
As per the recommendation from Seppo’s book, Clear For Life, I use Exposed Skin Care. I really like the line of products from them because they don’t dry my skin out – from day one, I never experienced any dryness. I cannot say the same for ANY other product I’ve used. Ever. The products are a balance of natural remedies, like green tea and sage leaf extract, as well as chemically proven ingredients, like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. I use the main products in the topical system – Cleanser, Tonic, Acne Treatment Serum, and Clear Pore Serum. Occasionally, I use the Clarifying Mask, and I used the Moisture Complex that I got in my very first kit until it was gone.
Once I ran out of the Moisture Complex, I just started using straight Aloe as my moisturizer. Be sure that if you do use aloe, you use JUST aloe, and avoid all aloe products that have alcohol in them – those will only dry out your skin. I have noticed a difference in the appearance of the red marks on my skin while using it as a moisturizer, but I can’t back it up with science. Even if it isn’t clearing up the red marks, I like using it because it’s much cheaper than majority of the moisturizers out there, and it’s a natural product.
To those who think it’s counterproductive to moisturize oily skin – oil isn’t the only cause for acne. And if you moisturize, your skin won’t feel like it needs to produce more oil to moisturize itself.
And finally, on those days when the bread cravings are just so difficult to ignore… or you get to go to Joe Squared in Baltimore (aka the best pizza EVER), and you are desperate to try the pizza, so you get a monster cyst on your cheek… (Yes, that exact thing happened to me about a month ago) In those cases, I use straight melaleuca essential oil as a spot treatment. I also just recently learned that Thyme can be just as effective, if not more, than benzoyl peroxide in clearing acne. And as always, my reasoning for using essential oils – why use a synthesized product with fillers that can have side effects, when you can use the same chemical compound that was created by nature? No-brainer.
Using this protocol for the past almost six months has made a tremendous difference in my skin. Majority of the hyper-pigmentation marks from pimples are gone, and I am working with my dermatologist to find ways to help make the deep scars less noticeable.
One last disclaimer: a lot of products didn’t work for me. I am happy to have found a system that uses natural products that I can use along with my other natural products. While this works for me, and I would recommend for anyone who struggles with acne to try it, it might not work for you. The hardest battle in the fight against acne is learning how to clear up your skin because everyone is different. Our bodies process foods differently, our skin reacts differently to products used topically, and our genes are meant to make us all unique. As I said, I would recommend trying a regimen like this, but I cannot promise it will work for you. And please, don’t listen to those people who say “it’s guaranteed to work!” because they’re lying. Try it, of course, but be fully aware it might not work. Then try the next thing. And the next, until you find what does work for you.
If you are interested in learning more about essential oils, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’d be happy to talk to you about them more!