I first developed acne when I was 13, tiny red spots and whiteheads all over my face, chest, shoulders and back. As a teenager you can imagine the insecurities it gave me, I felt hideous, it depressed me and I rarely left the house without my chest, shoulders and back covered up as I thought the sight of my acne would make others sick. My poor mother went through hell with me, wiping the tears, the temper tantrums whilst clothes shopping and the endless visits to the doctor.
Through my experience doctors regard acne as just “one of those things” teenagers go through, but here I am 26 years old still suffering acne, still have insecurities and have tried every lotion and potion that promises to clear my skin. I have been prescribed all sorts of antibiotics and no improvement, the only thing that managed to clear the acne was the combination pill, Dianette. I was on dianette for many years, although it did not completely clear my acne it worked a treat in clearing my face and chest and it gave me some confidence, but when I was diagnosed with retinal migraines I was taken off Dianette as it there was a risk of stroke!. Once the dianette was out of my system my acne has returned, now accepting acne is just part of who I am I just stick to using oil free products.
The attitude towards acne I find is quite dismissive, but what a lot of people do not realise is that everyone has a dabble with acne at some point in their lives, acne is not just for teenagers, adults suffer with it too. I have had comments whilst at work from customers such as “Aren’t you a bit old to be having acne?” I’ve also had “do you not wash your face daily?” Rude right? As I need my job I let it go over my head and just smile at their ignorance.
A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to be invited to an event hosted by Dr Stefanie Williams and her team at her clinic, Eudelo, in Vauxhall. Dr Stefanie Williams is not only a specialist in dermatology but she is also a qualified and registered doctor, so when I first read the email inviting the the #acne101 event I didn’t even need to think about it.
Meeting Dr Stefanie was a pleasure, her presentation was incredibly informative, detailing the different types of acne, what acne can look like, and what we can do to help prevent and stop acne. There are many medicines that can prevent acne but the one tablet capable of switching it off altogether is Roacutaine, there is a lot of fear mongering in the media regarding roacutaine, yes it has it risks but so do all medicines, the only people you should listen to are dermatologists. I currently in the process of getting the roacutaine but in my initial consultation I was informed I had to be on two forms of contraception, one being a condom the second being of what’s suitable, for me the last result was the coil, I had that fitted in August and now I’m waiting for my follow up appointment with the dermatologist.
Following the presentation Dr Stefanie held an interview with a fellow blogger Em Ford, Em is well known in the blogging community and the online world due to her acne, see her video here. I enjoyed but also felt saddened by listening to Em’s experience with acne. Once the interview was over we were invited to see the eudelo team for a consultation, skin scan, facial scan, a oxygenatix foundation match and a facial. I learnt so much about my skin even that I may be suffering rosaccea as well as acne, I was given products to use as a cleansing routine, Neostrata clarifying facial cleanser (which I love!) and la Roche posay redermic R ( which I’m not so big a fan of, left my skin itchy!). I next had a skin & facial scan that told me how hydrated or dehydrated in my case my skin was, rated elasticity, and measured pore size and UV damage. My results were horrifying, basically I need to drink a lot more water and use sun protection daily, below is my uv damage scan, the dark spots are the damage. Terrible right?
What I took away from this scan is that you need to wear UV Protection daily come shine or rain. I now use a serum under my foundation that is UV30, I can’t fix it but I can sure prevent any more damage!
After my scan I had a skin match done by a MUA for Oxygenetix foundation, a breathable foundation solely made for acne. Most foundations suffocate our skin, even the ones that promise to help clear blemishes, covering spots just suffocates them causing the bacteria to grow, causing bigger and more breakouts. Since I have started to use Oxygenetix I found my skin doesn’t get as oily, it has a full coverage and I don’t get any new breakouts compared to the Beyond perfect foundation I normally use from Clinique. Only downside is that this foundation at cheapest is £45 for just 15ml.
Overall my experience at the Eudelo was unforgettable and has certainly enlightened me, oh and I had my very first facial! Having very sensitive skin, I have never had a facial done through fear I’ll have a reaction or end up having twice as much breakouts, so when the lovely PR girls offered me a facial slot I jumped at the chance, I thought surely as it’s an acne event it’ll be a gentle facial? and I was right. When the beauty therapist invited me in to her room we had a good chat about my skin and decided that the facial offered wouldn’t actually be suitable for me so she offered a manual deep cleansing facial, so I hopped on to the table and I was tucked up with a LUSH red fleece, and my facial began, the therapist was incredibly friendly and gently with me, we chatted away throughout the entire facial, she gave my skin a gently exfoliate, cleansed and then moisturised finishing off with an antibiotic cream which when I woke up the next day, all blemishes had gone! Just wish I asked what she used!