Goodbye Cystic Acne, It Wasn't Nice Knowing You!

A few months ago, I was devastated. I don't know what was going on, but it seemed like every day I had a new cystic pimple.These are the zits that are real bumpy, hurt like heck, and are  really embedded in your skin. When I went to see my Doctor about a totally unrelated issue, the first thing he said to me was "Wow, you've got some major zits let me refer you to a dermatologist." Unbelievable! Anyway, I was so scared to touch them because I know how badly they can scar. However, I would head to my Doctor, and she would give me coritzone shots like every week. Finally I couldn't take it anymore. These zits were taking over my life. No amount of makeup, could cover all of the bumps I had and I was tired of getting needles to my face every week (that can't be good). I knew I had to take control. These zits  were downright embarrassing. Before continuing, let's get something straight, I'm not a Doctor, I'm a beauty writer,who loves all things beauty. If you decide to follow this, just remember that. These are things that worked for me, to get rid of those horrid bumps and I'm currently working on my hyperpigmentation story next. My doctor told me my zits were hormonal and I should maybe try birth control or accutane. Negative. I was breast feeding (although I had to stop recently due to a health issue). You girls know that I'm a beauty reader. I do tons of research on skin health, hair health, and just overall beauty. So with that research, this is how I went to work on my zits.

1) Every single morning/night, I washed any trace of makeup off of my face using my Clarisonic

(God I love this thing), or an exfoliator. Two  of my favorite exfoliators was Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser or Kate Summerville's Exfolikate which contained tea tree oil. But I'm sure you can get less expensive options. Those are just what I used.

2) I began taking Zinc Capsules  and fish oils. My favorite was Barleans Pina Colada Fish Oil. Man this taste good. (First time, I've ever looked forward to taking fish oils). Now, I recently ordered, Barleans Mango Peach. Sounds Yum. Anyway, if you are wondering, why I used Zinc, and fish oils, because both are powerful anti inflammatory pills. Also, I drink coffee, and zinc is depleted in your body when you drink caffeine. Here are some reviews from people who have used zinc to help/cure their stubborn acne 
and here are the reviews on people who used fish oil

3) I made sure I never ever missed a morning smoothie. Loaded with vegetables and fruits that benefit the skin, it was a must for me.  Before I wouldn't drink my smoothie on the weekends because I wanted to eat brunch out (NYC has the best brunch on Sat and Sunday) but nope, I made sure to drink it every single day and just said forget the brunch.

4) I did not stress over it. STRESS WILL MAKE YOUR ZITS WORST. BELIEVE ME. I"m really lucky that I have a very supportive family. When I would cry about my skin, they would reassure me that  I was still beautiful and that this too shall pass. Guess what, it did. I haven't had a cystic zit in months.

5) I also made sure I washed my face brushes constantly. That's really important .

A lot of people think that your skin health is based on what you do topically. That's not true at all. If that was the case, then why are the most effective treatments for skin, pills. Take care of your inside, and your skin will show.

6) Thanks to my reader hypnotic, she reminded me about pillowcases. I wash mine at least twice a week with a non-fragranced cleanser. 

Hope this helped.



I will be writing my hyperpigmentation story soon.


hypnotic said...

girl thank you! i've been waiting for this post for MONTHS! i think consistency is key, you can't try to solve a problem with half heated attempts. i know when i take shortcuts my skin suffers.

it's always great to pinpoint your triggers by process of elimination (dirt pillow cases, unclean makeup brushes, vitamin deficiencies, diet, etc)

great post

Elaine A (TOBeautyReviews) said...

Thanks for the tips! Last month I broke out like crazy all over my mouth and chin area like I never have before! I read that it was hormonal. I heard about the fish oil but not the zinc. Luckily it's starting to subside now but I think I will definitely look into these solutions as preventative measures.

Eli said...

Thanks for the useful advice!

Ella Pretty Blog said...

Glad you were able to find something that worked for you. I broke out badly while TTC (trying to conceive), but during my pregnancy and after, my skin improved. Then 2 years after pregnancy my skin broke out so badly - started off in the forehead. It improved there, but shifted to my cheeks (my main problem area) and even down to my neck.

I first followed my aesthetician's advice (used all Dermalogica and Yonka products) because that had helped me in an earlier acne episode - but it didn't work this time.

I went to my dermatologist and got antibiotics (oral and topical) took 4 months but my skin FINALLY got better - phew! I'm slowly phasing out the meds on my doctors advice.

Of your steps - I do 1,3,5 and 6. I tried Dr Perricone's Acne diet - but it didn't work for me at all - and it made me sick of salmon LOL (although I still eat it at least once a week)

Beauty and the Green said...

This is such great information! Thanks for sharing.

adrian said...

Thanks for the helpful tips! Interesting, useful, and good reminders!

Ms. Fancy Pants, Dresses & Skirts said...

Thanks for sharing..Can not wait to get started on taking the fish oil & the zinc capsules.

socialitedreams said...

good post.....i need to keep up my face washing regimen, make sure to wash those pillow cases, and get proper nutrition...gah, i'm so lax with my skincare stuff and then wonder why it's so crappy

Tiffany said...

This was an excellent and much needed post! Can't wait to see the hyperpigmentation post.

Shana said...

this definitely worked because your skin was gorgeous at the Makeup Show. I get breakouts every so often (stress related) so I try to maintain balance in life but some things are unavoidable. I will be checking out those fish oils. thank for this post

Anonymous said...

I have suffered from cystic acne for the past two years. About 4months ago my coworker told me about the new Aveeno face cloths scrubbing thingy (new to me anyway). I have been using them faithfully and my face has completely cleared with no new break outs! I am soo happy! Now to get rid of those pesky dark spots!

Beautiful said...

thanks for the tips! can you tell us what you put in your smoothies because I definitely need to drink one in the mornings instead of eating my usually fiber bar, banana, and sometime a yoplus with a bottle of water.

Jawahir said...

how much zinc did you use? there's so much conflicting information about the amount one should take to see a difference. did it make you nauseous?

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