Battle Against Pimples: An Update
Dear JDMB: As requested, this post is for you. :)
I never got to post updates about this battle over the years, so here I am again. I'll show you guys some photos from 2009-2012 so that you can see my skin condition over time, and I'll also tell you about the skin care products that I'm using right now.
This post is going to be a little more picture-heavy than usual, so brace yourself. Haha! Let's start off with my "evolution" over the span of a little over 3 years.
|2009 - Visible pimple marks. See how my skin was somewhat reddish? This was around the time I stopped using tretinoin and clindamycin.|
|2010 - Benzac had started to clear up my acne. :)|
|2011 - Still using Benzac. Fairly clear with the occasional zits during "that" time of the month.|
|2012 - Still on Benzac! :)|
After some trial and error, I have found that these are the products that work best with my oily, acne prone skin:
|L-R: Human Nature Balancing Face Toner, Benzac AC 10%, Celeteque Facial Moisturizer SPF 15, Clean & Clear Clear Fairness Moisturizer SPF 30, Human Nature Sunflower Beauty Oil|
One of the most important things in a skin care regimen is your facial wash. I used to use Pond's, Cetaphil, Clean and Clear, Cyleina, and a whole plethora of other facial washes. But I've finally found my HG (Holy Grail) facial wash. The thing about it is... It's not exactly a facial wash. It's a bar of soap. Haha!
Guys, meet By Nature Handmade Soaps' Citrus White. This is what I wash my face with, in the morning and at night. It effectively clears away the oil from my face, and it also aids in lightening whatever acne marks I have left on my skin. :) I love how it leaves my face squeaky clean.
Aside from Citrus White, I also make sure to scrub once or twice a week using Human Nature's Purifying Facial Scrub. I just make sure to scrub real lightly so that I don't end up doing my skin more harm than good. ;) I also make sure to avoid scrubbing the skin around my eyes as it's really sensitive. But I'm sure y'all already know that.
I like this balancing toner. It doesn't do magic tricks by shrinking my pores, eradicating my pimples, and whitening my skin... No it doesn't do that. But what I love about it is that it's 100% natural. It effectively picks up any oil and dirt from my face that my facial wash leaves behind. Also, it doesn't dry out my skin. :)
This product right here is what dries out any pimples that make it to the surface of my skin. Whether I have pimples or not, I make sure to apply a thin layer all over my face at night before I sleep. It helps prevent any breakouts. :) Over time, I've alternated between 5% and 10%. 10% can be a bit drying, but I found that some pimples still sneak past the more watery 5% one. So 10% it is. For me anyway.
If you're interested in also using Benzac for your acne issues, start with the 5% solution. Don't forget to do a skin test to see if you're allergic to it. :)
Even if my skin is uber oily, I have to admit that I really cannot do away with moisturizers. Benzac can really dry out my skin, and when oily skin becomes dried out, it tends to compensate by producing more oil. Now, who wants an oil slick? Not me. :p
I like Celeteque's facial moisturizer with SPF 15 because, true to its claim, it's really non-comedogenic and hypo-allergenic. I have sensitive skin (believe it or not), so it's great that doesn't cause any itching or allergic reactions. It didn't cause me to break out either, so, YEY! The non-comedogenic part wasn't just there for show. :)
This moisturizer I've only been using for a couple of days now. The Celeteque one's working for me, but I still wanted to explore. Clean & Clear's Clear Fairness Moisturizer with SPF 30 is... Okay. It has a creamier feel compared to Celeteque's more watery one. The disadvantage to the creamy texture is that it tends to cake or crease. Yeah, it does that on my oily skin, considering this moisturizer is oil-free. I notice the caking/creasing when I apply face powder or foundation on top of it. I usually have to grab a ball of cotton to rub over it so the creasing would go away.
This moisturizer hasn't made me break out yet though, so I can still finish the bottle without having to deal with pesky pimples. I'm retaining my Celeteque moisturizer once I'm done with this bottle. My foundation/face powder glides on a whole lot better when I use the Celeteque moisturizer. :)
A plus to using sunflower oil as a night moisturizer? I found that it lightens my stubborn pimple marks. Yes, yes. I still have pimple marks, but they're not as prominent as before anymore. And with the sunflower oil, even the stubborn ones are slowly starting to fade out. :D
So there you have it. Those are all the products that I'm currently using on my face. If you noticed, I don't use any chemical peels or tretinoin, or any of the like. I'm afraid of applying anything too harsh on my skin. And I'm afraid of my skin ending up burnt when I step out in the sun for 30 minutes (That happens to overly chemically treated skin, right?). So, to be on the safe side, I'm sticking to mostly natural products. :) I may still not have perfect skin, but then again, no one's perfect, right? Well, unless you have the moolah to go to Dr. Belo or the Calayans. Hehe!
None of the products here also promise instant results. The thing with skin care products is, they have to be consistently and religiously applied. Patience is key - alongside finding your HG products. :)
I hope that you find your HG products by way of my post here. :) But, please remember that although we may have the same skin type (oily / acne prone), it doesn't necessarily mean that the products I'm using will work on you too. If you have severe acne, or if your acne's really persistent, it's still best to consult a dermatologist. Sometimes, there are other internal issues that affect our skin.
I guess I'll leave you with a shameless plug before I close this entry (LOL). If you're interested in By Nature Handmade Soaps and/or Human Nature products, feel free to let me know. I'm a registered dealer for both. Hehe! (I don't sell products I don't believe in).
Well. Toodles and good luck! :)