Friday, March 14, 2008

ProActiv... So not the acne cure

<---------- BAD!

I remember I had turned 21 and started to notice polka dots on my face. So not cool. I always had a very nice complexion, but then my body changed and my hormones went wacky and for whatever reason I started to get acne. It was probably the most horrible thing when I went to my dermatologist and they said, "Darlin' you've got adult acne." WHAT!? (FYI - more people suffer from acne as adults than as teenagers - 50% of all adult women are effected and 25% of all adult men). So of course they gave me prescription medicine that is probably like acid on your face. I didn't know any better. But it really didn't work. So then after a year or so of freaky skin, I purchased Proactiv Solutions. Within two months, my acne was 95% gone. Phew what a relief! But then I noticed how dry my skin was, so much redness around my nose, things just were not seeming right. Here I thought I had finally a cure, but in exchange for mostly clear skin, I realized that my healthy skin was not looking too good. So after about 2 years I stopped using. That was last November. It is now March and my acne took no time coming back. Proactiv is NOT a cure for acne, just a band aid (an an unhealthy/unnatural band aid). It is not your friend, treat it like your enemy.

Here is a link to a website that talks about the nasties of Benzoyl Peroxide, the leading ingredient in Proactiv: http://www.skintactix.com/benzoyl_peroxide_skin_damage.htm

THAT IS SCARY STUFF!!! Check out the part where the FDA took Benzoyl Peroxide from it's #1 spot as leading fighter of acne to #3 because it's long term effects are unknown and possibly unsafe: "In 1995 the FDA changed benzoyl peroxide from a Category I (safe) to a Category III (safety is uncertain) ingredient and stated this action (56 FR 37622) was based on new information that raised a safety concern regarding benzoyl peroxide as a tumor promoter in mice…"

It may even be linked to cancer!!! If you use it, get rid of it. Let's find a natural cure together!

When I gave up Proactiv, I immediately ordered an all natural product called Herbal Luxuries. I did some research to find it. You can purchase this on the web. At first I thought this product worked miracles. I was like, "Awesome! Here's my solution to kick my Proactiv addiction." But after one month, the product showed no results and my acne was all around my mouth. I then realized that the benzoyl peroxide from the Proactiv was still active in my skin and still hadn't worn off. So sorry Herbal Luxuries, at least for me, you no worky! :(

So what now? I don't know, but honestly I'm trying everything. You'd think diet would be the number one reason for acne. But I eat really well, mainly green veggies, a lot of Vitamin A rich foods (which is good for skin problems). I went to dermatologist recently to get a red dot removed from my nose, and I asked Dr. Lui (he's amazing BTW: http://www.csmc.edu/10781.html), "Hey Doc, What's wrong with me? Why do I have acne." He said, "All the pretty girls get it." Awwww. "But seriously: It's attributed to mainly ingrown hair." I'm part Latina so I've got some hairy areas. But, while I really believe that is true I think it's more than just that; however, I have decided come April, I'm getting Laser.

Green tea has been something I have fallen back on when my skin is really bad. I drink a ton of it plain. I am not sure if the decaf has the same amount of antioxidants as the caffeinated, but you can try it if you don't like drinking caffeine. What I have noticed is that when I drink a lot of it, my bad areas dry out and it seems my skin improves. Now, this used to be enough for my skin to clear up. But to maintain it, you have to always drink it. My skin is being stubborn and no, Green tea is not the total cure, but helps A LOT and is good for you in so many other ways. I will dedicate an entry to the GT soon.

But then last week I went to Trader Joe's, and per the suggestion of Heather Wade, you know my trusty sidekick, she told me to pick up the Dessert Essence products and the tea tree oil blemish stick. I knew that tea tree oil would be excellent for my face, but would it really be the answer? It's been about a week now and sure my skin seems to be a little better. It's not totally pimply but I still feel like a girl with herpes on her face, and no, I don't have herpes. I feel like I have leprosy, probably not even close to it, but you do not feel pretty when your face is like this. Not even with makeup, especially not with makeup because your skin is only worse when you take off the makeup. So thanks Heather for the suggestion. I will keep the blemish stick, but not sure the Dessert Essence face wash is really helping.

So I was at my friends Alice and Heather's house this past Monday after I went to Walgreen's to look at their selection of acne products (natural, of course) but to no avail, and like every girl I have come into contact with lately (who all seem to have perfect skin) I asked them, "What do you use for skin products??" So Heather began to tell me that in high school she did not have good skin (she does now). My ears perked up. Go on Heather, I'm listening. So she started to tell me that her skin cleared up after using Lush products and this stuff called The Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay. So immediately I googled Lush Acne and here's what I found: "Fresh Pharmacy Cleanser, by Lush" http://www.amazon.com/Fresh-Farmacy-Cleanser-by-LUSH/dp/B000225ZL0

People, we may have found the answer. The reviews from everyone are extremely positive. And this stuff is ALL NATURAL! I'm actually going directly to the Lush store in Beverly Hills right after work to get a consultation and get this product along with one of their face lotions.

Here's the link to The Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay: http://www.amazon.com/Indian-Healing-Clay-Lb/dp/B00028O63W/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=hpc&qid=1205515457&sr=1-2

So, I'm waiting for the Indian Healing Clay to arrive. And tonight I will be the proud owner of new Lush acne treatment!!! I can't wait. I feel like a kid in the candy store, but it's the acne cure store instead.

Good skin is everything. It makes you feel confident and beautiful. I am dying to get this resolved. I'll get back to you with the results! Until then, happy pimple-ridding.

Oh please Aztec people, GIMME YOUR SECRET!!



P.S. Try Vitex, aka agnuscastus. It's an herbal supplement that helps with acne. I'm currently taking it, even though I am not a big fan of ever taking supplements because you should get all your vitamins and nutrients from food, but I'll let you know the results.

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