My Skin Story
Another completely vulnerable post from yours truly. You'd think I really enjoy writing these or something -- and I suppose I kind of do. But today, I want to share my skin story with you all. If you know me in real life or have followed me on social media for any length of time, I'm sure you have gathered that I don't have the skin of a L'Oreal model, and that's totally okay. This isn't a sob story, it's really not. Like I was saying, my skin is far from perfect. But let's hop back quite a few years, shall we?
Ahhh, middle school... I remember taking those absolutely glorious Family Life Education classes in which they would tell us all about how our bodies are changing and of course, how acne would eventually start popping up within the next few years because of hormones and all that good stuff. Except, guess what? For me, that never happened. I barely had any acne during middle school and high school days. In fact, I'm really not even sure why or when I started wearing foundation, because I never needed it. It was never an insecurity for me and never anything I needed to edit out of photos, because it really just didn't exist -- and I was ecstatic.
Flash forward to college days. I can recall the exact month my skin started taking a turn for the worst. March of 2013. And you want to know why? My eating habits were complete trash. College, for me, equaled hot Cheetos, and soda, and midnight trips to In N Out because they were open until 2 am (moment of silence for all of the Double Doubles I could be eating right now if I still lived in California...) ANYWAY. I started getting bumps on my cheeks and chin and it wasn't a pretty sight. But still, it wasn't horrendous.
This continued for the next three years because I was in college, and I was going on tours with my college, and I just honestly did not care what I was putting in my body. In that time, I also gained like 20 pounds. I guess that's just college, but yikes...
Unfortunately, I was a little high maintenance brat and I don't have many photos of me with acne because I would edit everything out. I tried to find some pictures, but this is about all I could find.
Fast forward to September of 2016, my skin took a turn for the worst...and I mean the. worst. I'm going to include a photo below, that I'm pretty terrified to show you all. But for the sake of this post, I'm willing.
This is the worst my skin has ever looked. It was painful, it hurt to open my mouth to take a bite of my food because I could feel everything stretching. It itched. It hurt when I washed my face, when I put on foundation, if I accidentally touched my face. Kids made comments, and so did some adults. One time, I had a lady from church (who meant well, I'm sure...) come up to me and tell me that my face was very severe and I needed to go see a doctor -- as if I hadn't done that several times before.
I finally figured out that I was suffering from an awful hormone imbalance. I got put on birth control along with developing a great skin care plan, and I started looking up hormone balancing foods. This led me to changing my lifestyle to a more paleo lifestyle. I wasn't super strict with it, but I cut out most sugars and processed foods, and never ever drank soda. I watched as my skin cleared up immensely - slowly, but surely; something I never thought would happen.
I know this sounds superficial, but until you go through it, you won't understand it -- but this was one of the worst things I've ever gone through in my life. I cried all the time, and I'm not a crier. I felt so insecure, so ugly, so envious of girls that didn't have to go through what I had to go through. I thought my skin would never heal.
Even in June of 2017, my skin was still suffering pretty badly. It wasn't until September of 2017, a full year later, that my skin was finally completely clear. I remember obsessing over it all the time; always checking my skin out in a mirror or on my phone, asking people if it looked okay, freaking if my makeup rubbed off a tiny bit. Honestly, looking back, I think I was completely justified in feeling that way. It's a very sensitive, very real thing for so many people and my heart truly goes out to people who deal with it.
Dealing with something as crippling as acne made me really take a look at what I put inside my body. (I am aware that there are so many other horrible things that people face every single day, but for me, this was very real.) I learned that we put so many awful things into our bodies every single day, and don't even realize what those effects are. This sent me on a journey of discovering what foods fuel our bodies, instead of harming them. (More on that in another post later.)
Here are a few, more-recent photos of my skin since it has completely cleared. I still have some textured acne scarring but am looking into treatment for that. If you know of any you think I'd like or would be effective, please let me know in the comment section below! I'd love to hear your input. :)
So, there it is, folks. My skin story, though it is still a little unfinished. I'm really wanting to write some posts about my treatments in getting rid of my acne scarring, as well as my journey to living a completely paleo lifestyle. Is that something you all would be interested in reading about? Let me know in the comments!