People struggle through puberty—and even after puberty (sometimes even at 40) to look for answers. I, for one, want to find out. I have clear skin in my Grade School years until the first three years of High School. Then on my graduating year, breakouts started to appear. Well, a lot of factors contributed to it like stress in school, peer pressure, and yeah, love life. What’s worse is that I didn’t have a dermatologist I regularly visit so I literally have no idea as to what the best regimen is for the perfect skin ever except for my mom who tells me to ‘wash your face every night, Lar.’ and ‘don’t touch/prick your pimple or it will create moon-like craters on your face’ So that’s what I did until two years ago when I couldn’t take it anymore—my face had acne all over and so I decided to FINALLY invest on a dermatologist. I wish I could show you photos of my pre-derma face but I’ve already deleted them for sanity purposes (lol).
Okay, here are some of my learnings from Dr. Amon, which may debunk some of the myths your mothers and aunties made you believe all these years yet you still wonder why after all the years you’ve believed them, you still haven’t defeated acne. So. Here. Goes.
Pimples should be pricked (by a professional pimple popper though)
Yeaaaaaaaaaaah, I had the same reaction. I was like, ‘how could my mother be wrong?’ Apparently, what’s inside your pimple is pus aka bacteria which, if not let out, will recur and will infect the healthy tissues that creates a bigger and deeper zit and that’s where the moon-like craters come in. If you’ve ever had a boil in your life, it kinda has the same context.
Pimples do not just come out because of chocolates
There are reasons why you are having breakouts. One could be hormonal—it might be that you’re about to have your period and hormonal imbalances which can lead to pimples. Another is eating excessively oily food (this, I’ve gotten from Dra. Vicky Belo— doctor to the stars, in her latest interview with Tony Toni of Boys Night Out). Where else should your body excrete the oil you’ve been taking in? Oh, you know where. So go ahead and grab that bar of Snickers in the fridge!
Since the last two years, I’ve been in and out of the derma’s clinic and I am very guilty of inconsistency. I am sharing with you my bare face photos though I am still undergoing treatment (no judging) because I want everyone to know that having acne is nothing to be embarrassed about. My doctor told me that she has patients who have very clear skin —almost no pores at all but are suffering from bacne (back acne). See? Equality at its finest. Everybody—okay, maybe not everybody experiences this but acne is mostly part of human life.
I am not, in any way, make-up-shaming girls here because I also do this, all the time but I have come to realize that I should stop covering up and start having myself treated. Listen, you do not have to cover your face with makeup because you are beautiful as is and it wouldn’t make you less of a woman if you are suffering from acne. Seek help because it is treatable. Show your skin some love. Trust me when I say that this will bring back 100% of the confidence you’ve lost struggling through acne. I know ‘cuz I got mine back and I’m just half way through it. I know, I know, some would say ‘love yourself for who you are’ but you have to understand that acne is not something you were born with and isn’t having yourself treated the same thing as loving yourself?
I lost my confidence with acne because I didn’t educate myself enough on this matter so I want to share with everyone this skin care routine I have adapted from my dermatologist which I believe is very effective because #SharingIsCaring and of course I strongly suggest that you consult with a dermatologist because each of us is unique and we all have different skin types. What works for me might not work for you—oh, you get the point.
•I wash my face with Physiogel Derma Cleanser day and night. It’s hypoallergenic and so far it has the best effect on my face. (Cetaphil’s fine, too)
•Right now, since I have breakouts (this hot weather is the worst!) I use an antibacterial toner. For the red scars (I always have them since I also have rosacea), I use a scar cream formulated by my derma herself. And my favourite—acne healing cream for occasional zits (it kills them overnight, I swear!)
•For times when I am pimple-free (but never rosacea-free of course), I use Avéne Sensitive White (so glad they are finally here in the Ph!) toner during the day, and at night, I use Infracyte Cyto Balance that restores my skin’s normal PH balance. The only constant in my life is the cleanser, scar cream, and acne healing cream.
But of course, the best advice I can give you—though I am very guilty of this, is to never ever skip washing your face at night with or without makeup. Avoid sun exposure (my tan line says otherwise, I know) because it triggers your pimples. And yeah, avoid staying up late (another habit I’m guilty of doing). I just figured it has something to do with breakouts since Dr. Amon always asks me this, ‘Napuyat ba?’ Also, do not forget to drink lots of water to flush out the toxins in your body.
So that’s about it! What about you, what’s your beauty regimen? Put it in the comment box below.
Always remember, beauty from within always beats external beauty. It doesn’t matter how beautiful you are on the outside, what matters is how you are on the inside.
Dr. Mary Anne Luciano-Amon (I swear she’s the best in her field)
RM 333A Makati Medical Center
For appointments, you may contact: +63 906 319 9156