18 With Acne


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Acne happened to me the day I turned 18. I woke up, and my face decided to erupt into tiny little white volcanoes everywhere and all at once. I was confused, embarrassed, uncomfortable, and a tiny bit obsessive about figuring out how to get rid of this new skin condition. At the time, I was living in Nashville amongst some of the worlds most beautiful people who most likely had never experienced a zit in their life let alone acne. Needless to say, I was 18 with acne, feeling rather alone in my skin condition, and incredibly unattractive.

Dating? Negative. I spend many afternoons crying in my room alone, praying God would pull a miracle and clear up my skin by the time I counted to ten. I even envisioned myself as the next ProActiv testimonial for clear skin…yeah that didn’t exactly work out for me.

So, I quickly became passionate about figuring this out.  My first venture was to a local spa where the Esthetician told me in a thick Russian accent (and with nonstop hand motions) that my skin had so many blackheads, she couldn’t get them all. Did I mention she used hand motions? –And why do Russians have to have such perfect skin anyways? So I went to a few more spas and quickly learned my face was beyond lotions, potions, and I desperately needed a dermatologist for a cure.

Eventually, seeing a dermatologist and getting on good acne medication was the cure, but between retinols and benzoyl peroxide, it was a serious process that I wasn’t really prepared for. When my Derm told me that my skin would peel, he didn’t exactly tell me that it would be falling off in chunks, sprinkling into my salad. Embarrassing! Also, no one can prepare you for the redness and itching that comes along with that. It took a good long year for this to go away, and during the process, I was inspired to help people with their skin.

After my Nashville adventure, I moved to Portland and enrolled into Esthetic school to discover the “techniques” behind good skin.  6 months later I graduated from Esthetics school with FLAMING acne due to my incessant need for constant facials. My confidence was shot once again! Who wants to hire an esthetician with acne? Who wants to go to an esthetician for acne with acne?

But I pressed on and was lucky enough to get a job at a Medical Spa where they carried prescription skin care items.  So, between prescription skincare, lasers, chemical peels and extractions, my face has been acne free for 5 years.

Acne can happen to anyone at anytime. So it’s important to know that there is a process that needs to happen in order for your skin to clear up.  I know it is no fun, and honestly, no one can understand the emotional side of acne unless you have been there.  So my advice to those of you who have acne is to not give up, be patient, and don’t be afraid to see a dermatologist.




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