In my quest for clear skin, I found a holistic approach to acne to be the most effective. I experienced my first acne flare up at the age of 13. Coming from a Mediterranean background, everyone in my family has naturally flawless complexions. My parents hadn't encountered anything more than an odd pimple and knew very little about what I was experiencing. Just like most teens, I began tackling my acne spots with a Benzoyl Peroxide treatment. However, I found that the more I attempted to clear my acne, the more sensitive and aggravated my skin became, and by the age of 15, the lower portion of my face was entirely covered with painful cystic acne.
Holistic Approach To AcneAcne was the biggest battle of my teenage years. I understand how having problematic skin can become the bane of your existence and, in my experience, the burden of this condition lies much more profound than its physical attributes. I became sensitive and insecure about the way I looked and avoided spending time with my friends, which is probably why I spent more of my summer holidays inspecting my skin in the mirror than having fun at the pool). Over the years, I had gone from one dermatologist to the next looking for an answer. Through this process, I have been prescribed more acne treatments than I can remember, and while I developed several allergic reactions to mainstream acne treatments, I still hadn't found a cure. Now as a 23-year-old, I am still prone to cystic acne along my jaw, chin and on my cheeks, and when acne spots choose to appear, they tend to keep me company for months on end. Previously having tested many harsh chemicals on my quest for clear skin, this time around I was after a more holistic approach. Having noted the impact particular diet and lifestyle factors, as well as good skincare, has on my skin's susceptibility to breaking out, I'm here to share with you the things I've learned about acne over the years.
Treat Your Acne From The Inside OutWe're all aware of famous clichÃ©, 'you are what you eat', however, this saying holds a great deal of truth particularly when it comes to acne. While treating acne may not be as simple as eliminating sugar and dairy from your diet, I noticed a significant improvement in my skin once I did - in a matter of days, my skin became less inflamed and, within two weeks, the number of active cystic spots on my face had reduced. As it turns out, acne producing hormones (androgens) are stimulated by dairy, and just like sugary foods, trigger an increase in insulin levels. While androgen hormones are predominantly connected to the production of acne is, it is insulin that fuels the excessive production of these hormones; for this reason, stabilising your insulin levels by reducing your dairy and sugar intake is key to controlling hormonal acne.
Defeat StressStress can trigger an imbalance in your hormones and trigger acne in much the same way as dairy and sugar. Practising stress release is a massive part of a holistic approach to acne. In the presence of stress, androgen levels spike and the cycle begins. Meaning the more you worry about your skin, the worse your acne may become. From one acne sufferer to another, I can't stress the importance of reminding yourself that acne doesn't define who you are as a person, and suffering from the condition doesn't make you an unhappier person unless you allow it to. I have found a lot of emotional stress relief through exercise, mainly high-intensity workouts, relaxation and sufficient sleep. Even though my skin may not be perfect, I'm improving my health and fitness every day, and that makes me feel great!
Simplify Your Skin Care RegimeProper cleansing ensures that your skin is clear from the impurities and free radicals that can often clog the pores and cause acne. However, over-cleansing or using harsh chemical based products can strip your skin of its essential protective oils. In many cases, overwhelming the skin with products can trigger your skin to produce more oils, and in turn, more acne. Unfortunately, I had to learn about this the hard way - through the use of mainstream treatments, I had irritated my skin, and my acne production was in overdrive! It wasn't until I visited my local health food store seeking a simple, effective treatment that I stumbled across Botáni's Skin Rescue Kit, and I've been using it ever since, which is how I came to work for the brand.
Botani Skin Rescue Kit
Botáni's Skin Rescue Kit is as simple as cleanse, treat and hydrate. Developed and formulated with love by a caring naturopath who understands the importance of harmonising the skin's deficiencies and imbalances in the treatment of acne, this kit is my secret weapon in the fight against acne. After trialling and testing so many acne treatments over the years, I can confidently say that this product trio is undoubtedly the most effective, fuss-free treatment for acne that I have encountered, my only wish is that I had found it sooner! What are your stories of Acne survival? I would love for you to share your quests! Ksenija @ Botáni
Want the chance to try Botáni's Rescue Acne Cream? For your chance to win a Rescue Acne Cream 'Like' our Facebook page and 'Share' the post about this week's blog with your friends. Let us know that you've done this by posting a comment below about your skincare quest. Make sure you include your Facebook name so we can contact you if you win.
*Competition is only open to Australian residents. All winners will be requested to complete a review of the awarded product. Entries are open from September 21st - 25th, 2015. We will announce the winner by Facebook on Friday, September 25th 2015.
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