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In a world of striving for perfection and flawlessness, it's hard to not focus on every little flaw. Skin issues are definitely one of those flaws that people try to erase. They can be daunting and bring along low self-esteem when and wherever they hit. As someone who has suffered from poor skin for the majority of their life, I can vouch for how they completely shape and dictate certain aspects of it.
I suffered from cystic acne for about 5 years (9th grade to freshman year of college). It started on my back and eventually switched to my face where it increasingly became more aggressive. I tried every medication and natural remedy under the sun - even laser. Nothing worked. It only seemed to get worse. The only way I was getting some relief was from cortisone injections in my face at my once a week dermatology visit.
I had enough, so I took matters into my own hands and did some research. I came across Accutane and told my doctor that I wanted to try it. My Accutane journey was longer than most. The average is 4-5 months - mine was 9 month. Needless to say, I had some time to perfect my skincare routine while on Accutane.
I've shared my routine with friends who have gone on the medication after me and I've decided to share it with you.
Do NOT use Face Wash
While on Accutane you should NOT be washing your face with anything but water. Any face wash can dry out our skin even more than Accutane is already doing. Use lukewarm water to wash your face at least twice a day. On bad days, I would rise my face more than the daily amount (three-four times) to get all the excess dirt off.
The point of Accutane is to stop your glands from producing oil, so naturally, your face gets extremely dry. Not to scare you (I had a worse case than most), but my skin would literally peel off from being so dry. It took me some time to find the right face moisturizer, but once I did I never stopped. CeraVe Daily Moisturizing Lotion is my go-to face moisturizer. It's light on the skin and does its job. Use it after you wash your face.
THIS is your saving grace. Aquaphor comes in multiple forms. I recommend getting the tub and the small tubes. Keep the tub at home and carry the tubes wherever you go. It's the only product that keeps your lips moisturized because trust me - they will be constantly dry. On some days where I found my skin dryer than most, I would put some Aquaphor on over my moisturizer.
I always wore foundation to try to cover up my acne and that didn't stop when I started Accutane. Because of the dryness, it's a little difficult for foundation to properly hold. Use a dabbing motion rather than a circular one to apply the foundation. Brushing the foundation across your face can allow the foundation to showcase the dryness and crack.
If you find that your foundation looks cracked or is peeling, I would take a small amount of CeraVe Moisturizer and dab it on top of the foundation. It helped the foundation to hold a little while longer.
Stress is a known factor for causing acne. There were many times when Accutane was a stressful process. Sometimes it looked like it never was getting better and only worse. But I promise, if it worked for me, it'll work for you. Accutane takes time and it will help. Don't stress over the process, believe in it and know that soon enough you will be okay.