Having struggled with severe acne for the past six years, I know how acne scars can affect someone. It can be hard to think positively about something that raises insecurities each time you look in the mirror, especially something that is all over your face.

Embracing my scars took me years. I went through phases of caking my face to going makeup free for a month, researching tips online and trying every potential solution I could find. I hated covering up my skin with layers of foundation and concealer, I wished every day that I could wake up one morning and have the perfect skin I saw other people had. 

What sparked a change of attitude towards my acne scarring was that I realized how much time I spent crying or occupying my thoughts with “what ifs”. What if my skin was clear? What if my scars disappeared? What if I had better genes? I recognized how obsessed I was with having clear skin, and how this obsession was affecting my mental health. 

Before I share what worked for me, I just wanted to make a disclaimer that I am not a medical professional or a skin care expert. My advice is gathered from estheticians, naturopaths, and my doctor—what worked for me may not work for you, but I am so happy to share my progress and tips since I have come this far. I truly hope my story helps you in some way, whether it be a product I recommend or that you can relate to my experience and finally feel that you are not alone. J

SELF CARE

Doing something every day that makes you happy is SO important. I never realized how important it to find activities that boost your endorphins. 

Here are a few suggestions of mine from personal experience:

p.s. this is what worked for me! Everyone’s journey is unique, I just wanted to share what worked for me in case it may work for you! J

  1. PILLOW CASES

This is SO important. Change your pillow cases every 2-3 nights! My esthetician told me to do this because I have oily skin. Essentially, when you put your face on your pillow, you are soaking up all the dirt on your face from previous nights. This is one thing I have been too lazy to do recently but I can totally tell that the breakouts I get on the right side of my face are from sleeping on that dirty pillow case! I have to get back into the constant washing of my pillow cases.

2. MEDITATING

See Here

I bought this book because I always was curious if meditating was as powerful as everyone said it was. This book is written in a tone that is so easy to follow and has really helped to alleviate stress in my life. Stress is one of the main contributors to breakouts – we’ve all had one of those giant finals season zits. This book not only helped me to de-stress but also helped me to not get stress breakouts as frequently.

1. HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

Before I jump right in, I just wanted to say I am not a dietitian or a doctor! I decided to cut some foods out to see if there was a correlation between certain foods and my breakouts.

DAIRY & GLUTEN

Dairy is the number one contributing factor to my breakouts that led to the scarring. For 3 months, I cut dairy entirely– along with gluten, all while following an anti-inflammatory diet. I found that gluten did contribute to some breakouts but not as much as dairy did. Now I really try to limit my dairy intake because even if I have cheese on a burger, a zit will appear the next day. 

OIL IN FOOD

Try to limit the amount of junk food and greasy food you eat! Your skin reflects your inner health, if you fill your body with nutrients and good food, your skin will likely reflect that! 

WATER

Now I don’t want to sound like Kendall Jenner when she says water is what keeps her skin looking so nice but keeping track of how much water…but water really does make a huge impact. Drinking lots of water is important to flush out toxins from your body and also to ensure your body is hydrated!

ACTIVITY 

Being active is also important to sweat out toxins from your body and get your blood flowing! Walking, yoga, running, and just about any of the 100+ ways you can be active should totally be incorporated into your lifestyle to help with the release of toxins in your body that contribute to breakouts.

VITAMINS

Vitamins are also so important! My esthetician suggested to me to take these vitamins:

Fish Oil: Omega 3 from fish oil helps so much with the texture of your skin! Omega 3 also has so many other benefits besides skin health.

Biotin: The vitamin for healthy skin, nails, and hair!

SKIN CARE ROUTINE

Having a consistent routine is crucial – don’t change your routine when a product doesn’t work right away!

These are the products that have worked wonders for me:

Makeup Remover – Bioderma Micellar Water

Bioderma is a holy grail item in my routine. This takes off my makeup so easily without irritation and I feel so clean after I use it!

The rest of the items were recommended to me by my esthetician Felicia (@Feliciakarfell on Instagram) from Lac + Beauty in Toronto (she’s the best!!! Shoutout to her). She told me how important it is to wear SPF during the day if you are prone to acne scars because the sun can actually make your scars darker! She also curated this fabulous routine that has helped keep my acne at bay and with the serum and frequent facials have helped to eliminate scarring!

Face Wash – IS CLINICAL Cleansing Complex

Serum – IS CLINICAL Active Serum

Day Moisturizer with SPF – Elta MD

Night Cream – Biologique Recherche Crème Dermopurifiante

Here is a before and after of my skin!

My transformation has been so rewarding for me to see! I am so grateful that I found what works for me and I hope that if you are struggling with acne, some of my tips will help you! Insecurities lay within all of us on a deeper level, make sure you always take the time to do good for your internal well-being!Don’t let the little things get you down, be present in everything you do!