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#1 Livvie

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Posted 27 March 2013 - 02:06 PM

Hello again!

 

This is a challenge I have begun as of yesterday night and am going to continue for the next 6 days at least. Anyone is welcome to try this for themselves and I would love to hear your feedback.

 

 

Those of you who read my post about skin mirror frustration know that I've been having issues lately with my skin (breakouts) and the terrible habit of picking (which leads to worse breakouts, worse skin and emotional damage).

 

After doing a bit of thinking, I've identified the root of the problem (for me anyways).

 

The cycle starts with two main things: the mirror, or looking in it anyways, and touching the face. Us skin pickers tend to get up close and personal with looking in mirrors too long and way too often. Sometimes we don't even realize we are doing it until it's too late, and then we feel terrible for the next few days until the skin heals itself. But it doesn't take long before we do it again and history repeats itself. Touching the skin without mirrors around also complicates things, but I don't have as much of a problem with this when I'm not able to see my reflection. 

 

My goal for this challenge is to avoid mirrors completely, as much as possible at least. I don't know about you personally but I tend to linger in the bathrom looking at my complexion, overanalyzing and eventually messing with my skin. I only feel worse after coming away from them anyways.

 

 

My personal challenge goals:

 

1) NO looking in mirrors as much as possible. To do this, I am only going to be in the bathroom with the lights OFF (I do have a small nightlight thing so I won't be stumbling around in the dark, but it isnt' enough to let me get a good look at my skin) and remove mirrors from my reach. The ones that won't be moved I will not look at, or if I happen to, I will blur my eyes. I know, this sounds kind of silly,  but I really think this is going to help.

 

2) Continue this for a duration of at least 6 days. This challange will be difficult, if not impossible, for those of you who wear makeup. You may want to either take a break from makeup or wait until a period of time when you will not be in public too much. For that reason, I am going to abstain from makeup for at least a week. People can think what they want about me - what I look like isn't really who I am, so I'm gonna just be natural.

 

3) No touching my face at all with my hands or fingers unless applying a topical acne cream/med.

 

Benefits:

 

1) After the 6 days are up (I really want to shoot for 2 weeks), I hope to see a big difference in my skin. No makeup and no picking should help, if nothing else changes! I will continue my current acne treatment i just started (which is an ACV, epsom salt and tea tree oil mix I apply twice daily).

 

2) Even if I still get the occasional pimple during this challenge, I probably won't know it and therefore won't be bothered! I'm not going to worry about what I look like and just see what happens.

 

3) More time back on my hands. Looking in the mirror so much takes away from my life...I never really noticed until I've forced myself to stop.

 

4) "Train" me in the long run to break free of my mirror dependence and release me from its effects.

 

5) Hopefully, a surprise at the end - better skin, and better quality of life!

 

 

Let me know how you feel about this and your thoughts/suggestions/comments :)



#2 Frank*L

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 06:46 PM

Not looking in the mirror as often will definitely make you feel better psychologically  Not to be Mr. Negative but I doubt your skin will magically get better because you don't look in the mirror but you will feel better mentally by not doing it as much as you did before. It's like your mind f*cking yourself.

 

I have BDD. I constantly look in the mirror looking at my acne scars. I can't help it and its very time consuming. Looking in the mirror kills me but I still do it and I can't stop. But when I force myself not to do it for like a day I feel a lot better even though I know nothing has changed. Sometimes we are our own worst enemies I guess.



#3 CrazyIceCream

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 03:08 AM

I want to try this so badly eusa_pray.gif

 

Another tip that I must add is that if you really need to look in the mirror, just look from afar and for a brief moment.

Oh! And smile! Because it will instantly lift your mood up biggrin.png

 

But...it's quiet impossible for me right now because I have this huge mirror right beside my "work" station to enable me to see my whole body as I'm trying on my "product" and such....

 

I noticed that I picked a lot since I have this new "work" station too. Haih...but I can't move the mirror cause I need it.

 

This calls for a whole lot of discipline dontgetit.gif

 

Oh well. Good luck to everyone who will be trying this challenge eusa_angel.gif



#4 Livvie

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 08:35 AM

Not looking in the mirror as often will definitely make you feel better psychologically  Not to be Mr. Negative but I doubt your skin will magically get better because you don't look in the mirror but you will feel better mentally by not doing it as much as you did before. It's like your mind f*cking yourself.

 

I have BDD. I constantly look in the mirror looking at my acne scars. I can't help it and its very time consuming. Looking in the mirror kills me but I still do it and I can't stop. But when I force myself not to do it for like a day I feel a lot better even though I know nothing has changed. Sometimes we are our own worst enemies I guess.

 

If your skin looks bad from picking (in the mirror) it should. Leaving it alone will give it a chance to heal. If you have regular acne that just comes up on its own this challenge probably won't help it go away...its mostly for those who pick and want to make their skin look better by stopping.

 

I know what you mean about it being time consuming though, looking in the mirror at the imperfections. I'm on my third day now of not looking in the mirror and is it hard! Especially when I have to fix my hair, do regular stuff even like brush my teeth. Every time I walk by one I have the urge to stare at my skin, but now I'm trying to look away and it is making me feel better emotionally definately, like what you were saying. I feel happier just by not having my flaws stare me in the face, not allowing them into my thoughts so much! I think I am gradually getting my life back, even though stopping cold-turkey is tricky.



I want to try this so badly eusa_pray.gif

 

Another tip that I must add is that if you really need to look in the mirror, just look from afar and for a brief moment.

Oh! And smile! Because it will instantly lift your mood up biggrin.png

 

But...it's quiet impossible for me right now because I have this huge mirror right beside my "work" station to enable me to see my whole body as I'm trying on my "product" and such....

 

I noticed that I picked a lot since I have this new "work" station too. Haih...but I can't move the mirror cause I need it.

 

This calls for a whole lot of discipline dontgetit.gif

 

Oh well. Good luck to everyone who will be trying this challenge eusa_angel.gif

I agree about looking from a distance if you have to look at all. And I would add that harsh lighting should be avoided too if you are going to try that. Sounds like you're in a tricky situation...seems like mirrors do induce us pickers to some extent at least, if not all of it.

 

Discipline is right! Old habits die hard I guess...


Edited by Livvie, 30 March 2013 - 08:32 AM.


#5 Livvie

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Posted 02 April 2013 - 09:37 AM

Well, just an update. rolleyes.gif

 

Today is officially the last day of my "surprise challenge." I have pretty much made it!

 

The past 5 days, I have really had a good experience. I have learned that the problem wasn't with my skin or even with the mirror itself - it's spending too much time looking in it, time that could be spent enjoying my life, forgetting about my so-called problems with my skin and just basically taking my mind off of myself.

 

 

I have liked this new way of living, really, so much so that I don't want to stop the challenge! Why break the bad habit only temporarily? I actually like not WORRYING and feeling BAD about the way I look every time I get close to the mirror. huh.png

 

I do have to establish that mirrors themselves aren't bad, and there's nothing wrong with just passing by to make sure you don't have food all over your face or in your teeth or something in your eye or whatever. It's trying to change something that needs to be left alone and examining yourself for prolonged periods of time that's bad.

 

I used to spend an avarage of 45 minutes PER NIGHT O.o in the bathroom overanalyzing my appearance. Now I only spend about 3-5 minutes just to do the basics, like brush teeth and whatnot. I regained 45 minutes per night for five nights which is 225 minutes minus the five I spent per night (25 minutes), that's...roughly 200 minutes I got back of my life!!! :D

 

Roughly 3 hours in just 5 nights! It was totally worth it. 



#6 Frank*L

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 04:17 PM

Well, just an update. rolleyes.gif

 

Today is officially the last day of my "surprise challenge." I have pretty much made it!

 

The past 5 days, I have really had a good experience. I have learned that the problem wasn't with my skin or even with the mirror itself - it's spending too much time looking in it, time that could be spent enjoying my life, forgetting about my so-called problems with my skin and just basically taking my mind off of myself.

 

 

I have liked this new way of living, really, so much so that I don't want to stop the challenge! Why break the bad habit only temporarily? I actually like not WORRYING and feeling BAD about the way I look every time I get close to the mirror. huh.png

 

I do have to establish that mirrors themselves aren't bad, and there's nothing wrong with just passing by to make sure you don't have food all over your face or in your teeth or something in your eye or whatever. It's trying to change something that needs to be left alone and examining yourself for prolonged periods of time that's bad.

 

I used to spend an avarage of 45 minutes PER NIGHT O.o in the bathroom overanalyzing my appearance. Now I only spend about 3-5 minutes just to do the basics, like brush teeth and whatnot. I regained 45 minutes per night for five nights which is 225 minutes minus the five I spent per night (25 minutes), that's...roughly 200 minutes I got back of my life!!! biggrin.png

 

Roughly 3 hours in just 5 nights! It was totally worth it. 

 

awesome! Glad to hear it was a positive experience and I really do hope you keep it up. Life is too beautiful to be wasting time analyzing yourself in the mirror and stressing yourself out. (even though I need to work on practicing what I preach myself) Make more time for yourself and enjoy it. I'm sure your a beautiful person regardless of your complexion or whatever it is that you stare at for 45 minutes a night. Peace.



#7 Livvie

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 08:02 AM

Thanks :) I totally agree. I think sometimes we fall into habits we don't even realize, and they start to gradually take over unless we react and choose to do something about it. I used to spend so much time obsessing that I found myself thinking once, "what would I do with myself if I HAD perfect skin?" That's when I realized something had to change - I didn't want to be living life that way. I really didn't have a problem with acne until I started picking. I think there is something to the old truth that picking the acne causes more acne...damaging your pores and all that probably makes them more suseptable to getting infected in the future.

 

 

I'm sure your a beautiful person regardless of your complexion or whatever it is that you stare at for 45 minutes a night. Peace.

 

You are very kind. The funny thing is my complexion is pretty clear most of the time, until after I pick of course. I know it's sad that it got to that point, but I'm not anymore! :D Towards the end of my picking habit I found myself staring at my scars too, like what you were talking about a little while ago. Now those can cause some emotional damage, more than temporary scabs (for me anyway) because you feel like you can't escape their permenance and they will never go away. But I've heard they can even out over time so don't give them a second thought, and don't look at them either! I'm talking to myself as well because I have a few of them (not deep ones, but still noticable in certain light) that I'm working to get rid of (dermarolling, don'tcha know.)

 

I haven't rolled since my surprise challenge took effect (which I completed - yay! Sorry, I'm still very happy :) ) so not sure how that is gonna go when I have to look in the mirror to see what I'm doing. We'll see how that plays out, cause I really don't want to start picking by looking close in the mirror after all my hard work trying not to do what I used to do.



#8 okaythen

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 01:40 PM

I need this! Challenge accepted, starting now. :)

#9 Frank*L

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Posted 04 April 2013 - 10:03 PM


 

 

 

 

I haven't rolled since my surprise challenge took effect (which I completed - yay! Sorry, I'm still very happy smile.png ) so not sure how that is gonna go when I have to look in the mirror to see what I'm doing. We'll see how that plays out, cause I really don't want to start picking by looking close in the mirror after all my hard work trying not to do what I used to do.

 

I tried decontrolling just once before, a small part under my ear backside of my jaw just to see how my skin would react. It turned super red and was like that for 4 days. So I'm not sure if I can go through with it on other parts of my face. Would really suck to do my whole face and it being red as hell for days. 

 

But yea your going to have to pay attention to detail when you dermaroll so you will be spending time in the mirror. Just don't relapse! lol Let me know how it goes.


Edited by Frank*L, 04 April 2013 - 10:03 PM.


#10 Livvie

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 03:13 PM

I need this! Challenge accepted, starting now. smile.png

Great! Good luck! :D

 

 

It has been about 2 weeks since I first started the mirror-less and hands-off policy! Well, I took a quick look in the mirror and was happy to see that my skin is 98% healed, but only from where I picked. Sadly, my complexion is doing worse, but I take comfort in knowing that it wasn't anything I've done to it to make it look bad. I also take comfort in not looking in the mirror at how bad it's looking and stressing out. :)

 

I do have a dermatologist appointment in a couple of weeks, because I have a weird rash all over my forehead, nose, and under my eyes that now seems to also be spreading to my right cheekbone and chin. The first time I went in to the derm they said it was fungal and gave me some expensive creams for it, which DIDN'T EVEN TOUCH IT. I am sick that all they've done was make my skin very thin and fragile, and after all that its looking worse. So I'm going back and hopefully he can help me get clear from it.

 

 

As of now, I've struck a balance between looking in the mirror and avoiding it - definately no more than a few seconds at time, and that only when I have to. I rolled last night for a few minutes however when I dermarolled. BUT I didn't pick at all or mess with my skin...if I had to touch it, I used a piece of tissue in between my finger and skin when I stretch the scars flat as I roll. Fingers off, haha! I even resisted messing at all with a nasty zit I got on my temple (the kind that itch; took a lot not to even touch it), and lo and behold it went away practically overnight with little to no mark. No blood, no redness, no scab, no scar...it was worth leaving it be.

 

 

I tried decontrolling just once before, a small part under my ear backside of my jaw just to see how my skin would react. It turned super red and was like that for 4 days. So I'm not sure if I can go through with it on other parts of my face. Would really suck to do my whole face and it being red as hell for days. 

 

What kind of roller did you use? And how hard were you pressing? I use a .5mm weekly/every other week and have never had a problem with redness for days afterwards unless I roll super hard (just on my acne scars). Like what I have now a bit. But I think its helping, maybe, so I'll keep up with it until I see those little stinkers even out once and for all.



#11 okaythen

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 12:37 AM

Good to hear you're going strong!
I haven't been as good as you, lol. Lacking self control at the moment. Plus every wall at my gym is mirrored, so it's quite hard not to stare at myself there.
One day challenge? I'll make a conscious effort today!

#12 tiffanibarnett

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 01:08 AM

Hi everyone,

 

I'm new to the forum, but I just read through your posts about The Challenge.  You're all doing such great work! 

 

I've been kind of already participating and didn't even know it...I had breakouts that got so severely infected they turned into cellulitis (complete w/an ER visit and everything, it was awful!).  They were terribly swollen and obviously I was on strict orders not to wear makeup, and the last thing I wanted to do was look at myself, so I've been avoiding spending time in front of the mirrors. 

 

Now, thankfully, there is only 1 spot left that isn't fully healed and I know if I keep avoiding the mirror it will only benefit me because #1-I won't stress & worry that it will scar & #2-I won't be tempted to scratch the skin that is peeling off.  Plus, by the time my challenge is up, I'll have a hopefully clear face looking back at me. 

 

Thank you for this great idea!  It's going to be a great motivator for me!  Continued luck to everyone who is pulling it off, and to those of you who aren't, just trying is something to be proud of!  Just take it one hour at a time if you have to!  :-)



#13 Livvie

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Posted 13 April 2013 - 02:56 PM

Good to hear you're going strong!
I haven't been as good as you, lol. Lacking self control at the moment.

Well now I can put myself in your place. I started doing it again after 2 weeks of no-mirrors...as in, looking, inspecting, anylizing, from a distance at first, then closer...closer...closer until, yep.

 

Picked again three days ago: my chin, and on my jaw. Now I am sporting a lovely large black scab where I unsuccessfully tried to extract a hardened white pore beneath the skin. I was so miserable I cried for a long time directly afterwards. Mostly from guilt and dissapointment at my not being able to control myself in front of a mirror. Skin picking is beginning to bear a striking resemblance to OCD in my life, but the only thing that's helped (as long as I tried it) was the no-mirror no-finger policy.

 

 

Hi everyone,

 

I'm new to the forum, but I just read through your posts about The Challenge.  You're all doing such great work! 

 

I've been kind of already participating and didn't even know it...I had breakouts that got so severely infected they turned into cellulitis (complete w/an ER visit and everything, it was awful!).  They were terribly swollen and obviously I was on strict orders not to wear makeup, and the last thing I wanted to do was look at myself, so I've been avoiding spending time in front of the mirrors. 

 

Now, thankfully, there is only 1 spot left that isn't fully healed and I know if I keep avoiding the mirror it will only benefit me because #1-I won't stress & worry that it will scar & #2-I won't be tempted to scratch the skin that is peeling off.  Plus, by the time my challenge is up, I'll have a hopefully clear face looking back at me. 

 

Thank you for this great idea!  It's going to be a great motivator for me!  Continued luck to everyone who is pulling it off, and to those of you who aren't, just trying is something to be proud of!  Just take it one hour at a time if you have to!  whistling.gif)

Great to hear about your success, tiffanibarnett! Sorry to hear about your infection...that sounds terrible. Glad to hear its almost all better...keep up the good work! Thanks for your nice thoughts. :)



#14 otherguy

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 07:16 PM

I tried this. I seriously avoided looking at myself in a mirror starting at the end of December last year. I caught glimpses, but I immediately turned away. It wasn't until about two weeks ago that I fully saw myself in a mirror again. I would say there was about a 5% improvement.






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