I believe a good diet, natural skin care products with few ingredients, exercise and a holistic approach to combating acne can be a good thing, but I don't believe it is "the cure". People react to different things, and if chocolate, gluten or anything else obviously makes you break out, it is a good idea to eliminate these things from your diet, but I think for a lot of people, big lifestyle changes causes more agony than it does them good. I have a very healthy diet and I always have had, and I have a normal amount of sweets and such a few times a month. When I went gluten and sugar free for 4 months, it made no change in my acne. When I was a vegetarian for 5 months, it made no change. When I started using all natural skin care products, it made no change. And, when I started listening to all of the tips I read online about using all sort of DIY stuff like lemon juice, OCM, salt water, baking soda etc etc, is when my skin decided to go mental. I strongly believe in medicine, and going to a professional; a dermatologist or a doctor who has empirical evidence of what works and what doesn't. This doesn't mean everyone will be cured by BP, tretinoin, antibiotics or anything you can get on prescription, but it is definitely a better choice than to destroy your skin at home with topicals that there are no evidence that works. I just feel sad that I listened to a lot of the advice I got off the internet, and people telling you to keep going with a regimen that obviously isn't doing your skin any favour (OCM is an extremely good example), when I could have gone to a dermatologist a lot earlier and maybe I wouldn't have the scars I have today. I think you could compare this to any homeopath that will tell you they can cure your cancer with natural remedies or sugar pills, when there are other medicines that could benefit you and actually help you instead.
Sorry if I'm offending anyone, but I keep reading about all these remedies and it really does sound too good to be true. When someone writes a review about lemon juice which they have used for 3 weeks with good results, how many of them do you think has continued with using it for the rest of the year? Very few. And when it stops working or they realise it had no effect, there is a very small chance of them updating their review to tell the rest of us it didn't work. Does anyone know any person with perfect skin that uses lemon juice and a salt water mixture every single day, and then do OCM and changes their pillow case and towel every day, and never eats gluten and no sugar etc? I don't. I am sure a lot of these things can help a little, especially in addition to using prescriptions from your dermatologist, but this insane obsession that is going to make it hard to live a normal life is doing us more harm. And I firmly believe that stress is causing acne. The stress I got from not only trying all sorts or natural remedies, but also from disappointing myself when I couldn't manage to live this "perfect" and "clean" life, made me more depressed, which I believe caused me more acne. I am not unclean, I am not eating unhealthy, I am not poisoning myself by not using only natural products; its my hormones and my genetics.
My friends who have perfect skin eat whatever they want, they don't count how many days it has been since they changed their towel or pillow case, they use cheap and simple moisturisers and they don't look in the mirror every other minute to look at their imperfections. They are calm about their skin, and they have not got hormonal issues or "acne genes".
Being unhappy with myself, having low self-esteem and being stressed about my skin 24/7 has made everything worse. I think the obsession a lot of people on here have about their skin is a very evil spiral. I will have to wait and see myself, but letting go of this obsession, trying to live normally, listen to my doctors advice and use the things I have been prescribed, AND starting to love myself again might be a solution. It's obvious that this is genetic and hormonal, so I need to be more aware of what I put on my skin than other people, but I need to calm down. And I need to not try and find all sorts of cheap ways that sounds too good to be true to fight this. And olive oil is for my salad, lemon juice for my tea, sea salt for cooking and baking powder for baking.
Edit: oh my, when I have a lot on my mind and I write fast, my English looks so messy and horrible!