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Hey, My name is Chad and I haven't been on this forum for years. I dropped by this one time to give my advice regarding acne. I started getting acne at the age of 13. All my teenage years I had a moderate case of acne. I tried so many products and spent so much time researching about acne and being on forums like this. I even went to beauty school to become an esthetician with the sole intention of curing my own acne. I'm still in 5,000 dollars of debt because of it. People always told me once I get through those crazy hormonal years of growing up my acne would go away and now at 23 it has almost gone away. I still have blackheads and whiteheads, which aren't noticeable, and frankly most people have some. I still get zits but most of my face is clear.

I wish I knew now what I knew when I was younger, and that's not to stress out about acne. I tried so many products to help my acne and now I realize they only made it worse because those products only irritated my skin and left it tender. I now keep my skincare and hygiene simple which allows me to concentrate on more important things. Having clear skin is no longer my life. In fact when I think about acne now and how obsessed I was whilst a teen it seems so small to me.

I have scars on every area of my face one from chicken pocks, another from a cat scratch, but mostly the ones I caused by picking at my face and I don't mean just little ones either I'm talking saucer like scars and one that resembles a chicken pock scar. Those ones caused by my picking I could kick myself for but I don't even care about them anymore. I had to let go of the idea of trying to be perfect. Even without acne I still have skin problems. I have a wart on my foot, I have seborrheic dermatitis on my head and a red patch close to my nose, which has sprung up in the past 4 months I think it’s seborrheic dermatitis on my face. I have lots of freckles on my arms and moles on my body, which may turn into skin cancer and are more of a concern. Point is I'm not perfect, and nobody is. Getting older and having my hormones settle down was really the key for me. I also exercise regularly and half of the time I eat healthy and the other half of the time I don't.

After esthetician school I gave up on products and started becoming obsessed with detoxing and diet which only led to more stress similar to product obsession and thus more acne. So at 19 I gave up caring about my acne at all, and got got more of a social life and simplified my routine. I pretty much eat what I want but like I said I do eat healthy too, I'm a big fan of fermented foods full of good probiotics like kefir, yogurt, kimchee, sauerkraut, and komucha tea. As far as products go I use two shampoos and alternate each week. I only use conditioner when I feel I need it, because my scalp is already oily enough and conditioner only seems to make my dandruff worst. I use nizoral twice a week, and keep a pillowcase for every day of the week in my dresser so I can change my pillowcase frequently. I usually only change it every couple of days though. For my face I use nivea sensitive skin face wash it's the best cleanser I've ever used. I've adopted old school wet shaving, which doesn't irritate me as much as using a triple blade razor. For my body I use kiss my face olive soap. After shaving, I put a 2.5% benzoyl peroxide cream just around my mouth, which I make myself with a mini size bottle of aloe and cheap 10% benzoyl peroxide cream from Wal-Mart. When I need to moisturize I usually just use a little jojoba oil which doubles as my preshave oil or for times when my skin is really dry due to winter I use a little bit of glycerin water, glycerin is real cheap. In fact all the products that I use are cheap that's what I love about them.

I've blown a lot of money on products like retin-a and obagi but expensive products aren't necessarily better in my book. Everybody has their own likes and dislikes that's why we have free will. My products above are just an example. So my advice is to find out what you like and which doesn’t irritate your skin and please keep it simple and reasonable. You'll only cause yourself a lot of undue stress otherwise. Granted my routine might sound like much to some but I only do what I like to so it's not stressful for me. Basically I just keep clean and shave when I have to.

Just to mention those who may not outgrow acne or have severe acne they may be tempted to pursue something like accutane or make changes in their diet to see if they are allergic to a food that's their decision and I feel for those people who struggle with adult acne. I know a brother at my congregation who has adult acne and honestly I don't even think about it. He's not unattractive in my eyes, and he has so many good qualities. He loves God, and helps others, and is so smart. His acne doesn't sum up his worth as a person. It's hard because their are people out there who are thoughtless and just have to make comments about your acne whether they're being mean or not, but face it we all have to get tough skin to a degree. People like to criticize if it's not about acne it's about something else. People sometimes make comments about my being slim, sometimes in an uncaring way and sometimes just because they wish they were thin. In fact all the people who have made those occasional comments are overweight. You have to deal with criticism and not let it get you down, because it happens everywhere at school, at work, at home, you name it. Learn to develop your own unique qualities and abilities. Save the money you would spend on expensive products on something like a hobby instead. Learn to be balanced. Sorry for the length but I justed wanted to stop by after all these years and give my advice. And remember what wise king Solomon wrote in the bible: "Take a warning: To the making of many books there is no end, and much devotion to them is wearisome to the flesh." (Ecclesiastes 12:12). There is a lot of information out there about acne and a person could spend all his free time doing research but this is wearisome to the flesh as I have found out. Take care everybody.

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That's true, I let acne dominate my teenage years and I wished and wished and wished and for a long time I let it depress me and anger me to a point that I simply forgot to live life to the fullest.

You need to enjoy life, savour it, live for now, live for tomorrow, life is precious and short, if there is no heaven or hell and this life is all you have then try and make YOUR life YOUR idea of heaven, do whatever good things you really want to do, ask the hottest girl in your class out, do something adventurous, whatever, but for god sake don't let your acne hold you back because if you wish your life away it will pass by surprisingly quick, I'm 23 now and I suppose I act younger, to make up for the time I pissed my happiness away with ideologies of depression, sadness, and uncontrollable inwardness, if you feel alive inside, ACT IT and believe me it will show.

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I think a lot of the time we obsess about our skin and turn into an issue that perhaps it isn't- but at the same time I would never tell someone to just get over the mental anxiety of having acne and try to make the best of their lives- sometimes that just cant be done. I really admire and respect those individuals who can accept their skin for what it is and move on with the rest of their lives- for the rest of us though, there's still a long, tortured road of failed regimens and social insecurity that may never be overcome. Ultimately, i think the only thing that keeps most of us going is that there might be a product, or regimen, out there that will help us achieve the skin we deserve and desire- for me at least, its this thought that keeps me going in the hard times.

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I know it's not true of everybody but when I stopped using a lot of products my skin calmed down a lot and I had fewer zits and my skin felt normal again, not thinned and burnt. My skin would never have scarred like it did if I hadn't been using all those exfoliating products I was using. All the products I was using only made my acne worse, including facials and microdermabrasion. Their are just certain things I can't use like BHA's and AHA's. I'm someone who does better with a washcloth honestly. Most of the time I only wash my face with water and only use cleanser when I need it. Everybody is different.

I hope people will find what works for them. But like most things in life moderation is key, and so is letting go of the idea of having perfect skin. I never have just perfectly clear skin, never, their is always a zit or two. And even with moslty clear skin I'm not any happier as a person. I'm more concerned with the new job I'm starting tommorrow cus I've been out of work for 3 months and won't have a place to live if I can't keep a job. The older you get the more your priorities change. I wish I would have used my teenage years more wisely, I think things would be easier now had I done so, but that's life.

Like Hannibal said live life, and their are never the perfect conditions to do so that's for movies. Acne is so little of who you are. Like you said Ledzep we can turn it into an issue it isn't. I concentrated on my acne so much because I didn't want to deal with other problems like the break-up of my family. I also used it as an excuse to not have a social life or do other things because I had bad conversation skills, or just a weak personality. It's great for people to work on their acne, nothing wrong with that, but don't forget about your other traits. Most of the time the traits that make us beautiful and endear us to other people aren't necessarily physical. When you concentrate on more important things such as your spirituality, you become less obsessed with acne and more happier as a person, and I'm talking from experience.

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Thanks for the post! :D Ill go to sleep with a smile on my face tonight instead of a frown.

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-raises hand- I would be one of the teens that lets acne dominate my life (:

It's good to know that someone else let acne free their mind. I thought I would be stuck in depression for the rest of my life ;)

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I just made an account today on this site in order to reply to this post. I thought it was absolutely beautiful, and I'm sorry if I had to bump it up (I know it's annoying for anyone to do it).

I wanted to give you guys a little bit of a story so that people realize that it's better to not care about acne than to care too much!

My father who is 45 years old has clear skin with absolutely NO SIGNS of any acne flare ups. He has tonnes of scarring, however... most of them are pitted and are on his cheeks, but I can honestly tell you that he has beautiful skin. Even, firm, young, and most importantly, LOW MAINTENANCE skin.

He started having acne when he was in his mid teens (I think) and from what I can tell from the scars on his face, he had it pretty severe... or at least borderline severe. He grew up in a hot tropical country, and the humidity is known to cause oily skin amongst its citizens. Anyway, my dad's acne was exacerbated by a very unfortunate event that happened to his mother (he was a mamma's boy) during this time of his adolescence, and I know he spent most of his teenage years being extremely insecure and fearful for the life that was ahead of him... needless to say, he was one of those emo kids. Hahaha.

HOWEVER, the only treatment my dad ever did to his face was overwashing with a bar of soap... and probably rubbing lemon juice all over it afterwards (YIKES)! He couldn't afford (or more appropriately, couldn't be bothered) to buy OTC products, since believe it or not, he got to a point where he was way too busy to think about acne. As time progressed during his teenage years, he just stopped caring and got himself a degree in Engineering. I'm sure his acne was at its peak when he was in university, as his stress levels then would've probably been out of this world. But like I said, he didn't care anymore.

When he was 21, he married my beautiful mother (who has IMMACULATE skin) and at 23, they had me.

In my entire life, my dad has never had acne. Maybe one pimple from 10 years ago (went away after a day, I'm positive), but he's always been as clear as my mom, except for the fact that he has scarring. Today, he does NOTHING to his face. My mom- who's never had a pimple in her life- has a far stricter regimen of cleansing, toning, and moisturizing.

My dad doesn't even wash his face at night. And in the morning, he takes a shower... using nothing but a bar of soap on his face. No treatment or moisturizer afterwards. My dad is also a foodie, and he eats absolutely anything he wants. He always has.

There is such a thing as "outgrowing" acne. But it's very much dependent on how you ignore the acne condition... life is not defined by lesions on your face. It's how you choose to live. I can honestly tell you that if a person is attractive, having acne doesn't make them any less attractive. Physical attraction literally lasts for 2 seconds. The rest of the time, it's all connection with one another.

My dad chose to live life, regardless of having acne. He is known to be a cool young dad, a very VERY smart well-read person, a good worker, a voracious reader, a world traveler, and someone who always does his best to make others happy. Please please please do yourself a favor and stop worrying and live life!!!!!!!

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