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Clearest My Skin Has Ever Been

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Long time lurker here. Probably been visiting the site for over 3 years without posting. Male, 24 years old. Acne since about 17. Got really bad in May 2014, have now found a way to have clear skin. Will keep you all updated.

What I have experimented with: (much of this did not work)

Paleo diet, vegan diet, low fat high carb vegan diet, apple cider vinegar both topical and injested, caveman style no products on face, 801010 raw vegan diet, acne.org regimen, megadosing b5, juicing, vitamix green smoothies, , vitamin d, omega 3, magnesium, multivitamin, face reality products, probiotics, keifer, low sugar, high sugar, better sleep more water clean pillow case, avoiding certain foods, antibiotics, many topicals from dermatologist, changing tooth paste. Probably a few more that I forgot.

Backstory to what worked for me:

Entering highschool I had perfect skin. Leaving high school I had breakouts. Sometimes deep and cystic, sometimes small pimples. During college I did the regimen but still had minor breakouts and ate a paleo diet and played around with avoiding certain foods for clear skin but was never serious about it. After graduating from college I was mixing things up in my diet with drinking beer and eating lots of salted macadamia nuts from costco. I also drove to another state and ate lots of different foods from whole foods. Cliff bars, red bulls, yerba matte, orange juice etc. When I returned back from the road trip I had extreme severe cystic acne all over my face. I wanted to cry and wherever I went people would look at me like I was a drug addict with sores all over my face. I really felt like Job from the bible when he was given boils all over him. I immediately became fairly depressed and didn't want to be seen by anybody and could barely socialize. Many times on my hands and knees screaming out praying to God everyday wondering if I will forever be plagued by it. While I was eating a paleo diet I read a book called the Hidden Plague that talked about how a lady managed to control her painful cysts by avoiding nightshade foods. She did this with an elimination diet. This opened my eyes to food sensitivities. Drastically I then switched to a raw vegan diet with no relief. I then switched to a low fat cooked vegan diet with no relief. I then switched back to paleo with no relief. I then became extremely desperate. I found out about face reality products often used at acne clinics found on yelp. I went to the local one and they gave me products to use mainly consisting of benzoyl peroxide wash and mandelic acid. I also became super serious about the elimination diet. I began eliminating food groups. My skin began clearing well but not fully. I then spent even more time on acne.org researching. I stumbled upon user Alternativisa and her many posts. Mainly the ones about how citrus had caused her cysts. I also found out from various google searches that some people are triggered by wheat, dairy, gluten, caffeine, grapes, apples, stone fruit, nightshades, high sodium, soy, chocolate, nuts and other things. I am male but found that for many women birth control and PCOS play a role. I spent probably hundreds of hours researching, reading blogs, trying different diets, topicals and crying out in frustration. I am setting the stage to say what is currently working for me.

What is working for me now to have amazing clear skin:

After much experimentation I now find myself going for a week or two with super clear gorgeous skin only interrupted if I start eating what I am not supposed to eat or stop cleaning my face properly. I find that skin routine is a portion of the battle, though food sensitivities seem to be the root of it for me. I am currently on a very restricted diet. I have eliminated many foods and now keep a food journal using google calendar. Each day I list the food/drink I consumed along with the number, location and state of healing of all bumps/cysts/pimples on my body. Right now I I have very very clear skin so I don't mark as many pimples but still list the food/drink. I am currently avoiding many things. I almost know for certain that wheat/dairy and yerba matte and maybe coffee cause me to break out pretty drastically in different places of my face. I am still unsure if citrus, chocolate, soy and other actually break me out. I will find this out by process of elimination along with the google calendar food journal.

I am currently avoiding:




caffeine/yerba matte -may or may not cause semi inflamed red bumps with a white head


citrus/citric acid

nightshades -may or may not cause cysts behind ears and on shoulders

wheat/gluten -broke out next day with lots of inflammation after eating enriched wheat noodle stir fry

On skin using:

face reality benzoyl peroxide wash twice a day

face reality mandelic serum left on skin at night

face reality moisturizer during day

not picking, fresh towls, fresh pillow cases, washing out hair product at night

Additional things that may be helping:

low fat high carb vegan diet (flexible: will eat meat if I want it)

green smoothies, juicing


I have found a way to have clear skin after suffering from deep cystic debilitating soul stirring humiliating acne. My list of foods that I avoid will probably shorten soon as I narrow down my exact triggers. The face reality benzoyl peroxide wash works well and the mandelic acid works well too. I am unsure if the mandelic acid cleared the folliculitis on my forehead or if it was simply eliminating wheat and other food groups. When the face reality products run out I will switch back to the regimen and I think it will work just as well. If you think my current diet is extremely difficult to follow, please be aware this was a last resort and has worked. If you wanted to try something similar I will mention what I have been eating this week to show you it is feasible. Lots of homemade daal, quinoa, rice, beans, veggie fruit packed green smoothies, coconut dream vanilla ice cream and occasional meat if I want it. I have a feeling I am very close to the end of the acne road as long as I avoid certain foods. Big shout out to Alternativista, I read many of your threads. What is working for me may not work for you. Everyone is different. Hopefully some of the information in this post may be of benefit to someone. Will keep you updated.

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did you elimate one buy one? its so hard to really get down to the exact cause or combo or more than one thing so I would imagone this was a long process to figure out what triggered your cysts

Edited by swoleMom
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