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Products, supplements and diet changes that reduced my acne

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I have had pretty bad acne since I was 11, I am now 21. First it was all over T zone, particularly my forehead, as I got further into puberty it was looking more hormonal, mostly on my jawline and chin. I have tried proactiv, all the clean and clear products, doxycycline for 2 years, apple cider vinegar, tea tree oil, rose water, etc. 

The best cleanser I've found is the Neutrogena ultra gentle hydrating cleanser. It doesn't leave my skin feeling dry or tight after as long as I put my other products on soon afterward. 

One of the products I've found that have really helped me is Alpha Skincare Glycolic acid 10% for oily skin, I apply it in the morning and at night. It has a pH of 4 and I feel like it's helped to balance my skin, reduce redness, and control my oiliness, it also helps get rid of/ prevent those super small tiny pimples, especially on my forehead.

Another product that's helped my skin is La Roche Posay effaclar duo acne treatment. It's 5.5% benzoyl peroxide so I really had to slowly ease into using it, and even now all I do is (only at night, after glycolic acid) apply the thinnest layer possible, over only the areas that I break out, wait about 10 minutes, then apply lotion.

The lotion that I use is Cetaphil daily hydrating lotion with hyalauranic acid. This stuff really helped to moisturize my skin and make it look less dull and congested. I had no idea that as an oily skinned person that I would need a lotion so I didn't use any my whole life until I was 19 but I believe it has made such a big difference. I apply it in the morning right after the glycolic acid, and at night 10 minutes after benzoyl peroxide. 

Also about 2 months ago I stopped wearing any form of foundation or concealer to help save time in the morning and see if it helped my skin and so far so good! 

The supplements that have really helped me are
1. I take vitamin code women's multivitamin and Nordic Naturals cod liver oil (has a little vitamin A naturally occurring in it) 
2. Around mid-day I take Vitamin Code Raw Zinc, it's from plant sources so it's not hard on my stomach at all and I don't have to eat with it. It's only $13 for a 30 day supply bottle so I've found it to be well worth it. I take it separately from my morning vitamins because I don't want the zinc to inhibit absorption of other minerals in my multivitamin such as iron.

I also take iodine and magnesium at night but I don't believe that's related to acne, I just take it because I was deficient in iodine and it was putting stress on my thyroid. 

As for my diet, I gradually over the years have removed meat, dairy, and gluten from my diet. first I removed dairy when i was 15, it helped some, then I stopped eating meat when I was 18, which also seemed to calm down my face, but the one thing that has seemed to really help me is removing gluten from my diet. I am a bread, pasta, cookie, etc LOVER, i grew up Italian, it is very hard to avoid gluten like I have been. BUT within 1 week of removing gluten my acne dropped off my face. when I get a pimple here and there they are tiny and have barely any inflammation and go away quickly. It's been 2 months since I've 100% cut out  gluten and right now I am happy and sad that I believe I've found the culprit. 

Also going gluten free does not mean I'm eating processed fake gluten free foods like bread, pasta, etc. I only eat fruits, vegetables, seafood, eggs, nuts, seeds, and whole grains like oats, brown rice, and quinoa. I don't eat any added sugar, processed foods, cereals, junk foods, crackers, dairy, meat, or fast food, I only have 1 coffee per day. Instead of sugar I use stevia. So it's been a large transition from eating the standard american diet , to eating the way I eat now, but to me it is worth it to feel  confident in my skin and be able to go out without spending an hour on makeup beforehand. Also I really appreciate waking up with my boyfriend and not feeling like I have to run to the bathroom to conceal huge pimples before he can see me. 

This is all just what has worked for me so far. I hope I can help someone with what I've learned over the years. 

Also my username is so lame because I made this account in 2013 and it won't let me change it hahah. I'm more of a dog person now 

On another note, I do not take birth control, I never have, and I don't take any medications other than the supplements that I already listed.  

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