I was like every other teenager (and young woman) who spent way too much time in front of the mirror. Where I may have been different is that I didn’t spend so much time applying make up, I mean, I enjoyed using make up though where others were giving themselves makeovers, I was popping zits. I didn’t want a single blemish to be noticed, though, I would pick at my break-outs in an effort to have them go away, which, of course only made it worse. Redness and swelling were always apparent, then scabbing and scarred skin to boot.
Looking back at photos, I don’t really see the breakouts in middle and high school, though I know I had them…it was my early 20’s and 30’s that was so awful. Cystic acne was my skin’s choice of informing me that something was off. Of course, if I knew then what I know now, I would have begun cleaning up my diet much earlier, and I definitely would have started using products that aren’t so toxic.
What had me make the change
It was in my mid 30’s when I threw in the towel. It was actually one of the top 3 reasons why I sought out my Nutrition Response Testing practitioner. I was so sick of hiding behind concealer and being watched by my little girls as I applied it as they asked what the red spots all over my face were. It was sooo bad and I felt sooo awful about myself. Now, stress in my life at that time was at an all time high, and what I learned is that the combination of that and my diet was creating terrible inflammation which worked its way out on my facial skin and soon started making its way to my neck, upper back, and chest. It had gone too far.
My diet at the time was “clean”, or so I thought. I was eating all gluten free grains, prepared at home from scratch, along with veggies, some raw dairy, clean meat, healthy fats, and lots of fruit. Chocolate was a heavy hitter as well, and I didn’t drink alcohol or coffee. To my surprise I tested for (meaning these foods showed up as sensitivities) dairy, grains, and fruit. FRUIT! I followed the recommendations of my practitioner and noticed an improvement WITHIN THREE DAYS.
What was I using on my skin at the time?
At that time I was still using some Oil of Olay moisturizer, and my mascara was a brand from our natural foods co-op. My concealer was something from Target, and my lip color was Burts Bees. Pretty basic, though here’s the deal…I had grown up using my moms Mary Kay cosmetics, and at one point when my skin flare ups were at an all time high I purchased an Aveda skincare set which made it even worse (though smelled great). It was time for a change.
What am I using on my skin now?
A couple years ago a good friend introduced me to Beautycounter and it changed everything. To keep my “why” down to 60 seconds: they ban over 1500 chemicals from being in any of their products, they don’t test product on animals, they do three levels of heavy metals testing, and they have a 60 day money back guarantee. So I was sold.
Here are the products I swapped out first:
Oil of Olay—>At first I used their Nourishing Day Cream, and now I use CounterMatch
No soap on my face–>Charcoal Cleansing Bar
Zulu mascara—>Lengthening Mascara
Neutrogena Makeup Remover—>Cleansing Balm, and now I use Instant Eye Makeup Remover
Zulu Lip Gloss—> this Lip Gloss
And, lastly, bronzer, I love a bronzer, so now I use this one—>Matte Bronzer