Friday 23 January 2015

How I Cleared Up My Skin

For about 6 years my skin has been a major problem, it started when I was about 13 years old, it wasn't too bad to begin with, I would describe it as "teenage spots" it started on my forehead and then after a few years; it was everywhere. I think I was about 16 when I would actually describe it as acne, it wasn't just lots of spots, it was a huge amount of redness, scarring and it just looked terrible. This is where my love of makeup began and it's the reason I have tried SO many foundations, because it was so important to me to cover up my skin in the best way possible; without irritating it further. When I was about 14, I went to see my GP who started by putting me on a cream for my skin (this was called Duac cream, this is quite mild and is what they put most people on to begin with) which worked amazingly and my skin cleared up almost completely, the problem with it is that you can become resistant to it, which I did. I was then prescribed a lotion and about three types of antibiotics, which did nothing, finally I was prescribed the pill, I didn't notice much of a different with this either. 

I'm going to talk through the skincare I now use to help keep spots and acne at bay, but I'm also going to talk about the massive impact changing certain aspects of my diet had on my skin. My favourite cleanser is the Origins Mega Mushroom Cleanser, I don't think I'm going to try another cleanser as this works so well on my skin. My skin can get quite dry and dehydrated so I need something to hydrate and something that doesn't dry my skin out even more. This is so moisturising and leaves my skin feeling clean and soft. I have used the St Ives face scrubs for years and really love them, they are great at removing dead skin cells but don't feel harsh or aggravate the skin. I use a mixture of three different face masks on my skin, the first is the Origins Drink Up Intensive Mask. This goes on at night, so that when you wake up in the morning, your skin feels refreshed and hydrated. The other two masks are traditional 10-15 minute masks, the Clear Improvement mask works great for calming my skin and any blemishes I have and the Ren Detox Mask is perfect for minimising pores! If I get a particularly big spot, I love to use the Lush Grease Lightning, unlike other spot treatments, this is so gentle on the skin and doesn't sting or irritate it, I simply put it on at night and in the morning the spot has significantly reduced in size. 

Now I'm going to talk about the main reason my skin cleared up. Milk. I had read somewhere that cows milk often causes acne and bad skin so I switched to alternatives. (It took me a while to find one I liked, my favourite is coconut milk! FYI Lactose Free milk still contains dairy, so I would avoid that too!) At first I wasn't sure if it was cutting out cows milk that cleared up my skin, but whenever I have a few off days like christmas for example, when I treat myself a little more than normal, eating milk chocolate and cows milk, my skin goes absolutely crazy. If you don't believe me (which I'm sure most of my family don't) just google "acne and cows milk" and a whole array of articles appears about the impact cows milk can have on your skin. The website Acne Milk says that "the reason milk products cause acne is because milk contains hormones that "turn on" oil glands." I read so many articles from people who had tried it themselves and found that their skin improved dramatically. If I'm being honest, I'm not completely dairy-free at all. I do still treat myself with chocolate now and then, but even by just cutting cows milk out there was a vast improvement. So, if you're like me and your acne will not go away despite numerous tablets and remedies, then try giving up dairy!

I hope I didn't scared you too much with my spot covered skin in the before shot! 


  1. I couldn't agree more!! Cows milk 100% makes me break out so badly- even a couple bowls of cereal is enough to do it! I never drunk much anyway cause I don't like the taste, but I've been drinking coffee a lot more recently and have noticed my skin getting worse. I switched to almond milk about a year ago and actually prefer it (except the price)- think I need to start using it in my coffees too! Amazing post and don't worry about the before pictures! :-) xx

  2. Your skin looks amazing, maybe there's hope for mine yet! xo

    Jenny | That Northern Gal

  3. Your skin looks amazing. Really made such a difference :)
    I really want to try out the REN detox mask, sound so good!

    Thank you for sharing, Have a lovely day ♥

    Ying | * Y i n g c b e a u t y *

    X x X x X

  4. I can 100% relate to your story- iI have started slowly making the change to almond milk however I'm finding it extremely difficult to go completely dairy-free! but your before and after photos are promising and hopefully I can get a similar result :)

    Great post- it was very beneficial and I'm sure it will benefit lots of people! x

  5. your skin looks amazing!! i'm currently in a similar situation as you was in, i'm taking antibiotics at the moment. i've cut out milk, but i don't think it's the cause for my acne, hopefully i'll find it soon :D great post xx

  6. This is amazing! I don't have acne, but I do have a few persistent blemishes that either scar and never fade or just NEVER LEAVE MY FACE. I'll definitely be looking into some of these lotions and potions!
    Beth x

  7. Wow, your skins look absolutely flawless now. I used to have very clear skin, but for the last 3 years it's been freaking out and breaking out all the time. No amount of skincare has been able to get it back on track (though it has been slowly improving). I think I'll try cutting dairy out for a month or so and see if it makes a different to my skin.
    Ivory Avenue

  8. I love the St Ives scrub, it would definitely be on my list too! Lucy, xx