Writing this post is difficult for me; really, really difficult. Its something I have struggled with for years and tried to hide…
Your first thought is probably one of two things: 1-No way, acne is for teens or 2-Ugh, I feel the pain.
I feel like the past year and a half my acne was worse than ever before. I tried everything from Neutrogena acne scrubs to Clinique and Dr. Murad products. I even used tanning beds to help calm my acne, NOT the right move by the way. Nothing seemed to actually address the problem. I could control it through my diet, but there were times even a strict diet wasn’t enough. I began to develop deep pimples around my chin, they would be there for months and I had hormonal breakouts around my mouth. I felt as soon as one breakout healed another began. I hardly ever wore makeup or sunscreen out of fear it would cause another breakout. I was hesitant to visit a dermatologist because I didn’t know one I could trust and more importantly I didn’t want to be on super strong prescription drugs.
In February I saw my plastic surgeon, Dr. Chris Castanzo, for botox. He noticed my skin, as he has in the past and suggested I see his wife, Michelle. I waited about six weeks thinking my skin would clear up…the acne did subsided a little but I was still unhappy with the skin as a whole. I was frustrated to be in my 30s and still struggling with my skin. So, I called Michelle and began my journey to beautiful and healthy skin. I should have prefaced this with the fact I have been going to Dr. Costanzo for 11 years, and over those 11 years I have watched his wife, Michelle, with the most beautiful and flawless skin see patients in the same office. I always assumed my skin was part of my genetics, there wasn’t much I could do to improve it and the damage was already done. Hence my envy of Michelle and other women with beautiful skin.
During my first visit with Michelle, she totally made me feel comfortable talking about something I had spent years trying to hide. Ironically, I saw her on a “good day” but I still have five or six pimples on my face. They were small, but there none the less. I explained to Michelle, how I was done photoshopping my pictures before I posted them to social media. How I wanted clear (acne & sun spots), smooth, flawless skin. Michelle looked at me with understanding and excitement. She explained she had the perfect regimen for me, but it was not going to be a walk in the park. Michelle put me on a program with ZO products, for my acne scars and sun spots, accompanied with a couple of topical prescriptions for calm my acne. In addition, I opted for Micro Needling sessions, to correct the texture of my skin.
Like I said, Michelle warned me, the first three-four weeks were not easy. My acne cleared up but my face started to peel. It was as though I was healing from a really bad sunburn. But, I toughed it out, I followed the program and at the end of five weeks I felt like a new person. I used to be so incredibly self conscience about my skin and now (two and half months later) I am proud and happy. I even receive compliments from friends and strangers.
I am so hesitant to post my bad pictures, but I know seeing is believing.
Please note: it was really hard to find these photos because I use to edit photos right after I took them.
I have makeup on, one of my “better” days.
I have makeup on here, this is one of my “best” days.
My problem area, the left side of my mouth!
Five weeks into my program (June 20), no makeup, no editing.
Nine weeks into my program (July 20); no makeup, no editing.
This was today, eleven weeks into my program; no makeup and no editing.
My skin is still not perfect, but I have come a long way. Chris and Michelle Costanzo have honestly changed my life, I cannot give them enough praise.
If you are in the adult acne group like I once was, there is hope. There is something you can do. The best advice I can give, stop wasting money on products which may work and invest your money in products/people that will definitely deliver results.