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A History with Problem Skin & My A+ Regiment

How would you describe your skin in one word?

Me: Trouble

Oily skin is one of the main reasons my skin appears moisturized and smooth, but it is FAR from perfect. Because with oily skin and “good aging” comes… you guessed it… acne. In this post, I will share the routine I’ve found that gives me the confidence to wear my skin & all of it’s flaws proudly. 

The History

Ever since about 6th grade I have struggled with surface face & back acne (grrr). I’ve realized it’s just part of who I am, and have learned to not get so self conscious over it, but it wasn’t always easy. With trial and error I have finally found a particular skin regimen that works for managing my skin flares up.

My journey with skin has not been an easy, here’s just a quick glance at all of the medications I’ve been on:


Now by choice – I am oral (acne treatment) free!

The only positive thing about my long journey with problem skin is I’ve tried ALOT and learned ALOT!

So Let’s Get To It, What Have I Learned?

Experiment with products, then keep it simple and consistent:

  1. Exfoliate (scrub or sonic brush) 2-3x weekly
  2. Wash (gentle cleanser)
  3. Intervene (with topical creams and intense cleansers when you experience breakouts)
  4. Moisturize (with light oil free lotion for the day time, and heavier creams/oils at bedtime)
    • I just started using Nu Skin Conditioning gel, thanks to the suggestion of another MN blogger. At first, the minty aloe like texture made me feel like I was rubbing toothpaste on my skin, but it has really grown on me! For the cost, it’s definitely worth a try. SkinMedica Ultra Moisturizer is another great one that is light yet moisturizing. 
  5. Invest in quality, mineral-based makeup
    • The most important thing here is a good CC/BB cream that meshes well with your skin and a mineral based powder.
    • I have tried the “raved about” Dior foundation, but keep coming back to the Tarte BB Cream, dusted by Cover FX pressed powder.
    • Recently, I have been testing out Beauty Counter products and have kind of fallen love. I am not ready to make the switch completely since I have other good products to use up, but I have to mention how much I’m enjoying their stuff! My favorites so far are the Tint Skin Hydrating Foundation, Powdered blush, and the Nourishing Day cream. Giant thanks to Brianna Jordyn Beauty for introducing me – you can shop their products here. (She also sent me some goods from their baby collection and I can’t wait to use on our little girl)!
  6. Add in the fun stuff to your liking (add face masks, sleep masks, eye creams, or specialty products to your routine sparingly)
  7. Refuel – Take a good multivitamin, and maintain a balanced diet.

Tips to Eliminate Breakouts (not product related)

  1. Sanitize gym equipment before you use it- or lay a towel over it
  2. Change out of sweaty clothes ASAP
  3. Wash your pillow cases frequently
  4. Don’t sleep with your hands on your face (I always did this- and never noticed until I thought about it!)
  5. Don’t touch your face, as much as possible
  6. Drink TONS of water

Want a more extreme solution to skin aging or acne?

If it’s within your budget I would strongly suggest looking into frequent facial peels or Broad Band Light treatment (BBL). BBL has not only helped reduce the dark spots that old acne has left me with but it has shrunk my pores, reducing likelyhood of breakouts and improving the appearance of my skin. Not to mention the aging prevention it is doing. Do some research on BBL and give it a chance!

This is not my best “selfie” lol (only a little embarrassed to be sharing this) but I took it right after one of my treatments. Over the next few days any old scar tissue or dark spots were brought to the surface and shed. Overall, I have had 6 treatments I believe over the course of 6+ months, and one on my back and I have noticed huge changes in my skins surface and my breakouts.

If you are from MN, my dermatologist is David Zamjahn, he used to own his own dermatology practice but wanted to focus on more cosmetic procedures. He practices out of Ridgeview Clinic in Chaska! He is so lovely and has taught me a TON about my skin, unlike other providers who barely even looked at my skin before prescribing something. 

These suggestions or routine suggestions are no magical cure. I really wish it could be simplified more, although everyones skin varies so much that sometimes it takes multiple brands and products to find what you like!

No matter your routine, or efforts to fix “problem skin” the most important thing is to accept that your skin and it’s “flaws” make you who you are. You can wear anything confidently, even a few zits!



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