My Skin Journey ... Part 2
Ok time for an update about my skin! It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything on the topic as it’s something not quite easy for me to do, so the time is now!
Everyone one has a few things about themselves that they find a little irritating & frustrating, would you agree? And it’s totally normal so don’t let it get you down! Mine would have to be my skin! No doubt. It has taken me years to get a hold of my skin & I am still working on it, day after day. I am being as patient as possible - as stress doesn’t help anything! (especially skin), I’m trying to cool my jets and not let it become the centre of my universe. Because I have bigger fish to fry & more important things to focus on!
I’ve spent the last few months drenching myself in research. I’ve been talking to experts, friends, family & colleagues about skin in general. When you spend some time learning about whatever it is you’re stressing over, it can help to calm you & you begin to see how & why things work the way they do - cause and effect! As they say knowledge is power, and it’s very true!
So since my last skin blog, many of you have wanted an updated so here it is …
Yep, I still have pimples! I have breakouts and some low moments. I must admit, my skin has improved over time as I’ve paid it some super serious attention. My diet & skincare routine have become big focal points each day & making the move to Byron has allowed me to introduce so much more fresh air, natural light & salty sea water to my days. I just have to learn to be comfortable with being patient as I know skin can take a while to heal. Up to 3 months or more.
Before moving to Byron, I didn’t want to start any specific treatments with clinics in Melbourne as I knew I’d have to look for new clinicians in Byron, who might have a different approach. So there really wasn’t much point.
Between now & then, I’ve refined my own “skin rules” which I now stand by. They’re mainly just for my own peace of mind, but they may help your thought process too.
Everyone’s skin is different. What might work for me probably won’t work for you & vice versa. Despite this, something giving new things a go before ruling them out is smart. The trial & error approach is a goodie.
Natural products are all that I will use. I don’t want ANY nasty chemicals or preservatives soaking into my pours, my epidermis & dermis (two of the top layers of your skin) & into my blood stream. No thank you!
Your face has some of the largest pours on your body, (along with your arm pits which is why the use of natural deodorant is a must!), so it’s quick to absorb anything you put on it. Be kind to your skin & use products with harmless, nutrient rich ingredients.
Skin conditions can be highly effected & internally from your internal emotions… your HORMONES! The trick to controlling this in my case is to focus on my health & happiness. To surround myself in positive people & work so hard that I became run down.
As well as coming to the above conclusions, I’ve also been making some changes to my actual skincare routine. I’ve broken it down for you below;
I’ve now started to take Chinese Medicine each day. My Chinese doctor, Vivian Tam (CM) is based in Melbourne, so she & I have regular Skype sessions where we monitor my skin, my hormones and my cycles.
Looking into Chinese Medicine has been at the top of my list to manage my hormones for a while now. In my case, and probably many of you too, my hormones have an overall effect on my body. My skin, my cycles, my mood swings, my positivity & my overall general mental wellness. I am so keen to level them out! Working with Vivian as been super interesting as she’s given me so much knowledge on natural remedies & how we can help our bodies without learning on so many western medicines.
When it comes to the medicine she prescribes, we alter the dosages as time passes & as we start to see the results on my skin. For example we started off quite soft & we’ve been upping the dosages because my hormones are quite unbalanced and stubborn … (the fun side of being a woman!)
Aestheticà (The Habitat, Byron Bay)
I’ve found a beautiful studio in Byron Bay called Aestheticà. Think of dried flowers, arched doors, wide hallways and rendered white walls. My heaven! Aestheticà have an amazing ethos of all natural beauty, which attracted me to them from the beginning.
At The Habitat, we’ve been doing micro-needling. This is to start the circulation of collagen, to produce healthy, fresh & plum skin. Your face feels a little raw & burnt straight after, but a day later it feels divine, (see below 3 pics. 2 are taken right after the treatment… and the last is a few days later). We finish the session with light therapy and a face mask to calm the skin.
As mentioned above, the two photos above on the left are the aftermath of the skin-needling. It leaves you a bit red and raw, but if you give it a week, your skin feels plump & fresh … like the pic on the very far right of me at the beach.
Little Company (Byron and Melbourne)
As soon as you walk into Little Company you feel compete & blissful zen vibes.
I’ve been getting facials here (which is the best hour ever!! I’m not kidding!! ). Stacie has been analysing my skin overtime & directing me on what products I should be using . It’s so important to find someone who can guide you down the confidently right path & who is educated on natural alternatives. Makes the whole process far more calming as it removes any unwanted worry. When I talk about natural alternatives, I mean products with no nasties, no micro fibres (or nano particles).
Stacie instantly noticed that I was over-exfoliating my skin (along with many other things I wasn’t doing quite right in terms of my skincare) & then created a full schedule of the products I should be using each day.
MORNING I use …
A Cleanser from Aveda
A Hydrating Spray from Dermaviduals Suusmoon Lotion N & a Dermaviduals serum
Vitamin C to protect my skin from nature (for example, UV damage) from Mukti
A Moisturiser with SPF from Skin Juice cc cream SPF15
I always stick to natural base, which can be tough as I work with so many different make up artists who all prefer to use different brands & products. But when I can, I look for natural products with no added preservatives.
I remove my makeup as soon as I can. At the moment I am trialing Bioderma. I haven’t used it long enough to provide feedback, but i’ll keep you in the loop.
I undergo Light Therapy at home
I apply Vitamin B on my face, followed by Vitamin A
And I finish off by applying Rosehip Oil before I hop into bed
Little Company introduced me to light therapy. I was doing 20 minutes of it every second day at their studio & I then decided to buy my own hand-held for home. After having dinner and doing the dishes I literally sit there with my light on my face! The dogs are so freaked out by it!
If you’re not sure, Light Therapy, over time, helps to penetrate your skin at different depths and causes various reactions within your layers of skin. Reactions include encouraging the production of fresh collagen cells, fighting acne-causing bacteria, plumping the appearnace of the skin up & reducing wrinkles. I’ve noticed some great effects. Again I have to stress here, I’ve noticed some great effects over a period of time. Remember with skin, everything takes time so you have to be very, veryyyy patient! It’s hard, trust ME, I know. I’d definitely recommend that before giving Light Therapy a go yourself (particularly with an at-home device like the one I use), like everything else - it’s best to book a skin consultation session with your local beautician/skin specialist to make sure it’s the right type of therapy for you & to make sure that it’s suited to the condition of your skin.
In terms of my diet, as I usually have a pretty clean diet I haven’t had to change anything too drastically. But I have made particular adjustments which I am sticking to whole heartedly!! So the foods & supplements I’ve been adding & removing from my day-to-day diet of late are;
Chinese Medicine in tablet form
Hemp Oil Capsules from Tonik
Skin B1 Capsules
I add in Beauty Plus Oil. This contains essential fatty acids for inner health and outer beauty.
I also add in an all natural collagen
Chinese Medicine in a powder form
ALL DAY, EVERYDAY!
Water! Never underestimate water!! I drink a lot of warm water throughout the day . No clue why I prefer it warm, just like it.
I find sugar smashed my skin and promotes break outs. Sometimes that’s all I crave. It’s my thing . I’m trying my hardest to cut it out all together - sometimes it’s impossible so I always have natural sweet treats as an option.
I don’t eat much gluten at all these days
And lastly, I avoid diary as much as I can
Remember when you’re reading this blog, that is is very specific my my skin, my body, my hormones & my lifestyle. So while there might be some things in here for you to look into & try, please don’t think that what I’ve noticed working, will have the same effects for you. It might, it might have better effects! But we all have to understand & appreciate just how different we are…from our looks, to our chemical make up & genetics!
When it comes to dietary things, for example dairy, while removing dairy has had a positive impact for me, you should consult your GP or skin specialist prior to cutting things of this nature out cold turkey. In my case, dairy was contributing to my skin issues but dairy does have brilliant levels of calcium which we all need to keep healthy! So if you are taking dairy out of your diet, it’s super important that you find your calcium elsewhere. As yes, skin is important but so is the health of our bones, our hearts, brains & the rest of bodies in general. So just remember - when & if you choose to remove anything substantial from your diet, you should really think hard about finding that type of nutrients elsewhere. The last thing you want, is one solution to cause another problem!
For me personally, the hardest diet related change is the removal of sugar. Sugar is my down fall without a doubt. Honestly, in the week before my cycle I get these major cravings for anything sweet & these cravings are SO hard to fight. When I cave, that’s when I notice my skin tends to go nuts. Don’t get me wrong, sugar isn’t the overall cause of my skin issues, but it certainly doesn’t do me any favours.
Sugar is a nasty thing because it is so ADDICTIVE. I wish I could fully give it up, but I have to admit that I find it extremely hard.
I’ve realised this after I’ve spoken to people for advise only to find what works like magic for them, hasn’t had any effect! It can be really soul destroying when you feel like all of your efforts are for nothing - so trust me when I say, go slowly & seek professional advice. Make sure you FEEL good at all times, becasuse your state of mine, I promise you, is very likely to have direct effects on your skin.
Thank you to everyone who has shared their story & their personal advice and even contacts with me. It is truely touching & I feel immensely grateful to you all. Below are some photos of my skin when I’m having a rough patch. As you can see, it get’s pretty red & inflamed - causing me to feel low. If you keep scrolling down however, you’ll see me on better days where I’m treating my skin to Vitamin D (while wearing SPF of course), salt water & fresh air.
As I always remind myself all the time, for every low there is a high. Life is a rollercoaster. We just have to hold on tight & do what we can to make the inclines higher & wayyyy more frequent which is possible with the right attitude & a little discipline. Keep those heads held high guys!! We can get through anything together!