I’ve struggled with acne-prone skin since freshman year at college. Before that, I had only dealt with the rare clogged pore and nothing more. But as soon as I had spent a few sleep-deprived, beer-filled weeks in the dorms, my skin was like, MacAttack Engage! My mom thought it was the water, or the food – which, now that we’ve transitioned to a primarily Paleo diet, yes, diet had something to do with it. I thought it was the products, so I tried everything. I was using the over-the-counter junk like Noxema (thanks to my Aunt’s influence of walking around the house as a kid with that glorious white mask that smelled like the inside of a Eucalyptus branch), I dabbled with the Neutrogena soaps, Clearasil, Murad and of course the infamous ProActiv. Cue the red, peely skin that’s so tight you’re afraid to actually smile, for fear of inducing wrinkles.

The last ditch effort, as most people with acne-prone skin, was the dermatologist. After years of research and insight into the mechanics of doctor’s offices, it’s hard not to want to smack my college-self upside the head and say ‘Could’ve had a V8’! No, wait, wrong commercial. But seriously, self, when they prescribe you an oral antibiotic for your skin, without inquiring about your diet or lifestyle, Just. Say. No. But that’s Kelly now, not the Kelly with painful, cystic acne and a perma-rash on her forehead. So, skip forward through trying birth control to control the hormonal side of acne, and we land to a fantastic, albeit a bit outdated, esthetician, where I was shamed for trying an almond oil wash and transitioned over to the pricey line of YonKa and Skinceuticals. Honestly, if I wasn’t told there that oil was terrible for my oily skin, I would probably still go for monthly facials, because he was a magician with skin. Just not what I needed at the time. It was around the time he suggested laser treatment – and I thought, finally! A solution! Let me get my wallet.

I think the (retrospective) good thing about having acne-prone skin, is that you never stop looking for a solution. And thank God for Pinterest. And for fellow bloggers like Liz. Let me tell you, when you first read about putting oil on your skin to cleanse it, the idea kind of rocks your world, right? But then the more you think about it, it kind of makes sense.

I’ve been a convert to oil cleansing since November 8, 2014. I know the date exactly because Smarty Pants over here thought it would be a good time to start a new skincare regime while away in Charleston for a friend’s bachelorette party. Me and 14 of her closest friends ;). At that time I was using coconut oil (beginner’s mistake) and I was hoarding that stuff like a meth addict – don’t touch my oil, my skin!

It only took that weekend for me to A) become a convert to the oil cleansing method and B) figure out that coconut oil was not meant for my skin. Maybe yours, but try it, and beware that it might continue the clogging mania. I jumped back on Pinterest and found a great recipe for a base Facial Cleansing Oil. Amazon to the rescue! Now that I’ve started to incorporate more essential oils into my daily routine, I’ve got some amazing recipes for oils and masks, but for starters, here’s what I use:

Caster Oil

Sweet Almond Oil

Sunflower Oil

Lavender Oil

Clary Sage Oil

Tea Tree (Melaleuca)

Additional Add-ins:

Frankinsense Oil

Cedarwood Oil

This goes without saying on this blog that the best way to achieve healthy, clear skin is through fantastic diet and a great sleep routine. I’ll get into more of that later, but for now, I suggest you toss out that bottle full of toxins you got at one of the 4 corner pharmacies near you, and hit up Amazon, or Whole Foods if you’re feeling frisky, and try this out. It’s no miracle worker, but over time it will change your skin for the better, and allow you to really identify what the route of all those pimples, or in my case, cysts were.

Leave your questions in the comments below and I will do my best to answer them, or at least share some of my favorite links if I don’t have the answer myself. Teamwork makes the dream work!

Ciao for now!



Featured Image Photo Credit: Flickr user gatsbyj

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