I battled persistent acne (going from cystic to a smaller scattering of pimples) for about 3 decades. Imagine how frustrating it is to still have acne in your 40s? Yay acne and wrinkles — joy. When I was younger, derms just wanted to solve the problem with antibiotics and or birth control instead of trying to figure out what in my day to day, other than hormones, might have been causing it. Guess what, birth control didn’t solve the problem and I wasn’t going to develop antibiotic resistance over trying to treat acne. The derms I was seeing didn’t care. So I had to go out and figure it out on my own, like most people. I did the whole gambit of online DIYs (nope), over the counter medicated potions (nada), changing my diet (double nope), and even tried the multistep Korean skincare fad (alas, no).

I do want to shot out to Dr. Dray via YT though. She is a wonderful derm out of Texas, I believe. Ultimately, her videos and recommendations did wonders for my face. I discovered through trial and error easier/simpler was better. I eliminated most skincare having any unnecessary ingredients like fragrances or colorants and dumbed down my routine to the basic of basics. These multi-step regimes are not suitable for everyone, and just because it is expensive does not mean it is necessarily any better than something you’ll find over-the-counter. Just sayin’. Instead, I found washing with basic face-wash (double-cleansing in the pm), using a basic lotion (like CeraVe) and alternating nights (depending on how my skin is behaving) between Differin, BP 2.5%, and Vit C serum. During the day, niacinamide serum, some sunscreen, and very basic makeup (no foundation, just tinted moisturizer or tinted SPF) and I’m good to go.

best of luck to anyone still struggling

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