How I dealt with my first big spot breakout

Thyme aroma oil, facial cream, sea salt.

What the hell! I have my first break out of bad skin after slacking with my skicare routine. I found three savior products to get me out a self-conscious rut…

I won’t boast, but I feel more blessed in the skin department than some of my other areas. Although eczema has plagued every corner of my body since I was baby (that;s a whole different story), acne has never been a trouble. You win some, you lose some.

My whole cheeks were pimply under the skin, pussy spots were poking up daily and I had no idea how to cope with it.

When kind people gush ‘your skin is so clear!’, I will say ‘thank you’ to, as opposed to ‘oh no, I hate it/it drives me mad/I’d rather have yours’ which so often follows compliments. I am very lucky to have been given spot-free skin, and shall appreciate it as much as I moan about my flaws!

After a holiday – feeling tanned and glowy

I am also able to be grateful after seeing how much bad skin can effect the confidence of people. My sister has always battled with her acne, which she is prone to on her face and back. We always joked which was more irritating – her acne or my eczema? Every packet of pills, she has tried it, in search of the secret to flawless skin.
I don’t think there is a secret. Everyone is so different, and while some beauty fanatics morning regime involves 15 minutes of high tech serums, self-massaging and priming, mine is a lot more fuss-free.
I have always done the same thing: remove my makeup every night with makeup wipes or micellar water, cleamsimg with Clean and Clear Deep Cleansing Lotion and moisturising with Aveeno (literally since I can remember). I also am aware that what goes on in the inside will show on the outside in terms of diet.

Aveeno moisturiser

MORE: 7 beauty products I can’t live without
So, what changed? I was left pondering when my skin had one of those ‘break outs’ I had heard about and feared. My whole cheeks were pimply under the skin, pussy spots were poking up daily and I had no idea how to cope with it.

I wondered how people went through skin insecurities every day

It sounds dramatic, but I began to panic that this was the beginning of a downward spiral for my skin. Feeling like hiding my foundation caked face (I don’t even own a concealer), I wondered how people went through skin insecurities every day. I felt like apologising in advance when having a conversation with someone, so they knew I was aware of the bulging yellow head on my face. I checked mirrors whenever I could, assessing how bad the situation was. It’s ridiculous, because I know full well no one else particularly noticed, as I don’t with others, either. I don’t even have photos to show, because it was a no-selfie period!

MORE: Eating seasonally: Spring recipes

What I was doing wrong

I confided in close people about the flare up and recognised some rookie errors. First, I had swapped to using coconut oil for my makeup removal for a few weeks (I love the stuff, natures’ gift to women). I wanted something more natural having dry skin. Little did I know that the little bugger commonly blocks pores – duh? My mistake.

After researching, I found the use of coconut oil to both relieve and cause acne is debated, and depends on your skin type and pores. Well, it wasn’t doing mine any good, or the plughole for that matter.
Secondly, my exfoliating game is weak. Very weak. I don’t think I have every actually exfoliated my face. But using oil to remove my makeup without exfoliating (and rarely cleansing), I was doomed. In general, I was slacking in paying attention to what my skin is responding well and not so well to.

Thirdly, the pin dropped when I overheard someone saying how their whey protein powder had ruined their skin for months, until they stopped using it. Oh no! I have been using a brilliant diet whey protein powder for the past 12 weeks every day. At the same time, I have been consciously trying to cure with diet and products, but to no avail.
Could whey be the biggest culprit? I hopped onto google and read about the connection. According to Live Strong, ‘ . with substantial evidence to back it up, I wasn’t going to lose anything by swapping to vegan protein powder.

3 products that saved my skin

Not willing to welcome spots as a regular visitor on my face, it was time to make a little more effort. My breakout has definitely given me a wake-up call that you cannot slack when it comes to caring for myself. These are the products I picked up, and in two weeks, my face has cleared.

NO MORE COTTON PADS: I was getting through more cotton wool pads than my poor bin-empyting habits could keep up with. Five or more pads at a time to remove my stubborn mascara every evening is not financially or environmentally ideal. I have seen makeup removing towels before and thought ‘meh’. Is it just one use? I assumed. But Removeil was knocking about at work for a while so I gave it a go. It is GENIUS.

With just water, the grey microfibre towel side removes makeup quickly and without any soaking or scrubbing. After, you use a little soap to lift the makeup moves so you can use it again. The other side is an exfoliator, which lightly brushes the skin. After putting it in the washing machine (I do this after one weeks use), it is ready to use again, and lasts six months. It seems quite expensive (£24.99) but this probably matches up to what I was paying for liquids, wipes and cotton pads before.

CLEAN AS A WHISTLE: My friend recommended I try Clearasil 5 in 1 cleansing pads, no more than £6. Supposedly it reduces oil and shine, unblocks pores, evens skin tone, removes dirt and exfoliates. It does everything I wasn’t doing before! I use a pad morning and evening, feeling a slight scratch as it got to work removing the top layer of dead skin. Afterwards, my face always looks cleansed and new, ready to absorb my moisturiser.

clearasil 5 in 1
BERRY HIT: Healthista Glow Food, £18.95, is a nutrient powder containing every berry you can name. Macqui, lucuma, grapeseed, pomegranate and red berries are vitamin C rich, which is exactly what beautiful skin thrives on. It helps fight free radical damage (which is linked to diseases like cancer, too). Once a day I pop a scoop of this in my smoothie (with almond milk, strawberries, flaxseed oil, spinach and Healthista Lean Vegan Diet Protein Powder in Berry Burst), or a little water as a shot. It’s part of Healthista’s new superfood range, (who I write full time for). A small serving may go along way when taken every day, which I intend to do for a vitamin rich diet (which isn’t always achievable with just food).


Thank you for reading and let me know if you have a go-to product to reverse breakouts – I’m a newbie!

MORE: Glossybox review: Jan and Feb 2017


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