The following is an interview with reader Kat on her journey to discovering the Love Vitamin and clearing her skin naturally.
If you’d like to fill out your own clear skin interview to be featured on the blog, then just click here.
What was your experience with acne? How many years did you have it and how did it make you feel?
I started getting bad acne when I went into puberty, and it continued like that all the way through college.
It was so embarrassing. I tried to cover it with makeup but it still showed through.
Once when I was 16, I arrived to work at my then-job and my manager said, “Look how bad your face is broken out!”
Yeah, thanks…. I know…
What kinds of things did you try prior to holistic healing that didn’t work?
I tried every product on the market. Proactiv, Clean N Clear, Neutrogena, you name it.
Back in the throes of my acne storm, I never went to the dermatologist or anything because I couldn’t afford to. I dreamed about going though (is it silly to dream that?) because I thought that a dermatologist would have the magical cure or medicine.
Surely they would have something that would work, right?
Some of the over-the-counter products mildly helped my acne, but I also have very sensitive skin. So that combined with the harshness of those products doubled the redness and irritation on my skin… well, I feared that my face would never be completely clear.
After everything on the market failing me and then realizing that I could not afford a dermatologist, that’s when I decided to look elsewhere.
How did you discover that acne could be treated holistically?
Well, like I suspect most people did, I started scouring the internet for answers. Using natural and holistic treatments wasn’t completely new to me because I wasn’t the biggest fan of chemicals anyway. I already used natural shampoo and cleansers for the rest of my body.
For my face, though, I was totally lost. I was scared to put anything on it, even natural stuff, because my skin was/is so sensitive and easily irritated.
So, before I made any changes, I did a lot of research. That was still confusing though, because some things worked for some people and not for others, etc. I really didn’t know what to try, but I figured I may as well do it the only way I knew how, which was keep trying different things until you stumble on one that works.
I first found Tracy’s videos on youtube when I wasn’t even looking for anything acne related at the time. I was searching for something on hair care (I can’t remember what exactly) and came across her video on dreadlocks.
I watched that video, and then when I looked at the channel, I was like, Oh! There’s skincare stuff here too! And for acne! So, I decided that was a good of a place as any to start. I figured I had nothing to lose.
What were the specific things that made the biggest difference to your skin? What worked for you?
From Tracy, I learned a lot about how acne problems can be treated from the inside out. That made sense to me because whatever you’re putting in has to come out.
So if you’re putting crap in, that’s what’s going to show. And yes, I was a terrible eater and my “skin care” diet wasn’t so good either with all my chemical laden creams and washes.
The first thing I did was throw out my face wash and switch to washing with coconut oil, because I use that on my hair and already had some.
Now, I know sometimes coconut oil can be scary and cloggy for acne prone skin, but it’s never done bad things to me. I loved it on my hair, so I figured it was worth trying on my skin, and it helped a lot. I am very careful to always buy organic, completely unprocessed coconut oil though, so that may be why.
Then I threw out all of my beloved (but useless) acne products. All of them, because I realized I was probably way overloading my face. Like, no wonder it was crying out for air!
I also changed my diet and seriously cut down on sugar and processed foods (which I have maintained). That helped a great deal alone.
The thing that’s different about me is, unlike many people, I don’t actually have hormonal acne (not that I can tell anyway).
Mine really wasn’t affected by my time of the month or anything, and it didn’t seem to change when things with my hormones changed (for example, going on birth control did nothing to change it).
Mine was definitely due to a lifetime of bad choices, bad eating, and not taking care of my skin.
Anyway — I’ll admit that it took me some time to see results. I also experimented with other oils (argan, jojoba) and liked them all, so now I keep a mixture of them around for when I need them.
I also do very little to my skin nowadays, but I am always sure to keep it clean. I don’t wash it unless I feel like I need to, but if I get a little clogged, some jojoba oil rubbed on will usually do the trick.
I guess I could say that, through watching your videos and reading your articles and books, I learned how to wash and take care of my skin.
I didn’t know how to before, because no one had ever taught me or shown me before. And my skin, sensitive thing that it is, really needed something holistic and as free of chemicals as possible.
Were there any obstacles? Things you found difficult about the whole process?
The main thing I found difficult was breaking habits that I’d had for most of my life. I had to train myself to think and do things differently.
How did you feel once your skin cleared up?
A lot better! I used to pile on makeup and I would feel so ashamed without it! Now, though, I only wear makeup sometimes but feel fine if I don’t have any on.
Kat is a comedian and runs a humor blog at www.kat-mueller.com. She is married to her best friend and tries to stay as healthy as possible.