An Ugly Subject: Adult Acne

I’ve got it. Yep. I said it. The whole world knows now. Benzoyl Peroxide. Tazorac. Differin. Minocycline. Doxycycline. Tetracycline. I’ve tried it all—well, mostly—and nothing made much headway. I’d lost hope in treatment and invested it in concealing cosmetics. (As for that, I recommend Jane Iredale’s PurePressed base—great coverage, light feel, mineral powder.) But Renée Rouleau, a true skincare expert, has restored my optimism that clear skin is not an unobtainable goal. I think I may be on the path to recovery. Jump to find out how and why.

It all began with the Cranberry-Brasion Facial at Renée Rouleau’s spa. I battled with my inner embarrassment as my makeup came off, revealing the blemishes beneath. “It’s been there since I was 14,” I told Renée. She didn’t flinch. After close examination and questions about my skin and skincare regimen, she made a suggestion. She told me she wanted me to try to give up dairy from my diet for two weeks. Although it may not always be the case, she said, in her twenty years as an esthetician, she noticed there was a link between dairy and acne for some of her clients. (I’m an avid cheese lover, by the way, but I’m giving it a shot.) Then she began the facial. As she went, she explained some things. She talked to me about possible reasons prescriptions didn’t work in the past, she described different types of breakouts, and she explained the different products she was using. Renée seemed just as knowledgeable about problematic skin as any dermatologist I’ve ever seen and also more concerned about getting me on the same page, which is really important to me.

I went home feeling better about the future of my skin and with a bag of products to keep up my exfoliating. I’ve been using the products for two days, and I’m really enjoying them. The AHA/BHA Cleansing Gel really removes my makeup, leaving my skin feeling totally clean, but not squeaky and dry. (It’s also a 2007 “Best of Beauty” award-winner from Allure if you don’t want to take my word for it.) I’m also using the Balancing Skin Tonic, which smells so fresh and feels so good, I could use it all day long. But my two favorite products, perhaps, are the moisturizers. The morning moisturizer is a sunscreen, and I must admit, Talkers, I can’t stand sunscreens. I know the anti-aging spiel. Blah, blah, blah. But having a greasy punim all day…I’d rather not, thanks. This one, with an SPF of 30, goes on like a light lotion and dries instantly. I swear. If you wear a sunscreen, which you know you should, I guarantee you’ll like this one. The evening moisturizer, Matte Moisture, I love for similar reasons. It’s ultra sheer and leaves my face feeling clean and unclogged against my pillows. So far, so good.

I’ll keep you posted over the next few weeks with this very personal matter that I’ve disclosed to you. Wish me luck with the no-dairy ordeal.


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