This post started out as being about my experience with the oil cleaning method, but quickly deteriorated into a big moan about how terrible my skin is, and my feelings about ‘bad’ skin, so I thought I’d chop it up in two and pretty much just vent today. Oil cleansing another day/
Oh, and prior warning: there is explicit discussion of different types of spots. If you’re squeamish, maybe don’t read on!
My skin is a nightmare. It gets greasy easily, and it’s full of spots and blackheads, and open pores. When I was younger I would attack it with special stuff for greasy skin, but as I’ve aged, that won’t cut it any more. Because as well as getting greasy easily, it gets really dry easily. If I washed with a greasy skin facewash, it will feel tight, and dry flaking will appear in places.
I have been searching for years for a cleanser that balances the need to clean with the need to not strip oils. Same for moisturiser. Most standard moisturisers (as in neither for greasy not dry skin) will not really moisturise enough and the dry bits will still be there. Heavier stuff for dry skin will be too greasy and sometimes make the spottyness worse. Any eye cream I have ever tried (90% of which have been for ‘senstive skin’) now makes the skin under my eyes go red and dry.
So as you can see, I was caught between a rock and a hard place, skin care wise. And then I went and made it worse. I came off the pill in October, and it’s played havoc with my skin (and other things, but we’ll not get into that). The last time I had anything approaching clear skin was when I took those make up free pictures back in November. You see, my spottiness is hormonal. Nothing to do with diet, or what happens on the outside of my skin (believe me, I’ve tried it all. It did not work).
I first went on the pill aged 17 for my skin and it did help. I still got blackheads and little white spots but those big painful red pulsating spots that will stay around for two weeks regardless of what you do, the ones that go bright yellow, but if you squeeze them even under sterilised conditions they will scar, the pill took care of those.
But now they’re back. Not quite on the same scale as they were there when I was 16, but back nevertheless. And they’re also back on my chest and shoulders and back, it’s horrible and I’m actually a bit worried about being able to wear sleeveless things once it gets hotter. I am pretty much avoiding anything with a neckline (and we’re not talking low cut, we’re talking anything showing anything beneath the clavicle) or without sleeves at the moment and I hate it. I hate that I am limiting myself in this way, but I also don’t want people to see all the redness and puss that’s going on on my body. And so I cover myself up as if I was following a religious modesty code.
What I would really like is for there to be a spot-positive movement, like the way people are positive about being plus size or their wrinkles. I don’t want to feel self conscious about my skin, but I do, because, and I’ve said this before, there is no positive spin on spottiness. No one likes it, or even accepts it. Spots are what we must all fight.
I get why that is, because often spots are a sign off ill-health and run downness, but I’m not run down, my diet is good, I get plenty of sleep and exercise, in short I am fit and healthy. If anything, not swallowing hormones every day should make more MORE healthy. But people assume, just like I will assume of other spotty people. It’s bullshit, I tell you!