I did not think that I’d still be dealing with breakouts at 27. When I was younger, I kind of just assumed that adults never dealt with acne? That it just disappeared once you hit your twenties and you never had to deal with it again?
Wow. Was I wrong or what!
As a teenager, I used to deal with the occasional breakout — nothing major — just a few blemishes once or twice a month and a little bit of texture on my forehead and cheeks. Once I reached my twenties [and moved away for uni, and started suffering from severe anxiety, and lived with daily migraines for almost a year, etc, etc, etc], it’s like my skin decided it was time to freak the fuck out and lose all sense of normalcy. I mean, I don’t blame it — with what was going on inside my brain and body — but I will say that I suffered with the worst acne I had ever had in my life, and it really knocked my sense of confidence within myself. I never went to class, avoided all social events and kind of just dwelled in a realm of anxiety, panic and insomnia.
Nowadays, I’m nearing my thirties, and while I have managed to rid myself of never-ending cystic breakouts that can only come from the worst of hormone imbalances and excessive stress, I do wake up some mornings surprised to see a smattering of small spots along my jawline or cheek bones. My hormones still aren’t great, but they’re more balanced than they have been in years, and I no longer deal with the stresses of studying/working awful retail jobs/dealing with toxic people. But, I still get breakouts.
What gives, right? Well, it turns out that it’s totally normal for adults to have acne. We definitely weren’t taught that in school, but it’s true. Studies show that almost 50% of women between the ages of 20 and 30 struggle with skin issues, and it’s absolutely normal to do so. It’s obviously not ideal, but it is normal. I know that my breakouts are due to imbalanced hormones, which can result from periods of excess stress, environmental factors like high humidity and also from other lifestyle influences like eating too much sugar at the start of my cycle or resting my chin on my hand all day while I sit at my desk.
So: how do I deal with the breakouts when they appear? I turn to three — yes, only three — products to clear up congestion and get my skin back to its best self in no time at all.
This product is an essential for anyone that experiences painful under the skin spots. I usually have one or two each month, always along my jawline, and they are so so painful it’s almost unbelievable. The Buffering Lotion is a thin consistency that sinks into the skin quickly and, therefore, is able to target those under the skin spots that will never come to the surface in a quick and painless way.
I didn’t have much faith in this product at first, because anyone that deals with blind or cystic acne knows it is stubborn as hell. However, I apply the Buffering Lotion to the area whenever I feel a blind spot appearing, and it just goes away? I don’t know how it does it, but there’s no redness and no pain remaining after around a week of consistent application. The product itself is a little drying in the days afterwards, but that’s not of concern to me, as long as it prevents weeks of blind spot pain. Could not recommend this product more!
At first I didn’t really understand the difference between this product and the Drying Lotion, until I read that this Drying Cream is for those small clusters of under the skin blemishes that haven’t yet reached the surface but also aren’t necessarily blind or cystic. This formula is gentle enough to wear all day without causing irritation or excessive dryness.
I like to apply this to under the skin spots with a small concealer brush, and I kind of blend it out in the surrounding areas too, to prevent any contact blemishes from forming. I also like using this for no-makeup days as it’s very similar to my skin tone and I can get away with applying a small amount without it being super noticeable. I like using this in conjunction with the Buffering Lotion on extreme spots to ensure they disappear quickly and don’t leave behind any bumps or redness.
Finally, the most cult-famous spot treatment on the market: the Drying Lotion. This product is perfect for treating surface blemishes. I’m sure you’ve all seen people on Instagram and TikTok covered in tiny smears of pink paste — this is the product they’re using.
I apply this on surface blemishes as well as any spots I may have picked in an anxiety-induced frenzy [I know it’s bad but sometimes I can’t help it!] and it dries them up in about a week. It doesn’t necessarily make active spots disappear, however it does dry them up and also prevents me from mindlessly touching them while they run their course. If I apply this product on any spots I have picked, I notice they always dry up quicker and don’t get re-infected or inflamed.
Bonus tip? Apply all three products to especially bad spots. I know this probably isn’t recommended by the brand so try it at your own risk, but I have found that a light application of all three products on aggressively painful, cystic spots works a treat. You know, the ones that literally appear overnight and cause blinding pain if you accidentally touch them? I definitely only get these when my hormones are at their worst, but using these products ensures they disappear within around a week, and don’t leave behind any redness, infection or bumps. Just make sure your aftercare is on point [cleanse, exfoliate, moisturise, SPF!]. I also like to practice facial massage techniques in the aftercare stage to flush out any excess toxins or fluid from the area of the breakout.