April 1, 2019


Acne is no new thing for me. I have suffered from cystic acne and awful skin for several years. I have tried over, and over, again to clear up my skin and nothing seemed to work. Maybe the universe aligned or maybe I finally just tried right the concoction of solutions, either way, I wanted to share with you my personal experience and how I cleared up my acne.

One of the most important things I have learned on this acne journey is that everyone’s skin is different. Your skin may not respond to these tips, the way mine did and you might have additional tips that you can share. I would love for you to leave your skin tips and techniques in the comment! Also, I wanted to share that, for me, acne wasn’t just a physical problem. It was emotionally based too. If you suffer from acne, I feel for you.

Acne is a horrible condition and so many girls, boys, women, and men are affected by it each day. It took me several years of trial and error, and I think I finally found the right combination that works for me. 

How I Cleared Up My Acne & Tips for Clear Skin, Dr. Barbara Sturm Skincare

How I Cleared Up My Acne & Tips for Clear Skin

How I Cleared Up My Acne


After years of avoiding dermatologists, because I couldn’t seem to find the right one, I finally found a great dermatologist. When she recommended an antibiotic, I wasn’t exactly thrilled. I had taken antibiotics in the past for acne and they never worked. This time, I took my antibiotic for about 2 months and my skin cleared up. Personally, I don’t believe that I can owe all of the results I have received to the antibiotic, but it is a good place to start to rid your body of bad bacteria and can be done every so often if you have a bad breakout. 

If you do decide to try antibiotics, and even if you don’t, it’s extremely important to take a good probiotic. These are my favorite and I make sure that I am either taking a probiotic or finding a source of probiotics in my diet. For women, it’s also great to take a probiotic that is specified for women. this may be too TMI, so I’m sorry, but the right probiotics can also be really great for vaginal health. 


Some people absolutely hate retinol, but I personally love it. Retinol works wonders for my skin and keeps it clear. These days, I use retinol prescribed by my dermatologist, however, there are a ton of really great options out there. I find that retinol keeps my skin from breaking out and really helps to even out my skin tone and keep my texture nice.

Retinol is powerful and will cause quite a bit of irritation when you begin using it. Often times, things get much worse, before they get better. But, I promise it’s totally worth it. I have been wanting to try this serum. Many people, with cleaner routines, prefer this over retinol. 

Clean Up Your Beauty Routine

The topic of clean beauty and cleaning up my beauty routine has been extremely popular lately. While this should be a blog post all on its own, I thought I would share just a few brief notes about cleaning up your beauty routine. This subject is so important to me because I feel like cleaning up my beauty routine made the biggest difference in my skin.

Having acne really took a toll on my self-confidence. I would always dodge mirrors and was hardly ever seen without makeup. Heavy makeup that is. Back in November, as my skin was slightly starting to clear up, I kind of became obsessed with the Goop website and the many products they carry. I had been hearing a lot about RMS and about clean beauty so I decided to give it a try. It was difficult at first not covering every single blemish, perfectly, but the overtime my skin clear up and I truly think it was majorly to do with cleaning up my beauty routine.


Like I just mentioned, keeping my makeup more minimal and clean, until my skin cleared up was essential. Also, when my skin did clear up, I don’t wear makeup on a regular basis. If anything I will wear a little mascara, fill in my eyebrows, and spot conceal if necessary. The RMS uncover up has completely changed the way I look at my makeup and while my beauty routine is not completely “clean” I am working towards finding more products that I love. Bare Minerals is also another brand I have always loved and I use their “warmth” bronzer whenever I apply my makeup. Recently, I have been testing out the Chantecaille tinted moisturizer and have been loving it. I use the shade Vanilla.


As with makeup, I really noticed an improvement in my skin when I switched up my skincare. I have always wanted extremely active ingredients in my skincare and went the oil-free, acne, related route. However, while is still steer clear of oily products, I have taken a more gentle approach to my skincare. Also, using products with fewer chemicals is extremely important to me. 

When you aren’t wearing as much makeup, it’s much easier to treat your skin well and heal it. Lately, I have really been loving Dr. Barbara Sturm products. I love that her line focuses on anti-inflammation and healing the skin. Since using her products, I have noticed my skin has been much more balanced. It isn’t oily or greasy and it’s not dry either. Her products are gentle and effective. I truly love them. I have also been using Thayers Witch Hazel!

How I Cleared Up My Acne & Tips for Clear Skin, Dr. Barbara Sturm Skincare

Drink More Water

You are probably tired of hearing this but drinking more water is essential for clear skin. Last year, Jay went cold Turkey on sodas and he hasn’t had one since 2017. I am SO proud of him. He is inspired me to quit drinking them too, although I don’t like saying that because I know as soon as I say it, I’m going to get an instant craving.  Anyways, I haven’t had a single soda in 2019. That’s a big deal for me. 

Back in November, when I committed to clearing up my skin, I decided to really increase my water intake. After doing this for a few months, I can honestly tell you that it is the best thing you can do for your skin and your body. Your skin will be less puffy, but plumper and I have seen a huge difference in my acne. I always start my morning by drinking a big glass of water, before grabbing my coffee. If you struggle getting water down first thing, I have been using this and it is great for your skin too!


Check Your Pillow Case

Making sure that your bedding is clean and freshly washed at least once a week is important. I started sleeping on a silk pillowcase and I love it. I don’t wake up with a bunch of creases on my face and I also get better sleep. Silk pillowcases are really good for your skin and great for not messing up your beautiful blowout!


Check Your Detergent

If you haven’t noticed yet, I have very sensitive skin that is extremely sensitive to fragrance. this is one reason I just can’t go anywhere and have a facial. If someone. omes at my face with makeup or skincare that is heavily scented, I will literally run. The same goes for my bedding and clothes. I the Whole Foods brand baby detergent and it really helps my skin. It doesn’t irritate me and also still clothing clohting really well. If I use a regular detergent I will notice acne on my face and my back. I tendto get alot of spots where my bra is tight to my skin if I am using a detergent that doesn’t agree with me.

Limit Alcohol Consumption and Sugar

While there are many diet changes you make to your skin, to help clear up acne, I find that alcohol and sugar are the worst for my skin. Most people recommend staying away form dairy, and while some dairy is bad, some dairy can be good for your gut. One of my biggest guity pleasures is red wine. Let me just tell you. I love a glass of red wine, or three, but I always can find at least one to three new zits the next moring. Not to mention, I sleep terribly and wake up foggy. 

Sugar also tends to make me breakout. If I am consuming too much sugar, I will notice my skin acting up. At the end of 2018, I read this book and it completely changed the way I look at my skin and my diet as a whole. While I still have a long way to go, I reference this book whenever I am in need of a little help. Nigma Talib is very popular among celebrities and I was convinced by, my favorite gal, Rosie Huntington Whitely to read this book

I hope that you found this post helpful and enjoyed reading more about my acne journey. If you have any questions, please just leave them in a comment. I hope we can use this as a platform to encourage and help support one another in our journey to clear skin! As promised, you will find a picture of my skin, below, during my last peak breakout! It’s not pretty!

How I Cleared Up My Acne & Tips for Clear Skin

How I Cleared Up My Acne

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