a models roaccutane journey

A model with an acne problem. Follow me on my roaccurate journey…

Skin Dismorphia?

It has been a long time since I have written a post and to be honest that is sort of because I have been trying to forget that I ever had acne.

Firstly I must update you on my skin.
I have not got any cystic spots at all anymore and haven’t since my last ever Roaccutane tablet. If I have a big weekend of champagne and little sleep…I do get a couple of zits. When I say zits, they are like those little teenage hormonal spots that disappear in a couple of days.

I just wanted to let you know a little story of my casting today.
I had a request casting for a well known skincare brand. For the first time ever my agent said they needed to find models with skincare problems.
I went to this casting with a full face of make…as always.
As soon as I got there I was asked to take off my make up. I don’t think I have ever in my life been to a casting with no make up. It was so scary to be on show in that way. It literally felt like I was sitting there naked whilst chatting to the clients and the photographer.
Once we had chatted the photographer took my photo and very kindly said that my skin looked perfect in the camera. With absolute disbelief that she was talking about me I took a look and sure enough she was right, although my acne scarred brain immediately though, “nah, the camera is out of focus”. After such a long time with acne I have lost so much confidence. If anyone ever compliments my skin I simply smile, say thank you and think they are lying!
As I have told you all before that when I exercise or get hot my acne scaring comes up in the form of red dots. So I went and splashed a load of warm water on my skin and out popped the red dots. For some astonishing reason these dots still didn’t show up on the camera.
I’m not sure if the camera was the most magical lens or I have some sort of mental skin dismorphia haha.
I have come away feeling a bittersweet happiness. I’m thrilled that such an incredible photographer and client could compliment me on my skin which has been the name of my life for years or incredibly disappointed that I have clearly not got such an incredible campaign :

How is everyone else’s progress coming along? Have any of you been experiencing scars now that you have finished Roaccutane?

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Roaccutane after care

I have spent this week filming a commercial an having my make taken off and reapplied six times minimum in a day!! It caused me to have a red rash you can just about see in the below picture. I freaked out (understatement) and thought my acne was back!! Two days after filming with a day following with no make up on and I am back to normal…fewwwww!

My skin is a lot more sensitive to heat and random beauty products since being off Roaccutane but my skin always goes back to normal after a day or two 😊

How is everyone else’s progress coming along?

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103 countries suffering with acne

20130721-001715.jpgWow, I don’t mean to sound too dense but I’m not sure I could name 103 countries off the top of my head very easily!
Isn’t it a lovely thought to realise that none of us should feel alone.
If there are 103 countries suffering with acne right now we should all support each other in the quest to get rid of this annoying spottiness and help each other to not feel alone xx

Acne in the sun – skincare routine

Having a birthday late summer is both happy and upsetting. It is wonderful because, well, it’s summer. It is upsetting because at the end of each summer I have seem to get acne. My doctor and dermatologist can not seem to work out why this is, even after endless blood tests. Could it be because this is when school or university started back after the summer break each year and caused me stress induced spots? Well, that’s what I thought until I finished uni and it still continued to happen the following two years when I had finished university.
Maybe there is simply is no correlation between the end of summer and my acne, just coincidence.
Although, with all this being said, now that I have finally got rid of my acne thanks to Roaccutane I am more determined than ever to look after my skin more carefully than ever before as I am terrified it may come back. I am sorry this post has come a little late for many of us that have already had our fair bit of sun but I hope it can help you going forward.

In the summer we all sweat a lot more than normal. For me, traveling about in London on the sweaty tubes buses and trains I am sure this can not be good for my skin. I don’t want to over use any products on my face to strip it from it’s natural state so I have come up with a simple facial routine for each day: one for work life and one for the holidays. Hope they help you 🙂

Work Life Facial Routine:
I have been using Balm Balm Face Serum as a moisturiser underneath my foundation in the morning as I am currently on a quest to get rid of my scarring (read more lower down this blog). Use less make up than normal to help prevent any clogging caused from increased summer heat induced sweat. Use a light cleanser to wash away any make up at the end of each day.

20130720-234835.jpg(Clarins cleanser is nice and light. I use it daily. Approximately £12 and lasts me about six months!)
I would personally avoid any make up remover wipes as they just spread the make up and bacteria around your face rather than wash away the dirt.
TIP: Use a lighter foundation than you would in the winter preferably with an SPF.

20130720-234955.jpg(This Rimmel foundation (approximately £8) has an SPF15. It is a fairly light foundation but not as light as the Maybelline Fit Me range (approximately £10) which I like to use for evenings out when I don’t need an SPF.)

Holiday Lifestyle Facial Routine:
During the day DO NOT wear any make up on your face. You do not need make up when jumping in and out of the pool. It has taken me a really long time to feel confident enough to go make up free when not in the comfort of my own bedroom but this year I finally did it and felt such a sense of relief. I still have a little scaring which is visible but I just feel…these people are never going to see me again so…screw it :p However, If you do feel too naked without make up as a form of protection from the scary public eye, go heavy on the eyes to draw people’s attention away from your skin. Buy some waterproof mascara, ‘Natural Collection’ and ‘Little Miss Sporty’ do very cheap waterproof mascaras (£2-4)
During the day use a face specific sun protection (only apply with clean hands) every couple of hours.

20130720-235747.jpg(This Clarins SPF face cream cost me approximately £15 and as you can see over a weeks holiday of using it constantly I still have loads left for the rest of the summer.)
Don’t be scared to use a higher protection than you would normally, you will still get tanned and can always use a darker foundation if you want to look more tanned when going out in the evening. Remember your face is meant to be lighter than your skin tone anyway.
In the evening slather on and massage a thick oil full of organic oils such as mandarin and rose as these are oils which aid scarring repair. I have seen a huge difference in my scarring since my holiday and feel the oil skin massages have helped me so much.

20130721-000224.jpg(Balm Balm ‘Little Miracle Rosehip Serum’. Approximately £13. Lasts sooooo long!.)
My scaring has gone down to such an extent that I even went food shopping this morning with no make up on at all! I don’t think I have done that since I was a kid :p
TIP:
When you get back in from the beach/pool and have your shower, make sure you use a cleanser to wash off your sun cream from your face.

The result of drinking whilst on Roaccutane

For everyone’s information:
During my course of Roaccutane I had Christmas and New Years and drunk a bit of alcohol. Throughout the whole Roaccutane process I never drank more than 6 units of alcohol a week but I did drink a little bit.
My liver function test has stayed perfect before and after!!
I am NOT condoning or advocate anyone drinking whilst on Roaccutane BUT I can safely say a little bit of alcohol did not do me, personally, any harm just like my dermatologist had said.
A message especially to my younger readers who may not know how to track the units of their alcohol intake (it was certainly a learning process for me whilst taking Roaccutane) please do not drink whilst on Roaccutane in case you don’t realise that you are drinking too much and if you have a reckless night and throw up for example you may lose any effects of the tablet(s) you have taken that day and have to take a step back in your progress…oh and think about how expensive that one tablet is!! :p
If anyone has any questions, feel free to message me 🙂

Supposed last blood test

Sorry for my big absence, I have been super busy working and having trouble with my blood test results from about 3 weeks ago!!

So…I had my final blood tests a couple of weeks ago, a month after finishing Roaccutane. My dermatologist didn’t ask me to have these blood tests, I had to request he sent a letter to my doctors to specify which tests to take, for example cholesterol, iron, liver, testosterone, estrogen etc. A week later I rung my doctors to book in and they hadn’t heard anything from my dermatologist. I rung the dermatologists’ office to then find out my dermatologist had forgotten!!
…then I find out my doctors do not have an email address so my dermatologist just emails me the blood test requests and I had to print the email out and give it to my doctor taking my blood.
My doctors very swiftly processed the results and passed them on to my dermatologist. After three messages left at the dermatologists office I eventually get a call back to discuss my results. This call included me hearing my dermatologist munching away in his lunch and to be told, “results are all fine, ok?!”. Geez, don’t go into telling me about anything then!!!!
Three weeks later I managed to book in to see my doctor to properly discuss my test results. My appointment yesterday led me to realise the dermatologist only had me tested for iron and liver function not anything else!!!!!!!! Now I have to go through all the drama again to have more horrid needles in me 😦 Booooo!!

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Last blood test

Today I had my last blood test for my Roaccutane journey. I actually pestered my dermatologist to make my doctor give me a blood test. For some reason my dermatologist didn’t think it was necessary for me to have a blood test ever since my first to check if I could have Roaccutane to start with. He has been pretty breezy and nonchalant the whole way through my process which is probably why I have been so proactive in finding out I formation for myself! My results will let me see how my liver function is, so I will find out if my drinking a little bit of alcohol during the process has been ok or not.

20130425-105636.jpgI hate needles with a passion so my gorgeous fiancé came with me again today, to hold my hand :p
How is everyone else’s doctors/dermatologists about blood tests?

One month after my last Roaccutane tablet

One month after my last Roaccutane tablet means that I can now drink as much alcohol as I like (in a responsible way of course 🙂 ) and I can sunbathe without the risk of burning. If you are a regular reader of my blog you will already know that only two weeks after finishing Roaccutane I went to Italy (not for a sunbathing holiday but still walking around in the sun) and I didn’t not experience even the slightest bit of burning.
Since finishing Roaccutane I have had two spots. Do not be alarmed though they both, individually, arrived when I was incredible tired from work overload and from a day of traveling. These two spots were teensy little red dot pimples that were gone within a day-they just disappeared! These spots were not at all cystic and were barely noticeable. I have only ever had spots that can be di scribed as cystic so when these little pimples popped up to say hello and goodbye just as quick I was so relieved!
On the day I took my last tablet I had completely flat skin (except one blasted spot that arrived about three months into taking the tablets). I had red dots still left where my old cystic spots had been. Four weeks later all the red dots are now a lighter shade of pink and that annoying spot is now flat but darker than all the other “left overs”. I am positive that with time (like my dermatologist had said will happen) these pink dots with eventually disappear…that time could not come soon enough though. I am experiencing a little scaring but nothing too major and again, I am praying this will heal with time.
Does anyone find that they stare at people’s skin far more than they ever used to? When I am out and about in London for castings I spend a lot of time on the tube and pass time by inspecting people’s skin :p I can’t help myself, I gawp at people with perfect flawless skin and wish I could tell people with cystic acne that they should start taking Roaccutane as soon as possible because it will change their lives 🙂

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Follow my Roaccutane Instagram journey:
@roaccutanejourney

Iron, Hair & Roaccutane

I have to admit…my iron intake has been slackkkkk!!
Whilst I was taking Roaccutane/Accutane I was really good with my acne helping diet but since loosing my lumpy spots I have sort of forgotten to keep my iron levels up.
I have been really lucky with the fact that I don’t think my hair got any thinner whilst on Roaccutane and I think this was helped by the fact I ate a lot of iron rich meals. I used the app ‘My Fitness Pal’ to keep an eye on my iron intake. When I first started tracking this I realised I was only having about 5% of my recommended daily iron levels!!
I will get back to eating lots of curly kale and broccoli starting tonight!!