Today, I am writing about the dreaded curse of acne. This is a veterinary student blog, you may think to yourself. Why is she writing about acne? Well, my friends, acne is a consequence of stress, among other things. And we all know that stress is part of our daily lives as veterinarians and veterinary students.
My story with acne
I never had acne growing up. Seriously. I always had super clear skin. I also started taking birth control for my menstrual cycle cramps at 15 years old, which likely helped me skip this phase of teenage-dom. At the ripe age of 25 years old, I decided that I wanted to switch up my birth control. And that is where my problems truly began.
Enter cystic acne.
These horrible bumps are painful and the kind that will scar your face and leave a scab for weeks. It is awful. To be clear, I am not a dermatologist and I am not an expert on acne. I do know that cystic acne is linked to hormonal imbalances, namely testosterone. Many adult women suffer from this type of acne with the cardinal sign being hard nodules along the chin and jawline. To compensate for this, many physicians have begun prescribing Spironolactone, a diuretic that we commonly use in veterinary medicine to treat patients in congestive heart failure.
To be fair, spironolactone works. It takes about three months to kick in, but it really did help with my cystic acne in the beginning. However, I absolutely hated having to take a pill. Especially because I switched my birth control to avoid taking a pill! I was desperate for any skincare product that would help manage my acne without the use of Spironolactone. What’s more, I still would get the random painful bump even while on this medication. I knew that I needed something personalized for my skin, but after trying multitudes of products I felt pretty hopeless.
I actually don’t know how I stumbled upon this brand, but it is a miracle that I did. Within a few days of using these products, I was able to STOP taking spironolactone and have not broken out with cystic acne since. I believe the key to their success is in the personalized skincare quiz. They ask you questions about your skincare goals, your age, whether you are trying to get pregnant, your skin type, and your biggest concerns. Arguably more important, they ask about your environment, sleep schedule, and stress levels. They then send you the results of the quiz in an e-mail detailing your new regimen and the ingredients that they will incorporate in your specifically formulated products.
Here is an example of my skincare analysis and the ingredients they included to meet my needs:
Your personalized routine consists of a cleanser, serum, day cream and night cream. Each product is customized for your specific goals. Y’OUR uses clean ingredients with no fillers, it is paraben and toxin-free, cruelty-free, and made in the USA. They tell you how much to use and when to use it on a little card that comes in your box. They also have instructions on the back of each product.
The kit itself costs $180 for a three month supply, but they offer a payment plan for $65/month. BONUS is that Y’OUR will send you a free replacement product if you run out of something before the three months are over. The price can be a little daunting, but when I put it into perspective, I was trying all different types of skincare lines AND paying for spironolactone monthly. Moreover, I was still getting cystic acne – the reason why I started taking spironolactone in the first place! We put so much emphasis in veterinary medicine on our mental health, but It is equally important to take care of our skin by using products that really work.
I pride myself on only partnering with companies that I believe in and I am telling you that my results speak for themselves. The only negative thing I could possibly say is that the serum can be a bit drying. I solved this problem by using the serum only on my face’s problem areas. These products have really helped me more than I can express in words. I chose to write this review because I personally have struggled with acne since the beginning of veterinary school. For me, acne adds additional stress that I don’t want to deal with while I am trying to focus on studying or working. I believe that these products would benefit many of my peers and empower them to become more educated about their skin.
Skincare products are definitely not the end all be all. It is important to eat well, shower regularly, and try to minimize stress to prevent acne. Personally, I minimized my stress through exercise, journaling, and meditation. For more tips on managing stress and anxiety, you can check out my blog post here.
Let me know if you have any questions about the products. I am happy to help in any way I can!