Finally: How I Cured My ACNE :)

After 10 yrs of suffering from acne and being stripped off all levels of self confidence, I never in a million years thought I’d be free of it coz it somehow became a part of me . I’ve had my fair share of good skin up till I was 14 and that was it. From then on, my face was a constant battlefield till recently.

Acne ruined me not only physically but emotionally and mentally as well.  I went through it all, the puberty pimples all through high school and hormonal acne all through college. Difficult times I can tell you that.

Ways I’ve tried to cure my acne in the past:

Facial – Parents spent thousands of dollars sending me to facials because I was crying endlessly at times. Nope, didn’t work.

Products – Along with facial comes thousands of $$$ on products recommended by this person and that person and impulse purchases. Yeah nothing ever worked. What’s new?

Dermatologist – At 20, I was put on the brutal pill, RoaccutaneMy doctor said “if this doesn’t work, nothing will” and I ain’t gonna say no to that. Being on Roaccutane was when all hell broke loose. I broke out more than I ever did in places i never had acne throughout the purging period of 2 and a half months. I had dry patches all over my body, my face was constantly peeling. I also had extremely chapped lips to the extend that when I yawn, the sides of my lips would tear and bleed. Thats when I knew what true depression felt life. I skipped college class for a whole month. Stayed in the room and cried everyday and night when i looked into the mirror. I even cried to my doctor and gave up mid way but he asked me to stay strong so I did. After being on it for 3 whole torturing months, I had clear skin for half a year and when the medicine wore off, the demons came back. So I gave up going on this the second time because of the side effects.

Birth control pill – At 22, my acne transitioned to hormonal acne cluttering on my cheeks and chin. So my gynecologist put me on Loette then I went on Diane35 and damn I broke out like craaaaay for the first 3 months. 3 months don’t seem like a long time but imagine going through the purging period and having to go to work and I’m in the marketing department, I go to endless meetings and that was a tough time for me. Confidence level zero.

WHAT FINALLY CURED MY ACNE

So I thought enough is enough. I’m done with this and since I’m already earning my own money, I’ll do whatever it takes to get clear skin and won’t burden my parents anymore.

So I did my research for about a year and along the way I started changing my skincare routine going through trial & error with products to find out what works best for me. I spend more time on face masks, more time cleaning my makeup tools and changing my face towels and pillow cases. I also changed my lifestyle. I stopped smoking, I go to bed early, I drink plenty of water and I eat as much fruits as I can. While my skin improved a little,  it was still not the way I wanted it to be. Sometimes my skin is alright, sometimes it flares up like crazy so I was always paranoid.

Which brings us to this products that I continuously stumbled upon as a cure to acne the midst of my “research”.

RETIN-A

“Retin-A (tretinoin) is a form of vitamin A that helps the skin renew itself and quickens cell turnover. The Retin-A and tretinoin are used to treat acne, reduce the appearance of fine wrinkles and mottled skin discoloration, and to make rough facial skin feel smoother”.

I was absolutely 100% skeptical about going on it coz the side effects alarmed me. People went through months of peeling and flaking of skin and I had a phobia of that after Roaccutane. But after almost a year of contemplation and putting it off, I finally caved and decided to take the plunge because my skin was in a horrific state and if you never try you’ll never know.

The one I use

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They do sell it over the counter here in Malaysia. So I got it at my local pharmacy for RM18 a tube. I’ve been on this for almost 3 months now and I cannot vouch for this product enough. Maybe you need proof ?

So here’s a before & after photo only after a month of continuous use every single night.

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I was fortunate enough not to experience any massive peeling whatsoever just slight dryness around my nose and chin. My Retin-A routine is to wash my face, let it completely dry for about 15 minutes, go in with the Retin-A cream, wait another 15 minutes, then put on my moisturizer.

My skin after Retin-A

I notice that the texture of my skin improved drastically. Its so much smoother now and my scars fade very quickly. Less talk, more proof you say? Here’s another picture for you :p

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I still get the occasional odd breakouts during the time of the month coz I’m a girl and I have neurotic hormones but they heal incredibly fast. To prevent the zits from escalating when they’re there, I use (click here this skincare duoinstead of Retin-A and it heals them overnight most of the time. Also, my smile lines are completely gone from using Retin-A which is a big fat plus +

Retin-A is very tricky, it cannot be used simultaneously with a ton of different product ingredients. So if you’re interested, make sure you know how to use it, which percentage to go for, and be sure to consult a doctor if you haven’t read as many reviews and articles as I have. haha.

My Skincare Products

Some of these products are costly but if you have problematic skin you’ll know how hard it is to find stuff that works for you and deliver great results so I don’t mind spending the money. My skin is my best investment.

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I dont think that Retin-A would’ve worked on me as well as it did without the changes in my lifestyle and my whole skincare regime that i never skip a day in my life. Determination is key.

My skin now

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It has been a long and painful journey but I’m beyond delighted and thankful that I’m finally acne-free. I hope this post helps those who are suffering from acne and please know that there is a cure out there for you and it may even be the treatments that didn’t work for me. But you just have to find it and when you do, don’t give up halfway because that’s the thing about acne cure, it will always get worse before it gets better so you must always be patient with it. It will all be worth it in the end, trust me.

*Before and after pictures were taken with the same camera, unedited except the captions. Taken under different lighting.

Thanks for reading guys. xx

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60 thoughts on “Finally: How I Cured My ACNE :)

  1. NieysaSyahirah

    WOW. having acne popping out as if they pay rent on our face have always been one of the worst thing ever. i am so glad you didn’t give up, your wait is worth it because now your skin is now beautiful as ever (the photo says it all). and for only RM18 product, totally worth it.

    i dont have a bad acne condition but i would totally reccomend this to my friend who is fighting with acne too! thanks for this amazing review!! 😀

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  2. Kim

    Thanks for sharing! I have acne condition too and been searching for solution as well 😦
    I wouldn’t mind to try the Retin-A cream that you used. Do you mind if I ask if you have oily skin? I have oily skin and wonder if it will still works.

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    1. bellabae Post author

      Hi kak dida! ❤️ yeah i think it will help to evenout skintones because it helped even out my pigmented acne scars and also a great anti-aging product as well! xx

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  3. Julie

    Hi Bella!
    Did you go through a purging stage? I have asian skin and I started on Retin A 2 weeks ago. It seems like I have gotten about seven new pimples since I have started. They are drying up quickly though.

    Thanks for sharing! Your skin looks amazing!

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    1. bellabae Post author

      Hi julie. I did not go through a purging stage but i heard that a lot of people go through it for a couple a weeks and maybe months. I hope your skin will get out of the purging stage soon and that it will work great for u too! xx

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  4. Pingback: Routine: Evening Skincare | Bellabae

    1. bellabae Post author

      Thank you for being here 🙂 initially I used it every night and I take the tiniest amount, spread it across my face after toner and before moisturizer. Now I only use it a couple times a week 🙂 xx

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  5. Pingback: My worst skincare mistake | Bellabae

  6. samantha

    Hi Bella I have a couple of questions… what are the brands of the toner, moisturizer and sunscreen do you use when using retin-a? What is the best percentage to start with? Should I in the future switch to a higher one? Oh, and it’s an overnight cream, right?

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    1. bellabae Post author

      I’m using the body shop seaweed toner, moisturizer is Simple and at night I use a sleeping mask either Laneige or Origins. The sunscreen that I’m using is VMH hypoallergenics spf70. If you have really sensitive skin I’d say maybe go with the lowest dose which is 0.025 and work your way up. I started with 0.5 and yes it’s meant to be applied at night overnight 🙂 xx ❤

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  7. samantha

    Hiii I just got mine today and I’d like to know is it just during the purging period that I should avoid the sun? Or for my entire life for as long as I’m still using it? :O hope to hear from you. Thanks for the info too! Good day!

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    1. bellabae Post author

      Throughout the whole treatment you need to Becareful with the sun but not necessarily stay out of it completely. Just make sure you put high spf. I go on my daily routine as usual 🙂 xx good luck with the treatment dear!

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  8. Steffi

    Hie, i have som questions here. Is it okay to use tretinion cream? Doesn’t it clog pores and cause more acne ? I thought it would be better to use tretinion gel. What’s the brand of tretinion cream u use?Can i get it in guardian or watson pharmacy?

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  9. Pingback: Let’s talk about Acne Part 2: Roaccutane/Oratane pills | Bellabae

  10. Doug

    Hi may I ask if you need a doctor’s prescription to buy the retin a or you can just ask the pharmacist. And may I please know the specific pharmacy that you bought it>

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    1. bellabae Post author

      I didnt have any prescription and just bought it directly over the counter. I bought it at a pharmacy at vista magna Kepong. I forgot the exact name of it. It’s beside a 99 speedmart if I’m not mistaken. xx

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  11. Alissa

    Hey Bella 🙂 I want to say that I thank you so much for this blog! May I inquire as to which pharmacy you got the Retin A cream? And do you use it topically or just apply everywhere?

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  12. Ashley

    Hi, I’m currently using treintion cream for 7 going on 8 wks now. My skin texture has not improved. How long before you noticed a difference?

    I’m starting to think I’ll be one of those people that the product doesn’t work for. Any insight or information would be helpful and encouraging.

    Thank you,

    Ashley

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    1. bellabae Post author

      It took me over a month to see a difference. But if it doesn’t give u any bad side effects then no harm in continuing. Have faith and goodluck! 🙂 xx

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      1. Ashley

        Thank you!! I guess I have to start believing in the product. I’ve been a negative Nancy about it all along. I have to accept the process.

        I had clear skin upup until 28 then bam. Closed comedones have become my worst enemy and have ruined the texture of my skin. I was just hoping not to spend my 29th birthday with a face full of comedone acne but I guess things could be worse. Your progress was quick!

        Is your skin oily or dry? Mine is extremely oily. Sometimes I wonder if I’d benefit more from thr gel vs the cream.

        Your post gives me help. Are you stl using the product?

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  13. zul

    hi, im guy i have very terrible acne and scars, i just discover about retinol or retin a, so other than that what i need to try to improve my skin, thank you!

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      1. Simu

        Hey gurl, do you still use the 0.05 or 0.1%? 🙂 I started using Retacnyl (0.05%) instead of this brand and it seems to work better xx

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      2. bellabae Post author

        My skin peeled for a whole month almost this time around. I just went back on it. You can try to see reviews of tretinoin on acne.org 🙂

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  14. Grace K

    Hi Bellabae, May I know where is the location you get this product. Cos I have been searching everywhere but couldn’t find. I’ve tried retin A cream before and couldn’t find it anywhere now.

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    1. Simu

      Hello,

      You can buy it online from Crown Clinic, but you will have to email them to order. If you live near Ampang, Vitacare sells Retacnyl (Retin A) manufactured by Galderma that seems to work much better with my skin than the Y.S.P Industries manufactured one that Bella uses 🙂

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  15. Pingback: Skin Update: Tretinoin Cream & Acne | Bellabae

  16. lapin

    Wow your skin looks amazing! Thank you for sharing your results. I’ve been thinking of trying this product, but I’m so scared of breaking out even more. Your story gave me courage

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    1. bellabae Post author

      Thank you so much for reading! Not everyone breaks out more from it initially. But yes the risk is there. I wish u all the best if you end up trying it !

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  17. Izzakml

    Hi bella, my skin have clogged pores and many whitehead on my skin face.. i want to ask the tretinoin are suitable for whitehead? Tq

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