The Sufficient Single
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6 Steps to Clear Skin

It hurt to smile. The delight in my cheeks faded altogether.

For the next five years, acne invaded my face, claiming every territory as its own, showing no mercy. I called them the “Nazits.” (Just kidding, I made that up on the spot).

I loathed going out in public. I hated the stares, especially from guys. Cheers to the single, pimple life. And as soon as my face felt the Florida heat, my concealer washed away like the summer rain. Besides, what was the point of covering up my acne if applying makeup became too painful? I physically could not touch my face without wincing.

In the midst of my battle with acne, I graduated college, worked three different jobs, moved to Atlanta, and went through a season of anxiety and depression. I even stopped dancing for a year. In a previous post, I described how “I didn’t have the desire to exercise, socialize, leave the house, eat or even get out of bed. Resting my head on my pillow, all I could focus on was my breathing and the crippling chest pains which ensued after every exhale.”

And yet, I had hope.

I was angry with God, no doubt, but I still had hope that He would lead me beside still waters and restore my soul (Psalm 23). God was, is, and will always be with me in the valley. God reminded me that my joy is made complete in Him (John 16:24) in the midst of my circumstances. He gave me the confidence to meet with a counselor, sign up for dance classes, and immerse myself in a biblical community.

Most importantly, I acquired an outstanding dermatologist. Today, my skin is practically glowing with glee. giphy

So what’s my secret to overcoming hormonal acne? Apply these six steps for confident, clear skin:

1. Listen to Your Dermatologist

I was prescribed Accutane an entire year before I ever considered it. I finally was like, “Screw it! God, you are in control of my life and I am going to trust you with this pill. And guess what? I survived. It was worth every dang monthly blood test I had to take just to see if I was pregnant. Unless by some act of God, trust me LabCorp, I was not pregnant. (Accutane has severe side-effects for birthing defects)giphy (1)

2. Moisturize and Cleanse

Moisturize and cleanse daily. My favorites are Aveeno 24hr Skin Relief Moisture Lotion and Pond’s Cold Cream Cleanser.spray-delay.giftumblr_p4f1af9p0L1vojxp4o2_400

3. Hydrate

Treat your water bottle like you treat your phone: take it with you wherever you go.giphy (4)

4. Exercise

Find a workout routine that works best for you. I love a variety of cardio and toning such as pilates, dance, boxing, and HIIT. Try workouts from Tone It Up or Nike Training Clubtenor

5. Eat Your Vegetables

Do yourself a favor and follow your parent’s advice: Eat your vegetables. Or as my family used to always sing, “Veggie, Veggie, Fruit, Fruit!” Not sure how to incorporate vegetables into your recipes? I suggest Tone It Up’s Nutritional Plan.giphy (2)

6. Pursue Your Passions

Fear kept me from dancing again. It had been a year since I stepped foot inside a dance studio. What if I lost my technique? What if I wasn’t as flexible? Again, I was like, “Screw it! God, you are in control of my life and I am going to trust you with my passions.” Dancing gives me joy, so why not pursue it? jonathan-dancing-queer-eye

xoxo

Ashley


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