When I was little, 5 or 6, I would watch Saved By The Bell, Full House, Family Matters and all the other great shows that explained to me the TV version of what becoming a teenager was all about. You were either super rad and super chic with tons of friends, or you were super smart, or you were the biggest nerd in the world with no friends, bad clothes and acne for days. So I couldn’t help but wonder if I would just miraculously blossom into a super model or would I become this awkward figure of life roaming around the school halls.
Well … let’s just say I wasn’t strutting around any catwalks when I turned 13. I was incredibly tall and disturbingly thin. My teeth were so busted that I not only had braces for almost 3 years, but a palette expander (hot right) that made me talk like an idiot … like saying my own name was a challenge. My limbs were too long for my body and yeah … my hair turned overnight from soft waves into tight kinky curls that I had no idea what to do with besides slicking it back, when all the rest of the “cool” girls had this fabulously flowing straight hair.
As much as I am making it seem that I was Screech from Saved by the Bell, my teenage years weren’t as bad as they could have been. I started transforming my style, a.k.a. having taste, and reading fashion magazines. And my favorite part of all … I got a blemish once in a blue moon. And it wasn’t on the tip of my nose or on my cheek or somewhere super embarrassing. It was always on my chin or on the side of my face and never really that atrocious to deal with. I knew people who bought stock in Proactive, had to go on more intense medications that God for bid you ever got knocked up because your child would have three heads or something … that is how crazytown strong it was. I mean people have scars from bad acne, yet I walked away with a pimple here and there … nothing that really kept me up at night.
And now I’m 25, you would think I was in the clear. My body, for the most part, has stopped changing, I survived being a teenager. Yet, for the love of Christ … the older I get, the worse my skin becomes. Like what kind of backwards ass nonsense is this. I realize your skin changes every so many years … blah, blah, blah … whatever. That doesn’t stop me from thinking this whole situation is bullshit. I’ve gone years with not having to deal with acne treatments and now I may have to start … at 25! Well … I wouldn’t call what I have “acne,” more like irritations and blemishes.
I find myself standing in the face wash aisle with all of the acne treatments with teenagers comparing and contrasting bottles they read were the best of the best in Teen Vogue or Tiger Beat with their parents. “Yeah mom, Justin Bieber TOTES uses Neutrogena … but so does that bitch Selena Gomez … we CAN’T get that.” “But OH this bottle is pretty and Suzi uses it, please Mom, PLEASE … AHHHHH.” My GOD … is there a Jack Daniels aisle … or wait am I in the wrong place? But from my understanding, 25-year old-women should NOT have to rub shoulders with teenagers over acne problems.
So starting to look at blemish treatments for the first time is ridiculously overwhelming. I thought there were a lot of choices for makeup but Jesus. Do you have oily skin, dry skin, combination skin, irritated skin, damaged skin, anti-wrinkle shit until the cows come home … I mean where do you begin!? Sure, probably at a Dermatologist, but they are going to give me some medicated nonsense, and quite frankly I’m just not there yet. And I refuse to give Proactive a dime because the brand, as a whole, bothers me. I don’t know why … it just does.
And sure, facials can be relaxing to some, but not for me. Of course it feels awesome for a person to massage your temples, put steam and warm towels on your face as you drift into la-la land. But the aftermath when you open your eyes and get the verdict on how royally screwed your skin is … so not worth it. I remember the woman who gave me my facial turned the lights on, handed me a glass of water with lemon and then started rattling off all the shit that was wrong and all of the products I should use to fix it. A bazillion dollars later (that I didn’t spend because I know their end game, I’m on to you people who give facials) I spent the next week with a broken out face since getting a facial means they are pulling all the bad stuff out, which equals breakouts. Is an hour of relaxation worth a week of having to apply WAY too much coverup and foundation so people don’t know you turned into crater face? Um … I think not.
So at 25 (did I mention I’m 25), I start my search for the overpriced blemish creams and comparing and contrasting what works and what does not. How annoying is that? I came so far, and yet when I thought I was in the clear … I started to break out. Sigh. Things could be worse of course, but I will tell you my little secret on how to fight blemishes. Rubbing alcohol. I live and breathe for the stuff. Sure I tried all the Neutrogena treatments since that brand is notorious for being gentle on the skin … yet I found my skin breaking out more and getting insanely dried out. A little dab of rubbing alcohol over blemishes does wonders … take my advice.
In the meantime, guess I should go to a middle school and consult the kids on what is cool to use to fight blemishes. FML.