The summer I turned sixteen, I worked at a hot dog joint called “Willy’s Wayside Wagon”. It was a little trailer conveniently located next to a tavern. The steamed tamales, buns and dogs, with other side options like deep fried pizza puffs french fries with optional cheese sauce was a neighborhood favorite; especially the drunk guys from the bar next door. The steam would open my pores and I would receive a greasy facial every time I worked. Accompanied by the syrupy, fountain drinks available to me anytime I wanted had me strung out and dehydrated. Of course in combination with my raging hormones and my consuming this stuff every time I worked wreaked havoc on my skin.
My mom told me to use Noxema, so I listened. I would splash the water on my face like they did in the commercial but only difference is my skin looked like shit and there was water everywhere. (I know now that my Mom was lucky and has good genes; she has never had a break out in her entire life. The Noxema had nothing to do with it. My Dad was a genetically pre-disposed pizza face as was my grandfather:)
This is the story of my becoming a “product whore”. There was no internet or googling back in the early 90’s. All I had was my parents, my friends, Seventeen magazine and commericals to find the answers. Clearasil, Oxy pads, Stridex and the Buff Puff were the products I started with. I would wash my face in the morning and at night. My face exploded even more so I bought products to now cover up my face (Clearasil -the tan colored ointment and cover girl by Noxzema of course). Most of the time I had that slightly orange oompa loompa look from wearing clearisil as my make up regimen.
One day I was walking down the hall in high school and one my friend’s mouth dropped open in horror and I knew what she saw. It confirmed what I already knew; I was a complete pizza face. After school I did something I never did; I came home and cried to my mom. I told her I needed to do something. I was a strung out product whore who wanted to bury her head in the sand and not go to the prom; or leave the house again. My mom did something she never did, she got on the phone immediately and called a skin doctor and made an appointment for me.
I walked to the doctor by myself and apparently this was acceptable with parents verbal consent and I was 16. This lanky, older, bony Lemony Snicket-look-alike doctor walked in wearing a coal mine headlight and magnifying glass and examined my skin with a look of disgust. He gave some harsh but sound advice.
“You are washing your face too much.”
Um what? “I thought I am supposed to wash my face?”
He sighed. “The more you wash your face, the more oil you are producing. Just wash it at night and that is it.” I was so confused and my mind racing with all the commercials I saw that could prove his outlandish claim otherwise.
“You are also touching your face too much. Keep your hands off your face.” Now, I was feeling blamed for my skin’s demise, I inquired further. He was visibly irritated now, writing me out prescriptions. “The more you touch your face, the dirt and bacteria gets on your skin and you spread the disease all over your face.” DISEASE? What the hell?
“Take these pills as ordered and do what I said and your skin will be better in three months. Come back to see me in a month and KEEP YOUR HANDS OFF!”
I began taking the pills, Erythromycin and Tetracycline twice a day. I kept my hands off my face, avoided the mirror and washed my face only at night. I went back to see the doctor as ordered after a month and he said “I see you listened. It is working.” I left the office beaming feeling like I had control over my life again…Until I began to grow a mustache and beard.
Apparently the tetracycline stimulates facial hair growth, testosterone and also wears down the enamel on your teeth. I was too terrified to stop using the pills so of course, so I settled on a new product; mustache bleach. I continued the pills and bleaching my mustache and beard until I was 19. Until one day I was walking down the street with two of my guy friends in the snow; who pointed out that the new-fallen flurries were sticking to my mustache. I laughed it off yet was secretly horrified. I purchased some waxing strips the next day.
Eventually my crotchety dermatologist retired and I had to see someone else. My new kinder, younger and less crotchety dermatologist told me new information that would’ve been useful 14 years ago. “Use cleansers, lotion and make up that specifically says non-comedogenic, if it doesn’t say that on the label, do not use it. Non-comedogenic means it does not clog pores.”
He told me to stop the antibiotics and put me on a topical treatment; Retin-A. My skin stopped breaking out but now I had peeling skin all over my face. Make-up exacerbated the peeling this and I did not want to leave the house. The doctor swtiched my ointment to Differin which finally worked and it even helped the past breakout blemishes. Only problem, the co-pay it was expensive as hell. It was like $75 after insurance!
I then discovered another epiphany, Noxema and Cover-Girl products did not say “Non-comedogenic”. I was betrayed by all those bullshit commercials I had been believing wholeheartedly for the answers I was searching for. It was my first realization I was a sucker and I fell into the advertising trap. I felt like Ralphie when he realizes that he drank gallons of Ovaltine for a secret decoder pin that reminds him to drink more ovaltine “a crummy commercial.” I’d Been HAD!
“Maybe she’s born with it, Maybe it’s Maybelline.” Low and behold, I discover Maybelline says “Non-comedogenic” right on the back of the package. I also found out the dollar tub of Vaseline is non-comedogenic; I was now so confused. After using Maybelline, Differin and non-comedogenic cleansers and lotions; my skin FINALLY improved. However, the scars were still there, emotionally and on my face.
In 2015, a coworker told me about Rodan and Fields “Unblemish” regimen that I could try for 60 days and ship back for my money back if I did not like it. It was a bit more expensive than Pro-Activ so I was hesitant; but I took a chance. My skin has never been better, I barely break out at all now except from hormones or if I accidentally eat gluten.
I was amazed that I could alternate with some of Rodan and Fields regimens for anti-aging with exfoliating cleanser, vitamin C and retinol (Reverse Brightening) without breaking out. I have now tried ALL of their products and I am mind-blown. I believe I AM extremely qualified to become a Rodan and Fields consultant considering MY 25+ year SKIN BATTLE! WTF. Seriously. This knowledge took me 28 years to experience and acquire and I would like to save others from a 20+ year battle! It is like my ZIT Resume so please take this seriously.
I am compelled to tell others, especially my friends who have kids and TEENAGERS!
- Educate them about facial skin care as early as age 7 (with hormones in our food and puberty starting so young now, the earlier you teach them the better)
- Tell them to keep their hands/fingers/phones off their face
- Norwex sells a facial baby washcloth that they can use only water and the cloth to wipe their face and along hair line (sweat). This cloth self cleans when hung up to dry and has a handy little hang up tag sewn into the cloth. (This is excellent for teens and even adults.
- Have them wear non-comedogenic lotion, sunscreen and make up
- Have them cool face down with ice, water or cool washcloth when overheated, red faced and sweaty. (Heat causes inflammation, leads to break outs)
- When they have a pimple, wrap an ice cube in a washcloth or paper towel and apply the ice to the pimple on and off throughout the day (this will lower inflammation and the puss (infection). The pimple may break naturally or go down. Popping pimples equals scars, skin damage and re appearance.
- CONTACT ME FOR information on the NEW #SPOTLESS regimen designed only for kids and teens!!! For young and older adults – UNBLEMISH regimen has just been revised to have anti-aging components!!! For eczema, psoriasis, rosacea -try the SOOTHE regimen. When used correctly, these regimen can last 3-4 months. R&F also sells gauze sqaures to use for toner instead of cotton balls-use WAY less product!
- If you are an adult or parent (male and female) and you do NOT have a daily skin regimen, a skin regimen that is working, you do NOT wash your face before you go to bed, you have Rosecea and/or you do not wear sunscreen daily….Please contact me…PLEASE 🙂 708-945-9130 text, call or email email@example.com. If you trust me, do not want educaton and don’t want to talk about it and just order-my Rodan and Field Consult I.D. is 101793654. Kelly Knapczyk
FOR NORWEX: Text Allison Knight 773-818-7383