Saturday, May 03, 2008

Acne vulgaris - bane of my existence

Do not call it 'pimples', acne is much more than pimples. It is the itching, the scratching, the white heads, the black heads, the open pores and of course, the painful inflammations, a complete package. My skin started breaking out by the time I turned 12. Now I'm in my late twenties and it is still pretty much the same.

I've always been referred to as the pimply girl। I remember when I was at college, freshman year, a couple of senior boys started a "Clearasil for Deepa" fund as a joke and they went around the college asking students & professors to donate to it. I was able to laugh with them when they came to me with the money but I admit it did hurt just a bit. However, the story doesn't end there. The leader of the gang of boys got chicken pox the following year. And I wasn't the only one needing the Clearasil. Ha!, no wonder they say that karma is a bitch.

It is not that I did not try to get rid of it. Being a Keralite, I was subjected to dozens of home remedies by well- family members especially meddlesome aunts (how will any boy marry you if you look like this?)
My Father recommended Red Sandalwood & honey to be applied on the face overnight & washed off with warm water in the morning। My Mother recommended besan powder & rose water face washes. Not to be outdone, Grandma recommended a honey and lime solution for face wash. The hostel warden recommended pear leaves and tumeric. Another time, a stranger on the street recommended Fair & Lovely(nallatha!)

I did visit dermatologists, I remember the first doctor I went to. 5mins into the appointment, he asked if he could present me as a before/after case in his office lobby. He said that I was the biggest challenge he had come up against. Unfortunately, the treatment didn't work as well as he hoped. My skin peeled off and I couldn't go out in the sun for even short periods of time. So I stopped it.

Currently I'm using Neutrogena's acne solution to control it but people keep telling me to switch to Proactive. But there are lots of mixed reviews out there and I'm still undecided.