People seem to feel compelled to give good advice to people who as adults “still have acne”. As someone who developed the skin condition in her twenties, let me tell you a few things to not say when you meet someone with adult acne.
1. Did you consider taking the pill?
My first issue with this question: Of course I have considered everything. I am a grown up, my face is in full bloom and it also hurts, by the way. Yes, I have considered everything from taking medicine to shaving my skin off. Secondly, the pill is not going to really help balance my hormones. It’s going to make it much worse in the long term. And that’s only one of the reasons why I wanted to learn how to balance hormones naturally.
2. Just try this cream/cleanser/tonic.
Unfortunately adult acne rarely can be solved that easily. It is usually a health problem, not an inability to figure out better skin care. Telling me to “just” try something else downplays my problem and makes me feel a little patronized. Not in a good way.
(It took me years and trying out countless acne remedies to finally beat hormonal acne!)
3. It’s okay, everyone has a pimple every now and then.
Sorry, but this doesn’t work. Those are not pimples, they are acne cysts and they are here to stay. I am glad not everyone has those every now and then, but I would really appreciate if you wouldn’t pretend like this is normal. Let’s rather not talk about it at all.
4. Well, you gotta stay off the chocolate. And burgers.
Again, if it was this easy, no one would have adult acne. Yes, a clean and hormone balancing diet can help lots and lots! But assuming that I brought this onto myself simply by eating loads of chocolate and burgers is a little… insulting. Don’t you think I would’ve realized the connection and taken steps to get better? This stuff really hurts!
5. I never heard of adult acne. I thought acne is only for teenagers.
This one stings. A lot. I know many people think that. I know, because when I have a breakout I get treated differently. Like people can’t take me quite as serious. But I am an adult, with all my adult feelings. And I cannot tell myself that it’s gonna be over when I “grow up”. Dealing with my hormonal acne has been a very painful struggle, mostly emotionally.
I am aware that the tone of this post is quite sarcastic. Please don’t take it the wrong way, rather imagine it with a wink. I am absolutely aware that people saying these things mostly have the best of intentions. With my list I simply want to show the other side of the coin and raise awareness for how this can make people suffering from adult acne feel.
Have you heard any of these things before? Let me know in the comments!