The Story of How Acne Won... Temporarily
So, this is a story all about how acne decided to turn my life upside down — make sure to read that to the beat of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
It’s amazing the things that the human body can show us or try and tell us. I was an avid birth control spokesperson, like I should have been on the commercials. I found out that I was knocked up while on the birth control pill. In 2006, after giving birth to my beautiful daughter, I started rotating between the Implanon implant, Depo shot, and Nexplanon implant. This went on until 2017.
I rarely got pimples — like I mean a few during my period. However, one day I woke up one to 4 pimples, and I swear that within a darn day, those 4 turned into 25. I freaked out and panicked. I didn’t know what to do.
To get to the nitty gritty, my hormones were acting up due to being on birth control for so long. I had my levels checked via a saliva test that my Naturopath sent to a professional physician-based lab.
Long story short, I opted for my Naturopath to make me a customized herbal tonic, instead of going the traditional pharmaceutical route. Trust me, the tonic tasted like dirt and trees, but I could feel the difference in my body — especially when I was ovulating (which was such a creepy feeling.) I also removed my Nexplanon implant, and boy did I feel like I had the flu for about 2 weeks. The detox was REAL.
I then decided to give in to the thought of taking Accutane. I recognized that I was in a situation that I could use abstinence as my method of birth control. Although that was a hard one, I successfully didn’t give in to temptation.
I did a whole lot of research, especially regarding other brown women, such as myself, who had taken Accutane. Unfortunately, there were not many blogs and only a few YouTube videos. Ali was a dope resource for me, and if you'd ask me, we became besties.
My skin was glowing and my lips weren’t even that dry, but I felt like a Barbie doll whose limbs were waiting to pop off — joint pain is real. I was prescribed Absorica 80 mg a day, and my dermatologist did the best thing and started me on my initial dose, which is how I finished early.
The dry lips started day two of the medication and let me tell you getting a corner of the mouth lip crack almost took me OUT. After month one the lab messed up and didn’t do all of my labs, so I was delayed on my medication by 5 days, and when I started back it was like restarting the whole course I felt terrible for about 2 days.
Accutane — I used to shudder when I heard the word, but now I just smile and wave. My journey lasted ONLY 4 months… yes, you read that correctly. I reached my cumulative dose in 4 months, instead of the full 5-6 months. I remember going to what I thought would be a follow-up appointment, but instead being told that I was done.
Accutane gave me back the skin that I had prior to my acne flare. It’s not the easiest medication to be on, but with the proper supplements and care to your body it can be an easy course. I voluntarily took various supplements during my course, and I think they helped my journey go smoothly.
These are some of my favorite supplements. Some are over-the-counter, while others are pharmaceutical grade certified organic products. This list is not inclusive, but it’s includes the products that I feel kept my body in a good state while using Accutane.
- Xymogen Liver Protect (great for keeping the liver intact, especially since Accutane can be hard on the liver)
- Standard Process DermaCo (great for the kidneys and liver especially when paired with Liver Protect)
- Nordic Naturals Fish Oil (took this after my Lasik and I love the great quality of their fish oil)
- Nordic Naturals Vitamin D Gummies (I mean who doesn’t love gummies)
- ProBioCare Women’s Probiotics (because a good gut is necessary)
Since Accutane is a deriviative of Vitamin A, I avoided multivitamins that contain Vitamin A. Another tip: staying hydrated is so important.
My cholesterol rose to about 214 at its highest during the course, and once I was finished I upped my fish oil and my last blood test a month later I was back to a normal cholesterol of 192.
I took my last Accutane pill on January 22, 2019. During my course, I even traveled to Japan for a week, and had no issues keeping up while taking my pills. So far, I have had ZERO pimples or bumps since finishing my last pill, not even during my period. For that, I will give Accutane a high five. My scars even faded nicely, my skin now looks smooth and renewed.
If Accutane is a choice you are making, don’t let all the bad things that you see online completely change your opinion. If you have any questions, my Instagram is @ki_unicorn and my email is: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ki Anderson is a Quality Analyst in the Healthcare Reimbursement industry, mother of one, and she also has a blog Round Ki's Way. After dealing with hormonal acne, too long birth control usage, and wanting to be overall healthier she started looking into more natural ways to exist. She is known on any day to be called by friends with their symptoms for non-professional advice which she loves providing.