Acne Bootcamp Story: Acne and Dark Spots

This client started Acne Bootcamp right after graduating from college and starting her first job in the city.  She had been battling acne and what she described as acne scars since she was just 10 years old, although the "scars" she was referring to were actually dark marks caused by post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.  Her acne manifested mostly in the form of papules that you can see on her chin in the pictures. These red, swollen lesions are a form of inflammatory acne and they can be sore and sensitive and will eventually turn into pustules if the inflammation is not controlled and pus develops (learn more about the different types of acne here).

I put together a treatment plan that included biweekly facial treatments, dietary adjustments (mainly due to her love of cheese), and a homecare regimen that included benzoyl peroxide and mandelic acid.  I chose these ingredients because they both contain antibacterial properties that reduce inflammation and we needed to first get her inflammation under control so that we could extract the lesions on her face without causing further inflammation and ultimately, more pigmentation.  I also had her ice every day and night to further help reduce inflammation. Once the inflamed lesions were under control, we used the exfoliating properties of mandelic acid and mild chemical peels to help purge the non-inflamed comedones out of the follicles. 6 acne treatment facials later voila, our bootcamper was clear!

Once she graduated acne bootcamp, we shifted gears to work on the pigmentation. Since she had been using our lightening 8% mandelic acid serum already for 3 months, we had a head start and the pigmentation had already lightened significantly. I chose a combination of peels with lightening and exfoliating properties to help lift the rest of the pigmented cells out of the skin. I started each peel session with a lightening lemon enzyme boosted with a 20% lactic acid peel, both ingredients chosen for their lightening properties. Then, I followed with a chemical peel that contained a super mix of exfoliating agents including trichloroacetic acid (TCA), kojic acid, and azelaic acid.  It only took 3 peels for all of the dark marks to fade and now her skin is not just smooth and clear but it has an even tone.

If you are struggling with acne or dark marks leftover from acne, make an appointment if you are in the San Francisco Bay Area or get in touch with us for a free product consultation to have a customized product kit shipped to you.

After 6 acne facial treatments and a series of 3 depigmentation chemical peels.

Acne Bootcamp Story: Clearing Adult Chin Acne & Redness

Danielle started Acne Bootcamp with a very common story.  She never suffered from acne in high school or middle school then all of a sudden, she started breaking out in her late 20's.  Her acne manifested mostly around her mouth and constant picking only made it worse.  

With a product kit for her moderate combination acne and a few lifestyle adjustments, mainly switching up her comedogenic products, we got her clear in about 5 treatments.

Acne Bootcamp Story: The Last Resort Before Accutane

Karina was one of my very first acne bootcamp graduates.  She came to me as a last resort since her dermatologist had run out of treatment options for her and the only thing left to try was Accutane.  She is the sweetest girl ever and was just trying to enjoy her years as a young college student here in San Francisco without having to feel burdened by acne. I was lucky that she was so dedicated to the program and I never had to tell her to follow the product regimen or stick to the dietary and lifestyle guidelines of bootcamp.  I saw her every 2 weeks over 3 months and voila, the pictures say it all.  You can see the difference in confidence and now she feels as beautiful on the outside as she always was on the inside. She sent me these pictures with the words, "unretouched...thank you, Kimmy!".

"Going to see Kimmy at Acqua e Sapone was one of the best decisions I have ever made. My acne was so bad, I was about to go on Accutane, until a good friend recommended going to see Kimmy for a healthier, holistic approach to clearing acne. Within 3 months, my acne was cleared up. For the first time in my life, I feel confident and beautiful and don't have to hide behind heavy makeup and bangs. I can go out without feeling self-conscious about my face, and feel that people finally see me for me, not my acne, all thanks to Kimmy! I love going in for treatments because I feel so pampered and Kimmy provides me with the right tools to manage my acne, and each time I leave, I feel beautiful. There is no better feeling than having clear skin and confidence. Thank you so much, Kimmy!"

Beauty Bullshit: Oil Cleansing Cures Acne

Sorry Oil Cleansing. We're calling Bullshit

Oil cleansing has been given the reputation as being a natural cleansing method for clear, glowing skin.  Cosmetic companies are jumping on the bandwagon and raking in the dough selling face cleansing oils that retail up to $100! 

To be fair, I understand why natural cleansing methods have become popular because acne sucks.  By the time I was 16, I was finishing up my second failed attempt at Accutane and I would’ve stuck my finger in an electric socket if you would’ve told me that would make the pimples go away.  Unfortunately, there is no quick fix for acne and this rule applies just as much to natural remedies as it does to harsh prescription treatments. 

The theory behind oil cleansing is that massaging oil onto your face dissolves oil in the pores. In the world of acne treatments where harsh, prescription medicines and harmful side effects are the norm, the oil cleansing method attempts to cure acne by providing a natural, organic solution for fighting the disease. 

Just because harsh prescriptions don't fix acne does not mean an all-natural method will.  Dr. James E. Fulton says in his book Acne RX, “...if the complex oils in sebum create such havoc in acne-prone skin, then rubbing more oils into the skin is the worse possible thing an acne sufferer can do…”.  

Acne is a multifactorial disease in which genetics, lifestyle, environment, and diet all collide to create a perfect storm.  Even if oil cleansing did work, it would only be addressing a single piece of a puzzle that has many other pieces to it including inflammation, the overproduction of skin cells, and bacteria.  To have long-term success in managing acne, all of these factors must be addressed.  

Beauty Bullshit: Oil Cleansing Cures Acne | AES Blog

So, next time you someone recommends cleansing oil for zits, call Bullshit!