Unfortunately, cystic acne is a true fact of my life – for that matter, acne is simply a fact of life for most. Whether you have suffered through this phase during your high school years or am experiencing it as an adult as I am currently, it requires a lot of patience, effort, and in some instances money to allow it to pass. While acne is one of the most relatable skin issues among people, begetting a breakout on any day still feels like the end of the world. Believe me when I say that it is even worse at 30 especially when having to face the public and all that echoes in the catacombs of my mind is how everyone is not looking directly at me but the burgeoning crater on my general cheek/mouth area. And on my chin area. My forehead. You catch my drift. There has been days where I actually wanted to call out of work because that’s how bad it was that I wanted to curl up in the fetal position between my covers and not come out until it was all gone. Reality is, I don’t think it will ever fully go away, so that’s why having a few makeup tricks up my sleeve, as well as an army of the best products to deal with this issue is very useful.
Most of you know that the Mario Badescu Buffering Lotion became my holy grail over a year ago when it systematically broke down the existing cystic acne I was suffering from at that time, and it left my face riddled in dark acne scars. Which is not a problem because discoloration I can hide, texture and bumps I cannot. I applaud this product and have been faithfully using it since to maintain my skin’s balance and prevent future breakouts. However, in the last recent months after I thought the acne was almost fully tamed it came back with a vengeance – I mean, vengeance to the point where I legit did not want to leave my apartment. So bad. Nothing seemed to help it one bit. Anywhere from thoroughly deep-cleaning my brushes every couple of days to changing my entire diet again, to starting a vitamin regimen which I’d been lacking on, etc., nothing worked and I was borderline tears in my eyes because more started popping up by what seemed by the minute. Seriously, nothing is more discouraging when you actually witness zits just popping up from the most prominently visible pores on your face where you really can’t conceal them away or hide them with a hairstyle.
Going almost berserk I was about to let myself get carried away and empty out either Sephora or Ulta from just about every acne-eradicating, skin-clearing treatment in order to combat this evil. I needed something heavy duty, something effective beyond measures – not to mention something more efficient since I was prepared to add on more time to perform my daily skincare routine, but if I could avoid that it would be that much sweeter. Going about the internet, I fell into the arena of Murad products. Now, I have been aware for years that Murad has some of the most effective line of skincare products on the market – the only thing that has always steered me clear from buying any of it were the price points. At this stage in the breakout I was beyond desperate, so during one of my lunch breaks I mosied over to Ulta a few doors down and on a whim purchased the Advanced Acne & Wrinkle Reducer ($44). Although I could find very little review and real-person experiences on it, I decided to go for it anyway as I was intrigued by not just its acne-fighting potential, but the fact that it targets the aging process as well. And since mama is turning 31 in a couple of months, investing in double-duty products like this one pretty much becomes a must.
Ladies, I have been using this for 2 weeks and while I usually refuse to give a product any concrete opinion before 90 days, this.needs.to.be.said: HOLY GODDAMN GRAIL.
Murad’s the Advanced Acne & Wrinkle Reducer is a good day and nighttime serum that I apply prior to facial creams while allowing it to sit for a good 5 minutes to work into the skin. It contains a unique Kombucha Collagen Defense which will prevent fine lines and wrinkles while it conditions and moisturizes the skin. It’s noncomedogenic and has Retinol and Glycolic Acid, all of which help to improve skin texture. I apply this twice, sometimes 3 times a day depending on what kind of day I’m having, by simply massaging it into my face. The first time I used this, almost overnight the beginning red bumps under the skin stopped hurting instantly while it did not penetrate to become a full-blown cystic acne breakout above the skin. For the acne that was already present and a little more stubborn, it took about two, three nights depending on the severity before it was completely gone.
Unlike the Buffering Lotion, the Advanced Acne & Wrinkle Reducer actually stops breakouts from happening before they even get a chance to manifest. Yes, I will have a zit here and there that tries but it never gets a chance to manifest to something that I cannot conceal. In short, it never gets a chance to grow into an actual flare-up mounted with redness and irritation, instead they are kept at bay. Another element I really adore about this product besides its two apparent miracle workings, is that the formula does not dry out my skin which I was kind of anticipating once I started using it twice/three times a day.
It doesn’t sting, it doesn’t have a weird smell. It’s a no-fuss goop that works to restore luxury back to your skin and permit you to feel somewhat normal again. This potion has truly helped with my cystic acne, I could not thank Murad enough to create this formula. When there was a time that I could not see the light anymore because the acne just kept invading my face more and more without letting up, I found this product. Nothing has helped as much as this has, and I could not recommend it enough to anybody who suffers from hormonal and cystic acne flare-ups.