Editor’s Note 7/26/15 – Hey folks, because of the incredible volume of questions and comments that come to my inbox and the comments section below, I’ve created an FAQ page. It’s linked at the bottom of this post. Please keep the questions coming! I’ll add to the FAQ as needed! Thank you for all your awesome comments and questions!
My Quest for Clear Skin
Most of us have at least one physical feature we wish we could change — mine has always been my acne-ridden skin. It’s been a sore subject for as long as I can remember, with each new suggestion from a well-meaning friend creating a well of anger inside me: “I’ve literally tried EVERYTHING, including whatever you’re about to tell me, so shut up.”
By the time I was 19, I’d fallen for every gimmick on TV, tried anything a doctor would prescribe (including LOADS of antibiotics and topicals), and come up empty. At times, I was resigned to having acne forever, but somewhere inside me I always knew there was a puzzle to solve, and I’m happy to declare that I’ve finally solved it.
Until January of this year, not one single thing I’d tried brought me beyond what I’ll describe as my “baseline condition” — colorless rock-hard bumps covering my cheeks and forehead that never popped and never went away. But making this one final change was the key to pushing through that baseline into clear skin territory. Here’s my story.
My acne started mildly at age 12. Embarrassed of my face, I was wearing make up for school pictures in 7th and 8th grade and making sure no one saw my back or chest in high school. My sister shared my acne woes, so we became the “zit sisters,” helping each other pick hard-to-reach “backne” and commiserating about our grueling regimens of medications and topicals. The older I got, the worse it got. From junior high into high school I single-handedly boosted Walgreens’ stock price. We tried Retin-A, Differin, Panoxyl, Brevoxyl, Amoxicillin, Doxycyclin, Emgel, and those were just some of the prescriptions I remember.
At age 17, we went for the Nuclear Option: ACCUTANE. Accutane was a gruesome beast, requiring constant moisturizers, sunscreens, and lip balm on the entire lower half of my peeling, raw face. It was terrible. At softball practice, my legs would break out from the grass in the outfield, and everything I touched was greasy with spf.
By the time my junior prom rolled around, my chest and back were as clear as day, but not my face. I still hold onto a picture from that night, my clear back to the camera — a moment of triumph, if only partially so. I would later learn that drying out oily skin and killing all bacteria on and in your body to treat acne are just about the worst things you can do for yourself.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
At 19 years old, I was diagnosed with PCOS and told I would have to follow the South Beach Diet and take hormone-regulating medication for the rest of my life if I wanted clear skin (or to have babies one day). I begrudgingly took the meds, but I couldn’t manage the South Beach Diet. Not as a college student. Not at 19 years old.
From here, and for the next 6 years, my skin would get progressively worse, as would my digestion. I gained weight in my midsection, which only exacerbates PCOS, and became depressed. My skin was at its absolute worst when a late-night infomercial persuaded me to try ProActiv. It promised clear skin in 60 days, and I figured what the hell, I have nothing to lose.
Here’s a record of my progress:
A Holistic Approach – Curing Acne Naturally
In the subsequent 7 years, I immersed myself in the natural healing arts. I soon learned that clearing my skin would be far more about what I put in my body than what I put on my face. The diet and lifestyle changes I made laid the groundwork for what would ultimately be the final piece of the puzzle. Making these changes would likely get most people the results they were looking for, but for me there was still something missing. Here’s a short recounting of my approach since 2006:
- Going gluten-free in 2010*
- Removing and/or limiting dairy
- Removing and/or limiting coffee and caffeine
- Eliminating eggs
- Candida cleansing
- Supplementing l-glutamate, alpha lipoic acid, selenium, zinc, and lecithin
- Using herbs for acne
- Trying homeopathics
- Hyper-dosing probiotics (and later trying raw kefir and kombucha*)
- Megadosing vitamin A (under a naturopathic doctor’s supervision)
- Improving food quality by choosing organic/pastured/clean when possible*
- Losing weight through a reduction in carbohydrates and sugar*
- Reducing alcohol to a few drinks a week*
- Moisturizing with natural oils*
- Switching to mineral makeup*
- Washing my face with raw honey a few times a week*
*the ones that remain as part of my regimen today and have made a huge difference
My Wedding Day
Desperate times call for desperate measures. I wanted clear skin on my wedding day, so I made some very expensive decisions. In the year leading up, I underwent 3 VI Peels ($150 a pop), 3 Profractional Treatments (over $300 a pop), and weekly light and acid treatments. I would guess that I spent upwards of $3000 to prepare my face for the big day. Here’s a picture of me getting ready and another mid-way through the honeymoon, bumps and all.
My Miracle Acne Cure
In mid-January, feeling a little off from all the holiday sweets, I started drinking homemade bone broth every day to improve my digestion. Unexpectedly, the tiny bumps that have been on my face for twenty years shrank and disappeared!
I couldn’t believe it! For years I’ve been touting the health benefits of bone broth and chicken soup, but never once did I consider that it would actually clear up my terrible skin. Not only did the broth heal my gut, it cleansed and hydrated my system, and after almost two decades of constant disappointment and frustration, my lifelong acne was cured.
I don’t want to overstep here. My skin’s not PERFECT 100% of the time. But the smooth surface I feel today is something I haven’t experienced in the 20 years I’ve been dealing with this problem. Today, instead of impossible-to-extract, constant bumps, I get a few easily extracted blemishes a month, if that.
I’ll take that over the alternative any day.
Directions for the Miracle Acne Cure:
- Follow the instructions in this blogpost to make your bone broth
- Drink 1 warm coffee mugful first thing every morning for 14 days straight
- OPTIONAL: Begin tapering down to 5 days a week (weekdays makes sense), and then down to three for maintenance
- Continue this beautiful morning routine for as long as you can/want to, testing every once in a while to see if you can take a break without any negative consequences
- Keep eating well, whatever that means for you (for me, it’s staying off of gluten, taking a regular probiotic, and keeping sugar in check)
- Hydrate your skin with healthy oils instead of stripping away the natural ones
My plan is to continue at 3 days per week indefinitely, and ramp it back up to 5 or 7 if I start to see any backsliding. I’m enjoying the morning ritual, and have been doing great on 3 days a week for a little over 2 months.
So that’s it. Broth!
Broth to heal your gut.
Broth to boost your immune system.
Broth to restore your health.
Broth to cure acne naturally.
This one simple thing was the missing piece of the puzzle for me. I encourage you to try it for yourself, and if you do, please come back and tell me how it worked for you. I’d love to hear your story.
Simplify your quest for clear skin with this one-page guide: CWB Bone Broth Acne Cure. Inside you’ll find everything you need to get started making your own bone broth, including links to purchase kitchen wares. Download it now to get started on your journey to clear skin!
Please check out my new FAQ section! I’ve also recently started a YouTube Station dedicated to answering all your questions about the Bone Broth Acne Cure. Here’s the most recent video, so you can get an idea of what it’s like:
I’m SO EXCITED to see so many people trying bone broth and finding success!!! It makes me SO HAPPY!!! Please keep the questions coming, and if you have a success story, PLEASE share it in the comments!