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keep-the-faith , 05 Mar 2013

New Skin Picking Addict - Tips/Tricks I Use to Heal My Skin and Stop.

I'm a 22 year old female and I've been picking my skin for a few years now but it's become progressively worse this past year. I don't have bad skin, bad acne, or anything like that. I get the occasional pimple here and there or whitehead and I do have blackheads on my nose, but who doesn't? I am the one who makes a mess out of my own skin. If it wasn't for my picking my skin would be fine. After I wash my makeup off at night is when I do my picking. All of my pores just seem to look clogged and I squeeze and squeeze, I can spend an hour in the bathroom squeezing and picking at my skin without even knowing an hour went by. I never seem to fail to turn a little zit into a huge piece of raw skin. Worse than that is when the skin heals over I'll leave it alone for a few days and pick the piece of skin that healed over it, off, causing it to be raw and the whole process to start again. I do have clinical depression and anxiety and I'm not sure if this has anything to do with it, I guess I feel like I'm taking my problems out on my skin. Right now the right side of my face is clear along with my chin, and forehead. However, on my left cheek I have an open sore about half the size of a fingernail on my cheek that won't cover with makeup. I'm going to try the calamine lotion trick tonight and hopefully that will help. Some things that also help me are moisturizers with zinc in them, they seem to heal my spots and scars faster, along with topical vitamin c which I apply in the morning and mix in with my moisturizer, it helps to fight and fade discolorations. As for makeup, I use makeup that has ZERO pore clogging ingredients so this won't create more clogged pores for me to pick. I use the dermablend smooth indulgence concealer, which also helps lighten dark marks, NARS sheer glow foundation, MAC studio finish concealer, Bare Essentials Matte loose foundation powder, and tarte park ave princess for my bronzer. These products will NOT break you out. First I apply my moisturizer, then I apply the dermablend on any spots, then the NARS foundation, then MAC studio finish concealer over the spots, then I set it with a LIGHT dusting of the bare essentials, and apply my bronzer. It sounds like a lot but I use light layers of the products/use them sparingly so it doesn't look heavy at all. Also, when I wash my face at night I make sure the light in the bathroom is extremely dim, just light enough so I can see what I'm doing but not light enough where I will see every imperfection to pick. This works well for me. Once this spot on my cheek heals I hope I will be done picking. I'm going to try my best not to. Always try to remember that you are more than your skin and how it looks.
4 Answers
March 05, 2013
keep-the-faith, you sound exactly like me. I'm also a person who doesn't have acne prone skin. If I left it completely alone it would be really clear, and it has been for the past week I've kept my hands off my face. What strikes me most about your post is your linking of picking to depression and anxiety. I agree with you competely. Just over a week ago, I went home from college for the weekend. My face was it's absolute worse. I didn't recoginize myself in the mirror. I cried the majority of the way home, and my mom seriously talked to me about going to see a doctor for anxiety and depression (she understands my picking problem - it is family history, dating back to my great grandma who currently picks her skin. Crazy, right). Although I have not seen a doctor yet, I have given it my all to at least stop the depression that comes along with picking. Not picking for a week has literally vanished the depression I felt from picking. I know it's hard in our busy, busy lives, but try alternative stress relievers. I'm a big fan of 15 min meditations, and working out when I can. What is really important is to remember it's okay to not work out or exactly an hour - it's okay to miss a day. Most importantly, it's okay to pick one zit. It's also normal. Quick question - do you consider yourself a perfectionist? This is has been my biggest struggle and I wonder if it is linked to picking. Good luck to you in your battle.
March 05, 2013

In reply to by Lily19

I do consider myself a perfectionist when it comes to my appearance. If my skin isn't perfect, hair isn't perfect, etc. I literally freak out and get really depressed and down on myself and I literally can't have a good day. It's really obsessive compulsive.
March 06, 2013

In reply to by keep-the-faith

I understand. I can get as many "you look good today"s as I could ask for, but if I don't feel good, it's not true. Maybe it's a self-esteem issue, I'm not sure. Hopefully we can figure it out!
September 26, 2013
Hi Keep-the-faith, You sound exactly like my twin! I am also 22, however I have been a skin picker since before I can remember. My mom is too, and she influenced me to start when I was in 6th grade, and it progressively got worse from there. I've never had a huge problem with red, inflamed acne, however I have majorly clogged pores everywhere, and when I attack them, they turn into red, inflamed acne, so much that my skin has started to scar and looks damaged. I always say, "okay, this time will be my last, no more after this" and of course, this always fails miserably. I would definitely identify myself as a perfectionist, too. I just can't stand the thought or feeling of gunk being trapped beneath my skin. Somehow I associate purging these impurities from the skin with purging my own personal and mental impurities and insecurities, even though deep down I know i'm just harming myself even more. Lumpy skin will seriously ruin my day, but then once i've picked at it, the remaining blotchy, red, ugly skin makes me cancel social plans and other events. I want to gain control over this SO BADLY. I've tried many things, from covering up my mirrors (I still find ways), to writing sticky notes on the walls....HELP.

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