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JulieSunflowers , 22 Mar 2014

1 week of almost picking free... hope it'll last.. My tips :)

Hi Everyone! ABOUT ME AND PICKING I'm so happy I found this site that I thought I'd share my story and new found tips. Picking my skin has been my major irritating flaw since I was 15 (i'm 25 now). No products have ever felt like they helped more than others... I was on medicine against acne when I was a teenager and used the strong gels which helped some, but never made it go away. Now it has improved enough for me to just use cleansers, but I still have picking problems. Every time I have a few days break from picking (which is hard), I realize how huge my pores are, full of blackheads etc, and I get back at it and won't be able to go back on the break. I've tried telling myself: only pick on tuesdays with a clean metal pimple/blackhead extractor tool (purchased through the internet), but every time I allow myself this, my mind slowly thinks its ok to pick and I'll start my picking spree right back up again using my fingernails all day long. Especially when I do homework/work at the computer where my mind is elsewhere, and my hands easily go from keyboard to face. A NEW PLAN Well, a week ago my mom gave me some "pocket money" and instead of spending on clothes I decided to spend it on: 1) A cleansing/exfoliating facial brush from Shiseido for 40 dollars 2) Clinique's anti-blemish concealer for 30 dollars, and 3) Anti-bacterial gel for 6 dollars. Let me explain what I did with these products and another "fun" mirror-game I made, in order to avoid adding bacteria to my face and stop picking: SOAP, BRUSH, MAKEUP Every morning and night (sometimes just once a day) I use the brush with my facial-bar-soap, and run it in circles over my face. It's so comfortable and relaxing actually. And it keeps my fingers off my face, so I don't feel the bumps. Afterwards I cool off with cold water, a splash of my regular skin tonic and face lotion. If I'm going out, I cover up with the concealer on red spots and add a bit of powder (I washed my powder brush with soap - it also collects bacteria). Instead of powder sometimes I use Clean and Clear oil absorbing sheets to take away shine during the day. They're good and fun too.. Hopefully this decreased use of makeup will also help unclog the pores... MY MIRROR PROMISE I put two sheets of paper on my mirror in face height. One with a collage of a fun cartoon of a guy running away and on top of that I wrote: If you feel like picking, then RUN AWAY!! The other paper has a schedule saying with the headline: "I promise to not pick my face in the mirror or when I sit at the computer". Every morning I write today's date, my signature, and in the evening I write how well I've done (80% a bit picking, 100% no picking at all etc.). I only take the paper off of the mirror if I have to put on make up. PROGRESS So far I have not had a day of 100% but it's been around 85-95% which I'm really proud of. I've had a few minor whiteheads but I've sort of been able to keep my hands off of them, and my cleansing brush from Shiseido would sometimes pop them for me when I gently brush over them. Today, one week later, I can see all the black heads annoying me, when I go to a public well-lit mirror. But I keep not picking, 'cause I know that I'd rather prefer this than red dots all over my face and a bad self-esteem. But I don't know how long it'll last....I don't use much of the concealer, because there aren't many red spots... only on the up-coming whiteheads get covered up... When I look myself in the mirror one foot away, I can't see the blackheads, so I'm trying to tell myself, that they're not a problem. DAILY ANTIBACTERIA KEYBOARD ROUTINE Oh, and the last thing I mentioned that I bought was the anti-bacterial gel! I've always known that the computer keyboard, computer mouse, etc. are huge bacterial-spreaders. So every night I wipe a cotton pad with a bit of the gel over the keyboard and mouse and table... And also my iPhone. This way, if my fingers do touch my face, they won't be covered so much in bacteria... PICKING OTHER PLACES INSTEAD - NOT GOOD It's hard for me to stop touching my face completely, and I sometimes go to my shoulders instead. But I've realized that this kind of "cheeting" (picking somewhere else) doesn't help. It lets my brain know that picking is fine, and i'll later transfer it to my face... stupid me... So I'm really trying to not pick anywhere - even if it is a tiny bump on my chest or something minor... But it's hard... IT'S HARD - TIPS ON BLACKHEAD REMOVAL? It's hard to do keep your hands off completely, especially when it itches somewhere... but hopefully this routine will stick. Cross your fingers for me! By the way - does anyone know how you can get rid of the blackheads without picking? I'd love to go to a clinique and have someone do it for me, but can't afford it on a regular basis... And as I said, I keep failing at restricting myself to a 1-time-of-the-week thing. Then I just start up the whole thing again. So it's either I pick all the time, or I don't pick at all... And I kinda wish I could get the blackheads to go away... The Shiseido brush doesn't get them... but probably diminishes them.. I hope this was of some help!! I'm a very motivated and hard working girl who still has this problem at 25 - so it's nice to know others out there are having the same problem, so I don't feel like i'm just completely stupid and have lack of self control. I can control my money, clothes, food etc. but this... it's like it has it's own life... a little devil on my shoulder that slowly has to be pushed away but easily comes right back! Hugs, Julie
4 Answers
March 22, 2014
this post originally had spaces between topics.. oh well, look for the capital words, that are the head lines...
April 08, 2014
Don't know if anyone has read my tips or tried them... Now it has been over three weeks: I had 24 days of not picking the face (only tiny scratches here and there and a bit of shoulder picking.. but still good progress) and I only had two minor pimples and from a small distance the face looked completely clear almost all the time!.. Gradually my skin got filled with blackheads though, and some of them started to become filled up with a bit of white puff too, irritating my skin.. Instead of taking an expensive facial treatment, I cleared out the worst pores myself (with a metal tool from online), so I'm back to Zero - but on purpose.. I've set the next exfoliation-tool-day in 21 days (three weeks). Hopefully I'll be able to go back to picking free period for all of the following three weeks, and not be affected by my choice of self-treatment. (Note: I disinfected the tool with the antibacterial gel during this to keep as much of the bacteria away).... Let me know if you have ideas on how to get these filled pores sort-of-cleared in a more gentle way... I've thought of trying nose-strips or the homemade gelatine-'n-milk-in-the-microwave tip. Maybe this will be better to try in three weeks...
April 09, 2014
FIrst of all, let me just say congratulations on your victory! My name is Samantha, I am 24 and have been picking since I was 13. Are you still doing well? I need to start using your tips on disinfecting. Some things that I have been doing lately: NO makeup. Unless absolutely necessary, which has been about 1-5 times a month, and I have been experimenting with this since the beginning of Feb. (I work as a registered nurse, so thankfully we are not judged on how much time we spend getting ready for work haha.) For years I have made my focus, getting rid of the acne. Creams, face washing, medications, ect. but the problem is, all of these things only brought my focus and attention more on my face and ultimately, picking. And to top it off, medicications and creams dry out my sensitive skin, and then I'm consumed with picking that off. ugh. So my new method is avoiding touching or focusing on my face as much as possible. Sometimes after I take a shower I don't look in the mirror at all or if I do, I stand far away. I do catch myself picking still. Sitting at the computer, in the car, or when I am stressing out. Mostly I just need to keep busy. I do crafts, clean, or even do a lap around my complex. Usually after 15 minutes the urge to pick has long gone. Also, forcing myself to not wear makeup has 1) cleared up my skin IMMENSLY, 2) saved my money on makeup, and 3) made me much more aware of my picking because there is nothing for me to cover up the evidence with. I hope your journey is filled with more success! - Samantha
April 09, 2014

In reply to by samspade11

yeah, i can definitely identify with those tips too. And I think the keyboard/phone etc. daily disinfection is a good help... And yeah - old makeup-brushes and foundation tubes with ball-tips. I think they are bacteria hoarders! :) I only use blush and then sometimes the clinique antibacterial foundation (that doesnt let anything come into the tube), to hide big pimples etc. My question is still how to do something about the blackheads... I might try a lighter facial lotion, but like you say it's also about taking focus away from all the products and moisturizing the skin instead of provoking it with drying stuff.... But yeah, like I wrote I consciously took the decision to clear out as much as I could as clean as I could and now I have to mentally prepare myself to let go of that mental state "that it's ok to pick" which I let myself into , even if I tell myself - "ok, now I'll clear it out and not touch my face for the next 3 weeks"... So I'll let you know if I'll be able to leave my face alone like the past 24 days. And hopefully by the next time my pores are thick and filled again - i'll have found a better way - like nosestrips if they work...

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