I feel a bit of a fraud writing this post, because if you know me then you’ll know that I’m not a ‘beauty blogger’. In fact, just that thought makes me snort laugh a little. But, having lived with sensitive skin problems for many years, I feel that I’ve got a bit of clout on this topic now. I’ve always had mild eczema on my face but the symptoms flared after the birth of my daughter. Some kind of hormonal craziness happened when my periods returned and my face bore the brunt of this (poor face). I spent hours scouring the internet looking for answers, I bought and tried every ‘miracle’ cream, switched to completely natural products and popped every vitamin under the sun, mostly a total waste of money. I saw skin and allergy specialists, but nothing worked until I made a connection. Post baby I’d developed an allergy to the wholesome banana. Weird.
It’s been over a year since my random skin outbreak occurred, with my last ‘skin problems’ update posted in March. My original plan had been to regularly update this blog with posts on how things were progressing but you know what, waking up every day and seeing no improvement was hugely disheartening, so I decided to leave it. I honestly thought that the reaction was something I’d have to live with and it wasn’t something I wanted to talk about all the time on here. Let me just re-cap, I’ve always had mild Eczema around my mouth and dealt any outbreaks by using a steroid cream, no not the kind to give me muscles or man boobs, but a prescribed cream to keep the eczema at bay. The problem was I’d been over-using this cream and a MASSIVE side effect (that I knew nothing about) was something called Perioral Dermatitis, a rather sexy and attractive big clown mouth rash. This appeared out of know where like an unwelcome smell on Boxing Day 2014 (Boxing Day hasn’t been kind to me these last two years!) then a few days later another WTF moment happened and some random red patches underneath my eyes appeared along with some swelling, I looked like I’d done ten rounds in the Boxing ring. I aged about twenty years in the space of a few weeks. Needless to say I hid inside the house for the whole of January.
Sometimes, just sometimes I stumble across someone on social media who makes me sit up and take notice, Hanna Sillitoe from My Goodness Recipes was one of those people. Last Christmas, a few months after giving birth I had an eczema flare up on my face that came out of nowhere. It was awful and I literally spent January hiding away behind closed doors, with a hood over my head, not wanting anyone to see me. It was a very low point and although it has eased, I dread it coming back. I’m always searching online for inspiration, answers and cures and that’s how I came across Hanna’s Instagram page and website. Hanna suffered from psoriasis and shared her before and after images. Hanna claimed to have resolved her skin issues through changing her diet alone, needless to say I was intrigued to find out more.
I have had eczema for as long as I can remember, mainly around my mouth but occasionally on my arms too. Various things can cause it to react, but the usual suspects are when the seasons change, when I use lots of sun cream or when I eat spicy food. I’ve never given it a second thought, when using the strong steroid cream I’ve always been prescribed by my Doctor on the red patches that I get. I call these red patches around my mouth, my clown mouth, because that’s basically what I look like. I know, sexy! Over the years I’ve managed to keep it under control with the use of the steroid cream and other than a few bad occurrences, its been kept in check, that is until now. The eczema around my mouth often eases in the summer and triggers when the weather gets colder, so it flared as it usually does when November/December hit and I began applying my cream as usual. I try not to use it too much as my Doctor does warns me that it can thin your skin but without thinking, I was definetly overdoing it as in my mind, it gets rid of it, right? This time round however something was going on, my clown mouth wasn’t clearing. Over the Christmas period it got gradually worse until I woke up on Boxing Day looking a bit like the joker, with an exaggerated red rash at both sides of my mouth and small cuts appearing whenever I smiled. This combined with a hangover made for a fairly horrific day! Continue reading