Jun. 15th, 2017

rebeccmeister: (Default)
I haven't blogged much about the state of my skin in a while.

But I'm going to begin by briefly mentioning a project my mom is working on: she's decided to put thought and energy into creating a pamphlet for families with kids that have been diagnosed with ideopathic toe-walking. This subject is her specialty and was the focus of her dissertation. Her goal is to outline what it is, how it can be treated, and why it needs to be addressed in developing kids.

I mention my mom's project because the pamphlet I received when the doc declared "Acne Rosacea" wasn't particularly useful. It basically said, "Yeah, your skin looks gross, various things can trigger it, and in extreme cases it can get treated with expensive laser therapy."

I would expect a dermatologist would be more useful, except that the people I know out here who have gone to dermatologists have had widely mixed experiences. And I don't have the energy to deal with that at the moment. Also, the internet hasn't been particularly helpful, either.

I did learn one word which you probably already knew: the word "comodogenic," which is just a fancy word for things that clog one's pores.

That was actually a helpful clue. I got to realizing that the areas of my skin that were suffering the most were very dry. For a while, I tried out some MyChelle Dermaceuticals lotion + sunscreen, but while it helped with sun exposure, it wasn't helping with the dryness and scalyness. So, what next.

Well, a while ago, I started making my own lotion (.rtf file; original url within the file is now broken). I'd tried out pure aloe vera on my skin, but it only seemed to last a very short while and then my skin would be tingly and dry again. The other main ingredient in homemade lotion is some form of oil.

Everything in my life seems to keep pointing back to lipids. But okay, fine.

So then, I finally found this site, which summarizes the types and ratios of fatty acids found in various kinds of oils, and which kinds are thought to be better for different skin types. It also notes that you should test something out for ~2 weeks before reaching a conclusion about any particular thing, to give your body time to react and adjust to the new treatment.

Well, aha. I marched myself off to Berkeley Bowl and picked up some almond oil. I wish I'd known about this back when I was a teenager and scared to put anything at all on my face for fear of clogging my pores. I mean, I've avoided putting anything except sunscreen on my face for the past 20 years or so. But now I am going, well, of COURSE not all oils will clog your pores! Of COURSE certain kinds of oils would actually have the opposite effect! But it feels like it has taken forever to reach this understanding.

Anyway. So I've been testing out sweet almond oil and also jojoba oil, the latter because jojoba's what I could find in a portable size. Applying the almond oil is a strange and interesting experience because it soaks in quickly. It does make my skin feel oily, but not horribly so. After a couple of weeks of this, my skin generally feels and looks a whole lot better, although the rosacea is still present, unchanged. I think I can come to terms with the rosacea, so long as it remains at steady-state and doesn't get progressively worse. And I like knowing exactly what I'm putting on my face.

LimboLand

Jun. 15th, 2017 06:32 pm
rebeccmeister: (cricket)
I remember reading, not too long ago, that one of the difficult aspects of unemployment is that the unemployed are still tied to the general schedule of those who work. This, of course, may not apply to people who seek quiet time to pursue activities that require deep concentration, but still.

With the circadian experiment, I keep finding myself in a related sort of LimboLand. I came to work late this morning, arriving at around 10 am. I plugged away at a couple of projects during the daytime (sorting crickets, a small data analysis project, a meeting), but now it's 6:30 pm and I've got to wait until 8 pm to weigh the crickets and get them staged for the 11 pm happenings. I'll run my procedures from ~10 pm - 1:30 am, then I'll sleep on my supervisor's couch until 7 am. Then I'll get up, have coffee, and stage the next crickets at 8 am. Those ones will be run from 10 am - 1 pm, and I'll probably try to go home an hour or two after that.

I went through this whole sequence from Tuesday to Wednesday as well. By Wednesday afternoon, I was feeling strongly braindead and unmotivated, so I went home and played videogames (EarthBound Beginnings) until it was time to make and eat dinner.

When I have to keep this kind of schedule, I often cart along small personal projects and think I'll work on them, but I rarely actually manage to follow through. Instead, I wind up feeling helpless and unmotivated, and dither on the Internet.

It will just be a relief when I can ship these samples off. Not quite yet, but soon.

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