Ellie Rutland-Jones, a nurse from Swadlincote, Derbyshire, said she'd tried every cream, medication and even contraception possible to cure the acnes that she'd suffered with all through her teenage years.
The 21-year-old, who admitted to taking days off school because of her self-esteem, would even wear a full face of foundation in bed with her boyfriend Jordan Jaworski, 21.
But Ellie had a breakthrough when she returned to her GP to try controversial roaccutane - also called isotretinoin - after hearing about the amazing results that a friend had using it.
Aware of the drug's side effects, Ellie began a six month course in October 2019, and is now showing off her transformed complexion.
"Even around Jordan, I was self-conscious and I would go to sleep in makeup," says Ellie, whose face was once covered in large, painful red spots.
"He had seen my acne and was aware of my face but even then, when it got really bad I would cover it and go to bed in it.
"It was to make myself feel more confident in front of him. It had never bothered him.
"I would make sure I was wearing a scarf and full face of makeup to go to the shops. It would affect the smallest parts of my day to day."
She continued: "I didn't care what other people thought, but I was really bothered about how I felt. I had to have days off school because it would affect my self-esteem so much.
"It really affected me mentally, especially with all of my friends because I was the only one who suffered with it. Going through school, it was exaggerated by the changes in my hormones.
"There were days when I would just cry and cry. Mum would give me the day off school when it was that bad.
"At that point too, social media was really starting to kick off, and that really played a big part in my self esteem.
"All I would see there was celebrities with nice skin. I was always comparing my skin to other people's and it really did add up."
Ellie spent years going back and forth to the doctors, with no luck, until she cut out all contraception, which cleared up her skin for one year before starting university.
"As soon as I started my university course, it broke out again and has never really gone away. I'm not sure if that was the stress but until I started on roaccutane, it wouldn't go away," explains Ellie.
"I went back to the GP for one final time after one of my close friends had amazing results on roaccutane. They referred me and the effects have been great.
"Roaccutane was life changing for me. I never thought I would be one of those people with nice, clear skin.
"I knew the side effects and researched the medication before and it did scare me off a little bit."
It's important to read up on all of them before making a decision.
"I did have some dry skin and lips and a couple of nosebleeds but I definitely don't regret doing the course," says Ellie.
"I do get the odd spot here and [there these days] while wearing a mask all day for nursing, but that's because of sweat and bacteria, not because of the acne.
"From personal experience, I would advise people not to be put off by the side effects of roaccutane and to try it. If you do get any, you can just come off them.
"I had just accepted I would never be the person with nice skin but I want to show that there is hope out there for people."
While Ellie's transformation is incredible, it's worth noting that the same results can't be guaranteed for everyone and you should really chat to your GP for more advice.
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