One-Year Dairy Free

This past year I decided that I would try going dairy free in order to help treat the cystic acne that I had been dealing with for a few years. My acne got to the point where I didn’t really want to leave my house without piling tons of makeup on, or not even going out at all, for fear of people looking at my skin and judging it. I read online that cutting dairy, although not a cure for my problem, could maybe help with decreasing the amount of cystic areas that popped up along my cheeks. At first it was difficult giving up some of my favorite comfort foods, but with time I started to see not only a difference with my skin, but a difference in how my body felt overall.

Within the first month I noticed that I was a lot less bloated and even lost a few pounds because I was cutting out some of the unhealthy foods that I ate consistently throughout my freshman year. From there, I started to see a difference with my skin as I had fewer and fewer painful spots along my cheeks. Of course this change wasn’t solely from my dairy cut, I also began to wash my face more frequently with my prescribed washes and lotions and took this part of my daily routine seriously.  

Starting this journey while having to eat in the dining hall was not the easiest thing, especially when I had to turn away from eating pierogies and tortellini; easily my favorite things Eick had to offer. Now, as I start junior year in an apartment I am excited to continue this lifestyle with cooking my own meals and experimenting with dairy-free alternatives to my favorite foods.

For those of you dealing with cystic acne that may want to try something new, I would suggest trying out this diet change! It may not work for everyone, but you never know how it will affect you. A tip for those who are nervous to give it a try is to start out small! Try using a non-dairy alternative in your coffee such as almond milk, or trying to find a vegan butter substitute to use on toast or in baked goods.

Some of my favorite dairy free items include:

  • Almond Breeze Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • Earth Balance Vegan Butter
  • Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips
  • Nadamoo Dairy Free Ice Cream (their mint chip is amazing)
  • Plant Fusion Vanilla Bean Plant Based Protein


This past year has been filled with growth and changes and I am so happy to be continuing my dairy free lifestyle throughout this school year. Hopefully I will continue to see improvements in my skin and start to exercise more often to promote an even healthier lifestyle. To those who are thinking about trying this change, good luck and I hope you have an experience as positive as I did!