Makeup & Beauty

The Great And Terrible Trumple

Apologies for this image, but come on: it’s amazing.

(Also you have to go read the article I found it in right now.)

Let’s put aside the disturbingness (by which I mean amazingness)of that image up there for a second. We have to have a discussion about my face. WHAT. IS GOING. ON.

On Sunday afternoon Kendrick picked me up at the airport, and around bedtime I complimented him on his restraint, because the fact that he hadn’t brought up the situation on my face for an entire half-day was an impressive show of willpower.

“You can tell me,” I said. “It’s bad, right?”

“Well,” replied my (very diplomatic) husband. “…Maybe you look a little broken out.”

That, my friends, would be the understatement of the century. I look terrible. And I have looked this way since November 9, 2016, when all of my election-related anxiety made itself known via a single pore on the left side of my nose. Next, it checked into a pore on my forehead. And then decided to take up residence in one on my chin. OK, five on my chin. And all those Trumples*?

They are still there nearly a month later, and are they are welcoming more friends to the party every day

*If you’re not familiar with the term, a “Trumple” is a pimple that is Donald Trump’s fault.

caolion original pore pack mask treatment

I like to maintain a little mystery in my marriage. You know, to keep things hot.

Trumples are clearly not the most glamorous subject in the world, but I’m pretty sure I’m not alone my desire to address them, because they are total assholes who need to be put in their place. Regardless of your political affiliation, I think we can all agree that this past month has been an emotional roller-coaster, and I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked to over the past few weeks who have, over the course of our conversation, confessed that they’re not sleeping. Or drinking too much. Or – yes – breaking out like fourteen-year-olds.

I’m not writing this post to whine (or, ok, not just to whine). There’s even a positive side to it: breakouts mean you get carded, which – after age 30, at least – is super fun! (Lying. Getting carded was the worst when you were 18 and continues to be the worst when you are north of 30, because when you’re an Old you forget your wallet in the diaper bag wedged under the passenger seat of the car and can’t remember your birthday because you also can’t remember the last time you got more than four consecutive hours of sleep, except you really need the Safeway checkout dude to hand over the wine now please and thank you because that child who will not let you sleep is also driving you to drink Cupcake Chardonnay in astounding quantities because Cupcake Chardonnay makes being exhausted better.)

No no: I’m not writing this to whine. I’m writing this because I need your help. I typically operate on the desert-ish side of the skin spectrum, and virtually every skincare product in my arsenal is geared towards intense moisturizing or anti-aging. But right now what I need is…I don’t know, actually. Spot-treatment? Masks? …Toothpaste?

Last night I located a sample of a Korean clay mask that’s been kicking around my drawer for months, and that has gone unused because clay tends to tighten up oily skin (and “tightening” is the last thing I usually need). It did actually help quite a lot – and sent me down a rabbit hole of checking out this company’s products (a bunch of which are in the widget below) – but still: I’d love to hear any product recommendations that you have, because I think I’m starting to scare my FedEx guy.

Help me not scare my FedEx guy?

  • kira

    The same thing happened to me, also Nov 9. I got a facial and it calmed things down; maybe fewer products is better?

    • jordanreid

      nov 9 = WORST. i’m nervous to get a facial because i wouldn’t know who to go to out here, but that’s a good idea!

  • Beasliee

    Oh no! I highly recommend Origins Super Spot Remover (it’s not very expensive, £15 here) as you just dab it on the problem spot and the rest of your skin goes untreated, so no risk of upsetting it further! I just put it on at night, although you can put make up over it if you keep an eye on it as the gel sometimes peels and looks a bit odd. Good luck!

    • jordanreid

      thank you thank you!!!

  • antheapena

    Give up dairy for a while, see if it helps, it cleared my skin up immediately, I wish I’d known 20 years ago

    • jordanreid

      really???? but…ice cream…

      • Patrice

        Hi there; I second this…when I’m stressed, if I even have trace amounts of dairy (particularly cheese for whatever reason), I break out with at least one cycstic acne pimple on my chin within 24 hours. When I go off dairy completely, I do not break out. Good luck!!

      • antheapena

        I think that’s ok unless you consume a tub a night (not judging) I used to eat a lot of low fat dairy, milk, cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt etc. I drank coffee with quite a bit of milk in it. When I decided to give up dairy I was able to switch to tea, nut milk & other vegan options but that’s just me.
        BUT the difference in my skin was startling & immediate. I literally haven’t had a spot for 4 years & I was in my late 40’s getting breakouts regularly.
        Nothing changed regarding my skin care & whatever I spend buying good quality protein sources is far less than I’ve spent on lotions & potions that did nothing to help!

  • Kristin

    Jordan, I think we may have similar skin — I’m very sensitive, dry, etc. and the same age. 🙂 Always use super hydrating/anti-aging stuff. And because I’m Irish, I’m also prone to my skin getting very red and ruddy if it’s upset. Fun! Since I was a teenager, I have used Clean and Clear acne spot treatment in the rare occasion that a zit pops up. I think that’s what it’s called. It’s Clean and Clear, and in a tiny little silver tube. The zit is dried out within a day, and usually killed in 2-3 days. And- important – I don’t have to upset the non-zit skin!! It’s worth trying, especially because you can buy it from the drugstore for very cheap.

    • jordanreid

      drugstore + cheap, yes please. (i get ruddy too; these past few weeks my cheeks have been super blotchy, i think also in response to stress – and probably dehydration/lack of sleep/etc. worst.)

  • Rain Mikajlo

    ive always been envious of your skin! im
    not buying that youre actually broken out lol

    buut if you really are, good ol benzoyl peroxide spot treatment? you fly a lot and the air is so dry on planes– could be that?

    my mom is going to japan in a couple months and im going to make her hoard me!!! 😬

    • jordanreid

      i have terrible, horrible photographic evidence and was going to post it to be all awesome and IDGAF, and then i chickened out because it is that terrible and horrible of a photo.

      • jordanreid

        ps eeeee japanese beauty products, lucky girl!

  • MeganS

    Reddit has a community called Skincare Addiction that totally changed my regimen and made it so I almost never break out (before I was probably like a 4 out of 10 on the Acne Scale, but now I’m a 1.) They’re focused on science-based skincare — so using stuff that science actually says will work, not just marketing gimmicks.

    Anyway, different regimens for different skin types, but the best thing I did was start using Stridex in the red box twice a day. It’s a chemical exfoliant (which makes it sound harsh, but I have dry skin in winter and it doesn’t make it drier. It’s actually quite mild.) Wash with something gentle (I use mineral oil followed by Cerave cleaners), use the Stridex, let it dry a little, then use plenty of moisturizer (I use Cerave). Cerave in general is great – no fragrances and really easy on your skin. Paula’s Choice also has a lot of great products that align with the Skincare Addiction way. Good luck!

    • jordanreid

      Stridex!!! I remember that stuff from high school – I do remember it being super strong (although I imagine they’ve changed the formula), but it WORKED. Thank you!

    • Seconding this reddit. Lots of great info. I use differin gel and have for years. Any other kind of retinol makes my skin realllly dry, but a little differin once or twice a week + moisturizing every night = relatively clear skin. Also, I just rinse my face in the morning with warm water.

  • Kirstin Bunton

    Get this, seriously, works on like a charm on any thing, but really those deep rooted stress related beasts.

    And I have always sworn by this as my “toner” which is hydrating and light, spray on before mosturizing

    Finally, be careful striping your skin too much, you don’t have acne, you happen to have a stress related reaction to the world dancing on your face. I know, it sucks, but some of the other cleanser and clay masks will dry you out even further, and then your skin will counter by creating more oil, and then more clogged pores. Be gentle, but firm, drink lots of water and it will pass. xx

    • jordanreid

      YES. Excellent reminder. I definitely feel the desire to go overboard and strip my skin in hopes that something better is underneath, but you’re right, that never works. Gentle but firm, lol. And water! (And thank you for the product rec – that looks great.)

  • Kaitlin

    JORDAN! You need this:

    It zaps my zits almost completely overnight. I swear by it. I had a nasty trumple on my chin last night and now it’s a teeny scab (because I picked at it, of course.)

    • jordanreid

      ah! i used to use that back in the day. i will TOTALLY get some, thank you!

  • Nicole F.

    Two things: Drink tons of Emergen-C or Airborne, which, maybe because of the vitamins, always clears up my skin. And, hands down, the best purchase I’ve ever made in my skincare-life was the personal microdermabrasion system: I have zero affiliation with them. It’s amaaaazing.

    • jordanreid

      really?!? i’ve never thought to try this – there’s some procedure my dermatologist recommended that sounds similar but DIY sounds cheaper 🙂

  • Stephanie

    Apparently our skins is twins! The Lush Brazened Honey mask is the only mask I’ll use cause it’s the ssshhhiiiiizzzzz. Seriously, it REALLY REALLY helps calm breakouts and dry things up without drying out dry flaky face skin.

    Another Pro Tip: exfoliate the bejesus outta those spots, but as gently as possible like with a wash cloth or a gommage exfoliant. Boscia makes an exfoliating gel that SAVES MY LIFE this time of year

  • Stephanie

    I’ve really loved Burts Bees rosewater toner lately (it’s actually the only toner I’ve ever consistently used) it’s not super drying but gets rid of the oil. I break out worse when I’m not moisturized so night cream plus Kielhs oil free lotion are my go-tos. And this charcoal mask about once a week:

  • smalina

    When i was pregnant I got into one of those terrible skin spirals, and everything I did seemed to make it worse… until I:

    1. Got a facial. A really good one, where the facialist used an ultrasound machine to kill all the bacteria under the skin, and extracted well.
    2. started using Lush Ultrabland ( ) on my skin every day — and that is it. just ultrabland at night, and water and moisturizer in the morning. Once a week used a cleanser with salicylic acid. It was miraculous! Still on the same routine three years later (with the addition of serums and toners) and we are all good.

  • Jenn

    My birthday gift from Sephora was a sample of a Fresh cleanser and rose mask. I have sworn by Simple face wash and Neutrogena serum for years, but I tried the Fresh products after my face broke out post-election/pre-menstrual syndrome (a lovely confluence of events), and I was blown away by how awesome my skin is looking. The cleanser is kind of pricey but I am still using the rose mask sample.

    I also recently switched to a heavier-duty anti-wrinkle serum from Neutrogena (I went from Rapid Repair to Deep!) and my skin has felt super smooth even between my weekly home dermabrasion treatments. (Speaking of which, Neutrogena has a home dermabrasion tool for $20 plus cost of replacement pads that I use once a week – it’s amazing.)

  • Lindsey Collins


    i promise, promise, promise it will help. you can actually feel the mask working once you put it on.

  • Cait

    Ever since I started using Biologique Recherche P50 1970 toner morning and night after cleansing, I have hade no Trumples. It is miraculous stuff. I like the satisfying tingle of the 1970 version, but if a little tingle freaks you out, they have more mild versions. I discovered it thanks to Caroline Hirons, an amazing skincare blogger… beware, reading her blog may result in hours lost to reading everything about skincare, and a lot of Sephora shopping.

    • jordanreid

      i LOVE tingles. totally want to try this.