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Week 2

Posted by unicorntears, 28 November 2012 · 617 views

tretinoin dans regimen progress photo
In my second entry, I posted two current pictures of the Retin-A (tretionoin 0.05%) breakout/purge I experienced 5 days into it.
Looking back now, that was nothing. This is what my skin currently looks like:


It has looked the same for the last 5 days, more or less. Some of those are red marks. Some of those are under-the-skin cysts that have been coming to a head and cycling, it seems. I've been applying Queen Helene's Mint Julep Masque and hot compresses in an effort to accelerate the life cycle of the lesions, as well as the icing and humidifier I mentioned earlier. Bear in mind that exactly two weeks ago, my skin was completely clear except for 4-6 papules on my left cheek.

So suffice it to say that I'm now stressing because of reasons.

In about 2 weeks, I'm leaving the country and travelling for a while. In my mind, I have two options:

1. continue with the tretinoin 0.05% cream and expect breakouts for the next three months, and wonderful skin thereafter.
2. quit now and hope my skin returns to normal and expect an occasional mild breakout.

I quit 3 days ago.

I'm hoping to clear the breakouts with Dan's Regimen at night, and hot compresses and the Mint Julep mask in the day (no, I have no plans to leave the house). When my skin returns to normal, I may reintroduce the Neo Strata Cream for maintenance.

This is all probably ridiculously aggravating to my skin, but I'm going mad here.
If you have any suggestions or anything, leave me a comment!


ETA: I'm reading the tretinoin reviews on this site and am now feeling so conflicted.

I totally understand how you feel. I also wanted to stop using tretinoin because it made my skin much worse.
When week 2 was started, I did 12 hours flight, and dry and dirty air on airplane made my skin breakout a lot. Before I had to use a flight to go back, I posed tretinoin for 3 days, and while I hadn't used it, my skin was getting better. But I decided to stick with it again.
Week 5 ends today, and my skin looks much better than week1-4, though I still have red scars and strange cyst like.
I read a lot of articles about tretinoin, and found out that so many people give up before the benefits.
FYI, Queen Helene's Mint Julep Masque contains sulfur, so it makes your skin more sensitive with tretinoin.
It is somewhat comforting that most people seem to go through this intense initial breakout before their skin gets better. I'm glad it's working for you 5 weeks in. Thanks for the info about the Masque, btw; I'll look into that.

Anyway, I visited my dermatologist today and he told me to cut down the tretinoin use to every third day, so I might continue using it in that manner. He also prescribed me some Duac gel to use every morning, which will supposedly help the inflammatory acne immediately.

Actually, the first time I used Retrieve (tretinoin 0.05%) back in April 2011, I used it in combination with Duac and I don't remember experiencing an initial breakout. Hopefully, this'll work out.

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