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Body Acne Sucks.

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Baroo

So in my last entry, I had stopped using the Paula's Choice BHA weightless body lotion because I went away for a week and didn't bring it with me. I broke out all over my back and had to start using PanOxyl 10% benzoyl peroxide bar soap on my back. I alternated days between using that and using a pyrithione zinc bar soap I bought on Amazon. So one day I'd use the BPO bar, then the next day the zinc bar, and so on.

This worked REALLY well on my back. My back stayed super clear. My chest still kept getting little breakouts. Then I ran out of the two soaps, and I had shoulder surgery, so I started using the Dial gold bar deodorant antibacterial soap with a scrubber. Again, my back stayed clear for many months; my chest, not so much.

So I started using Paula's Choice again and have been since. My chest stays perfectly clear when I use the Paula's Choice every day. My back, for reasons unknown, suddenly broke out horribly right after Xmas and I'm just now getting it under control. I bought the PanOxyl (CVS brand) foaming face wash 10% BPO, and I use that on my back and chest with a netted loofah and leave it on for a couple of minutes in the shower every morning, then rinse, pat dry and apply Paula's Choice.

I don't want to use PanOxyl forever; I'd like something less drying to use on my chest and back once everything is clear. But I'm not sure what to do. I guess Cetaphil? I dunno. It's so frustrating. But I want something that will just cleanse my skin and prep it for the Paula's Choice.

I have a couple of active lesions on my back, but they're steadily going away. For the most part, it's just dark spots, which is embarrassing. I'm in my cousin's wedding in April, and I have to wear a strapless dress. I hope it's faded by then. :(

Any tips would be appreciated! But for those suffering with body acne, I once again must recommend Paula's Choice BHA weightless body lotion. It's part of the line of products called Resist. It's like 20 bucks for a big bottle, and a little goes a long way - it works better than anything else I've ever used. I swear by it. Go there and at least try it out. It absorbs quickly - just put it on, do some other stuff and then you can get dressed. Do it do it.

Tip: Paula's Choice also works really well on my face. I use it in the AM after cleansing with Cetaphil. After it absorbs, I apply Cerave AM moisturizer (which is awesome). My face hasn't really even had any hormonal breakouts.

Baroo

Well, I stopped using Paula's Choice because one day, I was in a hurry, then I became lazy, and my skin was clear, so why not? Then I went to visit relatives up north over Xmas, and my back and chest broke out like crazy. Like CRAZY.

My face had started breaking out already around October, probably from the horrific summer we had in Central Texas last year. I got that under control using AcneFree, so now I use Cetaphil in the morning to wash, then Neutrogena Fresh Foaming Cleanser at night to wash my makeup off. After cleansing in the morning, I use the AcneFree BP Foam, then Olay moisturizer with sunscreen. At night, after cleansing, I use Garnier's dark spot reducer, because it's moisturizing and I have PIH on my face. My face is completely clear, and I'm happy with it.

So my back. I bought a bar of Panoxyl 10% BP bar soap last night and used it this morning on my chest and back, so we'll see how that goes. I want to be able to treat my body acne with ONE product. Just something I wash with, end of story. I'm hoping this will be it. A lot of people have seen good results with it, so I hope I do, too.

B

Baroo

Sorry for the long, convoluted title.

My back is still clear. I'm super happy. The marks are fading and nothing new is forming, which is helping them fade. When I wash my back and it feels like smooth, normal skin, it makes me wish it were warmer so I could wear strapless shirts again.

I have one blemish on my chest now, but I've been using the 12-hour AcneFree BP foam and it's going away. Everything else on my body is being nicely maintained by the routine I've fallen into.

I just wash in the morning (and at night on days I work out) with St. Ives Green Tea Body Wash, with a shower poof. After I pat dry, I use Paula's Choice 2% BHA Weightless Body Treatment Lotion on my chest and back. It's kept everything at bay, except the one blemish on my chest. Treating that with BP seems to be working.

So, BP = treating existing acne. BHA (salicylic acid - in the body wash and the lotion) keeps it from coming back.

I have PMS, though, so my face is breaking out. I finally broke down and bought the AcneFree System - the whole thing - for my face. I guess I'll see how it goes. This whole adult acne business sucks.

Baroo

So with the help of the AcneFree 12 Hour Foam and the Paula's Choice BHA lotion (plus St. Ives green tea body wash), the skin on my back and chest is completely clear. Completely. Of course, I'm breaking out on my face, but I'll take it.

I hope it lasts. I want the marks on my back to go away. I hate them. It seems like every time they start to fade, new acne pops up and makes more. Sad Baroo. But it could be worse. I'm glad to be clear, and I hope I can maintain it.

I've been really religious about using the BHA lotion after every shower, and I think it's been working at preventing new acne. The Foam works to kill acne fast, so... I think I'm good. I hope I hope.

The Foam works really well on the face, too, by the way - it clears you up fast and it absorbs completely. No weird white film. It still has bleaching properties, though, so watch out for that.

B

Baroo

So I've been using St. Ives green tea clear skin body scrub, and it seems to work pretty well if I use it in conjunction with an AHA or a BHA cream afterward.

The thing that really seemed to get my back and chest clear, though, was AcneFree's new BPO foam - it's called something like AM treatment or whatever, and it's in a little mousse can. I really like it - it soaks in thoroughly, isn't too drying and is easy to apply. It does work well on my body acne. My chest is completely clear, and I have two cysts on my back with the odd speckle, but otherwise ok. For a while I was showering twice a day, and that really seemed to work, but it's not practical - besides, when I stopped, it started coming back again, which just pissed me off.

In other news...

MY FACE IS GOING BONKERS. I'm 34; I don't know if I'm being hit by adult onset or what, but I've been breaking out on my chin really badly for the past few months. It's almost that time of the month, so it makes sense right now, but honestly, I just wish it would all stop...

I need to take better care of my skin, and also myself. I need to drink more water and exercise more to get my pores clean.

So... still using St. Ives Green Tea Clear Skin Body Scrub and Paula's Choice BHA Body Treatment, which is good for little spots. Cysts need more. I have a tube of bactroban that I use on the big cysts when I get them, or I use Staphoseptic ointment. I use that on top of either salicylic acid or BPO. see, I'm so inconsistent. I'm a mess.

Baroo

So I've been using St. Ives green tea clear skin body scrub, and it seems to work pretty well if I use it in conjunction with an AHA or a BHA cream afterward.

The thing that really seemed to get my back and chest clear, though, was AcneFree's new BPO foam - it's called something like AM treatment or whatever, and it's in a little mousse can. I really like it - it soaks in thoroughly, isn't too drying and is easy to apply. It does work well on my body acne. My chest is completely clear, and I have two cysts on my back with the odd speckle, but otherwise ok. For a while I was showering twice a day, and that really seemed to work, but it's not practical - besides, when I stopped, it started coming back again, which just pissed me off.

In other news...

MY FACE IS GOING BONKERS. I'm 34; I don't know if I'm being hit by adult onset or what, but I've been breaking out on my chin really badly for the past few months. It's almost that time of the month, so it makes sense right now, but honestly, I just wish it would all stop...

I need to take better care of my skin, and also myself. I need to drink more water and exercise more to get my pores clean.

So... still using St. Ives Green Tea Clear Skin Body Scrub and Paula's Choice BHA Body Treatment, which is good for little spots. Cysts need more. I have a tube of bactroban that I use on the big cysts when I get them, or I use Staphoseptic ointment. I use that on top of either salicylic acid or BPO. see, I'm so inconsistent. I'm a mess.

Baroo

The Paula's Choice is still working, but I noticed that if I skip a day, even if I use the Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash, I start to break out again.

I was at the pool all weekend for the holiday, and I think the sunscreen, the sun and the chlorine aggravated my skin.

I recently bought St. Ives green tea scrub and cleanser for my face, and I fucking LOVE them. They improve my skin almost immediately.

So I bought the St. Ives green tea body wash a few days ago and have been using it for two days. I'm going to try to use it without using the Paula's Choice lotion and see how it works on its own.

I will let everyone know. So far, things are looking okay.'

B

Baroo

So my back and chest are almost completely clear, which is nice. I still have a lot of hyperpigmentation on my back, which I hate, but it's fading.

But now I'm breaking out all over my chin. Yes, I'm a week away from my period, but normally I only get one or two. I counted today - I have SEVEN. My skin is very fair, so they're very obvious.

I should qualify this by saying that I'm on a special diet now, and have been for about a week. I'm taking all these vitamins and things to cleanse candida out of my system, and I've been drinking a ton of water and working out a lot. I've been avoiding yeast, gluten, dairy, wheat, blah blah blah and I don't know why I'm breaking out so bad.

I'm sure some might say it's toxins coming out, but come on. I know candida diets are kind of holistic horseshit, and I'm sort of skeptical of natural medicine, even though I'm trying it right now, and I just don't buy that acne is some reflection of mysterious "toxins" coming out of my body.

I have PMS. I'm grouchy.

B

Baroo

I'm still using Paula's Choice 2% BHA weightless body lotion every day after I shower. I'm not using the Neutrogena acne body wash at the same time anymore; I use it sometimes if I know I won't have time to use the lotion.

PC is awesome. My back is completely clear, and my chest is getting close. I even use it on my face at night. It fades spots and it absorbs completely in about 10-15 minutes, so your skin doesn't have a film all day - it just feels soft and smooth. Please, please, PLEASE try this stuff if you haven't. It's so amazing.

B

Baroo

Working.

So I'm itching like crazy from all this salicylic acid, but it's working. The difference is really noticeable on my chest... the back is taking a little longer.

I wash with Neutrogena Body Clear once a day and use the Paula's Choice BHA 2% weightless body lotion once a day. That's it.

It's working!

But I'm really itchy.

More to come.

B

Baroo

Fack the Derm.

You know, 10 years ago when I went to a dermatologist for the first time, I thought he was a quack. He gave me a bunch of expensive prescriptions for crap that didn't work. Fast forward to the second time I went to a dermatologist, which was this past February, and lo... the same thing happened.

F*ck it. I'm not going back. NeoBenz did nothing, Evoclin made things worse, and Atralin is making my face red.

I've got my Neutrogena Body Clear Body Wash back out of the cabinet. I recently bought Paula's Choice BHA Weightless Body Lotion, and I started using it today. We'll see how that goes. My skin on my face went back to normal after I stopped using the Atralin, although I'm using an oil control toner now, because I'm very shiny, and it's working.

I'll just do the Paula's Choice + Neutrogena thing for a while and see how it goes. If I get an inflamed cyst, I'll use Staphaseptic. It always gets rid of the big red ones really fast. I don't know if it's the benzethonium chloride or the tea tree oil, but it works.

B

Baroo

Day Eleventy Million

So I'm still using the Atralin on my chest, and I think it's helping... it got worse first, which is typical with retinol, and now it's starting to clear up, but good christ. It's 75 degrees outside and I can't wear a tank top.

Hopefully it'll be clear before it gets really hot outside. Damn you, Texas.

In other news, I still have little whiteheads on either side of my chin. The atralin is working slow on that business. But there are fewer of them.

I just hate that it's on my face now. Used to be I had pretty skin on my face. Ever since I went off hormonal birth control, I get one or two around my chin, but lately... I don't know what it is. I'm almost 34... should be over with this crap.

My chest itches.

B

Baroo

ARRRGH

My face is still doing really well with the Atralin. I like it. I've got some whiteheads rising around my chin, but it feels like purging, so I hope it just comes out and gets it over with.

My chest and back are getting worse. I don't know if it's the Evoclin or the NeoBenz. I'm continuing to use the NeoBenz, but I'm only using the Evoclin on my back and I've started using my Atralin on my chest. The skin on my chest is more delicate, so maybe this will work better.

Annoying. Here's to hoping.

Baroo

Still truckin' along...

So.

Face: The Atralin has made my skin peel a lot. So I'm down to every other day. My chin is still purging. The skin on my face has always been pretty good, I just get hormonal acne on my chin sometimes, so I think this will really work well for me.

Back and chest:

The dermatologist gave me NeoBenz Micro Wash and Evoclin for my back and chest. So far, I think it's working, but it's working very slowly. My back feels smoother but I can see the red bumps still. My chest is really a slow go, but it's going.

I guess it's just a keep trying and waiting game.

I'll keep you posted.

B

Baroo

Went to the Derm.

So The Amlactin continued to cause improvement... and then it stagnated. I always had a few little red bumps on my chest and more than a few on my back. It sucks.

I had to go to the dermatologist for another reason, so she checked out my back and chest. Now I suddenly have a big pile of things to use.

For my face, she gave me Atralin, because of my hormonal breakouts (I refuse to take hormonal birth control anymore... I'm happy with my copper IUD, thanks).

For my back and chest, I have to wash once a day with NeoBenz Micro Wash, let it sit on my skin for 2 minutes, then rinse, then apply this crazy foam. Evoclin. Once a day.

Today is day 2, so we'll see how it goes. My face is purging, which kind of sucks, but it's to be expected.

We shall see!

Baroo

Just an update...

Back in April, I got a severe sunburn, which killed all the acne on my back and chest and hid the red spots perfectly. Then, the sunburn caused me to break out in little spots all over, and my difficulties began anew.

I hemmed and hawed and tried things and stopped trying and all that. I bought a bottle of AmLactin (12% lactic acid lotion) and gave it a try.

I've been using it religiously every single day after I take a shower. I wash with Dove Cool Moisture bar soap and my hands - no gimmicks, just wash and rinse. After I dry off, I put one pump of AmLactin all over my back, and a half pump on my chest and shoulders. I massage it in and get dressed after I let it dry for a minute or two. It never really dries, but I let it soak in a bit.

The little bumps are almost all gone, and I haven't gotten any cysts since I started. It's been about three weeks. I think in another month or so, I'll be all clear. I'm on my period right now, and although I got the usual one or two little tiny zits on my face, I got nothing on my body. Hallelujah.

I don't know if it's the soap or the lotion. I guess I could always stop using one to see, but I don't want to.

Gentle cleansing and consistent treatment is key (as Dan and many dermatologists have pointed out in the past).

Don't give up folks! I'll post again soon to keep my progress going.

Baroo

DANG IT

So after the sunburn healed, I broke out in little tiny bumps all over my chest and back. Of course, the site's FAQs say that this will happen, and this has happened in the past, so I don't know why I'm surprised.

They say a mark of mental illness is repeating the same behavior and expecting different results. Blah.

So while the marks on my back are more blended with my skin, I now have these little bumps all over.

I just bought AmLactin 12% lactic acid lotion and plan to use that to try to smooth out my skin. Here's to hoping.

Baroo

So I stopped treating myself altogether. I've just been taking showers and using my tea tree oil body wash most of the time, but sometimes just a bar of soap.

I got a sunburn a couple of weeks ago when I went to Pensacola. Since the sunburn, I haven't gotten any acne on my back at all, and my marks are harder to see. I'm a pale person who recently moved to a warm climate, and I'm getting a bit of a tan, gradually, day by day, just from walking my dog and being out and about.

As I've been getting tan, my marks are fading and I'm getting less acne.

I don't want to go down that road. I know a lot of people say that tanning will help with acne and will help with red marks.... it's so tempting to try to go tanning to make my skin better. But I have a lot of moles, and I'm scared to death of getting skin cancer. It only takes one trip to the bed to get it.

I've tanned in beds before, don't get me wrong. I was never a sun worshipper and I never tanned regularly, but I have done it. I was always brown as a kid from being outside in the summer, and when I do tan, I tan very well... but I burn first.

I don't know what to do. I'm glad it helps, but I don't want to try to keep it up. It seems like half the people say it worked for them, and the other half (doctors) say it may help, but it doesn't really help.

WTF. I don't know what to do. Help?

Baroo

I think this blog is a good thing, because although I've only made a couple of entries, I'm detecting a pattern... I'm completely inconsistent. I don't do things religiously. Like I'll try a treatment, but I'll skip days or not do it exactly right or whatever, and then I complain about it not working.

I guess I need to figure out how to make myself do something every day - whatever it is that I decide to do.

I went out on Saturday night with a halter top and just said eff it. I need to get it through my head that nobody cares, and if they do care, it shouldn't matter to me. It wasn't that bad... the middle of my back is the worst, and the tie at the back of the halter kind of hid things.

Well... I'll try to focus more.

B

Baroo

It WORKED!

I put my mixture of Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and tea tree oil on my back yesterday afternoon. By the time I went to bed, the redness was way down and the cysts were smaller.

I put more on my back last night before bed, and this morning, they're even less red and even smaller still.

I'm going to keep it up, and if it keeps working, I'll put it on the message boards. Sweet!

So if I can get rid of the active acne, I can focus on my red marks. I hope I hope I hope.

Maybe I'll try to take pictures with my phone...

Of the back? Probably can't.

B

Baroo

These vitamin A caplets I have are gel caps. I'm thinking of trying to make my own little treatment.

I just cut open a caplet and rubbed the gel directly onto my skin (smelled like fish; lovely). After all, Retin-A is made from vitamin A. My caplets have fish oil and soybean oil in them.

Maybe I'll try to make a little potion - Vitamin A oil, tea tree oil, and.... maybe vinegar? Alcohol? I'd love some ideas.

I think I'll start with vitamin A and tea tree oil mixed into a treatment. Only a little tea tree oil, though - it's flammable, for x's sake.

If it works better than the AHA's been working, I'll be happy. Otherwise, back to square one.

ETA: Ok, I just mixed 2 vitamin A caplets, 2 vitamin E caplets, and about 5 drops of tea tree oil into a little jar. I'll use it for a few days and see what happens.

Vitamin A is supposed to help with cell turnover; Vitamin E is supposed to help with scarring; and tea tree oil is antiseptic. Should work... yes?

B

Baroo

Well, Dammit.

I've got 3 new cysts on my back that weren't there before. Crap. So much for trying to keep it at bay. My chest looks good now, so I'm happy about that, but these new ones on my back are disappointing. I feel like I'll never get rid of this.

Can I do a peel when I have active acne? Some people say it's okay, and some people say it's a no-no. I'm not sure.

I put AHA on my back today after the shower. I'll try to get rid of these. Maybe they won't leave marks.

:(

I'd post pictures, but I can't find my camera.

My blog posts = not interesting.

B

Baroo

Vitamin A pills.

So I've been taking 8,000 IU of Vitamin A every other day to see if it will help keep my skin clear long enough to allow the hyperpigmentation to go away without getting any new ones. I just started my period, and my face is clear, so I think that's a good sign.

I'm trying to drink more water, but it's hard to remember to do unless I'm really thirsty. It just doesn't occur to me. I'm all stressed out from my move and a whole bunch of other crap.

I moved to Texas from Michigan at the beginning of January because my fiance got a job here. I'm an attorney, and I'm not admitted in Texas, so I have to take the Texas bar exam. I thought I'd never have to take another bar, but here I am. The exam is three days and 15 hours long total. Barf.

My point - a lot of stress and hormones right now, but no breakouts. I've only got one or two active on my back right now. If they could just stay away so I could get rid of the spots. I look like a leopard.

I still haven't bought any peels, because I'm still scared. And I'm not sure how to put it on myself. I guess I could ask my fiance to do it, but I'm afraid to tell him how much it bothers me.

So I think the Vitamin A is helping, along with washing gently with Jason Tea Tree Oil & Melaleuca Satin Soap for body (I also have it for my face). I've been using Dan's AHA on my chest to get rid of the little bumps that seem to be sticking around, and I've been using it on my upper back. I'm not sure what combination of things is working and what isn't. Maybe I should start using one thing at a time to see?

Anyway... at least for now, it seems like the active stuff is under control or gone. I just need to deal with the marks. The leopard spots. To peel or not to peel? I don't know. How light will they be by the time it gets hot? This is Texas - I'm looking at tank tops and tube tops as early as March. FUUUUUUG I don't know what to do.

B

Baroo

So... my personal shame.

:(

I'd like to start by saying that compared to many of the poor folks who come to this site, I'm pretty lucky.

I don't really have an acne problem on my face. Right before or right after my period, I may get a couple of zits, but they heal pretty quick. I have fair skin, though, and the hyperpigmentation (the red marks) take some time to go away - but it's not so bad. Nothing makeup doesn't help. I have small pores and an even complexion.

The problem is my damn back. And sometimes my chest.

I get little ones on my chest about once or twice a month - just scattered across the front. They're annoying and make me want to wear turtlenecks. They heal pretty quick and don't leave scars, so... I guess I don' t mind? I'd rather not have them.

But my back... I used to have a lot of cysts on my back. It's calmed down to a point where I only have about 3 or 4 at a time, and then I'll go a few weeks with none, and then 3 or 4 will show up.

The problem with that is that my back is covered with dark red and brown spots, leftover discoloration from my previous cysts. They're not raised or indented, and I know I should be happy about that, but they're SO noticeable, because I'm pale. It's so bad it looks like I have active acne all over and I don't. I hate it and it seems like they never go away, or that by the time they might go away, I get new cysts to replace them.

I hate it I hate it I hate it. I never talk to anyone about it. Nobody. It's awful, isn't it? Something so stupid and something that affects me so profoundly, but nobody has any idea. I'm sure my friends have noticed the spots on my back, my scars. I'm sure my fiance has noticed. They have to have noticed - especially him. But I don't talk about it because it's so fucking embarrassing.

If I'm feeling like they look ok, I'll wear strapless shirts or tanks, but I have to wear my hair down to hide my back. I was in a wedding last year and wore a strapless dress and had to wear my hair down, even though I wanted an up-do because I have stupid stringy thin hair, but I couldn't.

I'm PMSing right now so I'm a little more bitter than normal, but goddammit, I haven't ever talked about this so I feel like I'm unloading 20 years' worth of frustration. My active acne has definitely improved with age - that's for sure, and I'm glad - but it won't stop enough to let me get rid of the stupid scars.

Bah. I want to cry. So stupid. You know, sometimes I even wish I had a beautiful clear back and had the acne on my face instead because then I can put makeup on. STUPID. Stupidstupidstupid.

My older sister has cystic acne on her face, and I'm sure she would kill me for saying that.

Wit's End - nice to meet you.

I think I'm going to try a peel, but I'm scared. I need to work up to it. AHA helps my acne but not the marks. I need something stronger.

I need to think about it more.

B

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