I don't think I've ever talked about it before on this site, but in addition to extremely oily skin I also suffer from seborrheic dermatitis. When I grow facial hair, I get terrible flaking, and sometimes red rashes and pustules. I also get some flakes in my eyebrows, and I have dandruff on my scalp (not sure yet if that's related).
I didn't really start to notice my flaking problem until last year, at which point I did some research and self-diagnosed myself with seborrheic dermatitis. It was only after this diagnosis that I realized I had probably been dealing with seb derm long before it was apparent to me. Looking back, I recalled occasionally noticing some light flakes in my beard, and a few occasions where big patches of yellow-ish flakes were showing up on my recently shaved face. I always wrote it off as typical dry skin and tried to remedy the problem by slathering moisturizer on my face, which temporarily improved the appearance but obviously didn't solve the underlying issue.
So now it's just another problem to solve in my list skin conditions (I also have eczema and possibly rosacea). I thought it might be helpful to others if I posted about my ongoing battle with seb derm, so I will periodically provide updates on my progress.
What I Have Tried
The first thing I tried was medicated shampoo. I've gone through shampoos containing salicylic acid, ketoconazole, zinc pyrithione, coal tar, and selenium sulfide. None of them helped. The only thing I've tried so far that seemed to make any difference was apple cider vinegar, but oddly enough the effect only lasted for a few days. A couple of months ago, I started applying undiluted ACV to my face after my showers. Within literally a day or two, there was an immediate improvement in my skin. Whereas previously I could rub flakes out of my beard for 5 minutes straight, I now had almost zero flakes. Unfortunately this only lasted for a few days and I could never replicate that success.
What I'm Trying Now
I just received the Noble 2% Zinc Pyrithione bar soap. Even though my pyrithione zinc shampoo didn't help, I've heard good things about this bar so I'm giving it a shot. I am also applying tea tree oil once a day, moisturizing with coconut oil, and using bentonite clay masks every 2-3 days. The only product I feel like I can comment on at this point is the bentonite clay, which seems to have a calming effect on my rash and acne breakouts. I'm also going to be starting raw honey masks in a couple of days.
As far as diet goes, I'm a bit of a health nut so I try to limit the amount of junk food I eat anyway, but for the sake of experimentation I'm being even more strict with myself. I'm trying to avoid processed, pre-packaged food as much as possible. I'm also severely restricting the amount of grains I eat, and I'm trying to make fresh vegetable juice 4-5 times per week.
I'll probably update on my progress in a couple of weeks.