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    Many people use oils (ideally cold pressed organic 100% pure) as a replacement of skincare, or as a step in it. Yes, such words as organic, all natural, full of vitamins and minerals sound really good and people leading organic lifestyle propagate the usage of those.

    You know, there are oils that can clog your pores. They do so by increasing follicular hyperkeratosis—an increased production of keratin in hair follicles. Over time, this leads to clogged follicles and comedones.   Thus, oils with a low comedogenic score are safe to use. This is nothing I’m going to talk here about.

    So, what are these beloved avocado, rosehip seed, grape seed, hemp seed, olive, safflower, coconut, etc oils?
    Well, 60% of each are fatty acids. Among these, in the vast majority of cases, 95% are linoleic and oleic acids (pic1; 
    CENTERCHEM, Inc. NOEWALK)


    Thus,  oils are concentrated chemical solutions.

    Linoleic acid (18:2) is scaled by NFPA 704 as level 2 hazard to health (0-4), meaning intense or continued but not chronic exposure could cause temporary incapacitation or possible residual injury (e.g. diethyl etherammonium phosphate). The next point on the scale is this one: 3 - short exposure could cause serious temporary or moderate residual injury (e.g. liquid hydrogencarbon monoxidecalcium hypochlorite).

    Oleic acid (18:1) is scaled 1 by HMIS: - exposure would cause irritation with only minor residual injury (e.g. acetonesodium bromate).
     

    Safety data sheets in chemical/biochemical labs state:

    Adverse Human Health: Material may be irritating to the mucous membranes and upper respiratory tract.   
    Effects and Symptoms: May be harmful by inhalation, ingestion, or skin absorption. May cause eye, skin, or respiratory system irritation.

       
    Indeed, 1 of 2 people is sensitive to even organic cold pressed natural oils and develop the worst irritation and breakouts they have ever had in their lives. Sometimes without even knowing what causes this state.


    WHY? WHY ARE THEY SO IRRITATING TO SOME PEOPLE AND WHY DO THEY MAKE OTHERS SKIN VERY SOFT AND SUPPLE?

    Answers hide in the nature of fatty acids and how they act when applied topically.

    Remark: our cells are surrounded by membranes the main component of which is a lipid bilayer (see pictures below). There are organelles in cells which have their own membranes. The composition of those differs, but the base of all membranes is the same lipid bilayer.

    Studies show that even micromolar concentrations of palmitic (C16, saturated acid) and oleic acid incorporate into the sarcoplasmic reticulum membrane (an inner cell organelle, surrounded by lipid bilayer) and reduce the content of phospholipids in the membrane. (pic2 - representation of fatty acids penetrating a lipid bilayer; Leo G et all, 1983)

    A consequence of enhanced skin permeability and/or toxicity with fatty acids is increased transdermal water loss (lauric, oleic acids). The intercellular lipids (permeate through the whole membrane) have an important function in maintaining the barrier to water permeation through the skin and for holding water in the skin, removing of intercellular lipids produced chapped and scaly skin.

    Maximum permeation enhancement was observed for fatty acids of 9 to 12 carbon atoms and for fatty alcohols of 10 to 12 carbons. Among saturated fatty acid, the maximum enhancement was shown by lauric acid (C12). (M. Loden at all, 2000)

    So, fatty acids actually promote a water loss but give us a filling of soft and hydrated skin. 

     

    Note that, when tests say the maximum or elevated score they don’t say other substances scored 0, as permeation ability was shown for many other fatty acids, as myristoleic, palmitoleic, linoleic, oleic, lauric and many others.

      Let’s be clear. The skin permeation effect of fatty acids indeed depends on the chain length and saturation. But the thing is oils do not contain very short fatty acids or contain only trace amounts of those (chains of very very short fatty acids are too short to incorporate into the lipid bilayer, therefore didn’t show irritation reactions). Also, it’s not the deal with a specific membrane, as all of them have the same basis.

    In an irritation test in nude mice, 10% oleic acid caused severe irritation. Oleic acid was also evaluated in guinea pigs, with 5% producing significant epidermal damage. Various fatty acids have been examined in humans by applying for 3 h under occlusion using concentrations 0. 16 M. Oleic acid resulted in an elevated score and visible erythema and edema. (M. Loden, 2000). Thus, all caused some damage, but oleic acid - an elevated effect.

    Another study shows linoleic acid produced significant irritation on human skin (Michael A et al, 1975).

    Also, prior studies on the relative irritancy of free fatty acids revealed the saturated C8 to C14 fatty acids and a C18 unsaturated fatty acid to be the most irritating. Another study says that among saturated free fatty acids from C3 to C18, and unsaturated C18 free fatty acids that were applied daily under occlusive patch tests to human skin until detectable erythema appeared, the most irritating fatty acids were C8 through C12. Of the unsaturated fatty acids tested, only linoleic acid produced irritation ( it was the only tested, though).

    Also, notice that different tests tasted different fatty acids and therefore one can say the most irritating was this acid/only this acid showed irritation, while an another test names different acid due to different samples included. Studies say they applied oils until the detectable erythema occurred, thus erythema occurred in all applied saturated fatty acids. Among these, they evaluated the most irritating samples.

    SO WHY OILS ARE SUCH GOOD CARRIERS?

    All people say oils are good natural carriers of vitamins and minerals to the skin. Oh yes, they are very good carriers, as they disrupt lipid bilayer (a membrane that surrounds our cells) incorporating in it and therefore make it easier for other substances to penetrate through it.

    But our skin is not designed as frogs skin, which consumes near 10% of oxygen within it. Our skin is a barrier, nourished by minerals, vitamins and fatty acids, etc supplied by blood, thus there is no need to disrupt the natural barrier in order to deliver minerals and vitamins topically.

    But even people that develop skin irritation and breakouts can safely consume different types of oils. Even mice like food flavoured with oil more. What’s the secret behind it? The thing is our digestive tract has a layer of mucus that protects it, also it regenerates really fast and digests all sort of organic compounds starting from our mouth.

    WHY DO SOME PEOPLE DEVELOP IRRITATION AND OTHERS NOT?

    Let’s look at one example. There is a compound called PTC (phenylthiocarbamide). It has an extremely bitter taste. Evolution gifted us an ability to detect bitter tastes because at the most cases bitter means toxic. So, when you can distinguish many bitter substances, you have better chances of survival.

    But turns out that we vary in the ability to taste PTC and among different nations and populations only certain amount of people can taste it (from 16% to 40%). But it doesn’t mean for those who can’t distinguish the taste, it’s beneficial and they can eat it without consequences.

    The same is with topical irritation. Not everyone develops the reaction, but it doesn’t mean it’s beneficial for those (we are not talking about allergies here, just irritation!)

    Most people experience some sort of reaction after some time of continuous application, as irritation may be induced by repeat disturbance of barrier function. The immune system reacts to this disturbance and et voila, acne occur!

    Maybe you also wonder how oils helped some people to battle acne (especially oil cleansing method) It turns out, they aren’t sensible to the mechanism in which fatty acids act. Okay, fatty acids act the same on their skin, they just don’t develop a visible reaction to it. Thus, fatty acids could dissolve makeup traces that can irritate their skin, or dissolve natural sebum, rich in oleic acid (true for those who has acne) that clogs pores and not to cause irritation by itself. Also, in the vast majority of cases, these people take a holistic approach to their acne and stop eating dairy, take Accutane, cure hormone disbalance, etc, so it's not necessary the oils cured their acne.

    WHY DO PEOPLE BELIEVE USING OILS TOPICALLY IS GOOD FOR SKIN?

    1.  People are leaded by the fact that linoleic acid is a natural component of human sebum.

    Let's investigate. See pic3 below. (Mauro Picardo et all, 2009)

    Triglycerides and fatty acids, taken together, account for the predominant proportion (57.5%), followed by wax esters (26%) and squalene (12%). The least abundant lipid in sebum is cholesterol, which with its esters, accounts for the 4.5% of total lipids. (Greene RS et all, 1970)

    Now, see a pic4 below. (B. Boughton et all, 1959)
                   Remark: 
    Index a means saturated acids, b – mixture monounsaturated and single branched acids, c – mixture of highly branched acids and more highly unsaturated acids.

    We can see, that linoleic acid (18:1) and oleic (18:2) acids are only less than 15% (there are also different linear monounsaturated acids with 18 carbons) of all fatty acids (they are 57.5% of sebum), thus less than 9 % of sebum are linoleic and oleic acids together.

    It’s not healthy smearing concentrated fatty acids on your skin, even though it’s produced by sebaceous glands in some quantity naturally. Most people imagine human sebum as a blend of fat and some small amount of water. It’s not like this at all.

               Think about this: we can obtain not only oils from seeds but cyanide too. It will be 100% natural and organic, but would you smear it all over your skin? (the toxicity isn’t relative, but It’s just an example that not everything obtained from plants is good for health).

    Indeed, human sebum is a unique substance, that can maintain itself when supplied with essential by blood (by the food we eat).
    (You can actually skip this paragraph)

    It is unique in particular, the pathways leading to the formation of lipids, which are typically sebaceous, such as branched fatty acids and fatty acids with unshared unsaturation positions: features unique to sebum are the branched chain fatty acids and lipids with a particular pattern of unsaturation. Δ6 desaturase enzyme (fatty acid desaturase-2) catalyzes a “sebaceous-type” reaction of desaturation that leads to particular compounds, unique to humanΔ6 desaturase preferentially converts palmitic acid (16:0) to sapienic acid (16:1, Δ6), which is unique to the human sebum and represents ca. 25% of the total fatty acids. Elongation of sapienic acid by 2-carbon unit and further unsaturation leads to the formation of sebaleic acid (18:2, Δ5,8), which is also peculiar of human sebum. (Ge L. et al, 2007)

     We cannot deliver fatty acids that are synthesised only by human cells topically (at least if you don't plan to extract them from some human body...)

     2. People that don’t develop any kind of visible bad reaction experience very soft, “hydrated” skin.



    Of course, skin is soft after continous apзlication of oils, as they disrupt elastic membranes and make skin very supple in that way.



    There is one Polish saying “co bagato, to niezdrawo”, meaning when there is too much of something it’s not helthy.  Even though vegetable, seed, nut oils are all natural, this doesn’t mean they can replace human sebum and can be used safely on the skin. We have a need in linoleic acid, but mainly in our food or some severe conditions that demand topical application of oils (can be helpful for people that don’t develop visible irritation).

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  1. So I'm now nearing the end of the third month and my skin has cleared up a lot. I only have a few spots on my cheeks which are small however my face is extremely oily still and therefore I'm not sure if my problem is the anti Adrogen thing cos before using this pill my skin is as clear using rigedivon however I think my problem was a bad reaction to stopping tretinoin and. That said, for a few weeks I haven't had any spots on my chin which I would used to get occasionally so 10000% it's doing a good job, I'm on tretinoin again now though so that could have something to with it. 

     

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    ArdentMinnow
    Latest Entry

    So, the giant pimple on my forehead is still forming. The other comedones are still getting flatter, but they aren't gone. Left cheek doesn't have any active pimples but tons of clogged pores. It feels rough to Touch. Right check has about 4 active pimples and tons of clogged pores. 

    Hopefully start seeing major improvements by the end of this week. 

  2. Yasmine93
    Latest Entry

    Hey everyone.

    So sorry for disappearing, I went travelling for three weeks (big roadtrip woohoo) and couldnt keep up with the internet or, sadly, the bone broth! I have now been back for three days and am back on the broth.

    While I was away I stuck to a paleo diet 95% of the time, with the very occasional cheat/accidental slip up. However, around ovulation my skin went MAD and I legit nearly threw myself off the edge of the grand canyon. Boo. Now that I've been tracking my skin for a few months I am CONVINCED my acne is hormonal and flares around day 12 of my cycle. Today is day 10. Oh god.

    Anyway, for now my skin is just about okay - a one new spot appearing on my chin and a few slightly older ones on my forehead, but that's it (plus old marks, yay me.) Have had so much broth today and am on a gut healing plan involving a paleo diet + broth + digestive enzymes + water kefir.

    Peace and love, chat tomorrow!

    xxx

  3. Hey Girls,

    Basically, it's my time of the month and my food cravings have gone crazy (always do) ... and this means, my face (to me) doesn't feel any better, but I am starting to see improvements regardless, and my family and friends have also started to realise some minor changes (baby steps guys, baby steps).

    Anyway, due to my impatience (as described in a previous blog), I am now on 'Minocycline' twice a day (morning/ breakfast and night/ dinner) as well as 'Estelle 35 Pill' (at exactly 11am every morning) because I really want to attack these little pimples and want them gone on the asap. I'm starting to stress too much over them, so I thought being on more than just 'Estelle' would fasten my progress, and now being on 'Minocycline' for nearly two weeks, I'm starting to see some improvements. I've just started my fourth packet of 'Estelle', though due to being on my period, I'm not taking the active pills at the moment, thus my little breakouts.

    I'm still using the 'dove moisturising soap' when in the shower, but since seeing and speaking to 'Australia Skin Clinic' they has provided me with some remedies that should help out with my skin... so basically, for the third time since posting in this journey, I have changed up my skin routine once again. I am aware that you should only see results if you stick to the one routine, but I'm confident in this final routine as I'm already seeing results (even as my period has come around, which is awesome). It's all about trial and error though!
    So here is a list of the products I've been using everyday:

    MORNING:

    • "Skinstitut" L-Lactic Cleanser 
      • I use this first to wash my face, using lukewarm water, then pat dry 
    • "Skinstitut" Hydrating Mask
      • IF I HAVE TIME IN THE MORNING... I leave this on for 10 - 15 minutes, then using lukewarm water to wash off, then pat dry
    • "ClindaTech" (Prescription Acne Treatment Topical Solution)
      • I use the applicator and place over affected areas
    • "Skinstitut" Moisture Defence Normal Skin
      • Once the "ClindaTech" has fully dried, I place this moisturiser over the top

    NIGHT:
    Whenever I go out (special occasion, not for university), I always wear makeup, but I never leave my makeup on overnight. I always remove my makeup with 'Garner Sensitive Skin Makeup Remover', then proceed my nightly skin routine:
    • "Skinstitut" L-Lactic Cleanser 
      • I use this first to wash my face, using lukewarm water, then pat dry 
    • "Skinstitut" Enzymatic Micro Peel
      • I leave this on for 10 - 15 minutes, then using lukewarm water to wash off, then pat dry
    • "ClindaTech" (Prescription Acne Treatment Topical Solution)
      • I use the applicator and place over affected areas
    • IF SKIN IS FEELING DRY... "Skinstitut" Moisture Defence Normal Skin
      • Once the "ClindaTech" has fully dried, I place this moisturiser over the top

    So far, I am super happy with this routine... yes, at times it takes a while, but because I so desperately want clear skin, the more time and effort I put into my skin, I know I should be getting positive results soon.

    Below are some images of my skin two weeks from when you last saw it on my first blog:

    IMG_6283.JPGForehead

    FullSizeRender.jpgLeft Cheek

    Anyway, I'm sure you can see that there isn't MUCH of an improvement, but the slightest of improvements are there! Patience, patience, patience!

    Thanks girls, I will be blogging again in a week.

    Please do ask any questions if you have any! xx
     
  4. Week 7 and my face is awful. I have spots coming up everywhere and nothing seems to be helping, the differin looks like it's working when I wake up in the morning but by the evening my face is a mess and just as red and angry as it used to be. 
    week7.jpegweeek7.jpeg

  5. So I am done with the first month !

    I am so happy that I am doing so great so far, my initial break outs weren't that bad it was very minor..
    My black heads are almost all gone
    my side effects are disappearing slowly..
    right now I have very minimal side effects, here's a list of what I had and how I am doing right now:

    Lips dryness is very minimal and controllable, ofc I have to contently apply lip balm.

    Almost no face dryness, my face feels very moisturized as I am applying a lot of face cream and palmers cocoa formula butter on the dry patches (which I don't have anymore), my foundation is apply beautifully ... no flakes no dry looking foundation..

    my neck had some kind of an eczema which is all gone now and the skin on my neck is back to normal, yet I am still apply my palmers creamy daily on it avoid getting the eczema again ..

    I had eczema on my hand but derm gave me an ointment for it, its almost gone..

    I had random bruises on my hand, my derm also gave me an ointment for that and its almost gone too..

    My eyes are doing much better now, the dryness are way less than before

    No bloody nose anymore thanks to the olive oil

    my scalp is great, I am using argon oil 100% natural soap bar which I got from morocco

    No back pain or muscle ache, although sometimes I feel extra tired but its manageable

    I am working out twice a week (high intensity workouts), it seems like roaccutane didn't really affect my exercising routine thankfully  ..

    Also now I am using a cream for the scars prescribed by my derm hopefully my scars ill be gone soon :D

  6. I've been on accutane for two months and 2 weeks. My first two months I was on 40mg daily and on my third month now my dose was increase to 60mg and it took a toll on my face and body as a whole with muscle and joint pain, also very dry lips. 
    After researching a lot and reading other people's blogs I seen many comments. 
    Even though this medication causes a lot of side effects I'm determined to finish my treatment. I've been suffering from acne since I was 14 years old, I have used tetracycline, all kinds of topicals, even lazer treatments that costs me over $2000 dollars. 
    Well I always have used make up but had to switch so many times due to the fact my skin was super oily and everything I used broke me out. 
    My last make up I was using for a while was bare minerals but didn't give me enough coverage plus my skin was still very oily. 
    Shortly after starting accutane, my coworker told me about Kat Von de, is vegan make up and it gives you a full coverage that makes your skin looks amazing. 
    I so far love it and bought everything from KVD from the foundation to finish powder, contouring palette. You can purchase her products online at kotvondee.com or shephora. 
    Also my lips were super dry, they would even bleed, and my doctor suggested believe it or not Vaseline, and I was using expensive medicated, organic stuff for my lips and it didn't work, but the Vaseline really has worked and my lips feel a lot better. 
    For my joint pain and muscle pain I take fish oil supplements and they really ease the discomfort, I also bought glucosamine and for my liver an organic liver detox. 
    I till have almost 4 months left on this stuff and I'm trying to make myself improve with whatever side affects comes along and I will not give up unless told by my doctor. 
    You can write to my blog anytime if you have any questions or suggestions. 
    Thanks 

  7. I've only continued to see these constant breakouts and uneven texture. 

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  8. This past month literally flew by. It was insane. I'm graduating from college in ten days, and - I can't believe I'm saying this - I have perfectly smooth, acne-free skin now. I cannot believe it. This is too good to be true. Today I had to film a video with a bunch of friends for a class, and I was scared to death when sitting in front of the camera in a so well-lit room. I thought my skin would look horrible, but it didn't. My skin glowed in the video. I am so happy.

    I defended my thesis last week. Standing in front of all the people from our department, I was fearless. I knew I was beautiful, and after I was done, so many people, including professors, came to me and said, that was a fabulous defense. 

    Side effects really haven't gone too bad. I was on 40mg/day for a month, and 60mg/day for a month. In the second month I started getting gum bleed everyday when I brushed my teeth. There's was not too much blood at all, and I know that this is normal, because accutane is known to cause inflammation. My lips are chapped, but not too severely. Other than those, I do not have any negative side effects at all. I am so happy with the drug, and I'm getting my 3rd month refill (60mg/day) tomorrow. 

    If you're reading this, I assume that you're either on accutane, or considering going on accutane. This drug literally worked wonders for me, and I 100% recommend it. However, do check with your doctor, and be serious about it, because this is a really harsh drug. Everyone reacts to it differently, and I'm just lucky to have a body that could handle it with ease. 

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    sdeeeeeeez7
    Latest Entry

    As a teenager I experienced a small pimple here and there, never anything cystic and never anything I would describe as acne. It wasn't until I turned 23 that my skin began having issues. I returned home from a family vacation with a pretty bad breakout. I tried over the counter products for a couple of months before I decided the breakout wasn't going away. I made an appointment with a dermatologist who took one look at my face (not a very close look) and told me that I had adult acne. Because I am allergic to benzoyl peroxide (works on my pimples but leaves the surrounding skin itchy, red, and swollen) I was prescribed a tretinoin cream and medication. I never filled the medication prescription because back then I was still sure the breakout would go away and the side effects of the pills scared me. I don't even remember the name of the pills. I used the cream for a couple of months and found my skin itchy and red and aggravated. I read that this was the initial break out, but the breakout lasted too long for me and I was so impatient, I stopped using the cream. I suffered for a few more months before I booked an appointment with an esthetician. The esthetician went through my makeup bag and threw out every pore clogging item I used on my face. She set me up with new cleansers and moisturizers, and with mandellic serum. I visited her office monthly, alternating between vitamin a peels and gentler treatments, and upping the mandelic serum formula every once in a while. After 3 months I saw a substantial improvement, and after 6-7 months my skin was completely clear. 
    I stayed clear for over a year with less frequent visits to the esthetician. Then, after moving and starting a new job, I started breaking out again. I do have a small problem with picking my skin. I know that makes it worse, and I'm sure that's what intensified the breakout. I was stressed, which caused acne, then I was stressed because I had acne. I booked an appointment with a new dermatologist and she was much more helpful. She diagnosed me with hormonal acne and I started taking spironolactone- which combined with my birth control pills, seemed to help. I saw a great improvement but never got completely clear. I decided I wanted to try isotretinoin. It has been one month now and I have seen promising results. My next post will be all about the first month.

  9. The wedding remains the most significant even for everyone’s life as it is the time that will pave way for new beginnings and endings in the life of both the groom and the bride. Every couple want their wedding to be an extravagant and memorial affair which people would like to remember for a very long time. As for the guests, the wedding favour that you choose to give is your token of love and appreciation for their presence in your happiness. The wedding favour also acts as a memoir for the guests to rethink of your wedding day every time they look at it or use. But how about the couple? How they will make their wedding last in their memories for long or how they will visit the days of their wedding as if the entire scene is replaying in front of them. 

    Wedding photography in Herts is one of the best ways that couples have been adapting too for years to preserve the memories of their special day and revisit them whenever they feel like. Though, even a small time wedding photographer in Herts can solve the purpose of just clicking pictures for the wedding day but it will somewhere lack the charisma and emotion that we expect from a wedding day video and photo shoot. In order to have a world class wedding photography in Herts it is equally important to find someone who can understand the emotion behind the setting and can also capture the same beautifully without losing on to its essence.  

    Finding a vendor for wedding photography in Herts should ideally not be a problem as there are many prominent names in the wedding photographers in Herts list that could come to your rescue. However the best way to pick on for your wedding is to look for the one who has great past record of shooting dreamy wedding sequences, possesses a creative bent of mind and is willing to incorporate suggestions coming from the couples or their family.But, too much interference in their work from the couple side can leave the photographer annoyed which might later reflect in the quality of work that you may receive.

    Thus, the best way to find wedding photographer in Herts is to ask for suggestions from the friends and family. They must know someone who would capture your wedding like a dream that came true.

    Author Bio
    The author writes a lot about wedding photography in Herts. He also shares information on wedding photographer in Hert.
     

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    KelseyAnn24
    Latest Entry

    Making this blog to vent my feelings. Prior to this current treatment tried doxycycline for 2 months with no improvement - since then my skin has gotten worse.


    anyway, currently on lymecycline. Tried this one when I was 17 (22 now) so hoping it will work the second time. 

    currently, my skin is awful - the acne was initially concentrated on just my right cheese/jawline but has since break to my left jawline. Woke up today with a bit on my forehead - first one I've had there in months. I'm getting worried.

    need to find a way to ignore my acne. It's consuming my thoughts constantly. Exams are soon, and instead of worrying about them I am more concerned about having to face my peers with my disgusting skin.

    current issues:

    3 hurtful zits on my chin alongside limit scars - looks awful. Putting BP on them seems to bring the infection to the surface? I know I will wake up with at least 3 gigantic whiteheads tomorrow.

    Zit on my forehead - hasn't happened for months, why now? I hope this isn't a sign it's getting worse. Can't keep crying over these issues everyday. Feel mentally drained and I won't leave the house.

    praying things will go my way soon. I feel depressed. 

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    AndreasSpjut
    Latest Entry

    Nothing really occured this week tbh, maybe just a small breakout

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    Today my skin has really flared up and I don't know why.... especially on my chin and cheeks, don't think it has ever been this bad before. Can not wait to start treatment but still have just over a month to go. Birthday this week so really wanted it to have a clearish face but what can you do :( if anyone has any thought about why I'm getting acne around my mouth and cheeks please let me know!! 

  10. Minks
    Latest Entry

    Right and left side in the pictures month by month. Went from 60 to 80 mg for the fifth month. Been very dry lately and have been getting more nosebleeds, but that's expected. Been getting a bit of a purge lately but that's ok because I still have closed comedones under my skin I want out. So lazy with the updates, sorry. No notable difference really happened in month four, hoping for the best. 

    Bye for now 

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    So I made this account just to share this story in case it can help anyone else! I turned to acne.org a lot for tips and advice so I figured it's good karma to post how I cleared up my acne.

    For starters, my skin was always super low maintenance, I never broke out in high school or middle school. It wasn't until I was in college, at around 19 or 20, that I started to break out a little here or there. I always chalked it up to stress and eating poorly at college but it consistently got worse. Sometimes it would clear up for a period or two but it was always annoying and came back.

    My acne was very dry and clogged, my dermatologist says I have keratosis pilaris which means I don't shed skin as well as others. My acne is centered on my cheeks and chin and is rarely ever blackheads or cystic acne. It is consistently pustules and papules but more often than not it was just raised bumps with no puss.

    My first attempt at clearing it up was going on birth control (didn't work) and then I tired another birth control (didn't work) and then I even tried going off birth control (definitely didn't work). After that I tried using as many expensive creams and moisturizers and face washes as possible, normally all at once, and that didn't work either (shockingly). I eventually saw my dermatologist and she prescribed my Epiduo about two years ago. Epiduo is a prescription acne cream that is a mixture of Benzoyl Peroxide (2.5%) and Adapalene (.1%). I had read a lot of forums and was pretty informed going into my treatment. So I knew that Epiduo was one of those "it gets way worse before it gets better" sort of gels, and I was prepared for that. Honestly, my skin was so raw and red and flaky from using Epiduo that I had a sunburn on Christmas that year. It was painful, and every moisturizer caused even more pain when I tried to treat the flaking. I cut back a little but knew that BP had this effect and I had to adjust my skin to it. Eventually I had passed the 8-12 week mark and thought I was seeing progress, but I think looking back that that was just wishful thinking. By month 5 or 6 I was using it once or twice a week and my skin was a bit better but I was over the whole acne thing and was just wearing makeup and ignoring it.

    Fast forward to September of 2016 and my skin was a mess again and I was convinced I was going to clear it up. I tried going on the no dairy diet, and still think I saw some results from that, but overall it wasn't a miracle cure (and I love cheese way too much). SO I subscribed to Curology at the end of November, excited to fade my scaring and get rid of the closed pores and whiteheads I had. Unfortunately, after a month and a half of Curology and two different prescriptions, my skin looked even worse than ever (see the images below - December at the start of Curology and January after a bottle or two).

    I finally realized that I just needed to introduce good products 1 by 1 and see how they worked. But first I had to get rid of acne irritant ingredients. So I started using cosdna.com before I purchased any products to see how the ingredients were. I dumped a ton of makeup that had ingredients with 4s or 5s on the acne irritant 1-5 scale. Then I did the sam thing for my skincare (I'll attach a list at the end). This took a few weeks because I only introduced one new products every 4-5 days, to make sure I knew which product broke me out if I were to break out severely. 

    **(This is where my actual "cure" starts)** Once I had a good skincare routine with simple products, I happened to stumble upon the Neutrogena Stubborn Acne Daily Leave-On Mask, which was just a 2.5% BP that you could apply 2-3 times a day under your makeup. By this point I was wary of drug store products, since I hadn't used them since middle school for my occasional zit back them. But I wanted to try my own version of the Acne.Org Regimen and I knew I needed a good BP and I already had a great cleanser and moisturizer. So even with my fear of BP due to Epiduo I gave this product a shot and within 2 weeks I was amazed, I wasn't waking up with a new zit every morning? I didn't have anything to convince myself not to pick or pop or poke at before bed? Looking back at Epiduo, I think I was reacting poorly to one of the inactive ingredients and thought it was just the BP "working." That or I was allergic to the adapalene, because I had no issues at ALL with the BP in the leave-on mask.

    For the next few weeks I continued to use the leave-on mask. Sure, once and a while I was getting a new spot, but I could visibly see my skin clearing up. I never had an initial bad reaction to this product. Within a few weeks I was using it 2-3 times a day without any irritation, dryness, or flakiness. My skin has never been so soft, clear, or moisturized in my entire life. That was in January. It is now May and I took the clear skin pictures below just a few days ago. I tried to use similar lighting but it was difficult to achieve, so hopefully you can tell the results aren't just all lighting. Hopefully I can check in in a few months and tell you guys that this was a long-term solution!

    Routine
    Morning:
     - Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser (optional, since i have dry skin)
     - Neutrogena Stubborn Acne Daily Leave-On Mask
     - Pixi SkinDrink Moisturizer

    Night:
     - Bioderma Micellar Water (to remove make-up, with a cotton pad)
     - Vanicream Gentle Facial Cleanser (double wash)
     - Neutrogena Stubborn Acne Daily Leave-On Mask
     - Simple Nourishing Moisturizer

    Optional (Not nightly, but a few times a week)
     - Dr. Brandt Microdermabrasion Scrub (for fading scaring)
     - Origins Retexturizing Mask with Rose Clay (2x a week)
     - Essentials Tea Tree Oil
     - L'Oreal Purify & Mattify Pure Clay Mask (T-Zone) (2x a week)
     - L'Oreal Exfoliate & Refining Red Algae Clay Mask (Cheeks and Chin) (2x a week) 

    Hopefully this helps at least one person! 

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    My first month is almost over!
    I have two pills left because I got food poisoning and had to skip a few doses so they wouldn't interfere with my stomach, but almost there!

    Side effects: 
    -Still trying to heal the cracked mouth corners but finally making progress with antifungal cream from the derm. Its scabbed over and I'm trying desperately to not touch but it looks so bad under my makeup so hoping it heals soon

    -Also started getting eczema on my hands which I've been controlling by slathering on argan oil and then Eucerin healing balm and then wearing cotton gloves over that whenever I'm home doing homework and especially before bed.

    -My favorite side effect is I only have to wash my hair once a week and it seriously looks like I just blow dried it for that entire week. I could go longer but I feel gross about it haha

    Results so far: I had my initial breakout about 2 weeks ago (right after my last post) which I was hoping to skip but it wasn't awful by any means and has subsided by now. I have dark marks left over which continue to go away and the only active acne I have right now is a few spots by my chin/mouth area and one on my temple. Also the blackheads are pushing their way out especially around my nose which is super annoying and gross but I'm leaving the medicine to do its thing and I refuse to touch them.
    My chest and back have also stayed clear just as they did the first week , so no change with that (thank god!)

    Product changes: I had to change my foundation and moisturizing routine cause my face started peeling like a mofo and so I am currently using Josie Maran Argan oil underneath Nuetrogena hydroboost gel cream and an spf on top for daytime. I switched to Armani Luminous Silk foundation with First Aid coconut smoothie primer underneath and it is flawless (does NOT stick to my dry patches). I also exfoliate my face once per week with the St. Ives oatmeal scrub which is super gentle unlike the apricot scrub and does not irritate my skin at all.

    Also had to start using Dove scalp care shampoo because my scalp was sooo itchy but this helped it in literally one wash.

    FOR ANYONE WHO SELF TANS I use the St. Tropez Express bronzing mousse and it works fab as always but fades way more quickly than usual (before Accutane I would get 5-7 good days of tan whereas now I 'm lucky if I don't get splotchy by day 3) so for anyone who's curious about self tanner on Accutane that is my experience!! I also find that it helps to even out my skin tone/dark marks and allows me to wear less foundation so there's that too

    Edit: updated pics of bare face
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  11. Today is day 17 and is the first day of wearing a full face of makeup. I still used my liquid foundation (Neutrogena skin clearing makeup). This is for oily acne prone skin and contains salicylic acid.

    I used my ceraVe moisture cream mixed with a little avocado oil. Then applied my makeup as usual. I was able to use concealer, foundation, and my highlight/contour creams. I didnt have any dry patches but theres no way to hide that my face is so bumpy with all these pimples. 

    Also even though im not so oily anymore my makeup didnt really stay in place -_- (i have always had this problem no matter what setting powder or finishing spray I use)   Although i was in the sun for majority of the day but at least  didnt look dry. 

    We'll see if my makeup changes drastically at some point. 

    UPDATE: today on day 18 i tried using my ceraVe daily AM moisturizer with 30 spf (it really feels and smells like its just sunblock). Well i used this today as a moisturizer/primer and i see dry patches around my mouth and on my chin. Maybe next time i will try the moisturizer/sunblock first. Then add cream on top nd see if that works. 

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    I took my first Claravis 20 mg pill this morning.  It was quite the process getting it - I wanted to get put on Absorica so there wouldn't be a need to meet a "fat content" requirement for my meals.  My insurance didn't approve prior authorization for me to get Absorica (and that awesome $5 coupon).  The delay in hearing back from insurance was an issue - I missed my first 7-day pick-up period and then had to wait 19 days from my first pregnancy test to start the process again (iPledge locks you out of the system for that period, it's their stupid policy).  So, now I'm going to be paying about $300-$350 per month for the medication plus $86 per monthly doctor visit.  But it's all worth it, right?  To be done with acne forever! Also, it was weird, but my doctor changed her script from 20 mg a day to 40 mg a day - not really sure why, but I don't mind.  Initial breakout is probably going to be crazy, but that's okay - better to be done with accutane as soon as possible :)

    I've had acne since 9th grade, so that's about 12 years now.  I honestly can't even remember my face without acne.  Can't imagine my face without it.  But can't wait to be without it!  Hoping this works.

    I have attached pictures of my face a month before starting Claravis (when I thought I was going to start taking the medication) and pictures from "Day 1."  As of now, I have maybe 5 active pimples (but I've been popping the ones I get - bad, I know - I wanted to get rid of them before not being able to pop them while I'm on Claravis).  From what I've read, accutane slows down the skin's ability to heal, so popping them while I'm on the medication is not possible.

    As far as products I'm looking into using - I'm very much into the organic and natural skin products (why would I load up my skin with cancer-causing chemicals when I'm trying to make my skin better???).  I got aquaphor and some of those travel size plastic containers to put the aquaphor in while I'm out and about. I'll be using vaseline as well. I ordered Era Organics Natural Face Wash (about $20 for 8 oz bottle - not cheap!) which had good reviews written by people with acne and dry skin.  We'll see how that works (Cetaphil, as recommended by the doctor, has parabens and sulfates, ick!). I also use Thayers Alcohol-free Rose Petal Witch Hazel - it really helps reduce scarring and keeps skin hydrated after washing - highly recommend this!  I have alba botanical sun screen that I'll use for my body when I go out (if that's needed, not really sure).  And finally, for makeup, I use basically all Physican Formula and Bare Minerals products - I want to limit the amount of makeup I wear.  I got the Physician Formula green concealer to hide redness and the BB cream which has SPF in it as well.

    I plan on doing weekly updates!  In the pictures below, "Before" means 1 month before starting accutane.

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  12. Ugh... ProFractional really screwed up my skin. It's been 7 months since I had it done and I wish I could go back and warn myself to never mess with it.

    My skin is more sensitive, gets red and blotchy very easily, cannot handle Retin A micro anymore - none of these were issues in the past. My scars are also more obvious. I can't believe I paid to do this to my skin :smileys_n_people_22:

    Anyways, be careful if you are considering this. The reviews seem extremely mixed. I am not the only one that has ended up with worse skin after going through ProFractional laser resurfacing. I wish I had stuck with microneedling which was going awesome (I thought ProFractional would speed up my results but I should have stuck with the slow and steady approach). 

  13. (So i dropped off my prescription quite late so i wasnt able to have an actually "day 1" of using the three products. )
    btw if you're wondering on how my skin is (oily) and was, i made another blog entry

    first night:
    -used bianca for the first time, took minocycline (100mg once a day before bedtime) for the first time 
    -bianca had no stinging or redness or itchiness. the texture was surprising to me, it was a clear runny gel consistency.
    -after an hour i applied neutrogena oil-free moisturizer for sensitive skin 

    next day:
    -used aczone (dapsone 5%) for the first time. i noticed it made my skin look matte.
    - put on cetaphil daily face moisturizer spf 15 on top after waiting about an hour to make sure the aczone fully absorbed into the skin 
    - didnt wear makeup that day i just wore a baseball cap to cover my forehead acne a bit 
    -i shouldve reapplied my moisturizer or an actual sunscreen coz i was out in the sun. i think i gained a new sun spot 

    second night:
    -i examined my skin before bed and noticed that inflammation has gone down, but i did notice some skin coloured little bumps on both cheeks. right temple has a few small whiteheads that seem to have grown. The big cystic pimple also on my right temple seems to have created a buddy and now theres two of them how great, i see some pus inside them both but it seems like itll be a while till they erupt and become heads. centre forehead acne has subsided, the ones with a head has sort of either "died down" or the pus was removed while cleansing or showering?? the other pimples around then have reduced in inflammation but is still quite big, some are starting to become a head.
    -i also apply BHA (paulas choice) on my nose every other night, if i remember, for my blackheads which seems to be helping i think. small whiteheads are appearing to the surface and some blackheads have vanished but the pores are still quite large.

    third night aka tonight:
    -i did wear makeup powder (with smashbox primer water underneath) for around 2 hours 
    -i removed the makeup with a mixture of castor oil and this jojoba oil that also contains sunflower and vit.E oil. rubbed it gently all over my face. took a shower and removed the oil from my face with cetaphil gentle cleanser. then i cleansed my skin again with the same cleanser. then i let my face air dry before applying Bianca treatement. followed by the same neutrogena moisturizer as before
    -my thoughts right now on this new routine is that i have a sense im about to experience the "initial breakout" or what i hope to be JUST the initial breakout. Prior to using the topical treatements, i  did have some bumps and spots that were in the beginning stages of pimples, so those spots coming to the surface isnt that much of a surprise to me since it was to be expected.
    -small bumps and small whiteheads on both cheeks. Temple pimples still there. i seem to be getting a pimple above my left brow. right jawline, there is a bump that is cystic and a bit painful. left bottom cheek has some texture, im scared that entire area will explode in cystic acne. centre forehead acne is the same except the the pus in two of the pimples are almost to a head.

    notes:
    -trying to stay away from fried foods and processed foods (although i ate fried meatballs and fried rice today, im trying lol)
    -im eating more veggies and fruits 
    -attempting to stay away from dairy but since im taking an antibiotic I want to let my body get some of that good bacteria back, so I am eating yogurt, greek yogurt to be exact.
    -drinking about 2.5-3L of water a day
     

  14. Shawna

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    Recently started using paulas choice "gentle" skin care for moderate to severe acne. For the first time ever I have dry flaky patches of skin. I stopped using the product but my skin is still dry and flaky and much worse than before. Any suggestions on how to fix it? I've used proactive sensitive skin in the past and it was an effective product but I'm afraid to use anything harsh or that could worsen my skin...  

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    I've been suffering with my skin for around 10 years, where it started off with just a few spots and now 10 years later I have really sore bumpy under the skin cysts and redness. I've tired almost everything to try and cure with antibiotics, creams, facials, peels. 

    Today it seems to getting worse and worse not better I have sores all over my face that look like burns. It's so sore I don't know what to do next. 

    Ive read a lot about accutane was wondering if that should be my next step?

    my mum gets married in August so I'm bridemaid and all I want is to not feel self conscious about my skin, it's really getting me down. 

    Any tips or advice would much appreciated, thank you 

  15. Hi! So I went to my PCP last night, and he prescribed me some minocycline for my acne, (I have been on the medication before). I took a pill last night, and this morning. While I was there, he also referred me to a dermatologist to put me on accutane. So I went to the dermatologist today, and he prescribed me Ampicillin, to prepare me to go on accutane. I was doing some research, and I saw that you should not take these two medications together. So how long until I can take the Ampicillin? I've seen people say that it takes weeks for Minocycline to leave your system, but that it's okay to start taking Ampicillin after 4 days of not having taken anymore Minocycline. I haven't been able to get a hold of the dermatologist, so could I have you advice on how long I should put off the Minocycline so I can take the Ampicillin?