It's actually very gentle and pH balanced which is important. The main thing is that you don't continue using it month after month. Using it for a week at a time then taking a break and only using it if a flare up comes will not aggravate the problem. It hasn't had ANY irritation on me at all. Another thing with SD is that you need a fairly thorough cleanser to get the job done. Read up on it, you need a strong cleanser to be able to really fend off the bacteria properly. Sodium Laureth can certainly irritate skin in the long run but short term, it's actually a very effective cleansing agent and "delivery system" which allows the active Zinc ingredient to penetrate better.
The fact that this is the only thing that has ever given me relief from my SD/Eczema means something. I've tried more than most people, with little to no results and now my flaking is almost fully gone.
Hi all, just wanted to share what has worked for me.
I've been cleansing with DERMAdoctor Born to be Mild. It has 2% Zinc pyrithone in it, which is supposed to kill seb derm fungus. I use it once a day, at night. It has reduced flaking quite a bit and as long as my dead skin levels are down, my skin ends up being very smooth and healthy looking. I also moisturize with Cetaphil Lotion, just because it's really the only thing I've found to reduce flakes substantially without drying me out in the long run. I just use a very small amount. I then follow up with straight up Extra Virgin Olive Oil to control flakes even more, help heal old marks and even skin tone.
So far it's been great. Flaking, tightness, redness and dryness are basically gone. Only a few flakes here and there but I've only strictly been using the cleanser for about a week.
There's a chance I'll flare up again since this is a chronic condition but this definitely controls it. Other factors for me are stress and diet. If I can maintain these 2 things, I also see improvement but mainly I need to get the dead skin layer off so my products can actually absorb properly. I think many people continue to use products on top of the dead skin layer and that just makes things worse. The product doesn't absorb, sits on the surface and leaves film, making skin tone look awful. I did that for a while. Getting that layer off in any way possible(even manual exfoliation with cloth, fingers/fingernails) helps a ton, just try to be gentle.
I know how you feel about the tight/cracked skin, I've had it for 6 months now. Sometimes moderate-severe and sometimes mild-moderate, but it's always there. It's taking its toll on me and I really miss my skin functioning properly.
The other ingredients in the shampoo may have irritated your skin. There are ketoconazole creams out there that are made more for the face rather than the hair/scalp line. I am tempted to try an anti-fungal prescription but I'm hesitant. I'm experimenting with things like tea tree oil and ACV on cleansed and exfoliated skin. They have anti-fungal properties but aren't synthetic like ketoconazole and pyrithione zinc. I'm not quite there yet but I see some improvement after using ACV. I may mix very small/diluted amounts of tea tree into my mixture just to see if it helps kill the bacteria that's causing the dryness.
Pretty much the same exact experience I've had, almost down to every detail. One thing I did recently was stopping using anything for a while to see what would happen and while I didn't break out, the dead/dry skin was absolutely excessive. I ended up washing my face with a very gentle scrub and proceeded to scrape the dead skin off with my fingernails. Not the best method but I was desperate and frustrated. This left my skin very red and irritated, so I applied aloe vera gel on it. It was certainly irritated but it was a pretty thorough manual exfoliation and it actually didn't cause any breakouts. I also hate using BHA/AHA on my skin. The next day my skin actually looked great and the texture was back to being smooth with minimal to no flakes. Although my hyperpigmentation/redmarks still looks bad and the damage is still prevalent from the past, I prefer it to having a thick layer of dead/dry skin on my face. It's been like 4-5 days since I did that and I've been using diluted apple cider vinegar and aloe vera juice to moisturize.
I've read that ACV can kill the bacteria/yeast that may occur in seb. derm. My skin is certainly not as flakey as it was, but unfortunately I think it's coming back and the layers are building up again. It looked really good a few days after I did that but it seems to be returning. I'm not sure what to do to get rid of this for good. I believe that product decisions in the past most definitely gave me SD. I never had anything CLOSE to this problem before using harsh products. I'm worried I've permanently damaged my skin. I need some relief and I'm gonna keep doing this regimen with the occasional exfoliation and a good diet see if the ACV can help fend off the SD.
While I don't really condone doing the manual exfoliation method, as it can be somewhat irritating, I realized something. If I could just "level the playing field", meaning getting those layers of dead/dry skin off permanently then I could use a combination of natural products and a good diet and my skin could finally look good again. The problem with the layers of dead/dry skin is that if you use products, they simply don't penetrate deeply because of those layers, in fact they seem to sometimes buildup and leave a film. It's a known fact that dead skin interferes with product absorption. I feel like whenever I thoroughly exfoliate and get my skin on that level playing field, that things like aloe vera/ACV penetrate my skin and work extremely well. After about 2 days of using the ACV/Aloe combo my skin actually looked really good and the flakes were minimal. In fact, I would probably stop using products all together if the dead/dry skin wasn't a problem. I don't even breakout anymore. The problem is, this level playing field only lasts about a week then the dead/dry skin comes back with a vengeance, so those products never fully get a chance to do their thing unless I keep exfoliating and even then it doesn't completely take care of the SD, it's temporary relief. I just miss having my skin be able to exfoliate on it's own, like it did 2-3 years ago. It was fine, I don't know why I started abusing products. Does anyone know a permanent way to kill this bacteria, or whatever the hell it is, that causes this face "dandruff".
So I'm a bit less than a week into this regimen and I gave my skin a break from everything for about 5 days. When I washed my face, I had so much dead skin on my face that I couldn't take it anymore so I kind of scraped it off with my fingernails. This left my skin very red and irritated so I put a little aloe vera(from Aubrey Organics) on my face and it calmed it down. The next day my skin actually looked really good and I have no breakouts from it.. My marks seemed a little more pronounced but my skin texture is very smooth.
I think I may have seborrheic dermatitis though because my dead skin will probably just keep coming back if I don't do something about it. Seb. Derm is basically like having dandruff on the face. I've read that seb derm is caused by bacteria growth on the face and can be fixed with diet and ACV combined with a natural moisturizer. Apparently ACV can kill the bacteria, we'll see. I've decided to take some action and try to use diluted ACV on my face and moisturize with the aloe vera every other day at night only for now. For now I realize that I can't do the do-nothing approach, I have too many important things coming up to have a dead skin mask.
I'd recommend that if you do start using products again after this regimen, you need to use natural products. I feel no irritation and have no worries about using these 2 products on my face, as they won't strip my skin or do any damage, quite the opposite actually.. I also will barely be touching or irritating my skin.
One day when this dead skin/dry skin/shedding problem subsides I will certainly do this regimen but for now I need some relief and ACV + aloe vera + a good diet may actually take care of it, assuming it is Seb Derm.
My marks don't seem to be leaving any time soon, with or without products. Sometimes they are very "calmed down" and look faded and almost blend in and sometimes they stand out a lot. This partially has to do with things like sun exposure, irritation and hot and cold weather. I know they'll fade eventually so my main issue now is keeping away the mask of dry/dead skin and limiting irritation. My only real breakouts ever seem to come from irritation, I just need to leave my skin alone and let it rejuvenate back to what it used to be before I damaged it with chemicals and hopefully it will retain its proper functionality in time. I am thinking of taking fish oil to help speed the healing up but I'm worried it may dry me out even more.
My only real worry is that I've done permanent damage or that this dead/dry skin mask will stay for months and months, if not more. I can only stay with it for so long, being a student and having a girlfriend makes it hard to have this strange looking flakey, dry, dead skin everywhere. :\
day 4 on this regimen... Limited irritation has calmed my skin tone somewhat but the dead/dry skin mask has given me a pretty dull complexion. My skin is very "dead" and dull looking, almost a yellowish pale white, whereas I'm naturally pretty tan. I think this should subside within a week or 2. Gonna hang in there. Also, new small breakout could be coming on chin, haven't gotten one here for many months. Other than that, no active acne other than a few tiny whiteheads. My hyperpigmentation/redmarks still linger pretty badly, some from months ago, some from over a year ago. Hoping the little to no irritation approach of this regimen can help them fade a bit.
yepican - I am not taking any supplements and weather here is actually pretty humid right now, which is why I don't understand the excessive dryness. My diet is good for the most part but diet doesn't play a huge role in my breakouts. Even when I have switched to very strict dietary rules, I still have fairly shitty skin. I do see some improvement on skin tone and dryness if I eat lots of greens, so I'll keep that up. I was thinking of taking fish oil for the dryness but I think I'll wait on that. Diet, for me, has never been any kind of permanent fix though, I feel like I need to just cut out irritation out of the equation for a while, my skin is very clearly damaged by products.
I've done this regimen before for a month+, I actually did it a few times before this thread was ever created and while I didn't break out anymore, my skin tone was bad and the dead skin buildup was excessive. From a distance, my skin actually looked good if not better than usual since irritation was minimal, but up close it was tremendously flakey and before there was actual healthy skin, there was a layer of dead/dry skin. I've mostly tried this regimen in the colder months though, so I think I'm gonna give it 2 weeks with very minimal washing just to see what happens in the summer. Maybe that dead/dry skin can start to be washed off by itself and my "real" skin can heal underneath it for a while. I'm not sure if that's how it works but all I know is my skin is very damaged from past product use and it's doing something on its own to combat that damage.
Right now I'm on day 2 and my flaking/deadskin buildup is excessive. My skin tone seems damaged and my face is itchy/dry. This is a fairly common side effect when I stop using a moisturizer but even while using a moisturizer this still happens so I'm gonna drop it and see if my skin can do some healing on it's own. I actually don't expect any new breakouts, rather dryness/tightness and dead skin, which is actually just as bad. I'm gonna see if any changes come about though, will keep it updated here.
Maybe this regimen isn't for people with very dry skin.. Or maybe I just need to give it more time.. How do you guys deal with excessive dryness? I feel like leaving my skin tight, dry and flaky isn't doing it any good. At the same time, I don't feel like products are helping all that much in the long term, though they may temporarily reduce dryness to an extent. I just don't wanna have to depend on them every day, I want my skin to be able to moisturize and take care of itself like it used to. Should I stick it out and try this regimen for 2-3 months? I'm so lost on this.
So I'm definitely a proponent of this regimen, or any regimen with a minimalist approach to skin care when it comes to layering on products and focusing more on diet and lifestyle decisions.
My only problems with this regimen are the factors of dead skin buildup and dryness. The dryness worries me more than anything. Continuously dry skin can really damage the skin over time so I usually end up going back to moisturizing a few weeks into this regimen because the flakiness gets ridiculous to the point where I can't really function in society. I don't know if the dryness will eventually take care of itself or what.
Also, for whatever reason my skin cell production seems to be extremely high, so new layers of dead skin and flakes are constantly being produced faster than they shed. I don't understand how to make this go away and I never see any signs of the dead skin ever really subsiding on its own. Is it supposed to take years or something? If I keep ignoring the problem will it go away? That seems to not make sense. Because of this, I've always been forced to exfoliate 2-3 times a week and follow up with a moisturizer. I rarely break out anymore but my skin tone is awful because of the dead/dry skin problem. If it weren't for that, I would have been on this regimen for good and maybe only very occasionally use a product for a special occasion or something. I really want that lifestyle more than anything, where I don't need to worry about my skin and it takes care of itself for the most part(which is what 90% of people I know do and what I used to do) but every time I try it, my skin turns completely unmanageable, dry, itchy, flaky and awful looking.
I feel like I may have permanently damaged my skin from using many harsh products in the past to the point where it will always be dry to some extent and won't be able to shed properly on its own. I've pretty much given myself some kind of eczema/dermatitis. If that's the case, I'll need products forever to maintain it but it might just be a temporary damage. It's been a couple of years and I just don't know what to do anymore.
If you take too much Zinc, it can be very bad. A copper supplement can counteract a lot of the bad effects from it. But still, taking over 50mg in pill form a day is not good because then you're also probably getting more from eating every day and it could add up to 75-100mg a day which is way too much. I got 2 bad side effects from zinc, dry skin and my hair would shed a bit every time I showered. Other than those side effects it seemed to help regulate new breakouts and keep inflammation down. Right now my skin is way too dry to start up again so I'm waiting for more humid weather then I'll probably go back on 35mg a day.
I followed this regimen for about a week or 2. However, due to my severely dry skin in winter I just couldn't continue it, although I didn't breakout more, the dry/dead/flaky skin just got too intense and I NEED a moisturizer. I don't see my natural oils coming back quickly enough to protect me in this cold weather, I gotta wait.
If you generally suffer from dry skin, I don't see how this regimen can work in places that are extremely dry and cold in the winter. In spring/summer I can see this working, or in areas that are generally more humid. I'll probably stop using anything at all once the warmer, more humid weather comes. New York winters can suck.
For now I've been using water only to wash only at NIGHT, and moisturizing with jojoba oil/vitamin E(dermaE brand, has both oils in 1) day and night. What I've found is that my skin tone looks a lot better and I haven't really broken out except for 1 pustule but it was from eating badly I think. Other than that I just have marks that are healing, and seem to be healing well without cleansing/washing much. Jojoba oil and Vitamin E also help to retain some moisture, improve texture and tone and improve skin elasticity. They've helped a lot, although I'm still not where I wanna be in terms of skin tone or moisture yet.
I feel the water-only and moisturizer method actually works pretty well, especially with jojoba oil since it actually cleanses pores AND moisturizes. I feel a cleanser just isn't needed unless you need to remove makeup, however a moisturizer is important in winter, for me atleast. Unfortunately, no matter what I still have dry skin to an extent. I've started to drink a lot more water so hopefully that helps. Generally though, I don't see this working for people with dry skin in the winter. Going outside with already damaged/dried/stripped skin from previous regimens will just make the skin even worse if you go out unprotected. I hate to have to use anything but it's simply for the reason to give a barrier to my skin from the cold wind. I'll definitely give this regimen complete commitment once it's nicer out though, my skin is never dry in the warmer seasons.
I just wanted to add that I also stopped taking supplements. I no longer use Zinc, Vitamin C or Cod Liver Oil and it has been for the best. I think the Zinc and the vitamin A in Cod Liver was drying out my skin and just making things worse. Everything has been better since I stopped using them, including skin tone and dryness. I may start taking fish oil down the line(the kind without the vitamin A) for general health purposes/mood/memory and it may effect my skin, hopefully in a good way. I also wanted to add that I drink 2-3 cups of Rooibos Tea every day and it seems to help skin tone and calm redness/irritation. Okay, I'm off for a while, goodluck to everyone trying this.
I'm about 2 weeks in and I've had the same results with the dried/dead skin sticking out of the pores. After a while it has substantially gone away though. I also used Jojoba oil a few times which is kinda cheating on this regimen but it actually unclogged and purged the dried sebum in 2 days and I have no more of it. It really saved me. I'll probably continue to use it occasionally at night but stick to water or no washing on the other days and see how it goes. I still have some marks/scars but they're fading faster than before and 1 new small breakout throughout the entire time but it was from eating unhealthy for a few nights I think. Either way this regimen takes time to fully get the skins natural strength back and I'm well on my way there. Will update in another week or so.