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  1. Today marks a new chapter in my acne journey with PCOS. I have found this forum incredibly helpful throughout my decision-making/research process and would like to contribute as well. Let's call this a little experiment shall we... To begin, a bit of backstory: I started getting acne when I was seventeen years old due to fluctuating hormones and diet (isolated to my forehead thankfully). However, upon cleaning up my diet by eliminating processed junk foods and sugar, I was fine in a year or so. With that being said, I have never had a regular "time of the month" (I'm currently 22). It got especially bad this past year, and that is when my bad hormonal cystic acne began forming (only on my forehead, chin and jawline are all clear). I was determined not to go on the birth control pill, as I wanted to deal with the problem naturally. I went to a holistic doctor, worked with acupuncturists and special facial treatments. Nothing seemed to help. I eliminated dairy, gluten, refined sugars and ALL processed foods. It got to the point I even eliminated any inflammatory foods (ex. tomatoes, citrus fruits...even strawberries for goodness sake!) But there was absolutely NO improvement. In fact, this past week...everything has worsened. *It's also worth noting that I have not had a visit from mother nature in over three months. Ever since this cystic acne breakout on my cheeks, my menstrual cycle has been horribly irregular* SO...I went to see my doctor and explained my troubles. She recommended seeing a dermatologist (as if I haven't already tried every topical ointment and cream in the universe and been seeing a dermatologist for years). She diagnosed me with PCOS due to my acne, irregular cycle, some excess facial hair starting, depression, and a few other symptoms (I am very thin however and have never struggled with weight- so we shall see how the birth control pill affects my weight). I asked my doctor if I could go on the birth control pill for an extended period of time. I am aware that things get worse after getting off the pill, so I intended to stay on it for fifteen to twenty years, or until I decide to have children. This is a completely personal choice of mine, as I am in an on-camera career where acne is simply not acceptable. I am quite nervous to start this pill, but I have so much hope that this will work out in three months or so. I am completely aware of the side effects, but this is so important to me for so many reasons. I have heard it gets better before it gets worse, so I will be seeing a wonderful woman who does facial treatments (specifically designed for healing the skin and not just extracting pimples) twice a week until my hormones balance out. I will also be continuing to manage PCOS symptoms as if I weren't on the pill by eating a low GI diet, getting sufficient exercise and undergoing acupuncture hopefully if I decide to come off it sooner, I will have an easier time stabilizing my hormones. I will try to post some photos of my progress and I intend to keep weekly updates here for anyone interested. I know for me, the infamous "initial breakout" was a huge fear of I will be sure to document exactly when that affects me and how severely. Also FYI, the pill I am going on is Yasmin. I have heard great reviews about this pill for acne and PCOS, but of course only time will tell if it works well with my own body. I wish you all the best of luck with your own acne journeys. Despite all the emotional struggle (and DAYS I have spent crying over such a superficial issue), we are all beautiful and special human beings. We'll get through this together! Love you all xoxo
  2. I'm19 & I never had completely clear skin but I wouldn't say I ever had acne (until now) in high school I would just get random pimples but it wasn't severe. Anyway I was on this birth control (Aviane) & I started to break out like crazy all over my cheeks, mostly painful cystic pimples! I was on it for a few months because I thought my skin would eventually adjust, after four months I couldn't take it anymore & I decided to switch. I've now been on my new birth control (Cryselle) for two weeks & I noticed that I'm still breaking out way more than I normally would be (less than on aviane but still more than normal). So I'm just wondering is it supposed to take some time for my skin to adjust or do I have to switch again?!? I also have a bunch of purple spots where old pimples were so any tips on how to get rid of that would also be very helpful! (I also have some hole type scars now, like craters I guess, but I'm assuming those are permanent sadly)
  3. 1. Type of Progestin Every birth control uses progestin (a synthetic form of the progesterone hormone). There are many different types of progestin. It is very important that the type of progestin is LOW in androgenic activity, meaning it doesn't send your testosterone into overdrive and create acne. Here is a list to help choose a birth control. Neutral (won't affect acne either way) No hormones. Copper Paraguard IUD Good (can reduce acne) Drospirenone. Anti-androgenic. Used in Yaz, Yasmin, BeYa, Gianvi, Loryna, Ocella, Zarah Norgestimate. Low androgenic. Ortho Tri Cyclen, Tri Sprintec, TriNessa, Ortho Cyclen, MonoNessa, Sprintec. Cyproterone acetate. Low androgenic. Diane-35, Dianette. Chlormadinone. Low-medium androgenic. Belara. Not-so-good (may not make it worse, but probably won't make it better) Ethynodial diacetate. Medium androgenic. Zovia, Demulen. Desogestrel. Medium androgenic. Mircette, Apri, Reclipsen, Desogen, Kariva. Gestodene. Medium androgenic, Femodene, Femodette, Millinette. Norethindrone. Medium androgenic. Estrostep, Ortho Novum, Loestrin, Minestrin, Brevicon, Synphasic, Ovcon, Cyclafem. Bad (pizza face alert!) Levonorgestrel. High androgenic. Enpress, Plan B, Mirena IUD, Seasonique, Lutera, Portia, Amethyst, Alesse, Seasonale, Triquilar, Triphasil, Aviane. Nogestrel. High androgenic. Cryselle, Ovral, Ogestrel, Ovrette. Etonogestrel. Medium-high androgenic. NuvaRing, Implanon, Nexplanon. DMPA. Medium-high androgenic. DepoProvera. 2. Level of Estrogen Most birth control pills add in estradiol, which is a synthetic form of the hormone estrogen. Generally, skin is clearer when a pill has a moderate to a high level of estrogen. The new "low-dose" pills basically take an existing pill, and cut down the estrogen, so you have way more progestin circulating in proportion to estradiol. It still works for birth control, since you can prevent pregnancy with progestin alone. But cutting the estrogen is bad news for acne most of the time. This isn't a comprehensive list, but some common low-dose BC you should avoid: No Estradiol, all Progestin Depo Provera Implanon NuvaRing Mini-pill Mirena IUD Nexplanon Ultra Low-Dose Alesse (Aviane, Lessina, Lutera, Sronyx) Levlite Loestrin Fe Mircette Ortho Tri Cyclen Lo Low Dose Cyclessa Desogen Levlen21 LoOvral Microgestin Fe Nordette Orthocept Seasonale (Seasonique) 3. Hormone Stability For many, the right progestin type and the right estradiol level will clear them up just fine. For others, however, an extra step is needed. Some acne sufferers have breakouts every time their hormones fluctuate, such as at ovulation (when testosterone rises), or leading up to menstruation (when progesterone rises). Many pills, since their primary purpose is to prevent pregnancy as invisibly as possible, try to replicate normal hormone fluctuations. So each pill has a slightly different set of hormones, to put your body in a cycle. Some people just cannot get clear with their hormones changing all the time. If this sounds like you, please consider trying a "monophasic" pill, which keeps your hormone levels at an even keel throughout the month. Example: Ortho Tri Cyclen is a "triphasic" pill which varies your hormones. A better option would be "Ortho Cyclen", a "monophasic" pill that keeps them stable. Monophasic Pills (NOT a comprehensive list, same colors from Progestin Type List) Alesse Brevicon Diane-35 (Dianette) Kariva Ortho Cyclen (MonoNessa, Sprintec) Yasmin Yaz Demulen (Zovia) Make it easy for me, what do you recommend? For some of you, this is just way too much information. However, don't just go to your dermatologist and tell him/her you want birth control. Many dermatologists, however educated they are, don't make very informed choices about hormonal acne. They'll just give you whatever brand is giving them free samples that month, or else their knowledge of hormonal acne is 10+ years old (concurrent with when they graduated medical school). So, if you just want an easy answer, this my Top 6 list. 1. Yasmin (or Ocella or Zarah) • best type of progestin, monophasic, 30ug of estradiol 2. Yaz (or BeYaz) • best type of progestin, monophasic, but only 20ug of estradiol 3. Ortho Cyclen (or MonoNessa or Sprintec) • good progestin, monophasic, 35ug of estradiol 4. Diane-35 (or Dianette) • good progestin, monophasic, 35ug of estradiol 5. Demulen 1/35E or Demulen 1/50E (or Zovia 1/35E or Zovia 1/50E) • okay progestin, monophasic, 35ug or 50ug of estradiol 6. Ortho Novum 1/35 or Ortho Novum 1/50 • okay progestin, monophasic, 35ug or 50ug of estradiol Frequently Asked Questions What about the mini-pill? There are several different brand names for the mini-pill. A mini-pill uses only progestin and has no estrogen at all. Mini-pills are a terrible choice if you have acne, as they frequently cause acne in people who never had it in the first place. Some of the implant types of birth control, such as the Mirena IUD, also only use progestin, and can increase acne. But my friend is on ______ and her skin is great! Even though it's on your bad list! Look, I am just here to provide information and some general principles. There are always exceptions, and new information is coming out all the time. Feel free to ask questions, but in the end, you're gonna do what you want...if it doesn't work out in the end, well I won't say I told you so.
  4. Does anyone have experience with the birth control implant, and whether it causes acne flares? I have had acne since puberty. Tried the usual treatments of tetracyclines, benzol peroxide, bcp, as well as any fancy treatment system I could get my hands on. Eventually went on Accutane, which was a godsend. My skin has aged a lot since accutance, and I now have big pores and some scars. But it was worth it: the accutane brought my acne down 95% and was definitely worth it. Since then, I have been on twice daily finacea, which dampens the number of small whiteheads and blackheads I still get. Since I still get flares at irregular points, my doctor has put me on Trimethoprim 200mg/day for 2 months to see if we can tip the balance. Because of frequent travelling and headaches, I decided to try the birth control implant. I read many user reviews, looked at clinical trial data, and talked to my doctor and gynecologist. My doctors agreed that there was a small chance that my acne might reoccur. I'm still in the "settling in" phase for the implant, and have been told it will take at least a few months for my body to get use to it. 2 weeks in, and no big breakouts yet. I would really like for this to work, since not having to take a pill every day is awesome. Plus, unlike IUDs, this can't be knocked out of place and doesn't feel uncomfortable. Does anyone have experience with acne recovery and the implant? Any success stories out there?
  5. Hi, Cut a long story short I was taking spiro for my cystic acne and had been on it for about 8 months. I have now had to come off it as I was experiencing hair loss. My doctor said about dianette the birth control pill, as it is similar to spiro as it's an anti-anodgren blocker. I am apprehensive to start it because I I had to come off the pill last year as my doctor suspected I had phlebitis and after coming off the pill was when I got my lumps on my forehead. I haven't taken any spiro for about a week and I am due on next week, I am concerned my legs will hurt again if I take pill, I Â concerned if I start the pill my hormones will be up in arms again, the pill may not work and what if I stay off All medication that my cysts could be gone fir good? I don't know what to do can someone give me some advice on what they would do if it were them? Thanks, CharlotteÂ
  6. Hello everyone! I'm really hoping someone will have helpful input and maybe even a solution After being on it for 5 years, I stopped taking the birth control pill about 8 months ago and have developed moderate-severe acne on my cheeks and chin. Mind you, I didn't have an acne issue before starting birth control or while I was on it. I'm starting to get really frustrated though, because I figured if I gave my body time to acclimate my hormones would eventually balance themselves out. My acne actually seems to be getting worse and I'm starting to panic especially because I'm starting to scar. I've tried numerous over the counter acne treatments, face washes, moisturizers, not washing my face, the regimen, doxycycline, a vegan diet, and more. I'm currently taking vitamin A and vitamin D to see if that makes a dent. I've also been going to acupuncture for the last 2 weeks to see if they can balance my hormones naturally. I JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO ANYMORE. Any girls out there have a similar experience? HELLLLP PLEASE
  7. Has anyone experience moderate to severe acne after stopping Yaz? I was on Yaz for 5 years, I stopped taking it 8 months ago. Since then I have experienced EXTREMELY oily skin and moderate acne that seems to be getting worse with time. This is really disheartening, I figured after my hormones started to level out that maybe my skin would too. I didn't even have acne before I started birth control... Now my chin and right cheek are covered with pimples and red marks from previous spots. I've tried doxycycline, various face washes, the regimen, and a few other treatments. Nothings really seemed to work. I REALLY don't want to go back on the pill because I know I'll have to deal with this eventually. Hoping there's someone out there that went through this that might have a solution?
  8. So I've decided to try and switch from taking birth control pills to a copper iud. The two times I have been on birth control my skin has gotten a bit better while on it granted but I hate the way my body reacts to it otherwise. I get really extreme mood swings, night sweats, my sex drive is a lot lower and I have less body hair (this would be a great thing if my eyebrows and lashes weren't included). I don't feel comfortable with the idea of constantly putting hormones into my body over a long period of time considering it changes my body so much. I just don't feel like I'm myself when I am on the pill. The only thing stopping me from switching is my acne. I know that once I switch my face is going to blow up. I know I am going to switch at some point I am just not sure when. I'm starting accutane on the 9th and I'm not sure if I should switch while I'm on it or once I finish. My thinking is that if I switch while I am on it the accutane will deal with any break outs that are a result from the hormone imbalance and that by the time I get off accutane my hormones will have become stable again. I am afraid that if I wait until after I am done with the treatment that it will undo the effects of the accutane. I'm just hoping that my derm doesn't give me a hard time about switching BC during my treatment and my gyno is willing to fit me with a IUD considering I'm only 19. Does anyone have any experience with switching BC while on accutane?
  9. 10/5/2012 Over One Year Later...

    From the album Face the Facts

    Over one year later, and I'm still excited about how well avoiding certain foods (for me, tomato, avocado, grapefruit, safflower oil, cola, pumpkin + nightshades) and taking birth control has improved my complexion. I feel comfortable enough about my skin's resiliency to actually wear make-up now... thus the picture with make-up (eye shadow, eye liner, and lip color). For the record, I wash my face only once a day now, and I have been doing so for the most since over a year ago. It's funny, because I washed my face twice a day when my acne was really bad. My point is this--for people who think people have acne because their skin is "dirty"... GET A CLUE! One more thing! I use Wal-Mart face cleanser now! SO MUCH CHEAPER. Before, I would spend quite a bit of money on fancy products claiming to rid my face of acne (e.g. Sheseido, Proactiv, Murad, Aveda, etc.) Now I can spend $7 on a cleanser and $8 on a good SPF face lotion and call it a day! The point here is this (and a lot of you probably already know this)--expensive products, for the most part, claim to fix things that they can't fix, because the root of the problem is more than skin-deep!
  10. 10-Year Battle with Acne

    Hi all! For the past little while I have been reading other's posts with their acne struggle, and I have been so impressed with the community and support that I thought I would try my own! So I'm going (try) and do long story short, but it may just end up long story long! If you don't want to read it all, I won't be offended if you just skip to the end I first started getting acne when I was in 6th grade, and by 8th grade it was awful. I started on a topical and antibiotic (I believe it was differin and doxy) but nothing was doing anything. By grade 9, I was put on accutane. At first, my body could not handle the dose that I was on, so I went off of it. A few months later, I went back on a very low dose... and this became the start of my prolonged battle with accutane. For about four years (I know, super unusual!) I was on about 40mg of accutane 2x/week (typical dose between 40-80mg daily!) I was also on multiple different birth controls over these four years (but was not sexually active). Every time I went off of accutane for periods of time, I would break out and my skin was awful (cysts, never ending pimples, blackheads, and viciously oily skin). I told myself at the start of my sophomore year in college, I would give accutane one more go. I was paired with a birth control, and I broke out completely in perioral dermatitis (a cross between acne and eczema). My skin had never been worse. I immediately went cold turkey on accutane and swore that would be the last and final time I would use it. I was then put on doxy which within a few months, cleared the pd. However, in January of my junior year in college, my doc put me on spirnolactone. After about 3 months, I loved the results I was seeing! In June of that year, I decided to go off of it (I can't really tell you why) and by September of my senior year of college, my skin was terrible all over again. Starting in September, I was put on spirno once again, and without results by November my doc also put me on doxy and a topical tretinoin. I am happy to say, come January of my senior year, my skin is good, but not great. I typically only have 1-3 pimples at a time, but my face is still very sensitive and has red marks all over my lower cheeks/jawline/neck, but is also still very oily. So this brings me to present day. I am satisfied with my current regimen. I take 100mg of doxy 2x/daily (200mg total) and I believe I am on 100mg of spirno 1x/daily. I use my tretinoin gel at night before bed. In the morning, I wash with an oil control cetaphil cleanser, and at night i use panoxyl face wash (10% bp). I am in a serious relationship and we are planning on getting engaged in the next few months and be married in summer of 2018. I've been on doxy close to 4 months, and am nervous my body is starting to reject it or the effect is starting to wear off. My questions are: what should I do once doxy fully wears off? How long can I stay on spirno for? I still get occasional breakouts, but I'm nervous that going off of doxy was make my face completely break out and all my progress will be lost. I am 21 and have been struggling with acne since I was 12. Needless to say I am SO done. My boyfriend who has porcelain skin doesn't get it, and I feel as though people who have had acne (so people reading this) will be the only ones who truly knows how depressing and dark it can be to walk through this. Does anyone have any suggestions for what to try after doxy? How long can I stay on spirno? Will that also start to wear off? What are some long term treatments I can use?? (my goal is to have clear skin consistently by my wedding in a year and a half! Which seems like a long ways a way, but in acne treatment world, isn't that far away!) Any suggestions will be truly appreciated (especially after this long story long)! Thanks for your help in advance!
  11. Hi there, You may remember me from some months back, I was dealing with hormonal acne in my 30s. I have been off this site for a while because I now have clear skin and I wanted to update on what I've done and what worked. I have been on generic Yaz for about a year, it improved my skin but I wasn't clear until I added 50mg of Spiro daily that i saw a dramatic change. It took about 3 months( from June to August) to see results but once it worked, my skin became normal as opposed to very oily, I stopped getting hormonal cysts and white heads and pretty much now, my skin is clear and I'm extremely happy with it. The only other things to mention are while no topicals really helped my acne, green tea extract and over the counter retinol( not Retinol A) have been the best topicals I've used. Green tea helps with too much androgens and inflammation and retinol helps your skin cells shed and renew faster, the retinol isn't nearly as harsh as Retinol A but still helps. I buy green tea extract at the health shop and mix it in with moisturizer. I also wash my face with crushed oatmeal( I put dry oatmeal in a blender). It is moisturising without drying out my face. I do try to eat healthy but since the meds have kicked in, the only thing that ever affects my skin is dairy. It really caused inflamed acne before but now, it might cause a small pimple or two but they go away in 1-2 days. I haven't been on simply because since my skin has cleared I have not thought about it much. Its awesome to have normal skin that isn't breaking out in ugly, red, and painful bumps and feel like my face is an oil slick. I have been depressed in the past and borderline suicidal, and I'm not going to say my life is suddenly perfect, but its a huge improvement in my mindset and I feel " normal". I haven't had any noticeable side effects from either med, except lower blood pressure and the absence of periods from time to time, which is fine by I have gained weight from the antidepressant I take but I'm trying to wean off it since I no longer have many of the mental issues, including acne. I hope my advice might help someone, of course it won't work for everyone( Spiro and birth control won't work for males) but the important thing is to keep trying and don't give up. And love yourself no matter the state of your skin because you are the same person inside no matter what so don't get to the point where you feel your acne makes you less of a person ( like I did). Its a medical condition like anything else not your fault. Best of luck to everyone, if anyone has questions about my regimen I'll be happy to answer.
  12. I started accutane last week and my skin has gotten the initial breakout. Does anyone have any tips to overcoming it? Or Accutane tips in general? I want it all to go as smoothly as possible and I really appreciate everyone's knowledge and experience. I haven't experienced much dryness but in well prepared and in anticipation. My skin is very oily still and hasn't slowed yet.
  13. Hello so I was prescribed birth control to regulate my periods because they are really messed up. I'm 19 & always would get a couple pimples here & there but ever since starting the birth control "aviane" then switched to "orsythia" (which are both apparently the same chemicals just switched because it was cheaper) I started breaking out a lot. Mostly on my cheeks but more on the right side of my face which is odd. The pimples aren't huge but they're really painful, almost cystic like, under the skin pimples. I get a few on my forehead & chin but it's mostly my cheeks & now on my cheeks I have what I assume to be scarring? It's like dark pink spots where the pimple was but sometimes there is hard bump that stays for awhile. I also started getting tiny pimples on my chest & random big pimples on my back which are both things I've never had before. I've been on the birth control for almost 3 months & I just really have no idea what to do because I'm scared to switch birth controls for the sake of my once really messed up periods (I would get two a month) someone please help!
  14. YASMIN log

    Hi guys, so I have been on the contraceptive pill Yasmin for 9 days now in order to treat my acne and I regret it to some extent because since taking it my acne has just gone 1000x worse. It's probably worth mentioning that I have PCOS. I'm going to update my progress on here if anyone is interested in following it I'd like to hear some of your experiences with Yasmin too! What im currently taking: Duac Yasmin I just started taking Vitamin A supplements because I have heard many many success stories with these!
  15. Hi everyone! Welcome to my post! Here are the topics that I'll be discussing: Accutane Birth Control / PCOS Cosmetics Washing your face Topical medications Before you continue reading I'd like to say that I'm still dealing with cystic acne. It's been a long journey, but my skin has improved dramatically. I've accepted that I'll never have perfect skin, but that doesn't mean I can't have try to have decent skin. Attached are pictures of my Accutane journey. My skin cleared up beautifully, but years later the acne came back. The last picture is me wearing makeup, not caring that my skin isn't perfect ;) Accutane I started getting acne in elementary school, and I've always had oily skin. I tried many OTC products, topical meds and home remedies, but nothing helped. Eventually, my derm put me on Accutane. I was on it for a year and my skin cleared. Years later, my acne slowly came back (not to the same severity as before). I did a second and third and fourth round of Accutane, but I had to stop each time due to horrible side effects. The acne always came back. Round one side effects: Dry, cracked, painfully chapped lips Constipation Dry eyes Round two-four side effects: All of the above side effects PLUS Extreme dryness in private area (TMI, sorry) Blurred vision Thinning hair I didn't take birth control during round 1 or 2 of Accutane. Birth Control/ PCOS I have PCOS. I have high testosterone and my periods have always been irregular. My doctors have said that birth control is beneficial for PCOS. I've literally tried 6 different bill control pills. The first 5 all broke me out HORRIBLY. My skin would get so oily and I would get acne all over my entire face. I can't remember the names of all the different pills that I tried- but I can tell you that Ortho Tri-Cyclen and Orho Tri-Cyclen Lo were the WORST. It took my face months to recover from the acne that those pills gave me. I've been taking Yasmin for 5 months and I LOVE IT. No headaches, no nausea, no initial breakout, and my acne has actually improved. My husband has commented on how consistently clear my skin has been. Please try Yasmin if you have PCOS/ adult hormonal acne. Yasmin decreases your body's testosterone levels which is why my acne has improved. AMAZING! Cosmetics I wear light makeup to boost my confidence and cover my redness from current/past acne spots. I start with a light application of non-comedogenic primer, then apply a mixture of oil free foundation with a non-comedogenic moisturizer (my "homemade" tinted moisturizer), and finish with bareminerals loose powder. These products don't give me breakouts, but I still try to skip makeup as much as possible. Face-wash I always wash my makeup off with CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser. Actually, I always wash my face with this in general. This is the best face wash that I've EVER used. It doesn't dry out your skin, but it cleans the skin throughly. I wash my face 2-3 times a day, depending on if I workout that day. Please try this cleanser. I can't recommend it enough. Topical Medications/ Spot Treatment If you're going to use a prescribed topical medication, the #1 thing that you need to do is to use a minimal amount. I actually mix my topicals with water to dilute it. Before applying, I use a non-comedogenic lotion with the topical treatment over it. Be gentle with your skin at all times. I have scars from the times that I wasn't gentle. I'm currently using Acanya and, honestly, I love it. It heals my acne very quickly, and I only use it as a spot treatment. Remember, what works for me might not work for you love yourself at all times (even during a horrible breakout) you are not alone <3 you can get through this GOOD LUCK!!!
  16. Hi girls! I'm 16 years old and I started Acutane (or Claravis the generic version) on December 24th about 14 days ago. I also started birth control when I got my period on the 27th. I missed one day of acutane and my prescription got messed up (i was given enough for only 15's a mess) but I'm worried about my period. I usually have my period for 6 days and some spotting the 7th and 8th day. But today is the 12th day of me spotting. I'm not bleeding enough to need a pad but it's staining my clothes because my period is usually done by now. Should i be worried? Does birth control cause this? I have experienced some itching on my vagina too... has anyone else experienced this as well?
  17. So I just finished my first pack of Yaz, and though I've of course spent hours reading about peoples' struggles with the initial breakout, I just wanted some advice. I had a horrible, debilitating full-face acne breakout over the past summer, and by some miracle managed to clear it up to just some significant residual scarring and a few whiteheads here and there in a few months with the help of a low dose of doxycycline and tazorac. Then, as a few more months passed, I was starting to notice some flare-ups of some jawline acne, and because of the location along with the fact that I had only gotten one period in my entire first semester of college (on NO BC), I decided it was probably hormonal. So I started yaz just about a month ago and I am devastated. I wake up every day so ashamed of the breakout on my face, and I am completely dreading going back to school, a place that I love. The strange part is, my spotty neck acne has completely cleared up and my forehead is SPOTLESS. My forehead actually hasn't looked quite this good in a while. But my left cheek is way spottier than it's been, and my right cheek is absolutely horrible; painful and cystic and covered in swollen bumps and whiteheads. It's caused me horrible depression because I truly cannot even leave the house, as I've been pitched back into the absolutely devastating state I was in over the summer (not to mention it physically HURTS!!). I am trying to stay brave but it is taking a horrible toll on me emotionally; I hardly even come out of my bedroom because I don't even want to see my family like this. Wondering if anyone has any advice or encouragement, or at least can offer some methods about keeping the acne under some sort of control while my body adjusts! Thank you so much
  18. Yaz Acne Help?

    So I just finished my first pack of Yaz, and though I've of course spent hours reading about peoples' struggles with the initial breakout, I just wanted some advice. I had a horrible, debilitating full-face acne breakout over the past summer, and by some miracle managed to clear it up to just some significant residual scarring and a few whiteheads here and there in a few months with the help of a low dose of doxycycline and tazorac. Then, as a few more months passed, I was starting to notice some flare-ups of some jawline acne, and because of the location along with the fact that I had only gotten one period in my entire first semester of college (on NO BC), I decided it was probably hormonal. So I started yaz just about a month ago and I am devastated. I wake up every day so ashamed of the breakout on my face, and I am completely dreading going back to school, a place that I love. The strange part is, my spotty neck acne has completely cleared up and my forehead is SPOTLESS. My forehead actually hasn't looked quite this good in a while. But my left cheek is way spottier than it's been, and my right cheek is absolutely horrible; painful and cystic and covered in swollen bumps and whiteheads. It's caused me horrible depression because I truly cannot even leave the house, as I've been pitched back into the absolutely devastating state I was in over the summer (not to mention it physically HURTS!!). I am trying to stay brave but it is taking a horrible toll on me emotionally; I hardly even come out of my bedroom because I don't even want to see my family like this. Wondering if anyone has any advice or encouragement, or at least can offer some methods about keeping the acne under some sort of control while my body adjusts! Thank you so much
  19. Hi guys! So I've been on doxycycline for a month and I'm seeing rapid improvement. My skin is still far from perfect but it's better than it has been in a really long time. A lot of my acne is becoming flat and turning to just scars which I am okay with. I will be starting accutane in a month so I took my first birth control pill today since going on birth control is required. The pill I was prescribed is "Junel fe" and according to the reviews it produces pretty nasty acne. If I am on doxycycline is there any chance I can avoid an acne flare up? I was so happy with the way my skin was improving the thought of having to go another month with cystic acne is really tough to think about. Please help!
  20. Hi there, I started taking Accutane about 2 months ago. It's going fairly well with my treatment but I'm experiencing the usual side effects (dry lips and skin, back and joint pain). While on the treatment I take Noriday which is a progesterone only pill (mini pill and i've been on it for the past year). Doing some Googling the other day I came across something about that Accutane can lessen the effect of this type of birth control pill (also normal ones) and sent away an email to my dermatologist about this. Surprisingly she tells me 'Yes it can decrease the effect so you should use condom as well". Dear dermatologist, big THANKS for not telling me this fact. I've been using only the pill for the past 2 months as is now seriously scared of pregnancy. I need your guys advice on this one, does it really decrease the effect? Or is this bullshit? Internet is telling me different things.. Thanks
  21. Nothing works

    I've tried sooo many different treatments over the past five years and nothing has worked or even come close to working. I'm trying to get my mom to take me to the gynecologist so I can get birth control, but she said she thinks that might be too much. I hear the pill helps acne a lot. Can anyone give me a success story ?
  22. Does Accutane Cause PCOS?

    Basically what the title says. Does Accutane cause PCOS? Has anyone developed PCOS after taking accutane? Or is PCOS caused by birth control? Is there a link of Accutane to PCOS?
  23. i wanted to post my spiro experience here- and get any feedback on other user's experiences. firstly, ever since i could remember i have had on/off SEVERE acne. all over the face. i could not even put a finger on an area that did not have a bump or red mark on it. I wanted to avoid birth control/ RX routes so i tried every diet (gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian) and supplement/ natural method that i could think of (zinc, vit d, berberine, vit a, etc.) Nothing helped in the slightest bit. I eventualy got tired of all of it and came across spironolactone in my research... saw the general lack of side effects and positive reviews, so i went to a dermatologist, and he prescribed me 50 mg per day and told me i wouldn't see results until 3- 4 months in. He was correct, i started on August 10th and today would be 4 and a half months, where i can say that i am 95% clear, with only 3-4 small spots on my face. However, as i have been taking it tfor some months, i have noticed some side effects and have come across in my research others that have noticed some of the same things: 1) weight gain- i have always generally been a thin person, fluctuating between 110-120 at my heaviest. I have always carried weight in my belly only, where everywhere else stayed lean. However, since i have started taking spiro, I feel like my weight distribution has definitely changed, and i am getting bad stretch marks and cellulite around my butt/thigh region. Because of the diuretic effect, my bloating in my stomach has flattened, however, i am gaining weight on other areas of my body that i have never experienced before. 2) bloated face- i used to get compliments on my defined jawline and thin face, however, spiro has definitely made my face look much rounder and fatter looking 3) bad/tense dreams and longer sleep- since starting spiro, i am getting horrible, vivid dreams every single night. I also have to sleep a lot more on this pill. I used to run perfectly on 7-8 hours, now I need 10-11 hours to function. 4) general anxiety- i have noticed myself getting anxious about things i never used to, snapping at my friends more, and feeling stressed in my day to day life. My theory is that many of these symptoms (weight gain, bloated face, anxiety) are caused by the spike in cortisol that spiro does cause, along with an eventual estrogen dominance due to the suppression of testosterone. That is why i have started to take rhodiola and phosphatidylserine supplements along with my spiro to try to combat some of the effects, but i dont know whether it is placebo or not because i cannot really tell a difference. Has anyone been able to find a solution or can provide expertise for any of these problems?? please let me know, as i am extremely satisfied with the positive aspects, but do not know if down the road i will have to find another acne method.
  24. Day 17

    Feeling depressed and crappy today in general because I haven't slept enough all week - last night was really bad, 2 AM and restless. I also have to take an antibiotic for a UTI which worries me for SE's on my body and skin. Another 2 comedones became full fledged zits (a tiny one and unfortunately a larger and more noticeable one) and that nodule I mentioned is still not gone. UGH. I may just go for a cortisone shot if I can find someone who can take me right after xmas. It's so annoying. Even though breakouts have been healing overall, the terrible look/texture of my skin is so deeply saddening it makes my chest actually hurt. The PIH and blackhead marks from spiro are's like once I get a blackhead, it won't budge for months unless extracted. I'm ordering an at-home SA peel to patch test as a way to get rid of this. Also, I'm trying diluted tea tree oil v chemical spot treatments.
  25. Day 15 [BP and PIH...ugh]

    Hey again everyone. I'm almost at day 16 now and I thought I'd check in. I don't feel as down in the dumps about the initial breakout anymore, since a ton of it has calmed down and cleared [touch gives me hope]. I have really crappy PIH marks from the cheek breakout and two small nodules remaining [one near the left corner of my mouth from the hormones, a super tiny one on left cheek that was a comedone but got inflamed ... thanks Spiro!] but it is what it is. They won't scar, and they're not bright red. It's a little irritated but I'm leaving them alone. I accidentally gave into stress and picked at a small spot but it's okay, thankfully. Being worried about moving, my screwed up class schedule and my health hasn't helped me with my skin. I hope to see better results day by day. I'm skipping the placebos to normalize my hormones -- it's recommended with a doc's approval for the first 2-3 packs, no matter what pill you're on, since it lets your body get used to the levels of hormones. I hate BP, yet I use it out of anxiety and all it does is make my skin irritated and my breakouts worse...dumb, I know. That's probably why the cheek PIH got so gnarly. I'm convinced BP has always made my PIH worse, which therefore makes my skin look bad even when it isn't. So I threw out the tube today. Good riddance. Oh, and I'm looking for a new sulphur spot treatment if anyone has any recommendations. I've tried cheap drug stores ones and they are just too irritating due to fragrance and whatever.