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  1. Tazorac + Doxy Log

    Hi guys!! I'm an 18 year old trying to get rid of her acne once and for all I have suffered from acne since my freshman year of high school (mild to moderate). My acne was never really cystic - I had inflamed pimples and blackheads in my T-zone. Through trial and error over the years, I was finally able to clear my skin through using Retin A Micro 0.04% (RAM) at night, along with Aczone or Finacea in the morning (alternating each day). However, during the fall of last year, I began noticing closed comedones (whiteheads) on the sides of my chin. I began using the RAM in these areas. However, this did nothing, and my comedones worsened. They began to spread to the rest of my chin, on my upper lip, and in between my eyebrows. My nose, which has always had blackheads, became even more clogged. The worst part is that these comedones become inflamed zits and leave hyperpigmentation behind. I talked to my derm about this, and she upper my RAM to 0.1%. This did not help, even after 6+ months. She said that the next thing to try was Spiro, which I did not want to take. (I have, however, through my own research found that Paula's Choice AHA and BHA gels do help to reduce the clogs to some extent - see my routine below.) I recently switched derms. He is putting me on Doxycycline (75 mg) and Tazorac cream 0.05%. I am hoping that the Taz, being a stronger retinoid, will help to eradicate these comedones. I also think that my skin may be slightly resistant to the RAM, as I have used it for the past 5 years. Because retinoids have worked well in the past, I'm hoping that a different retinoid will shake things up and clear my pores. Here is a great link describing the differences between RAM and Taz: http://www.skinacea.com/retinoids/natural-vs-synthetic-retinoids.html#.UsjULODFXJw As of now, my skin consists of comedones on my chin, nose, between my eyebrows, and on my upper lip. My "problem area" is definitely my chin (esp the sides). I get the occasional random pimple, but for the most part, any inflammation comes from my comedones becoming infected. My current routine: AM Wash with Cera Ve hydrating cleanser Mix Paula's Choice BHA 2% gel with PC AHA 8% gel Cera Ve moisturizing lotion Aczone or Finacea (alternate) PM Cera Ve hydrating cleanser Taz 0.05% cream Cera Ve lotion *Take 75 mg Doxy with dinner I will be documenting my progress on both Taz and Doxy - partially for myself, partially because I have been lurking on other people's logs for a long time and find them extremely helpful. Please comment with questions, support, or advice Other Links: Facial Masks I Recommend:
  2. Before I start: I used the search function of this forum but found mixed answers, so I ask this question again and hope the mods are fine with this Hello, I am a 19 year old young man. When I was 16 (just about to turn 17) my dermatologist prescribed me accutane (10mg daily). i took it for about 3 months and my acne cleared up. After that, I stopped taking accutane for a few months because I thought i was "healed". Not having taken the drug for several months, my acne started to come back worse than ever. Then I started to take accutane again for a few months until it cleared up and came back even worse... To sum it up, I took accutane on and off for about 2 years (Approximately 1 year of active accutane intake). I stopped taking accutane at the beginning of this year. During my accutane regimen, I didn't experience any side effects except dry skin/eyes/lips. However, after I stopped taking accutane, I experienced side effects like depression (combined with heavy mood swings), hair thinning on the sides, extreme back pain (especially in the shoulder blades) and bad vision. I know, you are supposed get blood tests done every month but my dermatologist didn't care a lot about this and told me (after having done one blood test in the beginning of the regimen) that I will be fine, because my blood levels were good and also because of the fairly low dose, I think. Sometimes, I drank alcohol while my accutane regimen but I felt like that hasn't had any impact at all. Today, I really regret having taken the drug for so long. Even though I don't know whether the post-regimen side effects come from accutane or not. The worst thing about all this stuff is, that I didn't know that accutane can cause pre-mature epiphysial closure. I talked with my dermatologist about this possible side effect and he told me that this side effect only occurred in patients that took extremely high doses of accutane, about 60-80 mg daily (can anyone even confirm this?), and that I shouldn't be worried at all. In fact, he told me that he has been actively prescribing accutane to even younger patients for more than 20 years now and nothing bad has happened. Maybe he is right... Well, I assume he is. I mean, this drug wouldn't be legal where I live (Germany) if it had such severe side effects like growth stunting right? I feel really desperate and hope that someone here reads this wall of text and can deliver a qualified answer... About my body: I am 5'8, my dad is 5'5 and my mom is 5'4. I know I reached a good height but still... I constantly ask myself whether I could have been a bit taller if I didn't start taking accutane or not... Thanks in advance for your answers
  3. Hi everyone, this is my second month on differin and I'm having a couple of cystic acne which doesn't come to a head, multiple pus-filled acne (which fortunately comes to a head) and lots of dark acne scars (a few which are still red and many others which are dark and grey). I get that there are initial breakouts with differin, but am I supposed to get cystic acne from this? Some of my cystic acne doesn't go away completely and stay as a bump on my face. Worse of all, there are the multiple dark grey scars which occur after every breakout! Right now I'm even afraid to meet my friends due to these scars. My dermatologist initially prescribed Differin for some small scars initially, but the application then eventually led to numerous whiteheads all over my chin and cheeks. When I consulted my dermatologist, she said that I have to continue applying it until all the whiteheads are cleared through breakouts. I was stunned to say the least, because my face used to be completely free of any acne except for a few occasional pimples before the topical application of Differin. To have numerous whiteheads and now all those cystic acne coupled with dark grey pigmentation is just baffling to me... and all these just happened within a few months of usage. If I would have known that differin causes breakouts, I wouldn't have used this for my scars at all. But the question is, should I continue applying Differin? I've been applying close to 2 months and 2 weeks now... and they say that I should give it 3 months for it to work. But right now, what I get are pretty much just adverse effects, and the initial acne scars (which was the initial purpose of applying Differin) have not really faded....
  4. 4 Months

    Almost 4 months of using Differin, cleansing with Cetaphil 2x a day, never using make up, and stopping my obsession of my skin.. here's what happened! My skin is renewed. I know I still have few blemishes but this is far better from where i started. I feel so thankful with the products i use. Especially, Galderma creator of differin and cetaphil products, for all their life changing innovations. This wasn't an easy journey, i had ups and downs but i powered through despite the recurring seemingly endless breakouts, with the help of people who share their own experiences on here. I am very thankful, i wasn't able to name each one of them but they all inspired me one way or another. In return, i am here to share my own experience. I am now a renewed person after my breakout experience. I learned to love my natural skin. Less is more. I no longer put any make ups except for one, lipstick! I just use the mildest cleanser, Cetaphil! I no longer obsess on my skin like I used to. I put moisturizer on which is also Cetaphil. I'm now a believer of the power of retinoids. Where as before it scares the hell out of me when reading all horror stories about it. But after I experience it myself, i can say that you have to be mentally and emotionally prepared for the roller coaster ride (redness, dryness, breakouts name it) should you use this. Because in the end, after 4 months for me, my skin became super smooth like a baby and the dark spots fade away fast. I will keep updating till i finally achieve my clear skin goal.
  5. I've been on Cephalexin and Aczone for 3 years and started Tretinoin a year ago. Before starting Tretinoin my acne was mild to moderate and I experienced a bad IB for close to 6 months when I started using .025% Tretinoin. After 6 months my skin basically went back to what it was before Tretinoin but now (1 year later) I'm breaking out again. I'm thinking to ask my derm for .05% Tretinoin, but I'm a bit scared because my IB was so bad with .025% and I don't want all the pain to be for nothing. Has anyone had good experience switching from .025% to .05%? Both in terms of IB and final results?
  6. I'm currently using retin-a gel 0.05% after retin-a cream 0.025% and micro retin-a 0.04% did nothing for me. I'm desperately, and I mean DESPERATELY hoping this is going to work as it's nearly my last resort after having been through 4 spells of Accutane (had to stop because of awful side effects) and after having exhausted pretty much every other option. I was wondering: is 0.1% that much more effective than 0.05%? For those who've been on both, which worked better, and how big was the difference? Should I have started with the 0.1% first before trying the 0.05%?
  7. I will being using Retin A gel 0.025% (the lowest) in about two weeks time and will go up to the 0.05% after a month. I know that my skin will be extremely dry, irritated and flaky. I just want to know how long does the dryness and peeling last for? As I want to wear makeup in the summer without it looking awful. I'm scared I won't be able to wear makeup after using retin A. Does the acne get worse before better with this treatmen? Also how long after will I start seeing results? Thanks for all your help!
  8. Hey guys, so I think I'm nearing week 4 on Differin, and I knew to expect an initial breakout as I'd used this product last year (and stupidly went off of it because I'm impatient). But i can't remember what happened last year - I think it definitely helped, but I can't remember my side effects while on it. I'm getting pimples in the areas where I have heaps of closed comedones (sides of face, cheeks near nose) as well as a few on my forehead. However since I've started using differin my face has been incredibly oily, and I've noticed my pores look HUGE. It's summer where I live at the moment but I'm wondering if this is normal? I have always had large pores and somewhat oily skin however I can't remember my forehead pores ever looking this obvious or my skin feeling like such an oil slick. In fact, for the past couple of years, my forehead was pretty much clear with no clogged pores. My skin feels rough and sensitive over the areas of acne, and even though I just wash with cetaphil, it feels a bit tight. It also looks quite dull and I've noticed heaps of closed comedones on my chin now. I steamed my face, exfoliated about 3 times a week and used a clay mask once in the last couple of weeks, so could I have put my skin under too much stress? I had been getting chemical peels late last year which made my acne 100x worse but I made sure not to start differin until a few weeks after my last peel. The first time I was prescribed differin last year was by a dermatologist, however this time I simply went to my local GP and asked for it, so should I be seeing a derm? just wondering if anyone has experienced this oiliness/large pores/dull or rough skin whilst on Differin?
  9. When I eat certain foods, particularly sugar and dairy, I breakout, and so when I totally avoid these foods my skin is 90% clear. I've been eating like this for 6 months now but it's really difficult. So i was wondering if using a retinoid would stop me from breaking out as much even if my acne is caused by food?? Does it work that way or will the only thing that keep me clear just be not eating those foods? Also, I know that most people experience an initial breakout from retinoids but if I don't currently have any spots, will I get an initial breakout? thanks
  10. Hi, I really need some insight about Retin-A (Micro .04%) as I’m just beginning my treatment. For some background information: I never had acne. I went for a chemical peel for minor discoloration and it completely changed my skin texture. My skin is very bumpy and the texture is so bad. It has now been six months since the peel, and my skin texture is still not restored. I have tried to baby my skin but it is not working. I also tried Differin (.03%) for three months but it just peeled my skin and none of the bumps purged or responded to the treatment. These bumps all over my face (small and large ones) are just there, don’t change sizes, get inflamed or anything. There are tons and tons of them. I just began Retin-A Micro. 04% four days ago. So far, all i’ve gotten is minor peeling and stinging. So my question is, has anyone with similar skin texture tried Retin-A? And what were the results? I’ve attached some photos so people can get better understanding. Any advice will help. Thanks!
  11. Hey everyone! My biggest skin struggle lately has been what I'm self-diagnosing as closed comedonal acne. Strangely enough, I seem to wake up with non-comedonal skin. By the end of the day (whether makeup or oil), it's like my skin has flared up, and the clogged pores are SO visible in the light. Does that happen to anyone else?! Honestly, I've done some damage to my skin in the past few months by thinking I could squeeze these suckers out of existence. I realize that it does more harm than good, but it is so hard to convince myself that they'll just go away. I also recently tried Rodan + Fields Unblemish, and STOPPED. My skin has more scars and pigmentation than it used to, and I honestly think it's a result of those products. I've been researched WAY too much the past week, and I have an established appointment with my dermatologist set up for Friday. However, I'm legit so scared of being prescribed a topical retinoid because of what I hear of the purge. My mild acne has sort of broken my spirit (ha) this past month, and I seriously don't think I can handle a "purge." Is that the ONLY way to cure these things? I have read that some have had help with using AHA products, but I'm so overwhelmed. As soon as I'm feeling confident about a product, I find some terrible outcome that someone has had. Help help- should I just deal with my INSANE fear of a purge? PS- Sorry, kinda look like Prison Mike from the Office in these photos with my towel Maybe it's not as bad as I'm thinking, but I feel like it's a crazy struggle not to be fed up with my skin.
  12. Hello all. This is my 2nd post on acne.org. My first was when my acne was at its worse.I developed moderate to severe acne mostly on my cheeks. I had at least 3-4 cysts per cheek and 8+ regular zits along my jaw and forehead. About a year and a half ago I started Dan's Regimen. This helped me reduce my acne to about one new pimple a week. Which for me is amazing. Yet about 5 months ago I noticed that the BP isn't working as well as it used to to keep my acne at bay. I'm no where near what I used to be but I get 2 or 3 new pimples a week.("Regular" pimples not cysts and luckily they go away within a day or two). My issue now is that these new pimples are leaving very dark hyperpigmentation. So I still don't feel my face is completely clear because the hyperpygmentation makes my skin look pretty bad. Today I went to the dermatologist for the first time ever. He prescribed me a Retin A called tretinoin (generic) and a topical antibiotic called Clindamycin. My issue is that I'm scared to stop Dan's Regimen because my acne will come back full force. But I don't know how to incorporate the Retin A in my Regimen. Has anyone tried doing the BP in the morning and Retin A at night? Do you think the BP would help combat the initial breakout of the Retin A. Should I even start the topical antibiotic as I've heard that it's pretty useless since your body becomes resistant. I'm not sure what to do, but my main focus is to try to keep my active acne as minimal as possible and try to reduce my hyperpygmentation.
  13. Hi guys! I'm new to this site, but I'm so frustrated at this point. I'm older and I never really dealt with acne very much until I was 18.. which seems to be the opposite of most people's experience. My acne is mostly cystic. It started on my chin and now I get them on my cheeks and forehead. They're miserably sore and take weeks to heal. Anyway, so I went to my PCP at 18 or 19 for this and she put me on clindamycin topical gel and Retin-A topical gel. At first they worked pretty good. I always had at least mild acne, but it was an improvement so I was happy. Fast forward a year and I go back to her for severe cystic pimples that were causing my lymph nodes to swell and generally just made me feel yucky. So this time she gives me oral doxycycline. When she prescribes me this, she tells me that if it doesn't work, she will have to refer me to a dermatologist for Accutane. My problem is that I know I will never be prescribed Accutane. I'm a woman of childbearing age and I have an immediate family history of mental illness. (not to mention I'm in nursing school and probably couldn't keep up with the appointments for lab work and everything). With all the drugs out there I highly doubt there is nothing else but Accutane. That's why I'm so frustrated.. the oral antibiotics initially cleared up my cysts but they were back within a month or two full force. I have tried so many OTC products as well and my doctor is making me feel like I'm running out of options if I don't go on Accutane. I still use both of my topical meds and I am religious about washing my face morning and night, but nothing seems to touch my acne. Thank you guys so much for any responses. I don't really know anyone else my age that has acne as bad as I do, so I know it will be refreshing to get advice from people who have been there.
  14. Hello everyone. I just started Retin A 0.01% gel every night. I am following what is recommened when using the product but I am breaking out with a lot of little pimples all over my cheeks and forehead. Is this what it's suppose to look like?
  15. From the album Life After Acne

    Today I'm sharing my tried-and-true methods for cleansing and moisturizing dry sensitive skin and how I go from the dull itchy and tired-looking face I wake up with to borderline presentable without makeup-- All thanks to the best natural ingredients and a cutting-edge beauty routine, including the Jenu Plus Ultrasonic Infuser, YoDerm, & derma|e.
  16. I am soooo busy. But i thought I'd share some info to other acne sufferers based on my experience. Hopefully this could help someone. If you read my past post, I had used Retin A. This post is the most recent update on what is going on with my skin. Retin A worked well for my skin when i first used it. Once i got clear skin, i completely stopped. I broke out again after three months of not using Retin A. So i started using it again, and this time it did not work at all. In fact, because the retin A made my skin so thin and sensitive, when i broke out again, my skin started to scar!!!! SCAR!!! something i never dealt with in my life. I was the lucky person who when i broke out, i just got hyper pigmentation. So scarring was such a sad moment. So i stopped using Retin A because it was changing my skin texture. Now I am completely clear from acne, taking a natural route. And when i get a pimple, it does not leave a scar. This is my current routine for my skin: ( oh and i have hormonal acne) Supplements : 1) vitamin code raw whole food and probiotics (multi-vitamin Brand- Garden of Life)- It recommends 4 pills a day. But since I eat healthy I only eat 2 pills 2) 2 cups of water with 1 tbps Apple cider vinegar 3) 2 cups of water with 1 tbps tumeric powder 4)1 serving of maca, 1 serving of matcha 5) 2 cups of either peppermint tea, lemon tea or green tea 6) a serving of golgi berries (now this alone helps with preventing acne and if i get acne, it helps my skin scar less and heal faster) Face 1) I wash with african black soap 2) spot treat blemishes and scarring with tumeric powder mixed with benonite clay and french pink clay 3) Toner Spray DIY: green tea, sea salt (natural kind), tea tree essential oil and helichrysum essentail oil 4) Moisturizer: Raw organic shea butter mixed with Frankincense, tea tree, rose hip, geranium essential oil)--> I KID YOU NOT this reduces acne by 50% the next day, I really hope I have helped. If anyone anyone can try this, keep me posted if this works for you.
  17. Hi Guys, I have been on Retin-A Micro .1% for almost 4 years. I use to have severe acne but now am completely clear! I recently went to renew my prescription and noticed that they gave me the generic form of Retin-A micro. It has the exact same ingredients as the brand name but is manufactured by a different division of the same company (Retin-A = Ortho Pharmaceuticals: a division of Janssen, Ortho LLC and Generic = Janssen, Ortho LLC). So my question is; If it has the same ingredients will it work exactly the same? I had a minor break-out for the fist time in months and kinda freaked out. I'm hoping it is not due to the change in prescriptions. THANKS
  18. I'm on Tazorac now for about 9 months, effects started to happen on my 8th month while using Tazorac. Tazorac caused pores to open on my face so much that it looks like someone nailed my face with construction nails. Also I have just discovered and researched that there is no cure for open pores, you can heal them a little bit, but not cure them. I would much better stay having acne on my face then have open pores that look like I have extreme holes almost all over my face. Some people may not experience the extreme open pores on their face, I'm just warning you guys what Tazorac can do and how it can mess up your face. I have an appointment with my Dermatologist in the mid January so I'm gonna ask him more closely how I can cure the pores and see what he will say about it.
  19. I started retin a around 3 weeks ago to help with my PIH and hormonal acne. First week I applied it once, second week I didn't apply it, and third week (this week) I've applied it twice. Before starting retin a, the left side of my face was honestly my pride and joy because it was so clear compared to my right side - everytime I looked at it I was so happy because thank god I didn't at least fuck up one side of my face right?? After starting retin a, I'm getting these tiny red dots on my left cheek and I want to know if this is purging and if they'll go away without leaving PIH or if I should stop and talk to my derm ASAP. It was just two dots at first and now it's 4-5 on my cheek right below my eye and close to my nose. I've read that when you start retin-a it's rare to break out in places you don't normally break out in and the breakouts should mainly be whiteheads. These don't seem to look like whiteheads and I rarely break out on my left cheek under my eye. I actually woke up crying today when I saw in the mirror all those little red dots on my left side and my derm is out of the office for Thanksgiving so I can't get help from anyone other than online. Should I continue retin-a if this is just a purge or wait till december to see my derm? Please help me my left side being clear before was honestly the only hope I had for my skin - I feel like if it turns to shit as well I'm going to just give up on myself.
  20. hi I've was prescribed .1 cream retin a and I've used it twice already, one last week and another time the next week. i woke up and my skin turned out like this. I think it's a chemical burn since the PERSCRIPTION could be too strong. how do I heal this?????? it peels and itches like crazy. will this scar????
  21. Hey I've began using an Adapaline topical gel of 0.1 mg and am experiancing a large initial breakout as it has nearly been two weeks since i began using the medication. Im hoping it wont last very long because it has been persistent since the day i started using it, and am getting more zits through each day. Regardless of that my main question is what is the long term cause and cure of acne coming from the use of adapaline. Will i still get ance breakouts 8 months down the road will i get an occasional pimple. Or will it mature my skin and create an acne free zone eventually so i dont need the retnoid any longer. If there is no rainbow at the end of the yellow brick road for the adapaline, since ive began using this gel and have started experiancing this horrific breakout could i start taking accutane a small time afterwards and avoid the initial breakout that product has since it is proven to stave off acne for good without the pain and worry of topical gels. I just do not want to experiance two seperate breakouts. If i am able to avoid one initial breakout by the use of the retnoid as some sort of face protector until i have completed the accutane session, i would love to know if that is possible. Please let me know if you have any information Thanks
  22. so im 16 and i've been using tretinoin cream .025% at night and clindamycn in the morning for about three weeks now. I've noticed the pores on my nose and cheeks appear much larger and I have an ice pick scar just below my eye that was never noticeable till now. Could it be the Retin-A is doing this? I'll admit I'm using more than a pea size. Is enlarged pores and depressed scars that are more visible a side effect of using too much tretinoin?
  23. what worked for me

    I wanted to share that the combination of Retin-A cream(.025%) and benzoyl peroxide (along with Aczone here and there) has improved my skin 98%. I had clusters of breakouts that were very stubborn. Some were superficial, some were deeper. I currently use acne.org's benzoyl peroxide in the AM (only a small amount, just enough to cover my entire face, because the Retin-A thins out the skin and I realized I couldn't handle too much BP) and Retin-A cream and Aczone in the PM (Aczone being applied first). After about 6 weeks of doing this regimen religiously, I stopped breaking out. I have now been using these products for over 4 months and have only had the odd pimple here and there (maybe 2 or 3 since the regimen started really working). I had been on Accutane two times previously, my last course ended over a year ago, but I started breaking out shortly after it ended. That's when I started this regimen and I couldn't be happier.
  24. I'm 16 and was put on .025% tretinoin 10 weeks ago. Before, only had mild acne on my forehead and chin as well as some hyperpigmentation on my cheeks. Now, even though my forehead and chin have actually cleared, I'm experiencing pretty bad breakouts on my cheeks where I NEVER got acne. They're hard pimples under the surface which won't go away, even though they don't really hurt. I know that the purging stage of tretinoin is only supposed to last a few weeks, so I'm very concerned and afraid that my skin will be ruined. I have another dermatologist scheduled for 3 weeks from now, but I was hoping someone had advice for me until then based on their own experiences. Note: I'm also using a benzoyl peroxide perscription in the mornings (I used it before on its own and it really helped my acne)
  25. From the album retin-a micro: worth the wait? I took a picture of my face every week for 4 months

    When I first started writing this post at the beginning of the summer, I was in the throes of the initial breakout caused by starting topical retinoids. Hyper-keratinized plugs and god-knows-what-else built up in my pores, and now the retinoid was forcing it out. My face erupted in multiple places with huge, swollen bumps. As each lesion resolved, 2or 3 new ones would begin forming on skin still red and tender from the previous weeks breakout. The only thing keeping me sane was this: I have a pretty good understanding of how retinoids work, and I knew there would be a light at the end of the tunnel. [ read my whole story & see my whole acne diary on my blog • link in bio or simply search 'creation despite retina-a micro' ]