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  1. Hi all, so here is a little intro to who i am and what my issue is. I am a teenager who suffered from acne for 5 long years. I had SEVERE acne all over my face, but it was the worst on my cheeks. Last year, my skin was at its worst. I felt depressed and wanted to do something about it. My skin type used to be very oily, acne prone. I NEVER used to flush not even when I was extremely nervous or embarrassed. Redness in general was never an issue for me. I had the least sensitive skin ever. My skin was low maintenance in that sense (minus the acne). Over the past 5 years I had seen dermatologist after dermatologist but to no prevail. Then I came across accutane. Sometime before Christmas 2015, I went to see my family doctor. I had just found out about a product called accutane and saw that it had given such amazing long-term results to people all over. I researched the side effects but didn't feel any different on wanting to try it. It was my last resort and after seeing many youtubers speak about their amazing results, I decided it was worth a try. This could very well have been the worst decision of my life. My doctor said she would let me speak to a different derm but wanted me to try minocycline for a month before i began accutane. She wanted to know if i would see improvement with it. SO for a month I took minocycline, and I noticeably saw a HUGE improvement in my skin. I would say almost 50% of my acne had cleared up. Nevertheless, my skin was still terrible. Although the minocycline was helping, I read something online about how minocycline only works whil you're on it, and I wanted something permanent. SO after that month, I spoke to my derm about accutane. At my first appointment, I showed my derm a list of prescription meds that I had been on (benzaclin, aczone, differin, minocycline, and at least 5 more). She told me that accutane has worked on every single one of her patients to cure acne long-term. I told her I didn't want any long term side effects and she assured me that the only side effects her patients had dealt with were dry lips, dry scalp, reversible hair loss, and temporary eczema. I was naive and didn't bother to ask more questions (partly bc I wanted to believe accutane was a miracle drug with barely any side effects). Within the 2nd month of accutane, I was laughing one day and felt my face heat up. It was abnormal bc that had never happened to me before. I looked in the mirror and my entire face had turned a deep red. It took about 10 seconds for it return to normal. After that, anytime I laughed too hard or bent down too long or became hot, the deep red flush would appear. I went to speak to my derm about it and she told me it would disapper after I finished my dosage. She assured me that none of her patients had permanent redness after accutane, and told me that one of them had my issue but a simple cold washcloth and makeup took that problem away. Nevertheless, I continued taking accutane for a total of 7 months. My skin cleared up completely and it has been 5 MONTHS POST ACCUTANE AND I HAVE NOT HAD ANY SIGNIFICANT BREAKOUTS, NOR HAS THE FLUSHING SUBSIDED. The facial flushing became something that I woudl constantly think about. Whenever someone speaks to me, i turn red and their reaction makes me turn even redder. I feel more insecure without makeup then I did when I had acne. I flush at just about everything. Heat, strong winds, cold weather, spicy foods, sour foods, exercise, BUT MY MAIN PROBLEM IS ANXIETY. i flush whenever someone even speaks to me. There is virtually nothing that doesn't make me flush. I don't ever even go anywhere without makeup. I can't even imagine the horror of social interaction without makeup. I even plan my showers so that I can shower right before bed so no one talks to me without makeup. I purposely skip school presentations. I have to sleep on my back (which is painful still bc of accutane) because sleeping with my cheek touching a pillow turns my cheeks extremely hot and red when I wake up. On every other forum I read, their flushing seems cyclical. They flush at triggers and then stay flushed for periods of time. They sometimes even know when to expect a fllush. I on the otherhand, I flush at everything. Everything is a trigger because I am so socially anxious that if someone says hello to me i can turn red. I am becoming more and more depressed daily at the idea that this may be the rest of my life. I refuse to believe that. There has to be some sort of cure for this. I don't understand how some can take accutane and have perfect skin and I have to live with this. I need to find a cure or I don't know how I'll deal. I have become such an introvert, even hanging out with family has become hard work. How can I live like this with prom, graduation, university, and then jobs coming up? I need help!!
  2. I hadn't logged in to acne.org for a few months since my acne had subsided using a combination of an extreme diet overhaul and the modified caveman regimen (you can read about this further here if you would like more detail: http://www.acne.org/messageboard/topic/356222-i-finally-healed-my-acne-with-pictures/#comment-3552807 Since logging back in I have read through my old caveman regimen log, and seen a video post by a YouTuber who's advice I have trusted throughout my journey with acne. She discusses combatting dehydrating skin, and how dehydrated skin is a very common cause of acne, especially in those who falsely believe they have oily skin due to the over-use of drying acne cleansers/face washes and treatments: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQG4qsyaj7k Since I stopped the caveman regimen I slowly reintroduced using a warm washcloth to gently wipe my skin, toning with a 50/50 diluted ACV/water toner and moisturizing with 2 drops of grapeseed oil. Increasingly I have been doing this regimen more and more - from one or twice a month to maybe 3 or 4 times a week. I think I have been slipping back into my old mentality of the more skincare = the better the skin. I've decided that this regimen may in fact be too harsh for my skin. The more I use the washcloth to exfoliate and the stronger I make my ACV toner, the dryer my skin feels. I no longer have acne but I can often see a redness like rosacea on my cheeks, I am now wondering if this is caused by irritation from the drying components in my skincare routine. From today I will stop using the washcloth all together, washing my face only with luke-warm water and my hands and allowing it to air dry. I will use my toner diluted 20/80 ACV to water and only once a week. I will use grapeseed oil to moisturise as usual and moisturise even on days when I am not washing my face. This is an experiment to see how my skin responds for 30 days and I will log any progress here.
  3. Good day! My name is Dan and I wan to know how to end this miserable acne on my nose. I've been dealing with this since 2011 and still, no difference. I've used products: Cleansers, Moisturizers, Tea Tree Oil facial wash, honey, etc. I've also watched Youtube videos about this humiliation. This is my first time in this group. I was told before that it would just go away BUT NO!!! My brother has acne before but that just lasted for a year and now, his face is like diamond. I did exactly what he did to cure it but NO LUCK!!! I asked him what he did but he wouldn't tell. They don't care about my problems. I've been bullied ever since I got this. Everyday I hear someone who talks about my nose, I think of suicide. I'm not joking. I know that suicide won't lead me anywhere but I just can't take it anymore. I can show you my nose picture. Please help me. I've never been to a dermatologist because it's too expensive. I'm from the Philippines and I also wanted to try ACNE.ORG products but it's not available here through drugstores. I need to ship it or use third-party services to do so. Experience: I get large cystic pimples every week. Whenever the other one is cured, another 1 or 2 breaks out. It seems unlimited. The scars of the cured pimple is really visible. I don't touch them, I don't pop or anything. i just leave them and IT WILL TAKE A MONTH OR 2 before a single huge pimple to cure. While it's on the process of curing, another one or two breaks out again. I'm literally crying while writing this. I just can't do anything about it. I ask God why I'm getting this curse. I wash my face EVERYDAY and before I go to so sleep. I just don't know WHY and HOW to cure it!!! Please help me!!!! :'(
  4. Nose Acne

    From the album (HELP) 5-YEAR OLD NOSE ACNE

    Can you help me with this please? I've had this since 2011. I can't get any career because of this. I get bullied always, families, friends, etc. I really want this to be gone. :'( I've tried lots and lots of products. i get large cystic pimples every week and whenever a pimple is in the process of curing, another one or two starts to break out. a single pimple takes 1 month or 2 to cure. This is pure curse. If this will be in my life until I die, I think it's better for me to die.
  5. Hey all, I noticed like bumps on my cheeks and it looks like damaged skin and gets kinda red like in heat but otherwise isn't that red ... well my skin is really sensitive now and really tender to touch ...plz tell me what my skin looks like ...does it look like broken cappilliaries or blotchy, uneven or damaged skin or like rosacea or just like pimples or like burnt skin I quite don't know how to describe my skin ??? and if it is broken cappilliaries or blotchy skin how can I get rid of it ??? cuz I noticed my skin has been like this for like 3 months now and isn't improving what to do ...plz help thanks ur answers and advice are really appreciated !!! I have included my pic plz tell me what it looks like ??? also does it look like I have scarring or just hyperpigmentation marks ???
  6. I have had acne for years and now have acne rosacea. i have tried everything ranging from lifestyle changes to accutane. I was prescribed sulfacetamide sulfur emollient foam 2 months ago and it worked amazingly, like my face has not looked that good in a long time. I was so happy then I went to pick up my refill last week and my insurance stopped covering this medication. They wanted to charge 160 for a 30 day supply... my insurance said they'd cover the cream form of it, so I picked it up and it was awful! I used it once and it tore my face up!! It had added fragrance and a bunch of ingredients. Why on earth would a prescription for rosacea and acne, two conditions that tend to make people have sensitive skin, contain a bunch of known irritants. Now not only do I not have my foam that helps my skin but my face is all wrecked from this garbage cream wash stuff too. I'm so upset, and I don't know what to do anymore at this point. I've talked to insurance company , my doctor, every pharmacy in a 10 mile radius all multiple times over and nobody seems to even show slightest sense that they care. It's gotten me nowhere and I feel like hiding my face again. Has me dealt with this before?
  7. I'm 3+ months off accutane and I cannot seem to get the irritation on my face (cheeks) or occasional flushing to subside. It's so frustrating!! As I'm sure many of you know. If anything the flushing is getting worse. I was on 40mg twice/day for 5 months. I had extreme flaking while on accutane as well as constant redness, occasional flushing, sinus pressure, and headaches. I barely made it through the 5 months my skin was so dry and flaky. My only reassurance was that it would all end...or so I thought. My skin is still EXTREMELY dry. I have to moisturize several times a day and I can never smile comfortably. I'm reading so many horror stories of accutane-induced rosacea and people saying these symptoms never went away. There seems to be so many differing opinions on how to treat post tane redness and persistent flushing. I feel so confused about what is causing the problem (i.e., circulation? dryness? irritation? accutane-induced rosacea? seborrheic dermatitis? something else?) I read so many different things. I'm further dismayed because it seems many, like me, have had derms that seem unwilling to seriously examine these issues. My derm said it's abnormal to have flushing still so he just threw some steroid cream at it. I've nervous to apply more medication to my face consdering no one seems to be in agreement as to what is even wrong, and I know steroid creams can have negative side effects. Also, these side effects, aside from the weird head pressure are only on my face. The rest of my skin is perfect. so I don't think it's anything hormonal or to do with another body system. The flakiness eventually went away when I switched to Cetaphil DailyAdvance Lotion (my skin just seemed to respond to it). However my cheeks are always still red, puffy, and really dry. The flushing comes whenever I get nervous or hot. Which seems to be a lot. haha. I laugh so I don't cry. Anyway...enough complaining. Aside from moisturizer, I've been taking 1 tbs fish oil a day but am considering stopping since I'm not sure if it has any vitamin A in it and I read that on another post. I would appreciate any thoughts / input / suggestions from people in similar boats. I'm curious to try diet changes or liver cleansing if anyone has input on that. Cheers!!
  8. Hello, my name's Ioan, and I'm 16 years old. I've been struggling with my skin for the past 2-3 years. It all started with a few breakouts here and there, but nothing really serious. But then they started to escalate and covered all of my forehead. My forehead was always red after this, so I visited my GP, and was prescribed Zineryt for acne. Which then cleared everything. But skip 2-3 years down the line, and many other medication being used (for acne) like Isotretonoin gel, doxycycline, duac... I'm now stuck with bright red skin, covered in bumps and I flush near enough everyday. I feel my face burning and then I'm bright red. I've seen my GP and have been sent to a dermatologist, but they're still calling it acne. I need help. I can't deal with this anymore. It's so embarrassing, and I hate seeing myself in the mirror. How can I stop the constant redness?
  9. Hi, Does anyone know what kind of acne or skin disorder this? My skin is verg rough looking with bumpy texture. In the nasolabial folds area in particular there are red rash like spots and bumps. In the centre of my forehead horrible tiny spots which look worse in certain light. my skin also looks very dehydrated please help me I would appreciate it x
  10. Mirena/Skyla IUD and Severe Acne

    I've been struggling with acne for a while now. I've had it since I was probably 13-14 (I'm 20 now), but it keeps getting worse and worse. When I was younger, it was relatively mild- normal teenage acne. I'm almost certain now that it is related to my birth control. I started birth control when I was 17. I started on Nuvaring, and while my acne did worsen while on it, it certainly wasn't severe. I was on Nuvaring for about a year, and decided to change birth control simply because the ring was fairly expensive. I did not use birth control for about 6 months, and I honestly can't remember how my acne was at that time. About a year and a half ago, I decided to get the Skyla IUD (same thing as Mirena, just smaller). I really enjoy the freedom that the IUD gives, but I can't say that my body has taken well to it. Insertion was VERY, VERY painful for me and the thought of having it removed makes me cringe. That is partly why I've tried my best to cope with the side effects, namely cramping and spotting for the first 3 months following insertion, severe acne, some moodiness, and a lower sex drive. I'm at my wit's end with the acne. I keep my face as clean as I possibly can- using gentle cleansers, salicyclic acid, Cetaphil moisturizer, gentle makeup with sunscreen (which I remove ASAP after getting home), etc. Despite all that, I've had borderline pizza face roughly since I started Skyla. Currently, I'm dealing with rosacea-like redness, papules, pustules, cystic acne, and a few nodules at a time just to make things even more fun. The acne is concentrated on my cheekbones, jawline, chin, and between my eyebrows. I will likely have a fair amount of scarring after it's all cleared. I've been to two nurse practioners in dermatology who only want to prescribe topical antibiotics. The first prescribed a 30-day round of oral doxycycline and topical Tretinoin, which I've been on for the past 6 months and is not very effective. The second, after me telling her that the antibiotics weren't working, simply wanted to switch me over to clindamycin (another topical antibiotic) and get me back on doxycycline. I haven't filled that script. I told the second NP that I'm convinced this is hormonal, since the Skyla is progesterone-only, high in androgenic activity, and that I tend to run high on testosterone anyways. She didn't want to hear it, told me she didn't have any solutions for me in that aspect, and told me that I'd be better off seeing a gynecologist and switching birth control. I suppose this is my fault for not seeing an MD, but in my area the wait time to see a dermatologist is upwards of 3 months. Maybe that's typical, but I'm desperate for ANYTHING to help control it. I have a few family members who are really into natural supplements (re: I'm a skeptic). They sent me some Flax Seed, Spearmint Tea, and DIM-Plus, all of which supposedly lower androgen levels. I've been taking the flax seed because, hey, worse case scenario I just get some extra fiber in my diet. The DIM-Plus scares me- there's little to no research on it (all anecdotal) and there's conflicting evidence (some say it blocks androgens, some day it blocks estrogen ie. Estroblock which I'm pretty sure is the OPPOSITE of what I need). If anyone has found a way to keep the IUD and counteract the acne, I'm open to suggestions. However, at this point I'm fairly convinced that I need to switch birth control to something with estrogen. From what I understand, birth control pills are the way to go for most people. I've heard Yaz, Yasmin, Ortho Cyclen, Diane-35 are all optimal for getting rid of acne. The reason I've never done BCPs are because I have a sensitive stomach, so nausea would likely be a pretty nasty side effect for me. I don't know if they still do the Patch in the US- is that an option? I would love to get some recommendations for dealing with this- skin care regiments, BCP advice, side effect management, etc. Thanks! TL;DR hormonal IUD probably gave me pizza face, derms won't give anything other than topical antibiotics. considering switching BC method
  11. So yeah...

    So after my bad reaction to Obagi Skin Products (crazy regimen) this is how I look. I have no used the products in over a month and in fact, I returned them all and got my $700 (almost $800) back. I am still on accutane and will go into my third month now. I am requesting a higher dosage because I have been taking 20mg. I use SHea Moisture african soap in a cleanser form morning and night and that's it. I dont know what to do, part of me wants to look into buying the Acne.Org Regimen but i cannot keeep damaging my face. PLS HELP
  12. Hey! I'm a 17 year old male and have had problems with red face after showers for a few years now. But it seems to get worse now when my acne is worse. When I shower my face,especially nose gets red a few minutes after. The thing is that sometimes I don't get red at all after showering, and sometimes i get really red. I'll show a picture of when my face is the worst. My face also get very red easily when exercising. I dont know if i have rosacea or not, as im only 17. For a lot of people their acne seems to go away after their teens. Could the facial redness also do that? As i think it is linked with my hormones/acne Btw i do moisturize my face after every wash (twice aday)
  13. Hi everyone! First post here, I was wondering if anyone could help me with some issues I'm having that I'm pretty sure are related to Rosacea, and/or sun-damage. I'm 24, male, and I've had facial flushing for awhile now but never thought about it, my dermatologist said it was rosacea (I already figured it was but that just confirmed it), and not Lupus. I have a butterfly pattern of redness (flushing?) that is under both my eyes (between my nose and my cheeks), and on the bridge of my nose. Sometimes my face gets very hot, I even have a fan at my desk to point at my face. The heat doesn't really happen frequently enough for it to be a serious problem though. However, the redness doesn't really bother me (I think it's almost cute). What bothers me is the strange skin texture that seems to accompany it. It's sort of leathery I guess. If I see it in the right light, I can definitely see enlarged pores (or what looks like enlarged pores) on the red areas, and some on my forehead. It seems to only be on the red areas, and on my forehead (which doesn't really seem to get red, maybe the very bottom near my eyebrows) and the rest of the skin on my face seems pretty nice. Also, some areas of my forehead (mostly near the sides/temples) seem to have a "fish scale" texture, or snake skin, I'm not really sure how to describe it, maybe "grainy", or orange peel skin combined with leather? I thought it might be Ichthyosis Vulgaris or something. The skin on the rest of my body is pretty much perfect. If I stretch my forehead, on some areas I can see what looks like hair follicles/bumps. If I scratch any of those areas with my nails, some very fine dead skin appears, but I avoid doing this, just to see if it's dead skin. Also, as for my skin care habits prior to this, they were pretty bad. I'd wash my face in the shower with bar soap (the same soap I'd use everywhere else) until it was literally squeaky clean. I never used sunscreen, moisturized, or anything like that (also got back from Europe 4 months ago, basically 12 hours a day of serious sun exposure). Now, my regimen as of maybe 3 weeks ago, I don't use soap on my face at all, but rather apply a lot of coconut oil before I shower and just rinse whatever I can off with water in the shower, then just pat it dry with a towel. I moisturize with olive oil a few times a day too, after I use a mixture of one part Apple Cider Vinegar to one part distilled water to wipe my face (supposedly it's a toner). I might be over moisturizing, but since the things I'm using are natural, I thought the skin would just absorb whatever it could and the rest would just remain on the surface to be wiped away or whatever. I might also try a green tea facial toner, brewing a cup of green tea, letting it cool and wiping my face with it prior to moisturizing. My diet is basically Paleo but with occasional beans and sweet potatoes. Also I drink too much coffee, trying very hard to replace it with green tea. I thought an acid peel (glycolic acid or something) might help my texture, and since I moisturize so much already, the extra moisture requirements wouldn't be a problem. I'm pretty sure that I'm the only one who would ever possibly notice this, but it still bothers me! Any help would be appreciated, thanks!
  14. TWO THINGS HERE. ... 1. I am an idiot and used fluocinonide on my face. I think now, i think i have steriod induced rosacea due to this as well as maybe my prescription of prednisone (10mg) that i take due to a weird skin rash that no doctor can figure out for over 4 years now. I use to put it all over my face, and now i only do spots where irritation and bumps occur on my face for a couple months now, becuase if i dont then the flare gets worse. Now my cheeks get soo red, like almost purple red. I had laser surgery done on my chin, forehead and hairline, which dont seem to get as red, but still get red. Not like my cheeks do. Thinking about getting it done on my cheeks. I am wondering if i should continue the laser surgery (very expensive) on my cheeks, and more all over my face, or if there is prescription i can ask my doctor for? The only thing that seems to calm my face is witch hazel, and a lot of it, for long periods of time... Like i put a dry sheet mask on and drench it with witch hazel for a good half hour/hour and my skin looks like a normal human beings should. I want to know if anyone else did this, and what they used instead of fluconinde, what calms the redness and how long it took for the redness to go down. Also, if you used it on your face....do you have moon face? and did it go away along with redness after use? 2. I know i also probably have normal rosacea because when i drink or heat spicy foods, i get super blotchy. Is there a prescription anyone takes to help subside getting blotchy? I am on Cephalexin, which doesnt seem to be working and i take lexapro to calm down my anxiety which could be the cause of rosacea too. I also use Mirvaso, which helps- but i still get redish purple blotchyness. I heard beta blockers work, but almost no doctors will prescribe that. What are you taking that helps your blotchy flairups? are you taking beta blockers, and if so how did you convince your doctor?
  15. i have rosacea and horrible [closed] comedonal acne almost all over my face and also my entire face but mainly cheeks and jaw are covered in irregular red spots, these are not from acne (i almost never have pimples, the only ones i am getting, rarely, are little whiteheads and that's all, for me everything is pretty much under the skin and mostly on forehead, nose and chin, cheeks are p clear) it's more like a rash but i had it for so long i don't even know when exactly it appeared, it looks so bad, i look like a gecko : / anyway, a week ago i started using finacea, i apply it once a day after washing my face and i moisturize after waiting one or two hours, my problem is that it was supposed to help with redness not increase it and that is exactly what i am experiencing : / after yesterday's application my cheeks were purple :-x i wonder if i may be applying too much of it, i don't know, maybe i am allergic or something? for people that were using azelaic acid, did it have a similar efect on you? will it help eventually or is what i am experiencing abnormal and i should discontinue? i'm afraid with time it will only do more harm, i don't want to ruin my skin for life and i already had a bad experience with differin, i don't use it anymore and did not use it for a year and my skin is still in a bad condition which i am sure is mainly differin's fault : / it did weird things to my face i'll probably also need to test my hormone levels and have my skin tested for demodex because it's ridiculous and almost impossible how fast my pores are clogging, it's all squeaky clean one day and after i wake up the next it's all clogged, oily and disgusting again, it feels dirty and gross : / something is def not right
  16. So, back in 2009, I started the acne.org regimen and followed it religiously for 2 years. My skin had cleared remarkably. However, in 2011, I began to have problems with my skin unrelated to acne. I went to a dermatologist and was diagnosed with rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis. At the age of 20, with no history of these skin conditions in my family, I was not only devastated, but also very confused. I never thought much of it, until I came across a forum where other people who had been complaining about rosacea, also mentioned that they were on the acne.org regimen. It seemed like a strange coincidence to have such a strong correlation between the acne.org regimen and these particular skin conditions. Now, I am not by any means pointing blame to the regimen for my unlucky situation; hell this regimen saved my face from embarrassment during my first years of college. I am just curious to hear from others who may have used copious amounts of benzoyl peroxide and are now dealing with further skin complications. Hope to hear from others on the forum for better or worse.
  17. Part I: Avoiding Harmful Products When Buying Products Don't Buy Cleansers That: 1. Contain harsh surfectants like sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium C14-16 Olefin Sulfonate. 2. Are in bar form. These contain harsh cleansing agents like sodium cocoate, and the ingredients that keep them in bar form can be absorbed into the skin to clog pores. Also, many bar soaps have alkaline pH levels, which actually encourages bacterial growth. 3. Are daily scrubs containing uneven particles like walnut . These can tear at the skin and cause irritation. Look for scrubs with smooth, round, bead-like particles. 4. Contain waxy, pore-clogging thickeners. Products in cream form tend to have these. 5. Contain animal oils*. Animal oils resemble human sebum and can clog pores similarly. 4. Give a "tingly" or "cooling" feeling. That feeling is caused by skin irritants like menthol and camphor. 5. Are medicated. If the medication contains a chemical exfoliant like salicylic acid, the cleanser is almost certain to have too high of a pH (over 4) to allow it to act as an exfoliant. Chances are that the majority of any medictation used in a cleanser will be washed away before having any real effect. If you let a medicated cleanser (either one containing a chemical exfoliant or one containing benzoyl peroxide) sit on the skin in hopes of giving the medications time to penetrate, than chances are you'll also be allowing the cleansing agents time to irritate the skin. * Emu oil for some reason seems to be an exception according to users of this site. Don't Buy Toners or Astringents That: 1. Contain drying alcohols, witch hazel, peppermint, or other skin irritants. 2. Contain animal oils. (See "Don't Buy Cleansers That:") 3. Contain rice or corn ingredients, as these can encourage bacterial growth. Don't Buy Salicylic Acid Products* That: 1. Contain skin irritants like drying alcohols, witch hazel, peppermint, or other skin irritants. 2. Have a pH higher than 4 or else the salicylic acid will not be an effective exfoliant. A good idea of a product's pH can be obtained with pH indicator strips. 3. Contain rice or corn ingredients (See "Don't Buy Toners or Astringents That:") * Most salicylic acid products are not pH correct, contain irritants, or both. Don't Buy Benzoyl Peroxide Products: 1. That contain skin irritants. 2. To use in conjunction with prescription retinoids (with the exception of adapalene which is used in Differin). Benzoyl peroxide renders most retinoids unstable and should be applied only in the morning if a prescription retinoid is being used at night. 3. Contain animal oils. (See Don't Buy Cleansers That:") Don't Buy Tea Tree Oil Products That: 1. Contain skin irritants. 2. Have less than a 5% concentration of tea tree oil, or more than a 15% concentration. Too little tea tree oil is likely to be ineffective, and too much may be irritating. You can, however, buy pure tea tree oil and dilute it, so long as you aim for the right concentration. 3. Contain animal oils. (See Don't Buy Cleansers That:") Don't Buy Moisturizers That: 1. Are in cream form. (See "Don't Buy Cleansers That:") 2. Contain animal oils. (See "Don't Buy Cleansers That:") 3. Contain rice or corn ingredients. (See "Don't Buy Toners or Astringents That:") 4. Contain skin irritants. Don't Buy Sunscreens That: 1. Are in cream form. (See "Don't Buy Cleansers That:") 2. Contain animal oils. (See "Don't Buy Cleansers That:") 3. Contain rice or corn ingredients. (See "Don't Buy Toners or Astringents That:") 4. Do not contain avobenzone, zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, mexoryl sx, or tinosorb; the ingredients recognized by the FDA to provide adequate UVA protection. 5. Do not have an SPF of 15 or higher. 6. Contain skin irritants. In General 1. Don't use products that contain skin irritants. Skin irritants prematurely kill skin cells, littering the skin with more dead skin cells than it can naturally slough off, thus creating a greater risk of clogged pores. Skin irritants also interfere with the skin's healing process, which can result in an increase in bacteria. Some common skin irritants are: Alcohols. Ethanol (grain alcohol), denatured alcohol, ethyl alcohol, methanol, benzyl alcohol, isopropyl, and SD alcohol should be avoided. (Exceptions: Ingredients like cetyl alcohol or stearyl alcohol are fatty alcohols. Some alcohols like SD alcohols can be used in small amounts. An ingredient is in a small amount if it appears at the end of an ingredients list). Ammonia Arnica Balm mint Balsam Bentonite (can be used in the occasional clay mask, but avoid frequent use or formulations which contain other "actives") Benzalkonium chloride (if it is one of the main ingredients) Benzyl Alcohol (if it is one of the main ingredients) Bergamot Camphor Cinnamon Citrus juices and oils Clove Clover blossom Coriander Cornstarch Essential Oils Eucalyptus Eugenol Fennel Fennel oil Feverfew Fir needle Fragrance (may be listed as "Parfum") Geranium Ginger Grapefruit Horsetail Jasmine Lavender Lemon Lemongrass Lime Linalool Marjoram Melissa (lemon balm) Menthol, Menthyl Acetate, and Menthyl PCA Mint Oak bark Orange Oregano Papaya Peppermint Phenol Rose Sandalwood oil Sodium C14-16 olefin sulfate Sodium lauryl sulfate TEA-lauryl sulfate Thyme Wintergreen Witch hazel Ylang-ylang 2. Don't base your use of a product on whether or not it says "non-comedogenic," "oil-free," "hypo-allergenic," "dermatologically tested," and similar terms. These are flashy marketing terms that have no regulations, therefore, they can mean anything. As mentioned earlier, products with waxy thickeners and animal oils (not plant oils) are most likely to clog pores. Mineral sunscreen ingredients like titanium dioxide and zinc oxide can clog pores, though synthetic sunscreens like avobenzone can irritate the skin of certain people and also trigger breakouts. Everyone is different and will be sensitive to different ingredients, so there is no real way of knowing what will or will not clog pores, just what may clog pores. One other thing- acne can take two weeks to form, so if you break out right after starting a product, don't assume that product was the culprit. 3. Don't use specialty products (chemical exfoliants, moisturizers, etc...) that are in jar packaging to minimize air exposure. Oxygen can render certain ingredients unstable. Also, with jar packaging, there is a concern for product contamination. Sunlight can also render certain ingredients unstable, so if you buy a product in clear packaging, be sure to store it in a dark space (such as a medicine cabinet or drawer). 4. Don't assume that the stronger a product (i.e. the higher the concentration of an active ingredient), the more effective it will be. Using a product that is too strong for you may cause irritation that can worsen acne. What is a good strength varies by person. 5. Don't assume that naturally-occurring ingredients are better for your skin. As can be seen by the list of common skin irritants above, there are plenty of ingredients both man-made and naturally-occurring that can be irritating to the skin. 6. Don't touch your face if you can avoid it so as to prevent the spread of contaminants. 7. If you have trouble with inflammatory acne, change your bedding often (once a week), and keep anything that touches your face frequently (like a phone or washcloth) clean and disinfected to prevent the spread of contaminants. 8. Don't use makeup testers on your face to prevent the risk of contamination. 9. Don't apply your moisturizer over areas of your face that are not dry. Applying moisturizer where it is not needed can increase the risk of clogged pores by mixing with excess sebum and "gluing" dead skin cells to the skin's surface. 10. Don't tan. Tanning only temporarily masks acne, damaging the skin in the process, which can actually lead to a worsening of acne. Even if tanning did help, it's not worth the risk of skin cancer, premature aging, cataracts, cellulite, and rosacea associated with unprotected sun exposure. 11. Don't steam the skin or rinse with hot water as this can cause irritation and capillaries to surface. It is best to wash with luke-warm water. 12. Don't give up on a new regimen. You need at the very minimum one month and preferrably two to see results. When using prescription retinoids, you need at least three months. 13. Don't over-scrub the skin as this can cause irritations. It is best to use gentle, circular motions. When drying the face, pat the skin dry as opposed to rubbing it dry. 14. Avoid doing anything to aggravate a pimple. It may be beneficial to pop one provided the pimple is ready to pop, but only apply light pressure. Never squeeze, scratch, or pick at it. If light pressure does not release the contents of a pimple, you will likely worsen it should you increase that pressure. 15. Don't use more than one method of exfoliation at once. For example, don't use a scrub followed by a salicylic acid product, or a salicylic acid product followed by an alpha hydroxy acid product. You risk over-irritating the skin. 16. Don't generously apply products (with the exception of sunscreen, which should be generously applied). Usually only a dime-sized amount / thinly applied layer is all that's needed for the entire face. Over-applying products can be harmful to the skin. 17. Be happy! Who knows, your skin might even get clearer as a result. If not, it's better to have acne and be happy than it is to have acne and wallow in gloom. __________________________________________________________________________ Part II: Building a Regimen Here are some products you could use to help build your own customized regimen, which are also listed in the responses below. I recommend building a basic regimen that includes at the minimum these steps: 1) Cleansing with Lukewarm Water 2) Exfoliating 3) Disinfecting (If You Have Inflammatory Acne) 4) Moisturizing Dry Areas Only (Nighttime) 5) Applying Sunscreen to All Exposed Areas of Skin (Daytime) You can also include other steps in your regimen, like the application of toners which don't contain chemical exfoliants (not that toners containing chemical exfoliants shouldn't be used if that's your method of exfoliation) or of retinoids. Also, you don't have to apply all these products at the same time; for example, you can exfoliate as often as twice a day or as little as once every other day. You should, however, cleanse twice daily. Something I want to make very clear is that I am not advertising a cure for acne. The above mentioned steps follow skin care basics and are beneficial to most people. Subsequently, using a regimen following these steps may result in clear skin, but it may make absolutely no change whatsoever. If you use the wrong products or can't tolerate certain steps like exfoliation or certain types of ingredients like benzoyl peroxide, it might even make your skin worse. If you're looking for a starting point to treating acne or have been following a damaging skin care routine and want to stop, I definately recommend giving such a regimen a chance, but I don't want to give anyone false hope that their acne will disappear from following it. You may have a stubborn case of acne that is beyond the help of over-the-counter treatments, in which case I advise you seek a dermatologist's help. I also want to stress that the treatments I recommend below are not the only decently formulated products out there (though the salicylic acid products I listed are the only ones I know of that are both pH correct and gentle). Some cleansers you may want to consider are: Clinique Liquid Facial Soap Mild Formula Eucerin Baby Aquaphor Gentle Wash Eucerin Redness Relief Cleansing Gel Paula's Choice (any cleanser) Purpose Gentle Cleansing Wash Some manual scrubs you may want to consider as exfoliants are: Essential Nutrients Daily Exfoliating Cleanser with Soft Massage Beads Nivea for Men Energizing Face Scrub (women can use this too) Some toners (not containing chemical exfoliants) you may want to consider are: Biotherm Biosensitive Soothing Refreshing Spring Mist Clinique Mild Clarifying Lotion* Derma E Pycnogenol Facial Toner, Fragrance Free Nivea Visage Moisturizing Toner Paula's Choice Toners *This contains about a 0.5% concentration of salicylic acid at a pH of around 4, making it minimally effective for exfoliation, though you probably won't notice a significant difference in your skin due Some salicylic acid products you may want to consider as exfoliants are: Bare Vitamins Skin Rever-Upper (if it really has a pH of 3.8, as the company claimed in an e-mail) Neutrogena Rapid Clear Acne Defense Face Lotion Olay Total Effects Anti-Aging Anti-Blemish Daily Moisturizer Paula's Choice 1% or 2% Beta Hydroxy Acid products* Serious Skin Care Clarifying Treatment *Paula's Choice makes by far the best salicylic acid products Some benzoyl peroxide products you may want to consider as disinfectants are: Dan's Clear Skin Regimen Gel (2.5%) Jan Marini Skin Research Benzoyl Peroxide (2.5%) Mary Kay Acne Treatment Gel (5%) Oxy Balance, Sensitive Skin Acne Treatment, Vanishing Formula (5%) Paula's Choice Blemish Fighting Solutions (2.5% or 5%) Persa-Gel 10, Maximum Strength (10%) Zapzyt 10% Benzoyl Peroxide Some tea tree oil products you may want to consider as disinfectants are: Derma E Tea Tree and Antiseptic Cream* (5%) Desert Essence 100% Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil (diluted; aim for between a 5 and 15% concentration in your mixture) *This product is in jar packaging, so the vitamin E and other antioxidants won't be stable, but the tea tree oil should work. It is also in cream form, which users may want to be wary of. Some over-the-counter retinol* products you may want to consider are: Diacneal with 6.4% Glycolic Acid Green Cream Jan Marini Factor-A Lotion Makeup Artist's Choice Retinol Serum (which comes in clear packaging, so store it in a dark place) *Products containing retinol do not necessarily produce similar results to prescription retinoid products Some moisturizers you may want to consider are: Dove Sensitive Essentials Daytime Lotion (no SPF) Green Canyon Spa Skin Barrier Serum Malibu Hemp Moisturizer Body Lotion for Dry Skin Paula's Choice Skin Balancing Moisture Gel Zia Natural Skincare Herbal Moisture Gel Some sunscreens you may want to consider are: Clinique Super City Block SPF 25 Oil-Free Daily Face Protector Jan Marini Antioxidant Daily Face Protector M.A.C. Daily SPF 15 Light Moisture Neutrogena Active Breathable Sunblocks Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry-Touch Sunsblocks Proactiv Solution Oil-Free Moisturizer with SPF 15
  18. Do I have rosacea?

    I don't know if I have/am getting rosace or not, perhaps it's just irritated or inflamed, I have no clue. The left side of my face is almost completely clear as far as pimples goes but its red as you can see in the pic which doesn't make sense as I don't really get pimples on that side. I've been taking 1 50Mg doxycycline monohydrate daily since November 2014 which I think my body is use to (if that's a thing?) so it has almost no effect at this point. I don't really wash my face as it turns tomato red which I hate seeing. I only use cocoa radiant lotion on my face and I sometimes rinse my face with Luke warm water. I recently started using AHA %10 lotion for the red marks from past pimples and the general redness on my face but I stopped using it because I don't want to risk making my skin even more red. (Btw my mom has rosacea)
  19. I am a teenage girl with a Rosacea problem on my face. It is most effected on my nose, and slightly on my inner cheeks closest to my nose. It is so embarrassing for me. And if it couldn't get worse than that, I have combination skin, which makes my nose oily until I put foundation or concealer on my nose to cover up the Rosacea, and it starts to peel/flake up. So I can't even cover it up, nothing really works. I need help from another female, or someone with advice for me. I'm going into high school, I don't want people to make fun of me:(
  20. I am a teenage girl with a Rosacea problem on my face. It is most effected on my nose, and slightly on my inner cheeks closest to my nose. It is so embarrassing for me. And if it couldn't get worse than that, I have combination skin, which makes my nose oily until I put foundation or concealer on my nose to cover up the Rosacea, and it starts to peel/flake up. So I can't even cover it up, nothing really works. I need help from another female, or someone with advice for me. I'm going into high school, I don't want people to make fun of me:(
  21. hi! well I have a bad nose breakout back in March, my nose was constantly red and swollen. I went to the dermatologist and he put me on doxycycline and gave me adapalene and benzoil peroxide. Well, being on those treatments has made my skin worse. I'm super oily and my nose started getting these weird like bumps? I'm not sure if it's scarring from the breakout I had or what...anyways I stop the meds and just letting this run its course. I didn't have this before, they started appearing when I was on my second month on those pills. Help???
  22. Hi, it's my first time posting on here so here goes nothing! You are gonna think I'm an idiot here but a couple of months ago I tried the toothbrush technique to get rid of blackheads on my chin and nose. BAD IDEA. For days my chin was scabbed over and oozing blood and a clear liquid. It was the same with my nose but it died down quicker and only left a small mark of hyperpigmentation that I just call a burn. On the other hand, even four months on my chin has a permanent scar on the crease and I have lots of white heads and blackheads that have turned into painful pimples all over my chin. I have tried EVERYTHING but nothing gets rid of them. My chin is permanently red and spotty, it's really getting me down. I'm going on holiday next week where I can't wear make up to cover it (it's even difficult to cover) PLEASE HELP preferably home remedies or things that I might already have THANKYOU!UPDATE: Okay so it has now been over 5 months and it seems to be getting worse . It is very red painful and sloops like it has spread all over my chin. I have tried all of the methods that you guys have recommended but nothing works.
  23. What on earth is this?

    Hi everyone, Can anyone tell me what on earth is this on my face? It's in tbe centre of my forehead and on my cheeks more towards the sides of my nose. i used to have cystic acne and was on doxycycline for 6 months but always had smooth texture. I've been off tbe doxy for 3.5yrs now but over time I've developed these spots / rash whatever it is. It started in the centre of my forehead but has spread to my cheeks it's very depressing . I saw a dermatoligist regarding it and called it acne , and advised I go on accutane. I refused, to which he then replied that I have no hope which made me feel utter shit Anyway, I would be grateful if someone could tell me what this is and help me get rid of it please thank you xxxx
  24. Alright. I'm 21, i've had enough of this. So I've been dealing with this redness for as long as i can remember. My cheeks ALWAYS seems to have this big blotchy red spot on them. It's really, really getting to me lately. I get the odd pimple, not a huge deal for me, but if i could find a way to get rid of this redness i would be ecstatic. I'm not sure if it's Rosacea or not. Never actually had it checked out by any dermatologist (and from reading up here, even if i do get diagnosed with Rosecea, it doesn't sound like there is much they can do about it). I don't use any medication of any kind, nor do I use any sort of topical creams. The redness is generally far more pronounced later in the day. In the morning it is "okay" - but "okay" is still much worse than it should be. It will flare up on cold days, warm days, especially sudden temperature changes (ie. walking into a building on a cool morning), spicy foods, alcohol, physical exertion of any kind, and sometimes for just no good reason at all. It's not itchy or dry. Doesn't flake or anything like that. Not really a burning sensation or anything like that, but i can definitley feel when it does flush. I've included some pics - maybe someone has a similar problem? Is there ANYTHING i can do to attempt to control the redness? (BTW, the lighting is decent where i took the pics - it can look a LOT more red in different types of lighting).