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The right state of mind to have Dan Kern's Regimen work for you

aha alpha hydroxy acid

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#21 Number1nerd

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 08:45 PM

This really is a helpful post! I just started the regimen not even a week ago, and my forehead is already completely clear (first time in months) and I don't have much active acne anymore. You're right - it's really easy to think "my skins great now!" and then get frustrated if a new pimple appears. Thanks for reminding me that the regimen takes time, it's very helpful and encouraging for when breakouts occur (like this morning ha!)

Thanks!!!
Katie

#22 Elsewhere

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 08:49 PM

I, too, think this should be pinned. I'm going to bring it up to the other mods and see what they can, because this is great post!

#23 Brandy

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Posted 19 January 2007 - 09:39 PM

QUOTE(Elsewhere @ Jan 19 2007, 08:49 PM) View Post
I, too, think this should be pinned. I'm going to bring it up to the other mods and see what they can, because this is great post!


darling Elsewhere, this post has been pinned already...........months ago! wink.gif

#24 BigKahuna

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 10:25 PM

ProActiv is the exact same thing as Dan Kern's Regimen. I'm not accusing Dan Kern of anything, all I'm saying neither is a magic formula. Proactiv is: a cleanser, a toner/moisturizer, and a benzoyl peroxide cream. The Regimen says to use a cleanser, a moisturizer, and benzoyl peroxide.

When I visited my dermatologist, she recommended (surprise surprise) a cleanser, a moisturizer, and benzoyl peroxide. Granted, the brands and exact types of each individual items vary, but they are essentially the same. Dan Kern's Regimen isn't groundbreaking. That's not a put down, that means it's something that clearly works.

#25 BigKahuna

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 10:30 PM

My face has cleared up (except my forehead, it's always been bad), I don't think I have physical scars, but most of the places where acne was on my cheeks are flat and light red/pink. is this hyperpigmentation? how long does it last?

#26 Brandy

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Posted 30 January 2007 - 08:46 AM

QUOTE(BigKahuna @ Jan 27 2007, 10:25 PM) View Post
ProActiv is the exact same thing as Dan Kern's Regimen. I'm not accusing Dan Kern of anything, all I'm saying neither is a magic formula. Proactiv is: a cleanser, a toner/moisturizer, and a benzoyl peroxide cream. The Regimen says to use a cleanser, a moisturizer, and benzoyl peroxide.

When I visited my dermatologist, she recommended (surprise surprise) a cleanser, a moisturizer, and benzoyl peroxide. Granted, the brands and exact types of each individual items vary, but they are essentially the same. Dan Kern's Regimen isn't groundbreaking. That's not a put down, that means it's something that clearly works.


Just to clarify, Proactiv and Dan's regimen are very different.

Dan stresses being gentle and using a nonmedicated cleanser for a brief wash.
Proactiv uses a medicated scrubby cleanser and they recommend washing for a minute or two.

Dan uses a very generous amount of 2.5% benzoyl peroxide.
Proactiv recommends using a small amount in a thin layer of 2.5% benzoyl peroxide.

Dan does not recommend a toner.
Proactiv uses a toner.

Dan recommends using a good moisturizer to keep the skin hydrated.
Proactiv does not have a moisturizer in their 3-step program.

Huge differences, which is why for most of us Dan's regimen has worked much better than Proactiv did.

You're right that the concept of using benzoyl peroxide to clear acne is not new, but it is the manner in which Dan has set it all up is what makes it effective.

QUOTE(BigKahuna @ Jan 27 2007, 10:30 PM) View Post
My face has cleared up (except my forehead, it's always been bad), I don't think I have physical scars, but most of the places where acne was on my cheeks are flat and light red/pink. is this hyperpigmentation? how long does it last?


Congrats on your clear face! Keep up the regimen and hopefully your forehead will begin to clear too. Also be sure your hair or hair products aren't getting onto your forhead.
Yes, those light pink/red areas sound like hyperpigmentation. They will fade in time on their own, but some of us use AHA lotions or moisturizers to help them resolve a bit quicker. AHA is an exfoliant (glycolic acid, lactic acid, etc.)

#27 Logite

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Posted 06 February 2007 - 02:17 AM

cool beanz

#28 Lorrie

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Posted 06 March 2007 - 01:45 AM

Great thread! I started the regimen a week ago and already I was tempted to add other products. I see so many people using different things like scrubs, peels, pore minimizers and etc. It's very confusing. After reading this, I am sticking to the basics (Gentle Cleanser, BP and moisterizer) no matter how tempting it is to add something new.

I look forward to the day when my acne is gone and I can start wearing makeup again. I stopped wearing it 3 years ago because it was pointless to cover the redness when it was obvious I had huge bumps under the makeup. Besides that, I cant help but think that any makeup just aggrivates the acne.

I do have a question. I have huge pores. Will this go away when my acne clears up? If not, do pore minimizers really work? Any suggestions for a good one once the acne is gone?

Thanks Bunches!
Lorrie

#29 AshBaby

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 04:49 PM

QUOTE(cool as kim deal @ Sep 24 2006, 05:11 AM) View Post
When I encountered acne.org back in December 2005, I was depressed and desperate. I had recently turned 20 and I had worse acne than I did back in high school. Birth control didn't help get rid of the painful red bumps scattered all over my face, six months of Proactiv didn't help, medicated washes didn't help, spot-treating didn't help, masks didn't help, salicyclic acid lotions didn't help, and I was terrified of the prospect of going to a dermatologist to be prescribed antibiotics that would cause me painful yeast infections. I was dubious about the regimen because I had used benzoyl peroxide in the past as part of Proactiv, but I also didn't have any other accessible acne treatment options, and I was completely sick of my skin. I read all about Dan's gel, browsed dozens of reviews and testimonials, and decided to open up my wallet and take a risk. I ordered two tubes of Dan's gel, figuring that I didn't have much to lose besides a little money.

The regimen sure enough ended up working for me, and so I keep coming back here to help out other people who feel angry/depressed/confused/frustrated about their skin. I can't say enough about getting yourself into the right state of mind to try the regimen, so I want to use this thread to prepare people for it in an honest, realistic way. The DKR works wonders, but if your expectations are too high, you are impatient, or you experiment with other things at the same time, you will run into problems.

Start off on the right foot with recommended products, and get rid of your old acne topicals. Just because you have the Proactiv acne scrub or your mom's face cream lying around doesn't mean that you should try them with the regimen! I know it's frustrating to spend money on things that don't work, but it's better to get rid of your old ineffective products than to try to start the regimen with them. Wait until you can get all the proper supplies and then begin the regimen, rather than using some 10% BP you have lying around or other old products that might interfere with your results. If you can't bear to throw them away, put them somewhere where you won't be tempted to use them while you try the regimen. I strongly recommend ordering Dan's gel to begin with so that you start with the best (and most cost-effective) product available. If you live outside of the US or aren't comfortable ordering off the internet, then pick up another 2.5% benzoyl peroxide (like Neutrogena On-the-Spot) from a drugstore, but Dan's gel is so much gentler, better-textured, and cheaper that you should try to start with it if possible. I believe I saw good results relatively quickly because I started off with Dan's gel.

Your acne will not clear up instantly on the DKR. If you actually do see miraculous clearing within days of starting (as some people on the boards claim), please realize that you have likely not seen the last of your acne. BP dries out your acne at first, but then you aren't using enough during your first week or two to actually prevent future breakouts, so they will probably come back until you have upped your dosage enough and held it at that level for a while. I still had breakouts for the first 6 or 7 weeks on the regimen, and many people take even longer before they clear. My pimples started disappearing more quickly and weren't as severe at that point, but acne is still acne. Be prepared to give the DKR a three month trial, and be prepared to still have acne for most of that time.

It is more important to get your skin used to the benzoyl peroxide for the first month or so than to actually achieve clear skin. It is better to go slowly and take more time to work your way up to a full-finger application than to use too much gel too soon and backpedal because of irritation and dryness. Even if you've used benzoyl peroxide before in other systems, you probably were not using nearly as much BP as you will be on the regimen. I had used both the Proactiv face wash and lotion twice a day for six months and plenty of 10% BP creams in the past, and still, my skin took time to adjust to the small amount of BP I started with. Follow Dan's recommendations for BP dosage--or use even less if you feel that your skin is overly irritated. You might not clear up as quickly as you want, but you can avoid many of the problems that new regimen users complain about by going easy with the BP.

Try not to think about your skin. When you start clearing up a little but not completely, you might hold your skin to a higher standard than you did before and become more frustrated with it. If you are constantly obsessing over a new breakout or thinking about how you're not clear yet, you might even do things that interfere with the regimen. Resist the temptation to check your skin out in mirrors all the time or to pick at active acne! Aside from reapplying moisturizer as necessary, you don't want to be touching your face; the best way to do this is to not think about you skin at all. Don't dwell on why you're not clear yet and don't worry about some visible flakes or redness. Think about what your skin will be like in a few months, not how it is now, and know that breakouts or dryness right now won't matter at all in a short time.

Peeling, redness, and flaking will eventually go away, but it may take a couple of months and some product changes. Let's be honest: your skin just probably won't look that great while you are beginning the regimen. You'll still have active acne, your skin will be drier, you might have flakes or areas of redness, your skin might look parched, it's just not a pretty picture at the start. Many people think that it gets worse before it gets better, and I agree. You just have to power on through it and look to the future. You can try switching cleansers and moisturizers to help with flaking or redness problems, but please realize that you can only do so much while you are still adjusting to BP. Even with the best recommended products, for the first few months you will still deal with some degree of redness, dryness, and flaking. Those problems do go away eventually! Again, try not to dwell on the state of your skin or do things that are counterproductive in the meantime.

Don't be tempted by other treatments while on the regimen. Other acne treatments like salicyclic acid (beta hydroxy acid) or sulfur can compoud your irritation with the regimen, so don't touch those at all, especially while you are still adjusting to the regimen, In fact, BP deactivates topical retinoid products aside from Differin, so you definitely can't have those on your face at the same time! When you see an acne face wash at a store, just skip right over it and purchase something unmedicated. Even though you think you might get clear faster by using multiple treatments, you'll just end up with lots more irritation and perhaps even more acne than if you had just stuck with BP. Other kinds of skin treatments tend to do more harm than good. Scrubs can tear up your skin, masks are overdrying, and homemade facial concoctions are ineffective at best. Some people really like the idea of natural skincare and want to incorporate in things like aloe vera and tea tree oil, but the results from adding in extra steps like these to the regimen seem to be by and large unsuccessful. Just keep in mind that if you insist on using more products and aren't getting the results you hope for, the first thing Dan, Brandy, and other regimen veterans will tell you is to get back to basics and ditch the extras. Alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) such as lactic acid or glycolic acid moisturizers really do help with flaking and dryness, but you should wait until your skin is used to the full dose of BP before trying these. The more complicated the regimen, the harder it is to figure out where it goes wrong!

If you can't make time to do the regimen morning and night, then the DKR is not for you. Twice a day, every day. If you do the regimen only once a day, leave out steps, go through the process hastily, or miss applications, then you should expect less than ideal results. I skipped a couple non-consecutive applications due to late-night partying and timing of washes recently, and what do you know--even after nine months of straight DKR use, I still got some small pimples by my mouth. Slacking off is fine so long as you are willing to pay the price, but again, it is an actual price. If you balk at setting aside a good half-hour each morning and evening to wash your face, apply BP, allow it to absorb, and moisturize, then you should look into other acne treatment options. Patience and diligence is absolutely key.

Don't expect a flawless complexion when all your acne is gone. Many people complain about redmarks and scars and how the regimen doesn't address these acne artifacts. It's simply not that easy! An AHA used once or twice a day over several months can help fade hyperpigmentation, but it might not be enough to get your skin completely mark-free, especially if you had moderate-severe acne before the regimen. I didn't even know I had acne scarring until I had cleared up, and then I had a whole new skin problem that I had never thought about before! Now I have accepted that I can't do much about my mild scarring without spending lots of money on treatments, and that even so, my skin still looks so much better now than it did a year ago. So when you do clear up, please don't expect to have baby butt smooth, unblemished skin. Have realistic expectations about what your acne-free skin will look like. I much prefer easily concealable light marks and minor dents over big red inflamed pimples, but if you feel otherwise, then don't bother treating your acne.

Breakouts can still happen. I still get small pimples nine months later when I slack off, as I have not grown out of acne. The regimen can keep virtually all acne at bay when you follow it diligently, but even so, you might still get little pimples in problem areas once in a while. The more persistent your acne, the bigger the consequences of missing an application and the more likely minor breakouts might continue. In order to maintain clear skin, you will need to keep buying cleanser, BP, and moisturizer, keep making time to do the regimen morning and night, and keep being gentle with your skin. The regimen effectively prevents acne, but if you stop, your pimples will come back (unless you have grown out of acne). It is up to you to decide if you can stick with the regimen for the long haul.


Thank you so much for that! My name is Ashley Gallardo and I have mild to moderate acne. For the most part I only have experienced white heads but around my jaw area I tend to get more pustule's. I am on day 2 of the Regimin and I obviously wouldn't have found it unless I was looking for something to help me. I had used the proactive cleanser for a few years and that worked okay, but never great. So i decided I can handle bp since I have been using it for so long and that I am deffinetely open to trying this. I obviously haven't seen any results yet and am not expecting to right away. My only hope is that it doesn't make it worse.
I was just wondering how long it took for you to start seeing results?

Thanks,
Ashley

#30 cool as kim deal

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 08:19 PM

QUOTE(AshBaby @ Mar 26 2007, 05:49 PM) View Post
Thank you so much for that! My name is Ashley Gallardo and I have mild to moderate acne. For the most part I only have experienced white heads but around my jaw area I tend to get more pustule's. I am on day 2 of the Regimin and I obviously wouldn't have found it unless I was looking for something to help me. I had used the proactive cleanser for a few years and that worked okay, but never great. So i decided I can handle bp since I have been using it for so long and that I am deffinetely open to trying this. I obviously haven't seen any results yet and am not expecting to right away. My only hope is that it doesn't make it worse.
I was just wondering how long it took for you to start seeing results?

Thanks,
Ashley

I started noticing that my acne was drying up and going away within about two weeks, but I'm talking just about improvement, not like it actually disappearing then. My acne just gradually disappeared over the first couple of months, much more so after the first 5 weeks I think after I had been using the full finger amount. I'd say not to expect huge improvements in your first few weeks, but little signs of progress like pimples not lasting as long.

The Proactiv wash isn't a leave-on treatment, so just because you can handle that doesn't mean you should use more BP than Dan recommends to start with, I hope this makes sense and that you don't accidentally start off too fast. I had used the Proactiv wash and the Proactiv repairing lotion (both 2.5% BP products) all over my face for like six months before starting the DKR, and I still had a lot of adjusting to do to BP, a good amount of dryness and flaking as I built up and constantly reapplying moisturizer. Just be cautious and don't get too greedy if you start seeing results and use too much BP too quickly! Good luck!

#31 omar guzman

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Posted 26 March 2007 - 09:25 PM

I agree with the advice.

You will definitely not see over-night results with the DKR. Like everything else in life, this is a step-by-step process.

Everyday people seem to post something along the lines of "day 3 on the regimen. is ____ normal?"

Relax, and ust read past experiences of other people. More importantly, know that you're on the path to clear skin, and that's what's most important, right?

#32 AshBaby

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 12:10 PM

thanks so much...i am VERY dry...so i added joba joba oil to the moisturizer and it is helping a lot, i realize now that I am going to have to start off VERY slowly. I ordered Dan's bp because people tell me that his is less drying and irritating than NOS, as of right now i am using the proactive bp, the recommended amount, it is less drying than NOS and has the same amount of BP. I am visiting my boyfriend next week, so i decided not to try to up the dosage untiil after the visit so my face isn't peeling off when i go out there lol.

Advice for when I get Dan's gel:
if i am using a particular dosage and my skin is still very irritated should i still up the dosage?

#33 cool as kim deal

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Posted 28 March 2007 - 04:55 PM

QUOTE(AshBaby @ Mar 28 2007, 01:10 PM) View Post
Advice for when I get Dan's gel:
if i am using a particular dosage and my skin is still very irritated should i still up the dosage?

Nope, you should up the dosage only when your skin is tolerating the current dosage without adverse redness, peeling, itching, etc. (that is, if you have a little bit of redness and flaking, that's normal and you can up the dose, but if it's bad enough to physically bother you or you look like a beet, then hold back). This is true for all BPs, Dan's or otherwise.

#34 Radiocure

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Posted 07 April 2007 - 01:35 PM

Great post, extraordinarily helpful. Thank you.

I do have one question. The first post mentions avoiding the addition of extra products or products that are not specifically recommended. I just started the regimen a few days ago and have been phasing in regimen-appropriate products as they come in (ordering online). Right now the only thing I don't have is the DKR BP gel. I suspect it will be arriving very soon but I have been using about a quarter finger of the Clearasil (10% BP cream) I was using before to tide me over until it arrives - is this a bad idea? My face is pretty red right now and flaky but as I understand it that would probably be happening even if I was using the right BP concentration.

Should I stick to spot treatment until the gel arrives or is this an acceptable alternative for, say, the next five days or so? Besides that I am following the regimen exactly, using the Clearasil as an exact substitute (though I am aware it isn't and am probably using less of it than I would use 2.5% gel). If it's at all relevant to answering the question, I have noticed modest amounts of clearing, mostly that blemishes that do pop up are fading faster. Thanks again for your help.

#35 cool as kim deal

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Posted 07 April 2007 - 01:53 PM

QUOTE(Radiocure @ Apr 7 2007, 02:35 PM) View Post
Great post, extraordinarily helpful. Thank you.

I do have one question. The first post mentions avoiding the addition of extra products or products that are not specifically recommended. I just started the regimen a few days ago and have been phasing in regimen-appropriate products as they come in (ordering online). Right now the only thing I don't have is the DKR BP gel. I suspect it will be arriving very soon but I have been using about a quarter finger of the Clearasil (10% BP cream) I was using before to tide me over until it arrives - is this a bad idea? My face is pretty red right now and flaky but as I understand it that would probably be happening even if I was using the right BP concentration.

Should I stick to spot treatment until the gel arrives or is this an acceptable alternative for, say, the next five days or so? Besides that I am following the regimen exactly, using the Clearasil as an exact substitute (though I am aware it isn't and am probably using less of it than I would use 2.5% gel). If it's at all relevant to answering the question, I have noticed modest amounts of clearing, mostly that blemishes that do pop up are fading faster. Thanks again for your help.

Hey Radiocure,

I think it's better to start off on the right foot with the right products than to try to use substitutes and change later. If you want to gently cleanse and spot-treat with the 10%, that would be fine until the DKR gel arrives. 1/4 finger of Clearasil 10% BP has the same amount of active product as 1 full finger of 2.5% BP, though, so that is an awful lot of BP to be using to start with! Dan only recommends 1/4 finger of 2.5% BP to start with, which would be like 1/16 of a finger of 10% BP, which is so tiny that you can't even spread it out, so you'll find yourself wanting to use more--but then that's just too much BP to be using when you need to get used to it. 10% BP is just too concentrated to work with since even if you get the raw BP amount right, you don't have enough of the stuff to spread out in an even, thorough way. That's why I think you should just sit tight until you can start off with Dan's gel. Spot-treating, sure. All over the face use, better wait it out until you get a less concentrated BP product.

#36 Radiocure

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Posted 07 April 2007 - 02:02 PM

QUOTE(cool as kim deal @ Apr 7 2007, 03:53 PM) View Post
Hey Radiocure,

I think it's better to start off on the right foot with the right products than to try to use substitutes and change later. If you want to gently cleanse and spot-treat with the 10%, that would be fine until the DKR gel arrives. 1/4 finger of Clearasil 10% BP has the same amount of active product as 1 full finger of 2.5% BP, though, so that is an awful lot of BP to be using to start with! Dan only recommends 1/4 finger of 2.5% BP to start with, which would be like 1/16 of a finger of 10% BP, which is so tiny that you can't even spread it out, so you'll find yourself wanting to use more--but then that's just too much BP to be using when you need to get used to it. 10% BP is just too concentrated to work with since even if you get the raw BP amount right, you don't have enough of the stuff to spread out in an even, thorough way. That's why I think you should just sit tight until you can start off with Dan's gel. Spot-treating, sure. All over the face use, better wait it out until you get a less concentrated BP product.


Hmm... Good point, I hadn't thought of it that way. I suppose it is quite a lot of BP - I'll stick to spot treatment for now. The cream is terrible for anything other than spots anyway, clumps up something awful. Thanks once again for all your advice! You have been extremely helpful.

#37 allisonsb02

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Posted 19 April 2007 - 12:14 AM

I am going to stop using the products that I have right now. I currently am using products containing SA and sulfur. I figured I shouldn't just stop with that and start up with Dan's regimen. How long should I wait in between regimens? My skin is usually really sensitive to overuse of SA or BP. But I would like to start up on Dan's regimen as soon as possible! Any help is appreciated!

allison

#38 muneca

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Posted 19 April 2007 - 04:53 PM

Great post! I actually was thinking of posting something similar but now I don't need to. I just came back to these boards. After being clear on the regimen for 5 months I had stopped checking in, but recently I slacked a bit with the regimen and got a small pimple and it reminded me how grateful I was to the csr and how I should share with others my experience. Which - btw - was very similar to yours. The stricter I followed the regimen the more it worked, any time I added in something or sloppily applied I broke out. It is to be followed as is. Good Luck all!

#39 cool as kim deal

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Posted 19 April 2007 - 05:14 PM

QUOTE(allisonsb02 @ Apr 19 2007, 01:14 AM) View Post
I am going to stop using the products that I have right now. I currently am using products containing SA and sulfur. I figured I shouldn't just stop with that and start up with Dan's regimen. How long should I wait in between regimens? My skin is usually really sensitive to overuse of SA or BP. But I would like to start up on Dan's regimen as soon as possible! Any help is appreciated!

allison

You want your skin to feel balanced, well-moisturized, and essentially have no problems besides the acne. If your face is still red, irritated, flaky, or dry from other products, you want to have all that settle down before you bring on the BP. You might consider just doing the gentle cleansing and moisturizing steps twice a day without BP for a couple of weeks to see how you like those products--you wouldn't be seeing if they keep you clear of course, but if they are right for your skin, not too drying, not too shiny, etc. Then you can add in the BP and get started on the regimen, and make the transition as smoothly as possible by starting out small.

#40 Connie08

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Posted 21 May 2007 - 08:25 PM

QUOTE(longshot @ Sep 24 2006, 08:58 AM) View Post
awesome post! I think i agree with absolutely everything in it. once i finally came to terms with your "mantras" my skin has truly cleared up. I think it took me 3 months total, but i had trouble finding the right products for my skin. now all i am dealing with are red marks which dont compare to the acne i suffered from before csr.



Try the Acne Free scar lotion kit. I think they have it at Walmart, or on ebay. It works wonders!!!!!!!!!!




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