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0.025% Tretinoin Cream; need encouragement or harsh truth

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Hello,

At the beginning of October, I saw a dermatologist for the first time about my acne. I've been using the Dan Kern Regimen for more than 2 years, but wanted to go to the next level of clear. At that point I had at any given time probably one, infrequently two, pimples that I wished would disappear. Not that I didn't have more that could be seen at a reasonable distance, but I mean ones that I felt really detracted from my appearance (and sense of self-worth).

I was prescribed 75 mg minocycline, to take twice daily, and .025% tretinoin. The mino was for my back, which is now as clear as it was before it became a problem out of nowhere ~6 months ago (for a year i was dating a girl and had no bacne whatsoever, either as a coincidence or because i was probably less stressed out and had 'happier' hormones in me than i do now as a 23 year old single working guy).

After a week or so of struggle and indecision about giving up BP, on October 11th I decided to stick to a strict tretinoin regime (which i should have done in the first place anyway, after all I paid a doctor right?) . I currently wash morning and night with Basis soap, in the morning I moisturize with AHA SPF-15 Neutrogena Healthy Skin face lotion, and in the evening I apply a pea-and-a-half sized amount of tret. Careful as always, just like with BP, though it's a little different as this is a cream instead of a gel.

11 days later and I am upset. My forehead, which i don't even remember having acne BEFORE i went on BP, is peppered with tiny but reddened pimples. A very few (5-6) across my forehead have the appearance of black/dried blood (very small, but emphasizes the "pepper" affect). Not "blackheads" in the sense to which I am accustomed. The rest of my face is also pretty bad. I notice that I don't have any BIG ones, like i would get before BP and very occasionally while on BP, but i have a LOT of little ones, which is pretty much as bad. My face is quite noticeably worse than it was prior to my giving up BP.

I know that Tretinoin can take a while to work, and that people report getting worse before they get better. But how do i know if i'm not just getting worse due to stopping BP? Also, apparently this derm is so busy that the next available appointment which fits my work schedule is in the first week of December (he wanted me in the first week of november but i had to reschedule). How do I know if he wasn't going to take one look at me in November and suggest I go up to a higher than .025% tret? Some people use .05 or even higher!

i am sticking it through, but i would love it if anyone would give me encouragement or post anything, really...thank you

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Hello,

At the beginning of October, I saw a dermatologist for the first time about my acne. I've been using the Dan Kern Regimen for more than 2 years, but wanted to go to the next level of clear. At that point I had at any given time probably one, infrequently two, pimples that I wished would disappear. Not that I didn't have more that could be seen at a reasonable distance, but I mean ones that I felt really detracted from my appearance (and sense of self-worth).

I was prescribed 75 mg minocycline, to take twice daily, and .025% tretinoin. The mino was for my back, which is now as clear as it was before it became a problem out of nowhere ~6 months ago (for a year i was dating a girl and had no bacne whatsoever, either as a coincidence or because i was probably less stressed out and had 'happier' hormones in me than i do now as a 23 year old single working guy).

After a week or so of struggle and indecision about giving up BP, on October 11th I decided to stick to a strict tretinoin regime (which i should have done in the first place anyway, after all I paid a doctor right?) . I currently wash morning and night with Basis soap, in the morning I moisturize with AHA SPF-15 Neutrogena Healthy Skin face lotion, and in the evening I apply a pea-and-a-half sized amount of tret. Careful as always, just like with BP, though it's a little different as this is a cream instead of a gel.

11 days later and I am upset. My forehead, which i don't even remember having acne BEFORE i went on BP, is peppered with tiny but reddened pimples. A very few (5-6) across my forehead have the appearance of black/dried blood (very small, but emphasizes the "pepper" affect). Not "blackheads" in the sense to which I am accustomed. The rest of my face is also pretty bad. I notice that I don't have any BIG ones, like i would get before BP and very occasionally while on BP, but i have a LOT of little ones, which is pretty much as bad. My face is quite noticeably worse than it was prior to my giving up BP.

I know that Tretinoin can take a while to work, and that people report getting worse before they get better. But how do i know if i'm not just getting worse due to stopping BP? Also, apparently this derm is so busy that the next available appointment which fits my work schedule is in the first week of December (he wanted me in the first week of november but i had to reschedule). How do I know if he wasn't going to take one look at me in November and suggest I go up to a higher than .025% tret? Some people use .05 or even higher!

i am sticking it through, but i would love it if anyone would give me encouragement or post anything, really...thank you

Hi Bro,

My docter gave me Tretinoin 0.02%.And i have been using it for about 4 weeks now.The first 2 weeks i had a massive outbreak on my back, shoulders and arms, but in the 3rd week, my skin began to dry up, and im seeying slight imporvement... but im still not satisfied yet.I do have to say, i put it on on some places on my face, and it took care any spots i had after about a week.

I put on a cream on my face to help against the dryness.

I must goto the dokter in 3 weeks for a check up.

My advice is, keep using the Tretinoine, and dont freak out of the sudden outbreaks, my doc says thats very normal.

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I'm using .05% Atralin gel(tretinoin)p.m., taking spironolactone(prescribed for hormonal acne in women)100 mg.(p.m.), and solodyn(minocyclin) 45 mg.(p.m.), and washing w/cetaphil gentle cleanser 2x/day. It's been a week since I started using the atralin and I've noticed it's working(toning down the redness and drying out the cysts I had).

Before that I'd been using differin 0.3% which caused my face and jawline to become very red, itchy and irritated:( My eyelids were swollen, red, itchy, leathery, and my eyes were seeping, also my face swelled up above and below my eyes. Something caused me to have an allergic reaction. To clear that mess up, the derm gave me some samples of verdeso(desonide)foam to use 2x/day. It took a week to clear up!!

I have an appt. on Mon. for a check-up w/the derm. Will try to post again to update my treatment w/atralin. I'm going to continue using it. Also I'm much older than both of you and a female. However, I've been battling w/acne for many, many years:( Good luck.

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I now have more than TWENTY (small) pustules on my NOSE ALONE. I am already stressing out about Thanksgiving family pictures. my forehead is also in bad enough shape that I want to wear a hat out to the bars, which i'm sure results in a nasty cycle

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Retin-a is known to give IBs and can take up to 3 months to show improvement. What you're dealing with right now is pretty normal. I think you might consider a thin layer of BP every other day or so.... Your breakout may be a combo of an IB from retin-a and quitting BP all at once. However, that will be more drying of course...

If your skin isn't getting red & peely, then definitely see about getting a higher concentration of tretinoin next derm visit....most derms start people on .025% with plans to move them up to .1% gradually.

As for my experience: (See my sig for my whole regimen)

I started with .025% tretinoin and it gave me an IB of tiny little red papules all over my cheeks. It was definitely a purging, not big pimples. After 3 months I had seen a noticeable difference in my skin & the IB had cleared up. The only thing is, I didn't quit BP. I still used BP in the morning. My inflamed acne was pretty much clear, but I wanted to go to a higher concentration because of some comedal acne on my chin.

So now I have worked up to .1% and am giving that til January to see if it helps the closed comedones on my chin. I am also on an oral antibiotic right now.

Today my inflamed acne is pretty clear as are my nose pores, so I can't complain too much about that. I found using a thin layer of BP every other morning to help in case I forget to take my oral antibiotic, in which case my skin breaks out. If inflamed acne is your main issue, then a thin layer of BP every other morning may be the trick, once you get over the IB anyway.


Nature of the Beast: Moderate, inflammatory, several cysts, large pores & very oily
Current Status: Very mild overall, with some red marks & mild "bumpiness" on chin (possible scarring).
Use: Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Facial Cleanser or Acne.org Cleanser / Acne.org 2.5% BP day & night / Acne.org Moisturizer for day / DHC Cleansing Oil or Neutrogena Towlettes to remove makeup at night / Oil of Olay Regenerist Night Creme at night

Makeup: Stila Stay All Day Foundation in Light 2 or Beige 3. Cover FX compact powder in 10.

-----

"People understand me so little that they do not even understand when I complain of being misunderstood." - Søren Kierkegaard


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i got asked by two different people at work today what was going on with my face. this has never happened.

give me a shovel so i can dig a hole please

it's 5 weeks till i see my derm again

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i got asked by two different people at work today what was going on with my face. this has never happened.

give me a shovel so i can dig a hole please

it's 5 weeks till i see my derm again

Did you read my whole post? Try a thin layer of BP in the morning, every other day, or even every day if you think your skin can take it.

I've gotten those rude comments from co-workers too.... I asked them why they would make such rude comments and they shut up. People will get embarrassed when you call them on their rudeness.


Nature of the Beast: Moderate, inflammatory, several cysts, large pores & very oily
Current Status: Very mild overall, with some red marks & mild "bumpiness" on chin (possible scarring).
Use: Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Facial Cleanser or Acne.org Cleanser / Acne.org 2.5% BP day & night / Acne.org Moisturizer for day / DHC Cleansing Oil or Neutrogena Towlettes to remove makeup at night / Oil of Olay Regenerist Night Creme at night

Makeup: Stila Stay All Day Foundation in Light 2 or Beige 3. Cover FX compact powder in 10.

-----

"People understand me so little that they do not even understand when I complain of being misunderstood." - Søren Kierkegaard


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It looks like we're on the same schedule - I started using tretinoin .025% on October 13! Today is officially 3 weeks for me.

The first two weeks were HORRIBLE!!!! They were absolutely excrutiating! I actually called in sick to work on Oct 20th (a week after I started using it) because we had a staff meeting and I could not bare to have everyone in my department see my terrible, horrible, awful breakout. It brought EVERYTHING to the surface, and apparently, I had a ton of buried infections.

My life has pretty much been on hold since then. I don't go anywhere I don't have to because I'm so embarrassed to show my face. I think I actually scared a sales guy at work... he glanced at me, and actually did a double-take and seemed to jump back a bit. I was humiliated. I have felt like a total freak the past three weeks!

There seems to be a little bit of improvement, however small. I still feel like a freak though and it totally sucks. But, I know I'm on the right track. Tretinion has worked for me in the past and it will work again. I just need to let my skin purge itself so it can be healthy again. It was my fault for going off my acne meds in the first place, and this is the price to be paid.

Hang in there Bud!!! Our faces might not be so pretty in Thanksgiving pictures, but think of how great we'll look at Christmas! :D That will be roughly 10-11 weeks, and we should be seeing noticeable improvement by then!!


My Acne Regimen

Morning

Purpose Gentle Cleanser

Benzamycin

ATOPALM MLE Intensive Moisurizer

Neutrogena Skin Clearing Oil Free Concealer & Healthy Skin Loose Powder

Multi-vitamin, Vitamin E, A, B-complex, Cod Liver Oil, Zinc, Acidophilus

Evening

Purpose Gentle Cleanser

Retin-A .025% (20-30min after washing face)


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I tried Tretinoin last year for 6 months & it was terrible all of my face was full of white flakes it was embarrassing plus when It cleared my acne the following week my acne will come back horribly

I have currently been drinking Apple Cider Vinegar for 6 days and I am seeing good results I hope this it it :)

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i used retin-a micro for about 6 weeks over the summer and thats all i could stand! it was horrible!!! ive had acne for over 10 years and have tried MANY topicals and antibiotics.... but nothing was as horrible as tretinoin gel (retin a micro). it made my face so raw that i had nightmares about my skin melting off. im on accutane now (week 6) and the dreaded initial break out of accutane has been NOTHING compared to retina a. im soooo glad i stopped using it. more power to you if you can stick through the whole treatment... i just couldnt stand another day on that poision. good luck

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your skin will get very dry when you use retin-a, hence you will get a breakout at frist. that is why you are suppose to moisture morning and night. Also if retin-a is really drying out your skin, apply it once every other day until you think your skin has got use to it and then apply it everyday.


Month 1: Sotret - 60 mg - Started 12/17/2008

Month 2: Claravis - 60 mg

Month 3: Claravis - 60 mg

Month 4: Claravis - 60 mg

Month 5: Claravis - 60 mg - Finished 6/9/2009

My Accutane Log


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I have been using Atralin Gel 0.05%(tretinoin)for about 5 wks. My face hasn't become flaky or dry and I'm not moisturizing(occasionally w/purpose redness reducing moisturizer. However, I'm unemployed and haven't been out in the sun very often. I'm washing my face 2x/day w/Cetaphil Gentle Cleanser, taking spironolactone 100 mg.(a.m.), Solodyn 45 mg.(minocycline)p.m., and applying a tiny pea-sized amount of Atralin Gel at night. If I go out, I apply Physician's Formula Mineral Wear Make-up w/sunscreen lightly over the spots that are slightly red/scarred and fading. My derm gave me 2 samples of the gel when I saw him in Oct. I've been using it very sparingly to avoid filling a prescription(before I see results)for a full-sized tube which could potentially be very expensive(I've spent lots of $$$$$'s on scripts that didn't work!!). It amazes me how much differently these topicals work on each and everyone of us. Thanks for your informative posts everybody. I'm gald I found this site.

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I can't believe is December 7th already.

I just got bumped up to .05%. I said I was giving this till Christmas. Then I'll deal with super-red/dry face for a few weeks when I return to BP. This tretinoin thing was a good experiment but I've been incredibly disappointed.

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I can't believe is December 7th already.

I just got bumped up to .05%. I said I was giving this till Christmas. Then I'll deal with super-red/dry face for a few weeks when I return to BP. This tretinoin thing was a good experiment but I've been incredibly disappointed.

Hang in there buddy. Tretinoin is designed to increase cellular turnover for your skin. The reason why people usually get worse, then better, is because it needs to bring the stuff from deep in your skin out (thus worse break-out because it is purging out stuff). Once your skin starts getting better, it means it is working to clean out your skin. However, the most important thing is to keep using it. Those coworkers will be jealous once your skin starts clearing up because it will look better than theirs (plus side to tretinoin is it increases collagen in your skin so it will look smoother and firmer eventually).

Also, someone earlier mentioned that they use benzoyl peroxide in the morning to compensate if they forget their antibiotics. Please do not forget to take it! The drug peaks in the body's system and if you don't take it in a timely manner, the drug's level in your body will drop. This gives the bacteria a chance to become resistant, which may risk you having to go onto a stronger drug. Stronger antibiotics are always worse for your body to have to deal with.

Another option is you can also use a salicylic acid (it helps slough off the top layers of your skin and keeps the pores open). BP is also an exfoliant, but I find salicylic acid helps bring redness down faster (at least it does for me).

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I've been using Tritinoin Cream for almost 8 weeks now, and I'm just now noticing some improvement.

I've been very depressed, and very embrassed to go out in public or even to hang out with my friends. Everyone asks, what's up with your face. That's one of the hardest things I've had to deal with, it makes me very upset to know that people can't get passed the acne I have. I had clear skin before I went to see the derm. They decided b/c I had a few white heads by my eyebrows that I should use this cream, they didn't tell me that it would get worse before it gets better. Now I wish I would have never used it. Proactive worked for me when I was in high school. The derm. told me that, Proactive works at first and then quits working. They also told me that my face broke out b/c I stopped using birth control.

Will my face ever be clear again? Im having a hard time seeing the light at the end of this dark dark tunnel!

When I started using this cream, I washed with Proactive, I noticed that my skin was very irritated and inflammed. So I started just washing my face with water. Now I'm trying to wash my face with Aveeno Baby, I think it's working, but I think washing with water is my best bet.

Does anyone have any advice?

:rolleyes:

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I have a solution for all of you to try: Use Tretinoin AND Benzoyl Peroxide TOGETHER. For me, it was a miracle solution.

A few years ago, when benzoyl peroxide had stopped working for me, I consulted my doctor. He gave me a prescription for Tretinoin (generic Retin-A). I used it for 2 months and nothing happened. Just like you guys, my skin actually got worse. And it kept getting worse. And it was sooo oily. I went back and the doctor gave me a stronger version of Retin-A (0.5%). Once again, I put it on faithfully every day... and nothing. Then, out of desperation, I started to combine the two. Every night, I put on a pea-sized amount of Persa Gel (a 10% BP solution) and then, after letting it dry, I rubbed ona pea sized amount of Retin-A. I put on one, then the other. Miracle of miracles, my skin cleared up. It didn't even take long. Within a week, acne was gone.

I told my doctor and he practically laughed me out of the office. He didn't believe that BP and Tretinoin worked together. The jerk told me it was just the BP working. Well, when I ran out of Tretinoin (Retin-A), sure enough, my acne came back. And once again, NOTHING got rid of it until I went back to combining BP and Retin-A.

I've been using this system now for FIVE years. Still clear. And I can even cut out the Retin-A for days at a time, which means that most days, my skin looks clear and normal. Not too smooth, as some people's skin gets when they use retin-a. Healthy. Normal. It's marvelous.

I'd love to see other people try this and post their results. For me, it was the answer.

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Okay, I used tretinoin 2 years ago now. It made my skin become very oily and then get lots of spots. (Which I personally think is from all the oil!) Also, I never used to get open black-type blackheads and after using tretinoin I now get them.

And two years on, the things that I used before for long periods of time; benzoyl peroxide, skinoren, apple cider vinegar wiped over my skin, freederm, zineryt, even many moisturisers, now when I apply them in a few hours, my skin will have had an oily over reaction, and over the week I will get a break out and lots of blocked pores from trying to use these products.

I used to be able to them with no problems, but even two years after using tretinoin, my pores seem to have changed and I don't know when I will be able to use my old products again.

I'm seriously looking at only washing with water and mild soap to try and keep my face acne free because everthing is making my skin over react. When I am not trying to use BP and the other stuff my skin reverts back to normal. I have mild acne, with occasional spots, and blocked pores. (Both before and after tretinoin). I should probably just leave it and try BP on my skin again in a year's time.

I really don't know what's going on with tretinoin cream, and I would honestly say avoid it unless nothing else works. This is not about accutane though, only trenitoin topical cream.

When I was on accutane, I got neither the oily skin reaction from immediate application or problems after I stopped treatment with my skin continue to over react to anything slightly drying. Not reccomended!

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i dont know if ive yet to suffer an IB but ive used it for about a week so far, and its clearing up this horrible breakout of acne that i had. ive had it for months and finally its clearing up. but i have been mixing it with persa gel, (BP 10%) like someone else mentioned on here. and maybe thats whats helping. and not jinx it but really llooks like my blackheads are clearing up. i love the way my nose looks for the first time in YEARS>

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Hello,

This is a bit of a change of subject, but this is the only message board about tretinoin. I had moderate - light acne before I began using this cream at %.025. My initial breakout was horrible just like BudJesus and others. Now most of this acne is gone but I have really bad hyper pigmentation. I know this stuff is supposed to be perfect for that, but I'm just wondering when I'm going to see it start lightening. Did anyone else experience this phase of little to no acne, but terrible hyperpigmentation? I am now on the %.05 and I am very reluctant to go up to the %.01 because my insurance does not cover it.

Thanks, any information will be helpful. My dermatologist is impossible to get in touch with.

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Hey ! I have few pimples and so many spots on my face. I am using Tretinoin Cream USP 0.025% with Hydroquinone Cream USP 4 %. I m using this cream from last 1 week but from last 2-3 days, I m feeling so much irritation around my eyes and new brown spots also occur on my face. My face become more rough then before.

What should i do ??

Should I stop using cream or continue with it.

Reply Soon ...

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I would have continued using BPO and asked for the first month or two to get .1% tretinoin. After that you can move down to .05% or less to continue treatment, as the effect of .1% and lower concentrations is pretty similar once the initial stage is over. It will take much longer for .025% to start doing anything and in the mean time you stopped your prior treatment completely, which apparently was working pretty well.

(wow, this is old! this sub board must not get much use.)


Low dose oral antibiotics for the long-term. Hibiclens morning and night in the shower. Occassional max strength triple-antibiotic white petroleum jelly all over the face (rarely, now). And occassionally salicylic acid wipes prep followed by 10% benzoyl peroxide PanOxyl (deactivates the Hibiclens, though). If you can afford oral or topical retinoids, you should try them.


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Hey ! I have few pimples and so many spots on my face. I am using Tretinoin Cream USP 0.025% with Hydroquinone Cream USP 4 %. I m using this cream from last 1 week but from last 2-3 days, I m feeling so much irritation around my eyes and new brown spots also occur on my face. My face become more rough then before.

What should i do ??

Should I stop using cream or continue with it.

Reply Soon ...

OMG please dont use hydroquinoneeee! I bought a product with hydroquinone because I heard it was really the only thing that worked to lighten acne scars. For the first week or two I was happy when the spots got lighter until a little while after that I realized how much darker the spots were gettingg. They are darker than what they were to begin with! Also i read hydroquinone can lead to skin cancer. It seemed odd to me when the gel [hydroquinone] is a clear color but some that got on the outside of the tube turned to this ugly nasty brown color when exposed!

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Hi, I've been using Tretinoin .025% Cream for quite a while actually, but I only just started using it more regularly about a month ago. Annnnnd I got the initial breakout once I started using it every night. Bad. And I still have it :/ I don't even want to go in public or even let my family see me makeup-less.

Anyways, I know the IB is normal but my question is... What are all of these tiny under the skin bumps on my face?? There is quite a few and they make my skin look so horribly bumpy in certain lights. Are they just papules? They're tiny, skin-colored bumps like just below the skin surface.

Also, when should I start seeing results and what products should I add to the Tretinoin? Should I ask my dermatologist to up the percentage? What could I expect if I started using a BP solution with my Tretinoin? Thanks!

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It's wierd seeing all these people having so much problems with tretinoin. My skin acually took it pretty well with antibiotics and clyndamycin gel in the morning, I started dec. 1st with .04 retin A micro and am now im .1% tretinoin cream, today is january 20 and I'm almost completely clear! stick with it everyone it works.

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