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Pre-Regimen Regimen

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#1 Lola Burns

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Posted 11 December 2011 - 11:44 AM

I live in a high desert climate and it's December. Between the horribly dry air and the BP, I'm shriveling up like a prune. My flaky, dry skin is way more uncomfortable and embarrassing than my acne ever was. So I'm backtracking. No BP until I gets handle on this dryness. Here's the plan:

AM:
Philosophy Microdelivery Wash (ultra gentle scrub with diatomaceous earth)
Philosophy Keep the Peace (light, possibly too light moisturizer)

PM:
Philosophy Purity Made Simple (soap free cleanser)
Philosophy Keep the Peace

And I got a humidifier.

Thankfully, I have nothing inflamed. Just a ton of blackheads, 1 or 2 migrating whiteheads (its in one spot one day and in another spot the next), and red marks. And crazy, out of control, infuriating flakes. I hope I don't have a massive breakout in the meantime.

Edited by Lola Burns, 11 December 2011 - 11:58 AM.


#2 Lola Burns

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Posted 13 December 2011 - 02:55 AM

I spent a good 40 minutes this morning in front of a magnifying mirror gingerly removing every single flake on my face with tweezers. Clearly, I am losing my mind. But after that little incident I did get myself a bottle of jojoba oil. Used a few drops of that after washing my face and before drying it. Then applied moisturizer on top of that. Hopefully tomorrow morning I won't look like a snake shedding its skin.

#3 Lola Burns

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Posted 13 December 2011 - 09:13 PM

Along with my mind, I have lost my patience. Ok, so I've never had any patience. I did wake up flake free this morning (hooray!) and with a brand new whitehead (boooooo!). Hopefully a couple days was enough recovery time and if it's not, I guess I'll discover that soon enough. So my new Pre-regimen Regimen is as follows:

AM
Philosophy Purity Made Simple
A few drops of jojoba oil (in the shower while my face is still wet)
Philosophy Keep the Peace

and more moisturizer, as needed, throughout the day

PM
Philosophy Purity Made Simple
A few drop of jojoba oil (again, wet face)
A quarter-sized amount of DDF 5% Benzoyl Peroxide
Philosophy Keep the Peace (globs and globs)

If anyone thinks this won't work, now would be a good time to voice your opinion.

Edited by Lola Burns, 16 December 2011 - 02:54 AM.


#4 Lola Burns

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 02:02 AM

4 days into using bp and the initial breakout is beginning. The flakes are back to, but considerably less than before. And the itching is keeping me up at nights. I hate my face.

#5 Lola Burns

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Posted 19 December 2011 - 12:22 AM

Day 5. I feel like leather, flaking like CRAZY and I may require a straight jacket to keep from touching my itchy, itchy face. But on the upside, my migrating whiteheads have disappeared.

#6 Lola Burns

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Posted 20 December 2011 - 01:51 PM

Beginning week 2. Using bp AM and PM starting today. Granted, a rather small dose of bp in the morning. I'm a little anxious to see how the day goes. (and by "a little" I mean "really fucking anxious".) This adds another 15 minutes to my morning routine, which seems nominal but I don't normally have an extra 15 minutes in the morning.

It felted like the top layer of my skin just rolled off in the shower and I'm feeling a little less leathery. The thought makes me shudder with disgust knowing how much dead (I don't mean dead, I mean DEAD) skin I've been carrying around.

I'm also noticing tiny little whiteheads on my chins. I don't know if that's purging or if they've been there for a while. Either way, I should stay away from the magnifying mirror for a while to preserve what sanity I have left.

#7 Lola Burns

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Posted 23 December 2011 - 12:52 AM

I am waaaay too rough with my skin. And I'll try, really try to be gentle with it and I just can't. I don't have the patience it requires. Although, I have restrained from using and scrubs on my face. Which is so much harder that I can explain. I'm like a scrub addict and I'm going through a pretty nasty withdrawal. Although, my blackheads seem to be going away. Or are at least shrinking.

#8 Lola Burns

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Posted 24 December 2011 - 12:49 AM

I'm starting to panic. Again. The more I read about benzoyl peroxide, the worse it sounds. It's a "drying and peeling agent". I'm not getting any younger, do I really want to slather on a chemical that going to dry me up like a prune? And the potential (and apparently likely) free radical damage doesn't make it any more appealing. I don't know what to do. I was prepared to stick it out, but not if I'm doing more harm than good. Why isn't there an easy answer?

#9 Lola Burns

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Posted 24 December 2011 - 12:28 PM

Ok screw it. I'm gonna dial it back a notch. No more bp in the morning. And only half the dosage I was using at night. I need to quit smoking. And drink more water! If I really care about my skin, I should probably start caring about my health.

#10 Lola Burns

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 01:11 PM

I am so over questioning whether or not I'm using the best possible stuff for my skin and whether or not said stuff is being used in the best possible way.

Pre-Regimen Regimen (version 65)

AM:
Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser
Desert Essence 100% Organic Jojoba Oil
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Fluide

PM:
Peter Thomas Roth Gentle Foaming Cleanser
DDF Benzoyl Peroxide Gel
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Fluide

#11 Lola Burns

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Posted 01 January 2012 - 07:34 PM

I popped 2 little fuckers (as I affectionately call them). I followed Dan's instructions but I still feel guilty. I really REALLY hope I didn't make a huge mistake. I hate my stupid chin. I also found a new one on my temple. Why!? How long has that been incubating before it decided to rear its stupid ugly head?! I left it alone. Everywhere except chin has been doing so well too. I'm so disappointed.

#12 Lola Burns

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Posted 03 January 2012 - 09:28 PM

So the 2 little fuckers look like they're gone for good. Yay! The one on my temple is shrinking. And no new ones have appeared. Phew!

I've also started drinking massive quantities of matcha green tea.

#13 Lola Burns

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 10:31 PM

I can identify no active inflamed blemishes on my face. Although, my red marks seem somehow more pronounced. I'm not too concerned with those because I know they'll fade with time. You'd think I'd be excited but I'm just waiting for the other shoe to drop.

#14 Lola Burns

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Posted 12 January 2012 - 11:22 PM

10 days into mass tea consumption. I've also been drinking half a cup to 1 cup of coffee a day and orange juice and lemonade. I thought going soda free would be harder. I'm also becoming obsessed with what I eat. Not avoiding foods (yet) just trying to eat more "good" ones. I have a new red mark. It's bizarre. Like there was a pimple there that has healed. But there wasn't! It skipped that part and when straight to red mark. I hope it just quietly goes away. I've been slowly upping my once nightly dosage of bp. I think in February I'll start the a.m. applications. I'm sure I'll get scared and push it to March. I want perfect skin because I have completionist tendencies bordering on OCD. Today, a woman I have met once (maybe twice) before said to me "you have gorgeous skin". That was nice, but it took me a minute to realize she was talking to me about ME. So all I could sputter out was "wow............it usually gives me a lot of trouble". I felt a little dumb not just saying "thank you" like a normal person. Nevertheless, it was encouraging.

#15 PaulH85

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Posted 15 January 2012 - 08:12 AM

Don't worry yourself so much about the BP and stuff. it shouldn't hurt at all if you wanted to go with just one application each day. I've always found that applying things at night works best because the body is inclined to heal and repair itself as we sleep. That's a key thing right there - a good sleep pattern. One of the things that can get in the way of that is stress and it certainly sounds like you find it pretty easy to get worked up about your skin. That focus on your skin may contribute to the acne, so it's a bit of a vicious cycle. It took me a very long while but I did eventually catch on that the best thought process to apply to it all is that you are doing something positive and your intentions are good. As long as you maintain a regimen and allow it to regulate what's going on, there's no reason why it shouldn't calm down over time.

The regimen you mentioned looks fine by the way, in case you were still unsure about whether you aught to be using the things you are. My regimen is kind of similar to that actually: Wash with La Roche Posay cleanser, got the Jojoba on hand if there's any dryness, and I spot treat with Isotretinoin gel rather than BP because BP burns my skin.

I can kind of relate to the situation with food, although I have been cutting things out. It's a very recent thing for me as it's less than two months since I found out certain things I'm intolerant of. Having cut those out, I'm acne free, but the things I cut are everywhere. I reduced dairy, gluten and yeast and I'm trying to cut out processed foods and things which are overly spicy. The processed food seems to be the tricky part because I kind of used to rely on that. I live with my parents so generally eat what they eat, but if I was cooking for myself at the weekend it would probably end up being a frozen pizza or something. Having cut that stuff out, I'm stuck for ideas and, from a financial point of view, it seems pretty expensive here to buy fresh foods and there's likely to be waste when cooking for one which I can't afford either.
I'd gone six weeks without eating frozen pizza and the eczema I'd had for several years had vanished without trace. Last Saturday, I ate a small frozen pizza and the eczema came back so I know for sure now that it was triggered by processed cheese.
I was walking around the supermarket yesterday, reaching for all the stuff I used to buy, then realising that I can't have it if I want to stay acne free. For about ten minutes, I was the ultimate cliche - single guy, grocery shopping for one, not having a clue what to buy unless it came in a box or could be microwaved...
Having thought about it a bit, I guess it's all about education. If I learn what the alternatives are and find out what I like, I can make it interesting and skin-friendly, rather than feeling as though it's difficult and that I have to try avoid loads of things.
By the same token, rather than being obsessed with the food thing in a sort of negative way, perhaps you could look upon it as something new and as a positive change. If the foods are good for you, skin-friendly, and if they also happen to be things you enjoy, then it's a win-win situation and that positivity encourages you to keep it up.

:)

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Habits become character
Character becomes destiny
It is time to change my destiny

 

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#16 Lola Burns

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 10:56 AM

Thanks Paul. You always write the most thoughtful posts. :))

I caved and started using bp twice daily. I'm only 2 days in but I'm seeing results. Although,I do wake up at midnight because my face was burning. I think I just used too much before bed. And all day yesterday I was beet red. Slightly embarrassing, but not so much that I'll willing to wear makeup during the day (I believe in makeup as an accessory, not a necessity).

I know being so high strung is terrible for my skin and my health (psychological as well as physical). So I'm taking steps to correct this. One of the worst things I do is bottling emotions. It's easy to come here and spill my proverbial guts, but in life I tend to keep it all to myself. Not good. So, while at least typing it all out helps, I've been making it a point to not avoid these discussions with my boyfriend. Because he does care about me and he knows me well enough to pickup on my stress level, even when others can't and he hates when I'm unhappy. And yesterday a friend asked me what was going on with my face. She apologized almost as fast as she asked the question. You'd think that would make me feel more self conscious. But it didn't. It was like I was given permission to acknowledge it.

I'm working on healthy sleep habits. Getting to bed at a reasonable hour, the same hour every night. And not hitting the snooze button 6 times in the morning. My boyfriend seems shocked I'm actually doing it without bitching.

I grew up with the philosophy that food = love and pleasure. So when it becomes something to stress about, it feels borderline sacrilegious. Spending a week eating really unhealthy and dreading mealtimes was more than a little out of character for me. One great thing about living in Los Angeles is that really good food that's good for you is readily available. I'm making it a point to eat breakfast every morning (a new habit made easier by waking up earlier) and having a good strong cup on matcha with it. And I find that it really does help me stay more alert during the day without the jitters I'm used to from only having coffee in the morning. I'm weening myself off coffee altogether (I have a small cup on the way to work in the morning).

I'm also getting ready to quit smoking. And no, I can't "just quit". I have to prepare. I'm monitoring how much I smoke and when. So I can anticipate situations where I would "need" to smoke and find a replacement habit. I got an e-cigarette and some nicotine patches. Those 2 things can't be used at the same time. So I have to work out when I should be using which. I am also considering getting on some sort of medication to help me quit. It's intimidating but if I could quit drinking (those withdrawal symptoms are a hell of a lot worse, and more dangerous) I can quit smoking.

All the little pieces are coming together. (but my face still kinda burns.)

Edited by Lola Burns, 26 January 2012 - 10:57 AM.


#17 Lola Burns

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Posted 29 January 2012 - 04:27 PM

So, Paul was right. I've been home for not quite a whole week and my skin is about 90% clear. I'm hoping (but not betting) that I'll be back to 99% by next week. Although, I am shedding like effing crazy. I attribute that to upping my bp dosage. And I have some lovely new red marks (I'll take red marks over active acne any day). So my face just looks dirty (I also accidentally got a tan during my little adventure). I skipped my AM bp yesterday morning because I overslept. I sort of ruined my whole day. I tried not to think about it. Tried to tell myself missing one application wasn't the end of the world. Tried to remind myself that there are worse things I could do (or not do). But it just pissed me off so much. Not just skipping bp, but losing a whole hour, having to skip breakfast, having to take my matcha to go. I have this whole routine in the morning. I rely on it to set the tone for my day. And there's not setting it right after that. Usually, even if I'm not in a great mood, if I force myself to smile enough, I'll actually start to feel happy. Didn't work. My boyfriend is pissed off about something. I don't know what. So that certainly isn't helping. And I'm avoiding him (I don't need his negative energy right now. I'm producing enough of my own). I really want a nap. But I don't want to do anything that might make falling asleep to night any more difficult than it needs to be. Today kind of sucks.

#18 Lola Burns

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 10:24 AM

The way my skin is peeling is a little weird. (this is going to sound gross) its not like little flakes. It's big flakes. Patches, really. Averaging half a centimeter in width. Before when I was peeling (when I first reintroduced bp after years without it), the flakes were relatively small and white. These new ones are kind of brown. I think I had a sunburn! I've never had one before, so I don't know if this is what it looks like. And the fact that it's a sunburn (if it even was) was masked by what I thought was a reaction to upping my bp. So does this mean the flaking will stop once all the burnt skin comes off? (fingers crossed)

The redness is gone (replaced with brownness), so is the burning. My face isn't sore or hot anymore. There is a bit of itching still. If I move my face when it has no moisturizer on it, the patches of dry skin break up and loosen and that itches. (the way it itches when something small and light like a hair is touching your face.) So I think this is all indicative of healing. (yay!) But I'm getting some new whiteheads (boooooooooo!) and I think these are caused by my inability to leave anything alone (there is something oddly satisfying about peeling off dead skin). In an attempt to develope some self control, I've taken up saying "you will not pick you will not peel you will not pop" over and over in my head whenever I have the urge. That has helped, but it's not foolproof.

I have a massage therapist coming over today. I so need this.

#19 Lola Burns

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 07:27 PM

I forgot to tell the massage therapist that I can't handle people touching my face. So she did. And I said nothing. But I ran up the stairs to wash my face the minute she left and had a cup of tea and watched a true awful movie and that calmed me down a lot.

I've been looking at ChooseMyPlate.gov for reasonable guidelines of what I should be trying to eat everyday. I'm not going to eat 3 cups of dairy a day. I'm just not. That's ALOT. But just to see, I'm trying to complete the government suggested food requirements today. To get an idea of what that really means. I've covered protein (6oz of wild salmon filet) and veggies (giant plate of lettuce and miscellaneous greens with 5 or so cherry tomatoes, red onions, carrots, avocado and corn). Still need 1/2 cup of fruit (had 1/2 cup of blackberries, some dried blueberries and a cup of Pom blueberry), 5 oz of grains and 2 cups of dairy (had only a little kashi with 2% milk). So this may be doable if I eat a gigantic bowl of cereal for dinner. I need to start eating larger portions at breakfast. I read that making breakfast your biggest meal, having a decent sized lunch and a light dinner can help you sleep. It makes sense to me.

People have been coming in and out of my house all day. So I've been hiding in the bedroom as much as possible. Oh, and I've developed a cough. Not feeling so hot right now. And I still have shit to do tonight.

#20 PaulH85

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 07:02 PM

Hope you're feeling better and I hope you're not hiding away?! :)

Thoughts become words
Words become actions
Actions become habits
Habits become character
Character becomes destiny
It is time to change my destiny

 

You look like a guy I banged once.