Starting off, I've tried just about everything since the age of 13 when I first started breaking out:
-some other acne pills I forgot the names of
-tons of topicals including: epiduo, retin a, clyndamycin, adapalene, tretinoin (for chest + back), etc
-proactiv, neutrogena, oxy, basically anything you can find in the store that claims to "work"
After realizing the harsh stuff didn't work, I just started using gentle cleansers + the topicals provided by my dermatologists.
So far, I've had 3 dermatologists and all of them have basically been prescribing me the same things with different names and different amounts over and over and over, and even though I tell them it hasn't work, they've told me to keep trying.
So I did. And, of course, it didn't work.
I've decided to give up. After looking at YAZ, Accutane, different topicals, I've come to the conclusion that to pros outweigh the cons.
I eat healthy, so it's not my diet, going on birth control made my acne worse, so it could be slightly hormonal even though I've become rather regular over the past few years. Lurking has lead to me to decide to go with the no-water approach. If this doesn't work, I'm headed back to the derm to load up on some Accutane and different birth controls.
On a side note, my brother went on accutane for his large cysts. Acne is definitely in our genetics, but mine is different from his. He's now a year off of accutane and is starting to break out in large cysts again. It could also be his awful college-kid diet, though.
tl;dr: NO WATER + CLEANSERS STUFF BECAUSE NOTHING'S WORKED. YEAH.
As of 3/29/12 I'm on around week 2 or 3 of no water, I haven't been keeping track all that long. My initial breakout was awful. There were medium-sized cysts and a lot of small, inflamed zits all over my face. However, now all the cysts are gone and I'm left with the small red zits and a lot of skin-colored tiny zits. As for my chest and back, all the large cysts are gone. Yay! I've been drinking green tea (about 3 cups) a day as well. It's definitely made me feel much healthier.
Overall my complexion is looking a lot nicer. It's all one uniform color except for the inflamed acne. I've also noticed that the acne is predominantly on one side of my face. I can't tell if that's the side I sleep on or the one I don't since I roll around a lot at night. I read a few years back a post about someone who put a towel on their pillow each night so they don't get all the yucky face junk on them at night. I've been doing that since I've started and I can't tell you if it's been doing more harm than help.
April 20th, 2012.
I wanted to share a few things I've noticed/learned/experienced throughout this process. I am well over a month without washing my face, and no, I am not 100% clear, but these are my observations, you can disagree or agree, but this is just what I have experienced.
1. Acne is caused by lots of things, which is obvious, I feel.
2. Acne on different areas of your body can be caused by different things.
- It seems that my back acne is caused mostly by either hormones or eating too many sweets.
- Chest and face acne are pretty much the same, caused by makeup use, stress, and too much washing/too little sun
3. THE SUN IS SO GOOD FOR YOUR SKIN, AND I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH.
- I was literally a shut-in for around a year or so, and this was probably the peak of my acne outbreaks. I've been going outside for about two weeks now and my skin is clearing up like crazy. Just don't stay out for too long without protection or you'll get burnt. Sunscreen has never seemed to make me break out.
4. I am also including surf with the sun.
- Now, I can't exactly tell if it's because of I'm around the point where my skin is now clearing up, or if it's the ocean, but I think it's the ocean. Yes, my skin IS clearing up now, but going swimming in the ocean all this week has really made my skin so nice. Which reminds me, I've never seen a surfer with tons of acne.
- I suggest if you're near an ocean go have fun and play in the water. If you're not, then I guess this doesn't really apply to you. ;(
5. Acne breakouts go in cycles.
- By that, I mean, that I've noticed my face has developed a breakout pattern. It starts at my forehead, and works my way around my face. It goes down my temple, onto my cheeks, now into my lower jaw, over the nose, onto the other cheek, onto the other temple, and back up the forehead. Then I get little breakouts around my nose rather than on the bridge and a little on my chin and eyebrow area.
6. Eating bad food will not make you breakout as long as it's in a. moderation and b. consistent.
- Of course if you eat a whole bag of candy you'll get sick and breakout, but eating a few pieces here and there seems a-okay to me. But, if you eat healthy 100% of the time then decide after a few years of eating very very healthy to munch down on a juicy burger, you will probably breakout if you're acne-prone. But, if you eat a burger once a month or so, while still eating averagely healthy rather than extremely healthy, your body will be okay with it and it won't slow it down any. It's fine to indulge yourself sometimes! Of course, eating unhealthy food all the time will probably lead to breakouts.
7. Working out, I feel like that's pretty self-explanatory.
Edited by notwashington, 20 April 2012 - 07:06 PM.