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First Post: Epiduo Initial Breakout Woes/sun Questions...

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#1 LifeisModernRubbish

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Posted 17 April 2012 - 07:32 PM

Hey guys, you can skip the first four paragraphs if you don't wanna read my skin saga, questions are all in the last section Posted Image

I've had acne on and off since sometime around my freshman year of high school (I'm a freshman in college now). For a long time I kept it under control with topicals (Benzaclin and one other that I can't seem to remember the name of), however in recent months they seemed to lose their effectiveness. This was obviously frustrating, so I went back to see my derm and was prescribed Epiduo and 100mg of sulfamethoxazole twice a day.
I started the new meds on February 16th

My skin initially cleared up wonderfully, which was probably either the antibiotics, or a nice coincidence. This lasted about a week and a half, after that my skin basically exploded (which at the time I did not know was the way retinoids worked). My skin was worse than it had been my entire life, I became extremely self conscious, freaked the hell out, however I stuck to the pills and cream.

It should also be noted that since starting college my diet has been just ridiculously horrible, pizza several times a week, fast food, lots of chocolate, LOTS of caffeine, less than 16oz of water per day basically the worst shit possible. In high school I never noticed a correlation between diet and acne (but I paid much less attention to my skin then), I'm not sure if my eating habits have made me break out, or it's just the Epiduo doin' it's purge thing.

Whatever the cause of breakout, starting about two weeks ago I dramatically changed my eating habits. I cut out dairy, any kind of fast food/pizza, coffee, soda etc. Starting drinking loads of water, fruits and veggies (mostly carrots), whole grain bread, tuna, turkey and ham, now the only caffeine I consume is in the form of green tea. I also started taking a multi vitamin as well as Omega-3 fish oil.

OK now that that's all out of the way (sorry for the long post Posted Image ) I can get to my questions.
I've been using Epiduo for almost exactly two months, my skin is pretty bad right now which I'm hoping (praying) is just the initial breakout. However my skin has been super duper oily for about a month, which seems to be the opposite of what most people experience using this stuff. I haven't had any dryness and only the tiniest bit of flaking. Is this bad/good? Am I experiencing a normal initial breakout? Or is it not doing it's job?
Secondly, and more importantly. This weekend I will be going to Coachella, which for those of you who don't know is a massive music festival. It takes place in what is basically the desert, it's gonna be really, really, really sunny and I'll be outside, all day, for 3 days. I've read lots of horror stories about what sun exposure can do to your skin on this stuff, will sun screen be enough? Should I stop taking the antibiotics for a few days? Should I be worried?
And finally, would adding BP (clearasil) to my list of treatments be effective or detrimental? I don't want to bombard my skin with chemicals that may cause redness, however it's really tempting, and it's tinted so it helps cover up my current zits.

Sorry for that MASSIVE post, I really appreciate you guys taking the time to read/answer my questions. So much great info on this site!

#2 sarah25

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Posted 30 August 2012 - 02:20 PM

Hi there,

Not sure if you will still get this-- but I'm just curious to see what your results ended up being like from Epiduo. I just started it a few weeks ago and am basically experiencing what you did so I'm obviously concerned, but I want to stick with it because I know tehre is an initial breakout period for many people.

Anyway, did Epiduo end up working for you? How is everything with your skin?

#3 Green Gables

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Posted 31 August 2012 - 04:34 PM

Hey guys, you can skip the first four paragraphs if you don't wanna read my skin saga, questions are all in the last section Posted Image

I've had acne on and off since sometime around my freshman year of high school (I'm a freshman in college now). For a long time I kept it under control with topicals (Benzaclin and one other that I can't seem to remember the name of), however in recent months they seemed to lose their effectiveness. This was obviously frustrating, so I went back to see my derm and was prescribed Epiduo and 100mg of sulfamethoxazole twice a day.
I started the new meds on February 16th

My skin initially cleared up wonderfully, which was probably either the antibiotics, or a nice coincidence. This lasted about a week and a half, after that my skin basically exploded (which at the time I did not know was the way retinoids worked). My skin was worse than it had been my entire life, I became extremely self conscious, freaked the hell out, however I stuck to the pills and cream.

It should also be noted that since starting college my diet has been just ridiculously horrible, pizza several times a week, fast food, lots of chocolate, LOTS of caffeine, less than 16oz of water per day basically the worst shit possible. In high school I never noticed a correlation between diet and acne (but I paid much less attention to my skin then), I'm not sure if my eating habits have made me break out, or it's just the Epiduo doin' it's purge thing.

Whatever the cause of breakout, starting about two weeks ago I dramatically changed my eating habits. I cut out dairy, any kind of fast food/pizza, coffee, soda etc. Starting drinking loads of water, fruits and veggies (mostly carrots), whole grain bread, tuna, turkey and ham, now the only caffeine I consume is in the form of green tea. I also started taking a multi vitamin as well as Omega-3 fish oil.

OK now that that's all out of the way (sorry for the long post Posted Image ) I can get to my questions.
I've been using Epiduo for almost exactly two months, my skin is pretty bad right now which I'm hoping (praying) is just the initial breakout. However my skin has been super duper oily for about a month, which seems to be the opposite of what most people experience using this stuff. I haven't had any dryness and only the tiniest bit of flaking. Is this bad/good? Am I experiencing a normal initial breakout? Or is it not doing it's job?
Secondly, and more importantly. This weekend I will be going to Coachella, which for those of you who don't know is a massive music festival. It takes place in what is basically the desert, it's gonna be really, really, really sunny and I'll be outside, all day, for 3 days. I've read lots of horror stories about what sun exposure can do to your skin on this stuff, will sun screen be enough? Should I stop taking the antibiotics for a few days? Should I be worried?
And finally, would adding BP (clearasil) to my list of treatments be effective or detrimental? I don't want to bombard my skin with chemicals that may cause redness, however it's really tempting, and it's tinted so it helps cover up my current zits.

Sorry for that MASSIVE post, I really appreciate you guys taking the time to read/answer my questions. So much great info on this site!


I would stop the antibiotics and BP a few days before the music festival. Just get a good sunscreen and reapply on your exposed areas every 2 hours. I have been out in the sun while on BP and antibiotics and let me tell you it was a nightmare.

Edited by Green Gables, 31 August 2012 - 04:35 PM.

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