I have had moderate acne for over 10 years. I am 28 yr old female with combination skin. I have found success with the following skin care routine after searching long and hard for the right products to use together. I know a lot of people say this and that works for them and I don't want people to run out and buy everything here because it is expensive but I hope that what I use helps in some way and may give you an idea about how you might improve your routine.
My first thought about how I would try to control my acne was by finding a good skin care line. I have been in search for good products but never found any luck with drugstore brands (which may work for some). So I thought since estheticians help people with their skin for a living, I wanted to see what they used. After searching online, I tried dermalogica and bioelements and for some reason Bioelements worked better for me. ***I do not work for Bioelements, I swear. That would be mean if I tried to scam people here*** I just thought if I use good products with prescription medication, I would be doing the best I can for my skin. Because I don't have the time or money to keep going to the dermatologist. I also do not take anything orally because when I was taking antibiotics in HS, my hair was shedding more than usual so I always tried to steer away from that. I try to stay away from sweets, milk, and junk food, but I do eat them occasionally.
1) Bioelements Decongestant Cleanser - simple reliable cleanser
2) Bioelements Equalizer Alcohol Free Toner (4 spritzes) - nice light moisture
3) Neutrogena Rapid Clear Spot Gel (all over where I am prone to breakouts, not too drying)
4) Clarins UV Plus SPF 40 (I am allergic to a lot of sunscreens but this one uses titanium dioxide which does not irritate and doesn't break me out, a little goes a long way, and it is like my moisturizer)
5) Nars Sheer Matte foundation - only on areas where I need it
1) Bioelements Spotless Cleanser - 2% Salicylic Acid
2) Tretinoin Cream 0.05 (anything less or more% will not work for me. less will actually create breakouts and more will dry out and upset my skin)
As you can see, since I don't use the Decongestant Cleanser, Equalizer, Spot treatment, and sunscreen at night time, those products go a long way. I don't use the Spotless Cleanser in the morning because I find that my skin does get a little sensitive during the day and would prefer using a simple cleanser with the spot gel wherever I need it. The Tretinoin Cream is really the reason my skin has cleared. It sheds my skin without irritating it. and for some reason, the spotless cleanser does not irritate my skin like other salicylic acids ones do. It helps speed up the shedding process. it might take some getting used to - using a little bit at first and increasing later or even using it with the decongestant cleanser for less irritation might be helpful.
Hope that helps! and good luck!
Edited by dreamers, 20 June 2012 - 02:50 PM.