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Temporary Fixes For Female Adult (Hormonal) Acne?

female adult acne hormonal acne temporary acne fixes cystic acne dermabrasion chemical peel microdermabrasion cortisone

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#1 CW3

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 11:47 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm a 25 year old female who has suffered from acne in different forms since about the age of 11. Once I turned 19, my acne started getting worse than it was in high school (and in high school it was pretty bad). As I got older, my acne became more cystic, and hormonal. I actually have pretty dry skin (and I live in a very humid climate), so all of the typical products that dry your skin out just exacerbate my problem. Nothing topical has ever helped. At this point, the only thing I put on my face is non-comdogenic lotion.

Anyway, I'm writing this because I got engaged in July, and am trying to figure out if there are any temporary fixes for acne that can guarantee I won't have any giant, active pimples for one day only, IE: wedding day. That's really all I ask, because in general, I'm really good at covering my acne up, and am willing to search for a long term cure ... But I just want a one day guarantee. I'm sure you can understand how I'm feeling about that.

My dermatologist reccommended accutane, but I know that things can get worse before they get better, and I'd just like some security that there's a quick, temporary fix so my face will look good on my wedding day. My fiance and I haven't picked a solid date yet, but the earliest it would be is October of 2014 (a little over a year from the date of this posting).

I'm not even concerned with scarring, that I can cover up easily, I just don't want any actives, particularly giant cysts, when I get married.

So what are some options? I've read that microdermabrasion can make severe/cystic acne worse. I've heard mixed things about various chemical peels, and have heard mixed results on lasers. What about cortisone shots? The thing about my cysts is that unlike with other people, they actually don't last all that long. There's usually a flare up of some, but the problem is that the second one set goes away, another set is active. I never get a break.

My problem area is really my jaw line, particularly on the left side of my face, but I also get severe cysts on my chin, and occasionally on my forehead or between my eyes, and sometimes, half on my lip (THOSE are the worst). I know for sure that the acne is 100% hormonal, because on a month to month basis, I can basically tell you exactly how my acne is going to behave .... And really, there's very rarely a time when it's OK. For one day or so, I may only have a few actives, but that means without fail, the next day I'll have about 12 new cysts.

When I was 20-21, I was on birth control (tri-cyclin), but it really didn't impact my acne at all. I have also been on antibiotics in the past, and those sort of cleared up white heads for a temporary period, but it never did anything for cysts (and even the whiteheads grew resistant after awhile).

Any thoughts as to what I should try? I have a year for experimentation, but I obviously don't want to waste all kinds of money on dead ends ... Especially when we're trying to save for a wedding. I also don't want to do something that will make things worse or cause some kind of permanent damange.

#2 Green Gables

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 09:06 PM

Well, the magic one-day cure is to get cortisone shots from your derm on all active pimples 3-4 days before your wedding. And then cover up the red marks with full coverage makeup.

You can go on anti-androgens, either prescription or spiro or natural anti-androgen herbs such as saw palmetto, stinging nettle, or wild yam. Anti-androgens don't have a purging effect.

#3 Binga

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 09:25 PM

Look into treating them with an ice cube and tizod/zinc cream/zinc supplement. But the best will be to start juicing carrot,cucumber,celery, beet, dandelion greens etc. or powdered wheat grass juice. Also do baba ramdev yoga for skin disease from youtube. Headstand and shoulderstand yoga will strengthen your hormonal glands.

#4 zitarella

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Posted 17 September 2012 - 01:20 AM

Birth control is the only thing that works for me.

#5 XenoMiang513

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 12:38 AM

I'm adding Saw Palmetto to my daily vitamin list because I also get hormonal cysts and slight hirsutism due to a higher testosterone level. I also just started on Retin-A and I have yet to really see the effects since I'm only a week in.

#6 Green Gables

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 09:02 PM

I'm adding Saw Palmetto to my daily vitamin list because I also get hormonal cysts and slight hirsutism due to a higher testosterone level. I also just started on Retin-A and I have yet to really see the effects since I'm only a week in.


I would bump up to at least 1000mg a day if you're female. 300-500mg is the baseline for males to show acne improvement, females need more.

#7 Tootsler

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 09:18 PM

I suggest scheduling a derm appointment for the morning one day prior to your wedding. If there is anything active, s/he can give you cortisone shots. I just got some a couple weeks ago. Boy, I wish I could administer them at home. Just miraculous.

#8 CW3

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Posted 18 September 2012 - 09:41 PM

I've never tried cortisone shots, but I'm interested in trying them to see how they work. Thanks,

#9 XenoMiang513

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 02:01 AM


I'm adding Saw Palmetto to my daily vitamin list because I also get hormonal cysts and slight hirsutism due to a higher testosterone level. I also just started on Retin-A and I have yet to really see the effects since I'm only a week in.


I would bump up to at least 1000mg a day if you're female. 300-500mg is the baseline for males to show acne improvement, females need more.


Yeesh, I guess I'm just worried about what kind of effect it's going to have on me. I've felt sick the last couple days and I don't know if I actually am getting sick or if I'm having an allergic reaction to the SP since that's the only difference I've made. I didn't take one today and felt better than yesterday so I don't know, maybe it's all in my head. I'll try taking two tomorrow to see how I feel but I may not be able to take them at all.

#10 Green Gables

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 11:31 AM



I'm adding Saw Palmetto to my daily vitamin list because I also get hormonal cysts and slight hirsutism due to a higher testosterone level. I also just started on Retin-A and I have yet to really see the effects since I'm only a week in.


I would bump up to at least 1000mg a day if you're female. 300-500mg is the baseline for males to show acne improvement, females need more.


Yeesh, I guess I'm just worried about what kind of effect it's going to have on me. I've felt sick the last couple days and I don't know if I actually am getting sick or if I'm having an allergic reaction to the SP since that's the only difference I've made. I didn't take one today and felt better than yesterday so I don't know, maybe it's all in my head. I'll try taking two tomorrow to see how I feel but I may not be able to take them at all.


You have to start at a low dose and then ramp up gradually. Anyone who goes on saw palmetto will experience some initial dehydration and frequent urination. This goes away with time. But you need to drink lots of water and ramp up GRADUALLY. I didn't mean bump up your dose today, I meant eventually you'll want to get a higher dose if your acne is severe.

#11 XenoMiang513

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Posted 19 September 2012 - 01:18 PM

Thank you, it really helps to have people here that are knowledgeable on these things.

#12 laura130490

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 10:01 AM

The only thing that works for me short term is going in the sun, I always have clear skin after I've been on holiday. Obviously that's not a safe way to clear up acne, but it's the only thing I've found so far that works every time.

#13 sallysa

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Posted 05 November 2012 - 11:42 AM

I was the same way. Mild acne and usually not too bad on my face, but pesky on my chest and back. My dress was strapless and I wanted my skin to look perfect. I saw a dermatologist for about 6 months before and we tried antibiotics, bcp, tazorac and retin A. Nothing changed it - at all. Finally she decided that she would put me on a steriod. So about a week (I think) before my wedding I started taking Prednizone I think it was, and my skin was FLAWLESS. You can't stay on steroids for a long time, for obvious reasons, but for my wedding - it was PERFECTION. And my gorgeous skin actually lasted 3/4 of the way thru my honeymoon. I stopped taking it the day of my wedding.

I wanted to hug and kiss my dermatologist because nothing has ever worked for me. It was the perfect, temporary fix.

(7 years later, I'm currently on day 7 of accutane. I'm 34, got married at 27 - have two kids - and am still dealing with this mild acne which nothing seems to fix.)

#14 lurveskin

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:01 AM

I went on a very strong antibiotic a week before my wedding (i even had to take extra meds to prevent a yeast infection). My skin looked the best it ever had on that day. Of course now I am back to the same struggles. But there are options for that ONE day. I know how special it is.

#15 tracy521

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Posted 11 January 2013 - 08:21 AM

i went tanning before my wedding because i wanted a nice glow and it dried up all my acne. now if you are getting more cystic spots i would schedule an appointment at the derm 2-3 days in advance only because it takes time for the cysts to go down. for my smaller ones it takes 2-3 days for them to go away but my bigger ones take 1-2 weeks after being injected.
you could also start getting regular facials too and then start using retin-a or some type of retinoid. if you dont want to use retin-a there are various moisturizers that they sell now at your local drug store that have retinol in them. they wont be as strong but it could they could be a good a good start to your skin care regimen.