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Starting Tretinoin Journey, Scared!

tretinoin initial breakouts clindamycin phosphate

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#1 h0peful11

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 07:34 PM

Hello i am new on this site and decided to join to document my journey with tretinoin and hopefully receive some feedback and help from others on this forum. I have battled with acne from the age of 13 and am now 22 years old. It got extremely bad during high school, at which point I tried numerous different methods such as doxy, benzoyl peroxide, tazorac, and facial extractions. I do not know what actually helped but finally for quite some time my acne became managable. I would still have some breakouts here and there but they were not as bad and i started to have some hope that maybe I was "growing out of it".
That all changed however, about five months ago. I noticed that I had begun to slowly break out on my cheeks, which was an area that I normally did not get acne. Usually even if I did break out my problem area would be my chin and by my nose. Well the breakout started to get pretty bad with some whiteheads and other gross pimples, so getting fed up and frustrated I decided to get Proactiv. Biggest mistake of my life!!! It gave me a horribleeee rash and I broke out ten times worse with both sides of my cheek completely filled with painful inflamed acne, cysts, and pustules. I went to numerous derms but was not satisfied with any of them up until my recent one gave me clindamycin phospahte wipes. They seem to be working a bit. But now, I am trying to get to the root of my problem and stop my embarassing acne by using tretinoin.

Let me just say I am terrified of using this. I have become so hopeless and scared because of countless methods that I have used that have not worked for me. I do not want to take oral antibiotics as they have a lot of negative side effects so hoping this will work for me. I was wondering if anyone else knows whether using clindamycin with tretinoin will help fend off the dreaded inital breakout? I already have horrible acne as it is, and many important events coming up soon and am so scared of how my face will look. Would really appreciate some help.

Sorry for such a long post

#2 h0peful11

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 07:46 PM

Anyone?

#3 tracy521

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 11:17 AM

the clindamycin should definitley help for sure. my derm gave me retin-a to use at night and finacea in the morning but i am so scared to use them. i was on retin-a twice in the past and all it did was give me super red skin that always peeled but this time they gave me the 0.0025% cream and told me to use it every other day but it does make me nervous because i tried to spot treat with it a bit and it made my cysts bigger so that does concern me. i assume that if i keep using it that the cysts will go down i just got too nervous and stopped. i have read that a lot of people have good success with the cream and my derm assures me it will be worth it in the end. so you could try using it every other day to see how your skin reacts and go from there or you could test an area of your face with it and see what happens.

#4 brownsauce2016

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 01:27 PM

Looks like we will be starting our journey together! Dermatologist prescribed Tretinoin Cream 0.025% for PM use and Clindamycin Phosphate Lotion for the AM. I have acne on one cheek and acne scars on the other. The Tretinoin is making my acne on my one cheek peel a lot and the other cheek looks fine. From what I'm reading, the peeling is supposed to happen and that my skin will build tolerance so I guess I'll just continue using it every night. I'm trying to be hopeful though--95% of the stuff I'm reading about this stuff is incredibly positive but it takes time. We're in the same position (I'm 18) so hopefully this works out for the both of us!

#5 tracy521

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 01:41 PM

i am still torn about using the finacea in the am since my face is very sensitive. i dont even know how it will tolerate the retin-a at this point. i used differin on my chin in the past but could never use it every night just every other night or i would peel like crazy and then it would get all red and swelled up. i think the differin was way stronger than the retin-a that i will be using though. the derm i saw told me he uses tazorac every night and that he moisturizers then uses the tazorac then moisturizers again but i think for me that would be way too much moisturizer. ahh to be 18 again!! i am 35 so i pray this stuff helps. i am so sick of dealing with this acne crap especially at my age. keep me updated on your progress. i am getting a peel on wednesday and then once i am done peeling i will start with the retin-a. good luck to you!

#6 h0peful11

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 06:16 PM

Hello! Thank you so much for the replies I am so glad to hear that I am not going through this on my own! I started using the tretinoin 0.025 cream about a week before I made that post, so am on around my second week of treatment really hoping that this will end up working!

Looks like we will be starting our journey together! Dermatologist prescribed Tretinoin Cream 0.025% for PM use and Clindamycin Phosphate Lotion for the AM. I have acne on one cheek and acne scars on the other. The Tretinoin is making my acne on my one cheek peel a lot and the other cheek looks fine. From what I'm reading, the peeling is supposed to happen and that my skin will build tolerance so I guess I'll just continue using it every night. I'm trying to be hopeful though--95% of the stuff I'm reading about this stuff is incredibly positive but it takes time. We're in the same position (I'm 18) so hopefully this works out for the both of us!



I have been using it mostly every other night and so far have not really experienced much peeling, mostly only redness, dryness and a sort of tight feeling in my face. I have read on several places that it is supposed to cause peeling though, so does that mean that it is not working? Also, on the nights when you do not apply the tretinoin cream, do you use the clindamycin in the evening as well?

i am still torn about using the finacea in the am since my face is very sensitive. i dont even know how it will tolerate the retin-a at this point. i used differin on my chin in the past but could never use it every night just every other night or i would peel like crazy and then it would get all red and swelled up. i think the differin was way stronger than the retin-a that i will be using though. the derm i saw told me he uses tazorac every night and that he moisturizers then uses the tazorac then moisturizers again but i think for me that would be way too much moisturizer. ahh to be 18 again!! i am 35 so i pray this stuff helps. i am so sick of dealing with this acne crap especially at my age. keep me updated on your progress. i am getting a peel on wednesday and then once i am done peeling i will start with the retin-a. good luck to you!


Oh man! I really get where your coming from and understand why you would be hesitant in using the cream. From what I have heard, the 0.025 is much milder than the rest of them, so I would suggest that maybe you can start off by using it once a week, and then maybe give your skin a chance to slowly get used to the cream? I would suggest to try using that and also I use a cetaphil moisturizing cream which I think will really help with the dryness. Good luck to you as well and hope to hear about your progress as well!!


Hoping that our treatments will finally give us clear and beautiful skin! :)

#7 brownsauce2016

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 11:15 PM

Hello! Thank you so much for the replies I am so glad to hear that I am not going through this on my own! I started using the tretinoin 0.025 cream about a week before I made that post, so am on around my second week of treatment really hoping that this will end up working!


Looks like we will be starting our journey together! Dermatologist prescribed Tretinoin Cream 0.025% for PM use and Clindamycin Phosphate Lotion for the AM. I have acne on one cheek and acne scars on the other. The Tretinoin is making my acne on my one cheek peel a lot and the other cheek looks fine. From what I'm reading, the peeling is supposed to happen and that my skin will build tolerance so I guess I'll just continue using it every night. I'm trying to be hopeful though--95% of the stuff I'm reading about this stuff is incredibly positive but it takes time. We're in the same position (I'm 18) so hopefully this works out for the both of us!



I have been using it mostly every other night and so far have not really experienced much peeling, mostly only redness, dryness and a sort of tight feeling in my face. I have read on several places that it is supposed to cause peeling though, so does that mean that it is not working? Also, on the nights when you do not apply the tretinoin cream, do you use the clindamycin in the evening as well?

i am still torn about using the finacea in the am since my face is very sensitive. i dont even know how it will tolerate the retin-a at this point. i used differin on my chin in the past but could never use it every night just every other night or i would peel like crazy and then it would get all red and swelled up. i think the differin was way stronger than the retin-a that i will be using though. the derm i saw told me he uses tazorac every night and that he moisturizers then uses the tazorac then moisturizers again but i think for me that would be way too much moisturizer. ahh to be 18 again!! i am 35 so i pray this stuff helps. i am so sick of dealing with this acne crap especially at my age. keep me updated on your progress. i am getting a peel on wednesday and then once i am done peeling i will start with the retin-a. good luck to you!


Oh man! I really get where your coming from and understand why you would be hesitant in using the cream. From what I have heard, the 0.025 is much milder than the rest of them, so I would suggest that maybe you can start off by using it once a week, and then maybe give your skin a chance to slowly get used to the cream? I would suggest to try using that and also I use a cetaphil moisturizing cream which I think will really help with the dryness. Good luck to you as well and hope to hear about your progress as well!!


Hoping that our treatments will finally give us clear and beautiful skin! Posted Image


Do you have any current acne? If anything, you should be grateful that your skin isn't peeling! Like I said, the cheek that currently has acne is the one that's peeling. The other side with only acne scars is fine, maybe some slight redness but that's really it. Everyone reacts differently to these topical medications. I too am experiencing the tight feeling in my face. And I'm actually using the Tretinoin every night so no, I only use the Clindamycin in the morning. It calms my skin down from the peeling and I'm pretty guilty of picking at the peeled skin. Do you exfoliate ever?

#8 h0peful11

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 12:39 AM

Sorry I had misread your post earlier, I thought you said you applied it every other night, And yes I do have some current acne, mostly whitheads, blackheads and clogged pores on my cheeks and chin and I have a lot of red marks and scarring from previous breakouts. But yes I suppose I should be happy that I am not peeling, I just assumed that it meant that it may not be working, and started to get worried! And no I have not been exfoliating. I know I am supposed to be doing that though to clear away dead skin cells. Is there any exfoliating scrubs that you could recommend? I used to use St. Ives apricot scrub, but found that to be way too harsh for my skin.

#9 tracy521

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:49 AM

ok so i went to the derm today and discussed my issues with them and they said to try the retin-a again like 1-2 times a week then to try it 3 times a week and then every other night until i can tolerate it daily. so i am going to slowly work up to using it and pray that it will help my skin and not cause a massive breakout!
i just started using this vivant 3% bp exfoliating scrub but la roche posay makes a few good scrubs that arent medicated as well. i used to love my olay regenerist cream cleanser because it had exfoliating beads in it too. good stuff!

#10 h0peful11

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 08:59 PM

ok so i went to the derm today and discussed my issues with them and they said to try the retin-a again like 1-2 times a week then to try it 3 times a week and then every other night until i can tolerate it daily. so i am going to slowly work up to using it and pray that it will help my skin and not cause a massive breakout!
i just started using this vivant 3% bp exfoliating scrub but la roche posay makes a few good scrubs that arent medicated as well. i used to love my olay regenerist cream cleanser because it had exfoliating beads in it too. good stuff!

H

Heyy good luck on your journey with tretinoin! I would like to know how your progress goes so it would be nice to hear updates from you. I am now beginning what I believe is the dreaded inital breakout from it :( not happy about it. after the last few months of battling severe inflamed acne, finallyyy my skin started to show some progress and get clearer, however i was left with a ton of scars. Now again, I have started to break out and it honestly terrifies me! I do not want my skin to get that bad again and just the thought of it makes me cringe! Hopefully the IB doesnt last too long and I am praying for a miracle for it to get better sooner rather than later. I think your idea of starting out once or twice a week is a good one. I had initally started using it every other day and was starting to notice more smoother skin. However once I started using it every night my skin got veryyyyy dry and also this is the point when I started to break out. So I think in this case it is best to start slow and steady.
As for the exfoliator you suggested, I cannot use anything with BP because unfortunatelyI am allergic to it, but I will try out the Olay product you recommended!
Best of luck to you! Keep me posted

#11 h0peful11

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Posted 12 January 2013 - 04:14 PM

Okay so thought to write a quick update on my progress so far. At this point I am not getting any more dryness, or tight feeling from the tretinoin. I have howeever been waking up every morning to new pimples. I think I am now in the inital breakout phase. My left cheek which was starting to rapidly clear up is now completely coveredin pimples and so is my right cheek. I'm also getting pimples on my forehead now. I have tried exfoliating with just a clean soft paper towel and gently rubbing my skin to remove the dead cells but i dont know if that is such an effective method. Definitely need to invest in a good exfoliating scrub, because right now all I use is cetaphil cleanser. Im kind of scared to introduce a new product into my regimen now because I feel of getting an adverse reaction to it, but let's see what happens.Hoping the inital breakout phase ends soon!

#12 h0peful11

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 09:45 PM

Hello, I dont know if anyone is reading this thread but just figured I should write a quick update.

 

Okay so I am currently in my fourth week at the moment. At this point in time the area I live in is getting extremely cold causing my skin to dry out more than it already is from using the tretinoin. I am experiencing a lot of dryness and peeling on my face at the moment. Currently I am also starting to continue to get some whiteheads all over my left cheek, have two active ones on my chin, as well as on my right cheek. At this point my forehead has sort of cleared up a bit (knock on wood), but is not completely acne free and I do have marks where I previously had pimples. I do not know how much longer this breaking out process will continue. I do not know if this is the initial breakout or is it is just regular breakouts. I am sort of confused about this. But I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for the best!!!! I really want my skin to start showing some more noitceable results!! But I know that patience is key with tretinoin so I will try to just remain that way. Will update again soon.



#13 h0peful11

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 12:48 AM

So I made a trip to the derm today and am feeling slightly discouraged. I thought that my skin was starting to get somewhat better, however,my derm added a desonide cream to my regimen due to the fact that I have a lot of redness and scarring. Ugh this is really a roller coaster ride, Feeling disheartened