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I Can't Tell If My Treatment Is Working. Please Help.

acne ivory soap little bumps

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#1 Tryst

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 10:13 PM

So I'm pretty much at my wits end. I joined this site to hopefully help find some answers. Because I'm desperate.

 

I've had mild-moderate acne since I was about 13 or 14. I'm 18 now. I've gone through many different treatments, and twice in my life I've had totally clear skin for a couple months. I can't remember exactly why, but the acne always came back. I probably should've stuck to the treatments I had been using, but I didn't and... Well, here I am now.

 

I've had a major overload of stress lately, and I've gone through 3 different regimens in the past 6 months. My acne has seemed to spread to places it hasn't been in years, like my forehead, though.. in some places it seems to have eased.

 

I can't tell if my current regimen is working or not.

 

I've been washing my face with ivory soap and a warm wash cloth every morning and night, then following with a toner, and a moisturizer if my skin feels dry. Spot treatment on swollen spots occasionally as well. I've been doing this for about 1-2 weeks now.

 

Like I mentioned before, it seems like it's getting worse, yet also better. If that makes sense. Before I had been using the neutrogena wave and toner, and I thought that was working, but I stopped after about a month because I was getting bumps on my forehead. I probably should have stuck with it longer, but I started to panic. I switched to that after using Proactive for around 8 months, and that seemed to work quite well for a while, until it came back once again.

 

Anyways. So now I've been using the Ivory soap, and my skin definitely feels drier and more taught then before, which I don't like and isn't good, obviously. I haven't gotten any very swollen/sore spots in quite some time though, since I started using the wave actually. But I feel like I'm getting more tiny bumps in places where I didn't have any before. Which scares me. Another thing is my spots seem to be a lot smaller then before with this ivory stuff, and they seem to go away faster to my knowledge, but I could just be imagining things. And I also am getting more little bumps, like I said before, so.... I don't know. I'm so lost.

 

How can I tell if this is working? I know you're supposed to wait for 1-2 months to really see improvement but I don't want to wait that long just to have my acne 10 times worse and have to work even harder with something else to get it clear. I am so frustrated with this right now I could scream.

 

Below are some pictures I took about a week ago of my acne, and then some more I took tonight. If anyone could give me any advice that'd be amazing. Like I said, I'm desperate by this point. I already have crappy self esteem and this is just killing it even more.

 

On the left/1st are the ones from a week ago. The right/2nd is from tonight.

 

Attached File  DSC_0152.JPG   80.5K   14 downloadsAttached File  DSC_0017.JPG   67.04K   7 downloads

 

Attached File  DSC_0185.JPG   102.9K   8 downloadsAttached File  DSC_0011.JPG   73.57K   7 downloads

 

Attached File  DSC_0186.JPG   105.14K   7 downloadsAttached File  DSC_0010.JPG   77.16K   4 downloads


Edited by Tryst, 07 April 2013 - 10:28 PM.


#2 Tryst

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 10:42 PM

I hope this is in the right place. Though I've been reading acne.org for quite a while, this is my first time actually posting here. I hope someone can help! D;



#3 Quetzlcoatl

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 12:05 AM

Could be a whole lot of things. Ivory soap is pretty drying though, so it might be exacerbating the problem. 

 

Do you moisturize?

What's your diet like?

Has it gotten better in summers?

Have you used benzoyl peroxide?



#4 Tryst

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 12:04 AM

My diet... I don't eat enough. I've been majorly stressed lately and have lost 20 lbs which is bad because I was already skinny. Last summer my skin was pretty much clear everywhere. Back, chest, face. As for drying, my skin isn't dry at all. I don't need to moisturizer. At first the soap dried it out, along with me using a toner with it, but I quit the toner and stopped drying my face and it's never dry.

Ive noticed I'm getting a bunch of tiny skin colored bumps in places I never really had acne before. Is my skin maybe purging? I don't really get any sore spots anymore. But I have a lot of little bumps and some red spots. I have noticed that if I do get inflamed ones, they aren't really sore and go away quickly. But... My skin still isn't clear. And it has been in the past but... I don't know. I'm just majorly stressed out.

And I have used benzoyl in the past but currently I'm only using ivory on my face.

#5 Quetzlcoatl

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Posted 18 April 2013 - 09:55 PM

Since you mention that it has been better during summer, I would start by trying a vitamin D supplement. If you want to go all out, you could get green pasture's butter oil/cod liver oil blend (chocolate flavor, off amazon), though it is expensive.

 

Skin colored bumps might indicate that the soap is aggravating your skin. I would try switching to a very mild non-comedogenic cleanser specifically made for sensitive skin. I can't give you any guidelines here, because I'm not all that familiar with cleansers.



#6 melmel87

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Posted 19 April 2013 - 02:26 PM

I hope this is in the right place. Though I've been reading acne.org for quite a while, this is my first time actually posting here. I hope someone can help! D;

 

 

Switch your cleanser to "basis sensitive skin bar" it's under $2 at walmart and will not clog your pores or dry out your skin. Ivory soap is scented which is bad for acne-prone skin.



#7 Ewa Gilbert

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 10:43 AM

It is very hard to give advice for acne to somebody else. I mean we all have different skin. Anyway I beleive you shoould use some natural methods. Use herbs and natural cosmetic. I was looking on Google for some helpful resources and I found this article http://www.healthann...ove-acne-scars/. Hope this will help you. Good luck.



#8 ask24

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 06:46 PM

Honestly your skin isn't that bad.

 

But you have to fix something internally in order to have long lasting clear skin.

I 've tried coconut oil for acne, and my skin clears up. you shouldn't be afraid using oils on your skin either. 



#9 ForQuestions

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 07:47 PM

Oatmeal cleanser!  I've been pretty much swearing by this ever since I started using it a month ago.  All you need is plain quaker oats, water and a moisturizer.  You can check out what I do in the thread I had posted.

 

http://www.acne.org/...d-i-ever-tried/

 

Good luck!



#10 Madeleine24

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Posted 12 May 2013 - 02:13 AM

Your type of acne is like mine. I get exactly what you do on your forehead!! Congested pores.

 

STOP the soap now. I personally use Dermalogica and have for years and love it but it's quite expensive (and each to their own...doesn't work for everyone). If you want a basic cleanser try Cetaphil or 'Simple'. I actually use some Simple products and I have serious reactive skin and it's perfectly fine for me.

 

Your congested skin might be caused by your water, which I think mine is caused by. Do you have 'hard water' at your place? You could try cleansing and rinsing with distilled water only. Or buy that 'Avene' spray to rehydrate your skin after cleansing. It's like water in an aerosol can. Also for these 'congested pores' (that's what I call the bumps!) is I tried this product at the beauty therapist and the main ingredient was Retin A, otherwise in Australia it's only available under prescription. I cannot for the life of me remember the product but it was way over priced when basic Retin A would do the same thing...Can you get your hands on some Retin A (Tretonoin) cream? The bumps literally shrank over night whereas BP has NO effect on them :(



#11 Cassiie

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Posted 13 May 2013 - 07:20 PM

your skin is actually not that bad!! but then again when its yourself its a big deal lol im the same way. Honestly try coconut oil! make sure its the organic, unrefined, extra virgin one. I use the one by Nutiva and its awesome and smells amazing. My skin was really bad and like pimples that would show even when i caked coverup on lol. If you're stuck and feel like you've tried a lot and have nothing to lose try it. I wake up wash my face with hot water then massage the coconut oil in for a few minutes then rinse it off pat it dry gently and then put the coconut oil on as a moisturizer and then i do that again at like 3pm and then again at bedtime. I'v tried sooo many products and antibiotics and expensive stuff and nothing worked. Im so happy i took the chance to try it and its only been about 3 weeks and my skin is clear. its just the scars i have left but its doing a good job at lightening them too!! and its also realy good in the hair makes it soft;)


Edited by Cassiie, 13 May 2013 - 07:22 PM.


#12 3lilpigs

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 10:24 AM

Your skin doesn't look bad at all. You mention skin colored bumps. These are probably clogged pores. Ivory soap will only exacerbate the clogged pores, as it is drying and not exfoliating. The skin needs exfoliation & moisture to release the clogged pores. Try a gentle topical exfoliant toner after washing (low percentage of bha, aha, or mandelic acid) followed by a non comedogenic moisturizer (my favorites: hyaluronic acid with a drop or 2 of a cold pressed oil such as aragon or tamanu) A good combo of moisture & acid is Cerave SA (salycilic acid). Another idea is manual exfoliation. I use a clairsonic, which is pricey, but you can find a good electronic face brush at Bed Bath & Beyond. It's called Pretika, and runs about $39.99. I use a gentle face wash called Derma e Hydrating Cleanser with Hyaluronic Acid. This method of washing the face is great, but use a gentle hand.

#13 freja

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 05:02 PM

I concur with most people here, I think the ivory soap is probably not doing you much good. I occasionally use "Grandpas Oatmeal Soap" bar to remove my makeup and it's pretty gentle, you can google it if you want to. (The ingredients are: Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Palm Oil, Water (Purified), Vegetable Glycerin, Rolled Oats, Talc, Essence of Oatmeal.) This soap *still* dries me out though, so I moisturize lots with oils! I'm currently looking around for an even simpler soap.

 

Your skin isn't bad at all IMO. :) I think with some moisture and very gentle care you could clear right up.



#14 Tom Busby

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Posted 03 June 2013 - 01:31 PM

All bar soaps are alkaline, which means they have a pH greater than 7. 

 

As suggested by 3lilpigs above, you could try the Cerave SA 9 (with salacylic acid) which will be slightly acidic.  If your skin improves, you have diagnosed at least part of the problem. 

 

Skin has a normal pH of about 5.5, so it makes sense to use a low pH product, rather than an high pH alkaline product like bar soap.