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mild to moderate acne Should I Try Retin A Again?

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Hi everyone! I apologize for the backstory in advance.

I'm an 18 year old male that just started off as freshman at college. I've had acne for most of high school, and I really want to get rid of it now. I met with my dermatologist a couple times in the past, and she gave me a few products to try that weren't so helpful for me (panoxyl for example, it dried out my face too much). She also gave me Retin A a while ago, but I don't entirely remember how it went. I might have stopped because of the initial breakout it causes, or the face drying (I didn't use a moisturizer back then though).

The daily routine she gave me the last time I saw her (and I still have used until today) was:


Neutrogena oil free acne wash


Aczone Cream


Neutrogena oil free acne wash

wait a couple minutes

Stridex Pad


clearasil salicylic acid gel


Neutrogena oil free acne wash



aczone a couple minutes after putting the epiduo on

This routine has had some success when I've done it continually in the past, but as of now it's not doing too much. Upon closer inspection of my face, I have a couple acne spots (cysts) on the sides of my nose and smaller ones on my chin, but there aren't too many actual pimples. Instead, my cheeks are covered with red marks that look like acne but appear to be where the acne used to be. That's what I'm assuming they are anyway; I doubt they're acne under the skin. If those red marks on my cheeks could go away, my face would look like a whole lot better.

Sorry, for the long backstory, but here are some observations on the routine.

Aczone doesn't seem to do all that much while Epiduo does appear to be more effective. I'm not sure how effective the routine is at getting rid of these red marks or cysts. This is why I'm wondering if I should change the routine and attempt Retin A again. I actually started using Retin A two nights ago, but I wanted other people's opinions on my situation.

I've changed my already healthy diet to be even healthier, and I've ordered some Zinc supplements to take too (because they're worth a shot).

Thank you for reading this, and your advice is greatly appreciated!

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