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Holy Isotretinoin Batman, It's Another Accutane Log!

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#1 megtree

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Posted 26 December 2013 - 07:57 PM

Hello everyone,
So I took my first dose of ISO today (absorica- 40mg), and I couldn't be more...excited? Terrified? One of the two. Anyhoo- in the tradition of Acne.org logs, here is my background:
I am a 26 year old female with Moderate acne. I've suffered with acne since puberty, which has oscillated from mild to moderate to seriously moderate (do I have to say severe?!) as of late. About this time last year, it started to get really bad again after I went off birth control (I know, cliche...) and became even worse when I went back on it. After trying amoxicillin, solodyne, Bactrim, spironolactone, acanya, Atralin and aczone, my acne has graduated from white-heads to blackheads to papules to pustules to nodules and now cysts.

Basically, it's a pain party on my face.

Finally, after crying and complaining about it to just about every doctor I have (GP, Gyno, Dermatologist #3 and Psychiatrist) the consensus is Accutane or bust. Basically, it just hurts. The breaking point for me was about a month and a half ago when I had a bad nodule on my cheek that was at extremely inflamed. My nephew gave me a big happy hug and pressed his cheek to mine. Instead of hugging him back just as hard and twirling him around like a good Aunt should, I yelled out in pain and pushed him away because it hurt like he had shot with a BB gun point blank. The hurt, confused look on his face gave me the push I needed to finally agree to Isotretinoin.

So, here I am. The pictures I've attached are from this morning. They are taken with my iPhone so, not the best quality. Right now, I have 1 nodule and 1 cyst in my left cheek, and 1 gigantic nodule/cyst combo (that's right, with fries AND a coke) on my right cheek, with about 4 or 5 more healing/ waiting for the right time to pop back up.
I'm definitely concerned about the side-effects and the IB, but my derm seems very optimistic. He also prescribed me a Z-pack for the IB, so I'm hopeful that I can get through this in tact.

On a side note- those pills are FREAKING GINORMOUS. That is all.

image.jpg
image.jpg

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#2 CWR24

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Posted 26 December 2013 - 10:56 PM

Good luck!


Absorica Aug 2013 -Feb2014

 

Claravis March 211 - July 2011


#3 mrsrobinson

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Posted 27 December 2013 - 06:34 AM

yes good luck, and your pictures look great already, you have great skin tone with minimal/no scarring, very little by way of clogged pores--  I know you don't believe it, but you are way ahead already

 

good luck to you, buy that chapstick and keep us posted



#4 megtree

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Posted 28 December 2013 - 01:56 PM

Thank you so much Mrsrobinson and CWR24! mrsrobinson- I do appreciate your comment. It definitely helps to hear positive encouragement :) Actually, scarring is something I am really concerned about, but I am ok at not picking (even when they hurt like hell!) so that might be my saving grace. I cannot seem to avoid the PIH though, and that's my main fear when it comes to the IB (other than the pain, of course).
So, Day 3-
So far, of course - no noticeable side effects (Which is ok with me!). My face has been a little itchy, dry and flakey from using the Atralin (topical tretinoin) these past 6 months, so I'm pretty used to flakey itchy red dryness. Actually, it might actually be a little improved since I haven't used any topicals in the past couple of days- but I know that will change soon. I'm moisturizing at night as well as in the morning, and religiously applying Blistex/Avene/Vaseline (basically whatever's handy), so my lips are actually much LESS dry than normal, probably because I'm paying attention to them.

In terms of an IB, nothing noticeable yet. The pores on my nose and t-zone look slightly larger and darker, and I do have some suspicious bumpiness on my jaw that I'm keeping an eye on, but I haven't actually broken out since Christmas Day. I am still taking the Z pack under my deems advisement, which may be why.
A couple questions I do have for anyone who has or is taking ISO (specifically absorica:)
How much fat do a I really need to consume with this drug? Like- can I just have half a cup of whole milk, or a tsp of olive oil...or do I need to eat a whole meal?
That pill makes me so nauseous! Any suggestions on how to mitigate that? Would ginger help?

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#5 PersnickityChick

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Posted 29 December 2013 - 02:45 PM

Hi MegTree! It sounds like you are really well prepared, and that is a great thing. 

 

You asked a couple of good questions, and ones that I have been wondering about myself.  My body seems to be processing the Absorica fairly well, even though I don't have a very fatty diet.  The jury is still out, apparently, on whether Absorica is absorbed any better because of its formulation, so just in case I've been taking my pill with just a swallow of eggnog (not a habit I plan to continue, but every year about this time I start craving it).  So far it seems to be working pretty well for me. 

 

I haven't noticed any nausea with the pill, but I have learned that generally for nausea ginger and peppermint help me. Since my tummy tends to be pretty sensitive, I tend to take a lot of that. :) 



#6 CWR24

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Posted 29 December 2013 - 05:12 PM

Thank you so much Mrsrobinson and CWR24! mrsrobinson- I do appreciate your comment. It definitely helps to hear positive encouragement smile.png Actually, scarring is something I am really concerned about, but I am ok at not picking (even when they hurt like hell!) so that might be my saving grace. I cannot seem to avoid the PIH though, and that's my main fear when it comes to the IB (other than the pain, of course).
So, Day 3-
So far, of course - no noticeable side effects (Which is ok with me!). My face has been a little itchy, dry and flakey from using the Atralin (topical tretinoin) these past 6 months, so I'm pretty used to flakey itchy red dryness. Actually, it might actually be a little improved since I haven't used any topicals in the past couple of days- but I know that will change soon. I'm moisturizing at night as well as in the morning, and religiously applying Blistex/Avene/Vaseline (basically whatever's handy), so my lips are actually much LESS dry than normal, probably because I'm paying attention to them.

In terms of an IB, nothing noticeable yet. The pores on my nose and t-zone look slightly larger and darker, and I do have some suspicious bumpiness on my jaw that I'm keeping an eye on, but I haven't actually broken out since Christmas Day. I am still taking the Z pack under my deems advisement, which may be why.
A couple questions I do have for anyone who has or is taking ISO (specifically absorica:)
How much fat do a I really need to consume with this drug? Like- can I just have half a cup of whole milk, or a tsp of olive oil...or do I need to eat a whole meal?
That pill makes me so nauseous! Any suggestions on how to mitigate that? Would ginger help?

 Absorica is a new brand that is formulated so your body can absorb it without having to take it with a high fat diet so I wouldnt worry to much about how much fat is in your meal I just take it with my meals.


Absorica Aug 2013 -Feb2014

 

Claravis March 211 - July 2011


#7 ciaraki13

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Posted 29 December 2013 - 07:21 PM

Good luck, good luck, good luck!!!! I hope it works amazingly for you. Looking forward to your updates

#8 Petrichor Murmurs

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Posted 30 December 2013 - 09:53 AM

Hi Megtree! I'm not on the same type of Iso as you, but I have found that, at least with mine, it helps to take it in the middle of the largest meal of the day. So I eat half my dinner, take the pill, and eat the rest. Don't know if that is the best way, but at least I don't feel nauseous.

I recognize the whole "hugging issue". It's easy to forget that they not only look bad, but sometimes hurt like .... too. It sucks not being able to just throw yourself into a hug. Or even put on makeup sometimes, because of an inflamed zit or cyst.

I hope the Z-pack keeps the IB away, so there is one less thing to worry about. Wish you all the best! wink.png



#9 megtree

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 11:53 AM

Day 5-
Not much new to report on my skin, it is slowly but surely getting dryer and I am noticing some "ruddy-ness" that sort of comes and goes, but other than that, everything is pretty much unchanged since day 1. I am noticing that some of my closed comodones are becoming more noticeable, but nothing has become inflamed yet.

In terms of side-effects- HEADACHES! Bah! That is by far the worst side-effect so far. Caffeine and Tylenol seem to help very well though. Chugging water helps for a little bit, but it just comes right back (especially in the morning). I had a very bad one that never went away on Sunday that kept me almost bed-ridden, but I've been fine since then. Dry eyes are still an issue, but keeping them lubed up with eye drops seems to help. The skin on my body is a little itchy but not dry.

Still having those super vivid dreams though, I'm actually kind of enjoying them! I am not looking forward to enjoying a non-alcoholic drink at midnight tonight, but ces la vie! I hope everyone has a happy new-years tonight! 2014, here we come!

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#10 PersnickityChick

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Posted 31 December 2013 - 08:27 PM

Sounds like you are doing really well! Happy New Year. I doubt I'll be wakefull enough to drink anything, alcoholic or not, at midnight. :P 



#11 Kev85

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Posted 01 January 2014 - 12:31 PM

Hey Megtree

I can completely relate to the hugging issue,

This Christmas I had to avoid hugging people just so that I could get away with the pain or an accidental pimple popping!!!

 

I may be joining the Isotretinoin Bandwagon soon...

All the the best ...



#12 megtree

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 10:21 PM

Day 7-
Nothing much to report. I am noticing some redness/bumpiness on the right side of my face and some breakouts on my back (eek!) that are a bit itchy. Not sure if it's an IB starting or business as usual. Also- more clogged pores and uneven skin than normal which is bothering me- but since they don't hurt I am totally ok with it for now. No new cysts or nodules since Xmas, but this is the time of the month my skin is typically the most calm anyway (weirdly enough, my skin breaks out the least before and during my period). I'm trying to keep my hopes and expectations very low, as you can probably tell. No dry skin, lips, or nose yet. In fact, my skin is MUCH oilier than usual. I have read other logs that report this same occurance right before their skin gets super dry, so I'm keeping up with my strict moisturizing/lip-balming/body-lotioning regimen despite the oiliness.

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#13 MISSanta

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 06:29 AM

Hey megtree, I just started accutane too (1st january)! i wish you good luck and i will follow your log for motivation :P 


23y/o female,  50kg  

                             

Treatment started: 1st January 2014

Month 1: 40mg (1 pill per day)

Month 2: 40mg (1 pill per day)

 

Here's my Accutane log!   catdance.gif

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


#14 LoveLouisV

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 08:10 AM

Hey megtree!! I agree with another poster - your skin is gorgeous!! Just imagine how beautiful it's going to be once you're all clear - only a few months of this craziness and that'll be it :)

I also agree with the poster who suggested peppermint for nausea...usually if I'm feeling a bit sick to my stomach the first thing I do is chew some peppermint gum...never fails!!

As for the body breakouts/clogged pores, if you're anything like me, that is indeed he first inklings of an IB. Mine took place right at week 3 like everyone said it would, so just be prepared...mentally and otherwise. Do not let it get you down - you know it's coming and it's not going to be fun or pretty but it will also be temporary and worth it in the end!! :)

Best of luck overall...I've subscribed to your log & will be following your progress!

xoxo

LoveLouisV

 

Check out my Accutane Log!!

 

F - 31, 105lbs

Start date: December 5, 2013

Month 1: 40mg Claravis

Month 2: 60mg Claravis

Month 3: 60mg Claravis

Month 4: 60mg Claravis


#15 megtree

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 12:01 PM

Hey megtree, I just started accutane too (1st january)! I wish you good luck and i will follow your log for motivation :P 

Good luck, and thank you! I'll check out your log too- it looks like a lot of people are starting/have started around this time. Hooray for us!

Hey megtree!! I agree with another poster - your skin is gorgeous!! Just imagine how beautiful it's going to be once you're all clear - only a few months of this craziness and that'll be it :)
I also agree with the poster who suggested peppermint for nausea...usually if I'm feeling a bit sick to my stomach the first thing I do is chew some peppermint gum...never fails!!
As for the body breakouts/clogged pores, if you're anything like me, that is indeed he first inklings of an IB. Mine took place right at week 3 like everyone said it would, so just be prepared...mentally and otherwise. Do not let it get you down - you know it's coming and it's not going to be fun or pretty but it will also be temporary and worth it in the end!! :)
Best of luck overall...I've subscribed to your log & will be following your progress!


Thanks LouisLouisV! I really appreciate how complimentary and supportive everyone is being, no one has ever said I have even remotely close to good skin- so I appreciate you all looking past my flaws. I think it really helps to think about the positives of our skin, even if it's sometimes hard to see.

I am more worried about the IB now that I'm noticing some skin changes, but i do keep reminding myself that when it happens, it will be the last (or at least one of the last) times I will have a painful flare up like the ones I've had before, and I feel much better. I'm almost hoping it comes sooner (almost being the key word here *LOUDLY KNOCKS ON WOOD*) so I can get it over with. I am really enjoying being cyst/nodule pain-free though (I have so many bear hugs for everyone!) so I'm relishing the momentary skin "calm before the storm".

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#16 emmygirl

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Posted 04 January 2014 - 01:23 AM

Yay, I'm so glad I found your log! I love reading your posts, you crack me up and your title is great! I am so happy to have your journey to follow because it's been crazy weird how parallel we are with this treatment. I was also noticing some serious nausea and think peppermint sounds amazing, I will try that pronto! Since I couldn't drink anything for New Years I drank some ginger ale and it was really helpful....and delicious too ;) I also completely agree with everyone your skin is GREAT, and will heal fast. 

I have had almost the exact same situation with nieces and nephews when they hit your chin or cheek and your eyes water in horrific pain (ugh it hurts just thinking about it) I've also had some of the classic, "What are all those red dots on your face aunt Em?" Ego hit for sure, kids are super honest, which is what I adore about them!  


26 y/o Female - 120 lbs.

30mg Amnesteem Twice daily

Start Date: December 23, 2013

 

CeraVa Facial Foaming Cleanser

CeraVa Moisturizer

Vaniply/Aquaphor Lip ointment

 

 

 


#17 Alien1

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Posted 04 January 2014 - 09:20 PM

I'm Jealous...I can't help it, your skin is going to be amazing! Keep posting, you're hilarious



#18 megtree

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Posted 05 January 2014 - 05:38 PM

Yay, I'm so glad I found your log! I love reading your posts, you crack me up and your title is great! I am so happy to have your journey to follow because it's been crazy weird how parallel we are with this treatment. I was also noticing some serious nausea and think peppermint sounds amazing, I will try that pronto! Since I couldn't drink anything for New Years I drank some ginger ale and it was really helpful....and delicious too ;) I also completely agree with everyone your skin is GREAT, and will heal fast. 
I have had almost the exact same situation with nieces and nephews when they hit your chin or cheek and your eyes water in horrific pain (ugh it hurts just thinking about it) I've also had some of the classic, "What are all those red dots on your face aunt Em?" Ego hit for sure, kids are super honest, which is what I adore about them!  

It's true! I adore my neice and nephew, and thankfully- they haven't said anything insensitive (I think my sister talked to them though). They haven't yet mastered the art of eye-bouncing yet (we all know it, the thing people do where they look at very part of your face BUT the acne so it looks like there eyes are just bouncing around your face) so they stare, but I can handle that. I love reading your post to! I am so glad to have someone to talk to who started so close to me who I can just say "hey, yo- this weirdness just happened- you got any weirdness happening?!" It is UNBELIEVABLY helpful.

I'm Jealous...I can't help it, your skin is going to be amazing! Keep posting, you're hilarious

Thank you so much! Humor is always the best medicine, and I find that laughing about all of this not only helps me cope, but it puts the people around me at ease so that it is easier for them to help me. I've noticed when I say things like "Ah! This gigantic zit is seriously hindering my ability to be aerodynamic!" Instead of "Ah! This gigantic zit is disgusting and I hate my face!" most people will empathize and talk about their own experiences instead of closing up and changing the subject.

Now. The log!

Day 11: I'm done with my first box of Absorica! I'm taking my 11th dose today. So far, no brain fog, no dry skin, but my lips and nose are starting to dry out. My face is also becoming more and more flushed, which is making my PIH look worse, but I am still cyst-less and nodule-less. I added pure rose water (Ahmed brand) to my regimen in the morning and night as a light toner, and it seems to help with redness and itching ALOT. I'm still a grease-ball, which I find very strange. My hair is getting oily within hours of taking a shower. I've always had pretty dry hair, so I'm not used to it being oily all. Not gonna change my shampoo or anything yet, I'm going to give it some time first. No Ib, the breakouts on my back I noticed a couple days ago have already disappeared. It's making me nervous!!

I am noticing some positive side effects Id like to point out: my skin is SUPER soft. It's either the ISO, or the moisturizer I picked Is extremely underrated (plain old Aveeno). Either way, I'm enjoying being a baby's butt instead of a shark-fin for a while. Also, the skin on my face seems extra firm, or thicker. No muscle pain, no fatigue or brain fog, and the nausea is gone as well, so..yay!

Happy Sunday everyone!

My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)


#19 PersnickityChick

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Posted 06 January 2014 - 07:38 AM

Sounds like you are doing great! It is good to see some positive side effects listed, too.  Hopefully they oily hair thing will change soon (for both of us), without reversing into super dry-ness.



#20 megtree

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Posted 08 January 2014 - 05:14 PM

Day 13 -

Oy. There goes the baby's butt. My skin (on my body) is starting to dry out in patches which is definitely not fun, but my face is still incredibly oily (bah!). My face is also very flushed, but I am not too bothered right now - makeup covers it, although it is making my PIH look worse. On the plus side...no IB...yet. I am noticing more and more clogged pores on my cheeks though, which is probably a harbinger of dark days to come. The oilyness, I think, is what is most disturbing right now - my boyfriend made a very sweet comment when I mentioned it the day before yesterday: "well...I thought you were just glowing...more than usual...". Ah yes, I am glowing. It's the pre-IB from hell...glow? Anyhoo, I haven't had any side effects other than body-skin dryness and facial-skin oilyness, but it is definitely starting to be a very different kind of dryness and oilyness than I have ever experienced. The moisturizer seems to be keeping it at bay on my face (maybe a little too well?) but I will have to step up my game when it comes to the rest of my body.

Anyone else experiencing more oilyness than usual?


My Accutane log (with pictures):

 

 http://www.acne.org/...r-accutane-log/

 

26 y/o female- approx. 54kg
Absorica -40 mg, 1 daily, December 26, 2013 - February, 25, 2014

Absorica - 60 mg, 1 daily. February 26, 2014 -
Probiotic - 1 daily
Fish oil supplement w/ vit D - 1 daily

Morning:

Cetaphil cleanser

Food Grade Rose water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Vichy 50+ Capital Soleil Cream for Sensitive Skin


Night:
Cetaphil Cleanser

Food grade Rose Water - Toner

La Roche Posay Mineral Water Spray
Aveeno Positively Radiant intensive night cream

Cerave Facial Moisturizing Lotion- PM

Cerave Moisturizing cream
Avene Cicalfate (as needed)





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