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Hormonal Acne- Spironolactone And Blue/red Light Therapy (Please Share Your Experience W Me!)

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6 1/2 weeks Spiro 50 mg

25 days Yasmin

3 weeks Doxy 100mg 2x day

7 1/2 weeks Blue/Red light treatment

It's been a good morning so far. Started my period so that is a HUGE sign the treatment is working. Never thought I would be so excited to have cramps and have it be that time of the month. But when things aren't in working order, everything seems to go to shit. My skin tone is so much better than it was even a few weeks ago. My cleansing routine has stopped my terribly dry, red flaxy skin and it's now smooth, has a more even tone minus PIH which is fading more and more. I am less oily in my cheeks, but still producing a sheen. When I had pretty clear skin I still had a little oil and glow 24/7 so hoping that even though I'm not dry, this trend will continue. It's been 4 days since shaving and really no need to, so I am really surprised that has slowed down so quickly. I have one small bump underneath jaw on the left side, a few clogged pores that have been there for some time on my cheek that are not noticeable, but taking forever to go away. The right side which was giving me utter HELL a few weeks ago has calmed down and smoothed out, I can still feel some clogged pores when I wash my face, but nothing visible. They could eventually turn to whiteheads or blackheads as I am exfoliating with Glycolic and using BP to dry out.target potential trouble spots. The swollen active on the right side of my chin that cropped up yesterday is now drying out and going down, it came to a head w/1 1 day so I extracted it because it was swelling, and for my fair skin it causes way more damage w scarring and PIH the longer it sticks around.

If things keep going in this fashion it will be amazing in just another month or so. I haven't had a cyst since the first IB, I have had small breakouts on my jaw (about 4 in the past week). I have had clogged pores turn into active, but I have not had another major "breakout" of new clogged pores since the first 3/4th week. Everything got pushed up then slowly clearing. This is giving me some real faith. I know I am not out of the woods, but to see where I was 3 weeks ago, SOOOOO depressed, down and thinking this was a mistake. Patience is a biotch, but I am thankful to be on this journey. Cheers to a few more days on the Spiro train and keeping my head high and eyes on the prize. Stick with it ladies if you are reading this. We will have good days, bad days and many in between, but we are not alone. xo

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Happy Valentines Day!

Well it's almost 7 weeks on Spiro and I have to say today I am starting to have even more faith in it working. My skin texture is changing, my pores are almost invisible on my chin and around it. There are still some clogged pores near the sides of my mouth that will need to clear. I know that will take more time, but the rest is smooth and this area is where pores were very visible before along with my forehead, My forehead still has noticeable pores, but the very few clogged pores have slowly gone away, there were about 4-5 small tiny flesh colored bumps that are shrinking slooowly. Haven't had much of a breakout in areas that I use to, above my mouth hasn't had anything in weeks, sides of temples nothing and far sides of my face absolutely nothing. The right cheek, the pores are also changing, smoothing over a bit. Some clogged pores remain that I am treating. The left side is clear of any marks on the cheeks, a few flesh colored bumps/clogged pores. So what I am dealing with now is one bump on my left jawline that started a few days ago, got a bit swollen but have been putting aspirin mask and BP on it. Probably will take a few days to go down. It's not a cyst, but an inflammed blind smaller bump. I have one small healing pimple that came a few days ago on the right side of my chin, but barely noticeable. I truly feel hopeful, I have kept up my routine, cleansing gently, trying to fade PIH, using blue/red light. Continuing to keep a clean diet, gluten, sugar, dairy, caffeine free. I plan to have a few glasses of wine tonight on Vday date so we shall see if that has any affect on my skin this weekend. Things have changed immensely from even last weekend or 2 weeks ago. Could it change tomorrow, I don't know. But I am going to be thankful for what seems to be a truly healing trend and steps forward. Just need to keep plugging forward. Next weekend will be 2 months and that for me means a lot. To the general eye you wouldn't notice I have an "acne" problem. But you and I know that it takes hard work to get clear, stay clear and hide PIH.

Once I start really completely clearing, I will have to contend with my anxieties of it returning and learn to listen to my body, have faith and trust the process. Spiro is working! Something is working and I am a much happier girl already.

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7 weeks Spiro today!

Man am I happy that the 2nd month is almost behind me. It's been tough in many many ways. One more week and I am moving into the 3rd month on Spiro. As of today I do not have any "active" bumps. I still have clogged pores around my mouth, barely visible until they decide to inflame and a few tiny ones on each cheeks near the cheekbonw. The left side seems to be drying up a bit and shrinking the clogs, using glycolic toner and BP. Taking forever to go away. I ordered Paulas choice 2% gel and should have it this week. I will try it on the clogged pores first to see if it helps them before I put it on the rest of my face since it is doing so well that I'd rather not induce any initial purge. The trend for the last week has been every day or other day a clogged pore gets a bit inflammed and then quickly comes to a head within the same day, I extract it if its surface or put bp and it tends to go away in about 2 days. The red PIH from the initial IB weeks ago is slowly fading but still present for sure. My skin is not dry, I am still producing a fair amount of oil. I am slightly worried, but its not causing any new breakouts so I just blot and enjoy the glow. While on Yasmin before when I was 90-95%% clear I still produced a normal amount and was dewy usually. I'm on the last day of inactive, so wondering when I start back on active this week if I will notice any changes either way. Despite the fact that things are truly going in the right direction, I still struggle with the esteem issues and confidence and thinking it is soooooo much worse than it is. I know people can barely notice, but even when I have one spot that is inflammed it crushes me. I put way too much pressure on myself to be perfect, in so many ways and I need to let that go. I have made so much progress in this treatment and truly truly can not wait to say I am CLEAR! This last batch of clogged pores is challenging me and its like I see them as ticking time bombs lol Grrrrr It's SOOOO close I can feel it. I'm anxious and excited for it, and want to be carefree already :-)

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50 days Spiro today!

Starting 2nd pack of Yasmin

3 weeks Doxy

Wow I am psyched to say that I am this far into treatment and today I am feeling good about things. This weekend was a good one in terms of getting out of my rut of hiding away. I even enjoyed wine and some gluten!!! So far not many repurcussions from the enjoyment and letting loose a bit.

State of affairs on my face. I have one small bump today on my neck, haven't had one there in probably a month. Right now it's not visible, but everytime I wear this tight scarf I seem to get one. I even thought to myself yesterday as I put it on and wondered if I would. Who knows if it is conincidence, either way it's there and not very visible at this point. Will see how long it lasts. I don't currently have any actives on my face, still just drying out the clogged pores,. Had an inflammed pore on my foreheard last night that I had been trying to get down with SA and BP, but it came to a head andt I extracted it easily and has gone down just slightly pink. My forehead had remained clear except for that recent clog. A few closed comedones around my mouth that will probably inflame this week and come out or come out dryer. But there are not any new clogs at all. Everything is just the old clogs that appeared 4 weeks ago clearing. It's a really good feeling to not see new areas clogging or popping up. That means my cleansing routine is working and is balanced for now and Spiro/Doxy diet are doing their thang. This winter weather had done a number on my skin so dry, couldn't find the right moisturizer, and I probably caused some of the clogs. I really think the week I switched to the hydrating cleanser that I did a number on my skin and added to these clogs. It was just way to thick for me and I wasn't toning with Glycolic then, so all the dry skin was building up and bam, clogged me up. So not sure I can even contribute that last breakout to Spiro, but who knows. I look forward to this week as I near my 2nd month. If things continue with the clearing of the current clogs and no new ones I would hope to see clarity by end of month 3 and limited breakouts around my next period as I will be 10 weeks by then. They say about 28 days to renew skin, so I would hope to also see increased fading in the red marks created about 4 weeks ago.

In regards to cheating on my diet, having wine, oysters, scallops and some white bread and not seeing an immediate backlash allowed me to feel "normal" again. I hate feeling fragile and having to be so damn cautious, careful. Back on the diet wagon this week and knocking back some more days towards clarity.

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Well today is another snowy crappy day here! I just wish it was Spring already and I could get outside and enjoy some sun. It always helps me feel better and makes my skin glow.

So today, feeling okay about my skin. Redness has still been reducing from post scars, barely putting any concealer on in the am. Still contending with all of those damn clogged pores and if I stare too long and too close I get anxious. One is growing larger today on my left cheek, it's a pore that's had this clog for several weeks now. I spot treated for 30 seconds with some SA 8% on it today before my routine and hope that tonight it either comes to a head or does something. It's not red or truly inflammed, I think it just wants to come out though. Will see if I can extract it easily tonight.

Debating on doing the SA 8% peel for 30-60 secs tonight. Tried it on my chest, which can be very sensitive to see if it turned red at all or had any reaction and besides feeling smooth, there was no breakout or anything either.

It stinks that I can't just enjoy my skin. I mean when I look in the mirror just a few feet away you can't see anything at all. But if I get up all in my grill and stretch my skin or tilt my head to make the light shine a certain way I can see the flesh colored clogs. Grrr I wish I could zap them. I wish they easily dried up and disappeared. I want smooth skin dammit lol It feels better when I am washing at night, less bumpy each week and tone is better. It's just a matter of time. I feel like I am wasting it just waiting though.

The bump that appeared on my neck yesterday is less swollen, coming more to surface. Treating with SA and BP. Should go down in another day or so. Besides that nothing else active.

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Day 52- 7 1/2 weeks on Spiro

Having a meh day today. Decided to extract some clogged pores on the left side last night, got 3 without a hitch (1 is a bit redder PIH now) 1 didn't budge and is now going to go through its thing today and will probably come to a head tonight. Not big at all as it would have been prior to spiro/doxy but still pisses me off. Have another clogged pore that is coming up a bit and will do the same thing. I just want flat and smooth skin darn it.

Started back adding Azeliac Acid and SA gel by PCA after my toner and before BP now that my skin isn't dry anymore. I am determined beyond all to start getting these clogged pores to diminish. The bump on my neck is small and almost gone, probably will be completely flat in another day or two. Prior to treatment that would have swollen and lingered for at least a week plus. Trying my hardest to stay positive and smile and realize how far I have come. It's just hard, because I remember when I didn't worry about my skin much at all and it's a daily thing I think about. I no longer have deep anxiety as I don't wake up with any under the skin bumps, haven't for about 4+ weeks now. But the clogged pores that turn into whiteheads is just as annoying since they are happening every other day pretty much. My entire face will be flat (just flesh colored bumps) then a clog starts to open, turn slightly pink and then get a bit bigger.

Hoping that entering my 3rd months really starts to bring some more progress next week. Sigh...

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Well having a crappy day today, but doing my best to work my way out of it. I feel like I've taken a few steps back in regards to my face, skin tone, bumpiness this week. I've got one active bump with no head on my left side which has been shitty this week. The clogs in that cheek have been more pronounced and are kinda coming out. There is one clogged pore that came to a head last night that I extracted and is healing near my lip. It will be completely flat tomorrow no doubt. I did also notice a small red spot (like 2 mm lol) on the right side of my lower chin that also pissed me off cause I hadn't even noticed a clogged pore there so feel like it was a new one. So damn frustrating. The bump on my neck is pretty much gone, so 3 days to come and go is great. But I have been working so hard to heal my PIH and these new ones are just pissing me off. They are no where near anything like the first few weeks, much smaller, less red or purple. Obviously it could always be worse, but it could also be better. I'm just feeling sad and really need to kick myself in the butt out of this pitty party.

Anyways, the journey still continues. I decided to take my 50 mg dose all at once this am alongside my first dose of doxy instead of splitting it up. I had like 3 alarms set on my phone to take pills throughout the day and I'm over it. I'm going to then take my Yasmin (basically 25 mg) with my second dose of doxy in the evening. That way things will just be that more manageable. Please Lord, I pray to you to give me the strength daily to keep my head up and get through this. The whole things get worse before they get better is a sucky slogan. I am thankful for the clear beautiful skin that awaits me on this journey... P.S. Please come very very soon. Thank you!

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So yesterday was a pretty down day for me. I just was exhaused and emotional and not sure exactly why more than usual. I've had a swollen spot on my lower left cheek for a couple days, hasn't come to a head, but hasn't gotten any bigger. I just wish it would flatten out already and go away. I noticed another pink area on my right side that is also blind and wasn't a noticeable pore that was clogged. Now these are frustrating. I can understand the clogs turning into a whitehead or inflamming, but I thought I was over these "blind spots" coming up. They aren't cysts, but they aren't easily gotten rid of either. Hoping these two will be the last of them and I can keep moving forward.

Started using Murad Exfoliating cleanser last night and really really like it. Used it again this am, even though I know many only use it a few times a week. My skin has been use to stronger treatments, so as long as it isn't overdrying me. My biggest problem is shedding of dead layer and keeping clogs at bay since I am still producing a fair amount of oil. I am spot treating my blind spot with DDF Sulfur mask and hoping that helps keep swelling to a minimum so it can just be covered with concealer until it heals in a few days. Ain't no magic cures thats for sure. Just time, patience and a good arsenal of equipment.

Thankfully the bumpy patch on my left cheekbone is dissapating which is helpful in this whole process. Have a very busy weekend ahead, a few dates with the man, hosting family for dinner and need to put my game face on. :-) Everyone knows that I am on a treatment for my hormonal imbalance, so they are all very understanding. My sister has hormonal acne and my mom still gets a cyst every once in a while and she is 60. She has really nice skin tone however, but think she had really bad skin in her teens adult hood from hormones and who knows what else she did, hippies and all lol Hoping that this weekend leads to even more progress, no more blind spots and working on my self esteem. Not sure if anyone is even reading, but this journal is helping me just as reading others journals and logs on here. I am not alone, and I thank everyone on here for sharing.

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Spiro 2 months

Doxy 30 days

Yasmin 2nd pack week 2

Well it has been a long road these last 2 months on Spiro and I truly feel I am more than half way through seeing some really great results. Last week was a crappy one, I had a few swollen spots (2 on lower cheek, 2 jaw line, 1 on neck) that came up, something I haven't had in over a month. I truly felt so discouraged, luckily they are all either flat or almost gone leaving a little pink behind. I do have one more spot that appeared on my neck last night, near jawline. I had gone so long without anything there, but I've heard that the 2nd month of Yasmin did bring some breakouts. It's tough because I didn't start everyting at the same time, I was scared to switch my BC, but in the end glad that I did. My oil has only slightly lightened up, before I would notice within 30 minutes of washing and now it's about 2+ hours before I really need to blot. My SA gel adds a sheen to my face, so it's hard to tell sometimes. I've been using Murad exfloiating daily and it's not dried me up at all. It is helping with cell turnover and scars, which is my goal to continue to fade PIH which seemingly takes FORever. Have some clogged pores that are still on each side of cheek and near mouth that are lingering and that's kind of it at the moment. I can deal with the clogs over the next few weeks no problem, I just would really like to stop anymore swollen spots appearing and am going to pray hard that this 3rd month is the end to that.

Despite my bad week, I still managed to suck it up and enjoy my weekend fully. Dealing with the acne is a battle I am not unfamiliar with, it's the dealing with it while an adult and trying not to feel so damn self conscious. I know with a little concealer and the right lighting you wouldn't even notice a thing. But it's my knowing and own self criticism that gets to me. I am proud that I kept all of my plans and enjoyed some really great times. I told the guy that I am dating about the meds I am on to balance out my hormones and the breakouts that have ensued because of it, and he was so sweet. He basically like it's not a big deal and that made me feel SO much better. I told him it bothered me, so at least he knows I am well aware I've got a few bumps on my face and currently doing something that has made it quite worse before it gets better. I am so hopeful. I am so thankful to be on this journey. If I didn't come across acne.org last fall when my hormones were an absolute mess I wouldn't be so far on this path. All of you reading, all of you on here contributing have given me such strength to make it every day through this. To not feel like I am alone, not feel like I am the only one that wants to hide away until this is over is comforting. I wish you all the strength to make it through one more day in this journey. Today I am thankful, thankful I will be clear before I know it!

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Day 58 Spiro

Finally got my Paula's Choice 2% gel in the mail last night and started using this after my DDF Toner. Woke up this am and some of the PIH seemed less red a teeny tiny bit and one area actually peeled where I put it. hopefully that means revealing fresher skin, I know it will take weeks to heal the rest of the areas, but it will be so exciting to have clarity again. I am a bit lucky that I have freckles because I can get away with my PIH blending in a bit.

State of affairs: The small swollen bump that appeared on my jawline/neck Sunday night, came to a head within 1 day which never happened before and is going dow and should be flat by tomorrow am. The last clogged pore above my lip has finally decided after weeks that it is ready to come up and kick the bucket. Probably will come to a head by tonight, these things move so quickly once they do decide to come have alittle party. Also, a clogged pore near my lower left cheek/jaw got a little painful last night, but my DDF mask spot treatment last night and BP today, and hope it goes away in a day. This area they never get big, just sore and red for a day or two and should be out the door. Hoping the PC over the next few weeks helps to clear the last of the clogged pores near my mouth and cheeks and keep them from getting too inflammed. It seems that every other day 1-2 pores that have been clogged for which seems like forever, slowly work their way up and out. I don't mind this as long as they don't turn into a blind spot and if that means they are gone for good. I barely had to use any concealer on PIH this morning, maybe a handful or areas that stand out more than I like. The less makeup the better, because since I don't cover my whole face, I just spot treat with Neutrogena Clearing foundation and I'd rather not have to use anything. But such is life and I have to accept that I am not perfect now, but I am well on my way to a beautiful clear complexion once again. I feel like I have to be positive about this, I have to completely believe it will work, because I know it will. Things have definitely definitely improved from the beginning of this treatment.

Ordered some samples of 10%BHA treatment from PC, the C15 and the Resist. Worth a shot to see if they can combat any of the battles. I have faith, lots of it and can see things changing and will continue to believe that I am on the right path to clarity. Cheers to another day!

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Today marks 60 days on Spiro and making my way into the 3rd month slowly but surely. Went to see a Natropath yesterday and am really looking forward to our work together. She believes in addition to my high androgens (hence the Spiro and Yasmin), that other symptoms I have may be due to low progesterone. It makes a ton of sense since low progesterone can be caused by body building and stress MY LIFE last year before my hormones freaked out. It can also be caused by too much estrogen, the bad kind. In addition to bodybuilding and stress, I was also on a high estrogen pill. WTF seriously?

Anyways, going to get bloodwork done next Mon/Tue (had to count out to 19-22nd day of my cycle when progesterone is the highest to get a read on what my high is). She is also testing 18 other things in my blood from Candida, Estrogen levels, Testosterone levels (most of them), D, A, B12, thyroid, insulin and the list goes on.

If it comes back as low progesterone, we will add an oral progesterone to further help my imbalance.

My symptoms of low progesterone:

Migraines (had them since forever)

Trouble sleeping

Missed cycles

Acne

PMS

fatigue

the blahs

So that's the plan for the next few weeks.

As of now, things are on a good trend this week and praying this continues. Haven't had anything inflammatory since Sunday, that one spot on my neck that creeped up. The rest have just been clogged pores coming to a head. This has helped my PIH calm and become less red since there have been fewer breakouts. The last week one sucked big time. Start of 2nd month of Yasmin may have been the culprit. Here is me today before washing my face. My PIH shows up way worse after showering. You can't see the clogged/closed comedones in this shot, but those babies are there. I am on a mission to eradicate those little suckers, each and every last one of them.

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Should never say things are going good...jinxed myself. Have a hard lump on my chin that formed. How the heck does this happen in a span of 8 hours? So darn discouraging. My chin had been so clear and then the last few days some clogged pores started pushing up. Now there is a hard one at the tip of my chin that is just red. luckily it is not super visible based on the angle that it is, but seriously!?!?! Ugh I just want to give up. This is so frustrating....

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Well it's another day and I am still here. I freaked out last night and I know that probably won't be the last time. The spot that I thought for sure would be a cyst on my chin literally came to a head within hours. By the time I got home last night and washed my face it was already progressed in a matter of 6 hours and is now flat today but a bit red. I've realized that this week's "breakout" is actually a purge from starting to use Paula's Choice BHA 2% gel that I got last week. All of the clogs are really coming out and unfortunately I have to suffer or just get through it. One other clog came up last night as well and now I see others pushing up closer to the surface. It is also my 2nd week of using Murad BHA/AHA so that is obviously progressing things along. I guess that gives me a bit more relief/hope that it's working. I can't expect the clogs to just disappear overnight (WISHFUL thinking, wouldn't that be nice?!) Man if a Genie appeared and asked me my wish I would say NO MORE acne ever again lol It's like I can actually feel an area where something is coming up. I mean I am on spiro, yasmin, doxy, clean clean diet, no products that could irritate, but I still have to deal with this crapola. I have been super emotional these last few days, been brought to tears of just wanting this to be over. But I have to suck it up and get on with it. It's just so hard to look around and not see anyone else dealing with this. I mean I think one time I was in TJMaxx last month and saw like 3 girls with acne and I wanted to just make friends with them... :/ I'm in my 30s and have a lot of gfs my age or older and only a few have like minor blemishes. Luckily my family is understanding, my sister breaks out hormonally. I want to feel pretty again and not self conscious in every different change of light, daylight, office light, bathroom light, night time.. Gosh can't all the lights be dim, everyone looks better lol OK Rant OVER

Back to work!

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9 weeks Spiro today

1 1/2 months Yasmin

Woke up with extreme anxiety today about my treatment. I feel like things aren't progressing fast enough, but I'm pretty sure most of us on this hormonal balancing journey feel the same way. The clearing of these clogged pores is taking like fooooorrreeever lol Grr... The AHA/BHA products I am using are definitely helping things at least move faster. I'm hoping 3 more weeks with consistent use I will see more fading of PIH and final clearing of these clogs. They are coming closer to the surface weekly as they clear away layers of dead skin. My overall complexion is fine, except for my jaw line and just above. Prayers and friends get me through these rough days. I was on the phone with my best friend today just breaking down. I told her how over this I am, and that I'm done. But in the end I don't have a choice. I have to keep moving forward. Basically through talking to her I've realized how hard I am on my self. This truly is the most difficult mental/emotional challenge I have experienced in a really really long time. I have allowed this to creep into my life and take over and I want it to stop. I really really do. It's going to take baby steps and lots of healing to get to where I want to be, but I will get there. I was going to just shut myself in today and decided instead, to get out and go for a long drive. It was really nice to just listen to music and drive through the woods and get out. It's a gloomy day here and looking forward to reading a book and escaping any negative thoughts. In the end I can't change this moment, I can't change what is physically happening to me, but I can change how I think about it. It's tough, but it's possible. I have great friends, wonderful family, dating a great guy who listens and understands, love my job, love my home and I torture myself over this terrible thing called acne. I want to scream it's not fair, but it's what has been handed to me at this moment, and I will get through and beyond it.

Cheers to one more day on my Spiro jounrney towards finding happy, vibrant self again, a clear faced one at that wink.png

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Feeling thankful for this board, the people that I have met on here and hoping to spread positivity to others. That's all I feel like sharing today!

I am blessed and I realize that on so many levels. Today has been hopefully a turning point for me emotionally. The rest I am going to leave in God's hands and put faith and hope into him.

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Soooo what I would like to report is that I am working on turning around my bad attitude about this whole journey. I've been feeling down and letting myself have a pity party. You know what, that is not going to help anything I realized. I am putting my treatment into God's very capable hands and am going to work on my emotional/psychological well being. I've allowed myself to slip into depression and suffer severe anxiety from the pressure of this whole thing. Putting a time table on when I am going to be clear, perfect, blemish free... well that's too much damn pressure. I may not wake up tomorrow with all my little clogs gone, but I can do my treatment today, put my big girl panties on and try my best to face the world with a smile.

I went to Whole Foods this morning on my way into work. I noticed myself looking at everyone in the store, bare faced. There were several women that were beautiful and had acne, a good deal of it. One was with her child and wasn't letting it bother her one bit. Another woman was just going about her business. I noticed other older women with a few blemishes. And then I thought to myself, seriously.... I put WAY to much pressure on myself to be perfect. I think the biggest challenge is I don't and really won't wear a full face of makeup. I gave it up YEARS ago after covering and hiding behind it in my teens when I had cystic acne. Now I am all bent out of shape about some PIH, closed comedones, some clogged pores and some tiny blemishes. Man I feel like a jerk. So I am doing my best to turn the negative thoughts that happen to creep in, right around to positives. Not worrying about tomorrow or if I will have a new blemish or a new breakout. Because I am doing everything in my darned power to keep them from happening internally/externally.

However I will provide an account of the last week:

Last Thursday- 2 swollen spots appeared on chin/jaw gone the next day

Friday- nada

Saturday- 1 spot on my neck appeared and just looked red , never turned into anything

Sunday- nada

Monday- 1 previous small swollen spot from 2 weeks ago that had appeared and hung out for a week, then flattened, came back to life and is flat and red now. PIH may just be a biotch.

Tuesday- nada

Today- who the heck knows ;-)

The rest are closed comedones/clogs that I am treating with AHA/BHA and gentle kind loving coaxing to hit the road. No one can really see them but me, but I hate them just as much. Going to try the PC AHA 10% tonight before beddy by and see what I wake up with. Hopefully some fading, softer complexion as others taught. The PC 2% gel has been working really well on overall tone, texture of my skin (minus clogs that are taking their sweet a@@ time).

Off to go about kicking Negative Nelly in the pants!

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Hi pilotphase! So I was taking pictures during my worst part of my breakout and throughout and it made me feel so crappy. Like it made me more anxious to see it and focus on it. I will take some pictures tonight of my PIH and see if I can get shots. Right now my biggest problem are the tiny clogged pores, closed comedones that are slowly slowly taking their gosh darn time. I've been using BP on them and it shrinks them and turning some into blackheads that then come out. others get minorly inflammed and turn into a whitehead and I remove them. If I didn't have these I would only have a few actives on my jawline and that's all. This is the hardest part, the slow go. Yasmin cleared me up tremendously on its own in my 20s. So I wish you the best with it. Just finished my first pack and so far so good. Have you thought about Spironolactone before?

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Hey there Pilot phase! Ugh the clogged pores are the bane of my existence right now. I'm starting the 3rd pack of Yasmin tonight and hit 2 1/2 months on Spiro yesterday. I'm having a bit of a rough week last week and the start to this mentally just wondering when this will all stop. Clearing of these clogged pores, comedones is definitely a challenge. I've been using AHA/BHA in rotation to exfoliate and it's bringing them to the surface, which sucks but is good. My dr prescribed Retin A, but I've decided against it. I have asked for Benzaclin to help dry up the remaining stuff, my left side has less clogs now after last week flare up and clearing out. Now just light PIH remains.

Hi pilotphase! So I was taking pictures during my worst part of my breakout and throughout and it made me feel so crappy. Like it made me more anxious to see it and focus on it. I will take some pictures tonight of my PIH and see if I can get shots. Right now my biggest problem are the tiny clogged pores, closed comedones that are slowly slowly taking their gosh darn time. I've been using BP on them and it shrinks them and turning some into blackheads that then come out. others get minorly inflammed and turn into a whitehead and I remove them. If I didn't have these I would only have a few actives on my jawline and that's all. This is the hardest part, the slow go. Yasmin cleared me up tremendously on its own in my 20s. So I wish you the best with it. Just finished my first pack and so far so good. Have you thought about Spironolactone before?

Hi I just read this. I am on my 2nd month of yasmin. Its not cleared me up hugely yet, some small improvements. I still have really bad chin and cheek clogged pores. Been using Epiduo but its making my skin look like I have eczema. Not sure what to do.

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Hey guys, I just want to say patience and hope are definetely needed and these meds DO improve your acne, just not overnight. To make things easier don't examine yourself everyday, not weekly even but let the months go by one by one, and every so often take note of the improvement. Yes, some months it may seem your acne gets worse but eventually as time goes on these bad phases will die out and the good months will become more constant.

Until then keep busy, whether you are at work or in educaction, just put yourself into work and try to forget about acne for now as it's a long road till then. The more busy you keep yourself, the more it will make time go quicker an before you know it, 6 months will have gone and so on..

Keep your faith in god and stay positive, hope this helps :) x

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Thank you for your encouraging words. These last few weeks have truly tested me and am thankful for faith, family, friends and God right now. It feels like there is no end in sight, but I know that is not the truth. I just am having a hard time getting out of my own way. I basically would prefer to hide until this is over, but I know that is not an option. Acne really helps you become humbled and tests your pride, strength and courage. I am going through a purge of clogged pores at the moment and it's really disheartening but it has to be done. I've been using Paula's Choice for the last few weeks and assuming my exfoliation routine is what is causing all of this. Just feels neverending, I mean there are a ton of pores on your face, so what do I expect. TIme just feels like it going by so slowly, it's the focus like you said that I need to change. I will work on that daily, and thank you! Pouring myself into work is at least an option. I am very thankful for a job I love!

Hey guys, I just want to say patience and hope are definetely needed and these meds DO improve your acne, just not overnight. To make things easier don't examine yourself everyday, not weekly even but let the months go by one by one, and every so often take note of the improvement. Yes, some months it may seem your acne gets worse but eventually as time goes on these bad phases will die out and the good months will become more constant.

Until then keep busy, whether you are at work or in educaction, just put yourself into work and try to forget about acne for now as it's a long road till then. The more busy you keep yourself, the more it will make time go quicker an before you know it, 6 months will have gone and so on..

Keep your faith in god and stay positive, hope this helps x

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I'm glad you found my words encouraging, acne does indeed humble you as a person and I found after I got over my worst acne, it changed me. I was very superficial before the acne and felt looks were important etc, but after the acne, even when my skin improved to the point others could not tell I'd ever had acne, I realised looks are not really that important as they change but your pride and happiness should be based on the person you are on the inside as that is what really lasts and counts in relationships with friends, loved ones and family etc.

People who make you feel your skin is some sort of problem just because it has a few spots need to avoided and try to surround yourself with positive people who don't give a toss. It really does test your strength & courage in that sense but just remember it is making you stronger as a person! They say every hard time tests you and it really does, but if you pass then the future will only be brighter!

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Tonight decided to do my first Mandelic Acid peel. I am on a crusade to destroy these clogged pores that have been plaguing me. If I were to say if Spiro works or not, I would say yes. The reason why I am not clear at 10 1/2 weeks is the breakout of a ton of clogged pores the first month. It was either the Spiro, product I was using- Cerave hydrating cleanser, PCA Clearskin and perhaps not enough exoliation, but I've never ever experienced anything like this except the last time I used clindamycin, basically it brought all the gunk to the surface and then slowly cleared. Soooo the moral of this story is, I can't cry about it, I have to launch a plan of attack. My hormonal breakouts are under control with the Spiro and Yasmin, along with diet. Now it's the next 4-6 weeks that I will be trying out various peels to exfoliate, clear and purge the remainder of my issue. I've got some clogs on each cheek, just a few on my left side of my chin/mouth and a good amount on my right side which has been calm for a while. They are just sitting under the skin. Well not for long.

I ordered the MUAC Mandelic 25% and started it tonight at 3 1/2 minutes. It actually felt a little warm, but no stinging. This is suppose to be gentle with no downtime, no crazy peeling, but I expect some purging and good exfoliation from it. It has anti inflammatory and anti bacterial properties. It feels weird not putting BP on my face tonight but also kinda nice. I will rotate in a Salicylic 8-15% and continue that over the next few weeks. I still use PC 2% gel, but due to some posts on here from Green Gable who talked about her stubborn comedones, clogs I orded Diana Yvonne 5% Salicylic to start using daily, prob try it at night so I can monitor the immediate effect, I'm sure it will be fine. I've been torturing my skin w BP for years. I just recently these last few months switched from 10% daily (strong I know) to 2.5% and spot treat buggers with the 10%, really keeps inflammation down.

I've also ordered the AHA moisturizer from here and will try to mix that in with my Cerave. Continuing to use a gentle cleanser. I'll tell you one thing, acne has got me focused and determined to get rid of it!! So today I am going to sleep knowing I have another plan of attack, I am not helpless. There are tools at my disposal and I am gonna use them. Gentle and slowly to start till I eradicate every last clog. The goal is cleared clogs and get off Doxy before the summer!!

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Well mandelic acid works...

The right side of my face where there are a ton of clogged pores/small bumps have awoken. It's going to be a tough few weeks to ride this out, but there is no other choice. As much as I would like them to magically disappear, that's not going to happen. I have to accept the process.

Going back to the Natropath today to get all of my test results, all 19 of them. Will see what the next course of action is to get me, my hormones, and my body completely on track. This week I had 3 small bumps on my jawline. So hormonal breakouts have not ceased. I am still pretty oily throughout the day. Skipped my period this week and started my 3rd pack of Yasmin, so may be the reason for that small breakout. 1 is flat, 1 is going flat and the other spot just came to the party.

To be honest, my biggest anxieties throughout this whole thing have been what other people think about my face and what is going on. I mean I've told everyone I pretty much interact with I'm on meds, etc and this is part of the process. But it's like I still feel like I have to hide it. Yes, it's getting way worse before it gets better. That is the sucky part of this journey, but I can't stop it. I can only aid it along. I've decided to have a talk with my boyfriend, guy I'm dating. I've had so much anxiety trying to hide my feelings about the breakouts. I've tried to hide it all from him. Even though I've shared what I'm going through. I'm going to let him know how much it has affected me and that I am doing all that I can to fix it, but I need some understanding and patience. I don't feel like going out in public and parading my skin around and once I share this with him he can decide what his reaction will be. That's all I can do. I need to remove all anxiety about this treatment and the outcomes so I can focus on getting healthy. I pray daily for courage, strength and I know I will get through this. But I do ask, can we just hurry this along PLEASE ;)

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11+ Weeks on Spiro and just started Pregnenolone 25 mg last Friday

Pregnenolone is to balance out my Progesterone and Estrogen deficiency and dominance. The blood test results obviously did show Testosterone was still high, levels of DHEA and DHT and Free were good. It's the crazy Estrogen dominance and almost no Progesterone that is causing all of the emotional, anxiety and also affecting the skin.

I had about 5 spots end of last week/Sat on my left jaw/neck. Pretty much all flat and gone now, but sucked. The rest of my face is still purging of the clogged pores. Going to use the MUAC 15% Salicylic acid peel tonight as the Mandelic helped bring some things up last week, I just have such a problem with skin shedding that I need to chemically exfoliate or they hang around forever. I have one pretty sore inflammed spot that was a comedone and now is just red and hurts when I smile. It's one of the last on my laugh line on my left side. Continuing on my exoliation plan to push along these clogs and try to keep them from inflamming into anything large. Grrrrr to oil and skin! Excited to actually purge this crap out of my face for good!

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So it's almost 3 months now on Spiro. Haven't had a hormonal breakout/new spot since end of last week. I had 5 spots total last week on jaw/chin/neck area. We shall see as the rest of the week progresses. Since starting the Pregnenolone last Friday, I've noticed my breasts have been more tender, sore and grown a bit. Hoping this is a good sign of Estrogen/Progesterone balancing out. Unfortunately it is hard to tell which hormone Pregnenolone will decide to turn into - Progesterone, DHEA, Estrogen, etc. But since I'm already taking Spiro and yasmin, hoping that it takes the cue and realizes what I don't have. I did order some NPC as well, just in case. Have an endocronolgy appt in 2 weeks to go over my results. We shall see if they think my Spiro is high enough for my imbalance, or what other suggestions they have.

Update on my skin. Well I did my first MUAC 15% Salicylic acid peel. Put that baby on for a minute and boy did she sting. No frosting, it's still a mild peel. But I have clogged pores on my lower half of my face and a few on each cheek that have been there FORever and need to go. I got a little upset this morning when I saw a few red spots, but I then remembered I need and want this purge to happen. I've got these comedones that have to go somewhere, so I need to suck it up and let them come up and out. Once the purge is over from this, I will do another 25% Mandelic peel to calm, soothe and clear up another round that I am sure I will need. I plan to continue to rotate. After I can clear the clogs, my goal will be to then look at Glycolic and Lactic peels for PIH and exfoliation. So that's it for now. Not gonna be down about my acne today. Doing something about it, it sucks, but it's life and it's my life and won't let this ruin it.

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