*This won't be a daily update since my schedule is ridiculously crazy right now. I'll be updating periodically when there are any crazy improvements, side effects (hope not!), or changes to my treatment.
I'm taking the Canadian generic brand of isotretinoin called Clarus. I take my medication with my breakfast, because breakfast is the biggest meal of my day. I'm taking 50 mg/day (0.8 mg/kg/day) - one 40 mg capsule and one 10 mg capsule. The dermatologist suggested that I take 40 mg with breakfast and 10 mg at dinner, but I'm just taking both with breakfast for now since my dinner schedule is completely unreliable. Once daily dosing is supposed to cause more headaches I believe, but I've been okay for now. I may switch to twice daily if the once daily causes me problems later on.
Basic skin history
- I have had acne since the tweens (I'm 22 now). My acne was mostly hormonal, so birth control pills controlled it pretty well until last year when I started getting really bad monthly breakouts on my cheeks and chin. I took minocycline 50-100 mg BID for about 6 months. My GP didn't feel comfortable with giving more minocycline, so off I went to a dermatologist. My dermatologist recommended Accutane from the get-go (I've already tried multiple other topicals too).
Acne products I've tried (and failed with): Proactiv, Murad, Clinique, Vichy, Clean&Clear, Neutrogena, Aveno, Spectro Gel, Clindoxyl gel, Benzaclin gel, Tactuo, Differin, Tetracycline, Minocycline
Current skincare & facial makeup list
- Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Daily Cleanser (Derm recommended) - I used to use Atomy Foam Cleanser and Clinique Liquid Facial Soap
- Clinique 7 Day Scrub Cream Rinse-Off Formula - as a more vigorous exfoliant (still gentle because it is the cream formulation)
- Clinique Moisture Surge Extended Thirst Relief - daytime moisturizer
- Clinique All About Eyes
- Clinique Moisture Surge Overnight Mask - bedtime moisturizer
- Josie Maran Argan Cleansing Oil - as a gentle exfoliant and face makeup remover
- Josie Maran 100% Pure Argan Oil - for the occasional dry patches
- Dior Addict Lip Glow - my lipstick/lip balm of choice
- Burt's Bees Refreshing Lip Balm with Pink Grapefruit - daily use
- Hanskin Perfect Super 3-Solution BB cream - been using this one for years; it goes on dry and matte though, I may need to change this for something a bit more rich
Skin before Accutane
- Dry-oily combination skin. I was moisturizing constantly to begin with; I'm scared about the drying effects of Accutane already. Face was pretty clear - only active lesion was a healing whitehead on my chin. Didn't have noticeable blackheads - I exfoliated regularly. Scarring is pretty bad on my cheeks from last year's breakout.
Skin on day 4
- Face feels same as usual - not noticeably dry, but I'm moisturizing like crazy so that might be why. The rest of my body certainly feels dry. I think I may need to pick up a good body lotion soon. The single whitehead is still healing + I developed another small whitehead on my chin. I think it's just because my period is approaching though.
- One major difference: the pores on my nose and cheeks look huge. Oh wow, seriously, I can see the little blackheads protruding; it's so disgusting. I steam-towelled and massaged the blackheads out with cleansing oil, so it looks a lot better now, but I've never seen them so bad... EW.
Accutane side effects on day 4
- DRY EYES - I used to wear contact lenses every day, but I think I'm giving that up for now. Glasses daily, contacts for date nights. My eyes were so sore when I got up this morning, which sucks because I'm a student with midterms = will be studying all day and night.
- As a mentioned above, my face isn't dry yet, but my legs and arms feel dry already. No chapped lips yet, but I have a habit of constantly applying lip balm, which might be helping me in this case. No headaches, no body aches, no nasal dryness (I'm actually getting runny nose), no appetite changes, and no mood changes noted as of yet (I asked my roommate and boyfriend to tell me if I turn into a psycho b**** lol).