What is nodulocystic? I haven't heard that term. I get cysts but thankfully mine do not last months. I can usually get them to come to a head with ice and BP. I have some right now because of the PC 2% BHA liquid. My skin did not like it much for the 3 days I sampled it. I think it was just too penetrating/harsh. I do plan to try it again but only 1x a week or so because it seems so much more powerful.
I believe nodulocystic indicates the development of both cysts and nodules.
If I decide to try PC 2% BHA--in any form--I'd probably only use it 1-2 times per week, to start.
I'm using the 2% BHA clear toner regular strength. It has brought blackheads up and seems to be clearing my pores pretty well. I know it will take quite some time since my skin is just completely congested.
Are you referring to PC 2% toner? I'm guessing so but shouldn't assume.
You might try the gel as a sample. Maybe they applied too much? I know many peole say the 2% liquid is oily/greasy and sticky for a long time, but others said it was due to using too much at once and once you apply it lightly, that doesn't happen. *shrug* Just a thought. Did you use a PC 2% toner?
That's interesting about PC 2% BHA liquid feeling greasy if too much is applied. I'll have to remember that, in case I do order it.
I've not used any PC product.
I see paula has come out with a 1% retinol and I'm thinking about trying it out (after my skin is under control). Her site says that it is comparable to a .025% Retin-A. It is supposed to be less irritating, though, since it is 2 steps (I think) below retinoic acid. It's my understanding the skin only converts what it it needs from retinol, so you don't get more than necessary, which is a risk with the pure stuff. But also, I know several people who only use their Retin A every few days to keep the irritation to a minimum. I think I would do the retinol only 1-2x a week.
I have a tube of generic Retin-A Micro--Tretinoin Gel Microsphere (0.04%)--which I probably should try one of these days. Granted, I'm a bit reluctant to start it now that we're going into summer. But regardless of when I begin using it, I definitely would only use it a few nights per week, at least in the beginning.
The clearest my skin has looked was when I used stridex SA, a 10% glycolic cream, retinol and BP. Not on the same day, I alternated every evening with them but used the SA 2x a day. My skin kept up with it for 3 months before it finally crashed and burned from the dryness. I think SA definitely helps me, so I've upgarded to a better formulation with PC and when my skin is clearer, I plan to use PC 10% glycolic 1x a week and see how that goes. I'm hoping it will help fade the red marks. I might trade that out for the retinol later for the antiaging benefits.
I, too, switch between a few topical meds., depending on how my skin is doing. For example, if it's more oily, I'll apply a Sodium Sulfacetamid/Sulfur liquid to my face at night to both nourish my skin and soak up some of the excess oil. But if my skin's less oily--because I've been consuming less oil in my diet--then I'll stick with using a BHA toner (1-2 x's/ day) and Finacea (2 x's/ day). I also use diluted tea tree oil on cysts--especially those that I find before they surface.
If you try PC 10% glycolic acid and/or her retinol product(s), let us know how you like them.
I'm not sure about the scar issue. I believe BHA will help fade red marks, but will do nothing for scars. AHA is good for red marks and sun damage, but for scras, well I don't know. It does help build collagen so it may, over time, help somewhat. Concrentration-- all I know is that for AHA, anything over 5% is not reccomended to be used daily. (I read it somewhere but have no reference link) I don't have a definitive answer on that. However, there is a scar section on the site that has many suggestions pertaining to scar solutions. They may have better idea on treatment options.
What's so confusing is a physician's assistant and a skin-care clinician (?) at a derm's office both told me that AHA isn't good for red marks, but for brown marks--i.e., either age-related spots or acne marks that have gone from red/pink to brown in color. They both told me that a retinoid is better for speeding the healing of pink-/ red-colored hyperpigmentation.
So confusing... In any case, I'm more focused on finding a better BHA product, since my skin is very oily, and I've clogged pores all over the oily regions of my face (basically all four quadrants and my nose). If it happens to help fade my existing hyperpigmentation and/or helps with collagen growth, all the better.