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Hey guys, I posted some forums about a year ago about my acne and about going on BCP. Short acne background description is I had pretty clear skin up until I turned 22 and all of the sudden started getting cystic acne on my cheeks (which never broke out before, it was always my T zone). I started taking Ortho Tri Cyclen about a year and 3 months ago and I was told that it might take about 3 months for the hormones to regulate and for me to start seeing a difference. It honestly was like a day or two after the three month mark that I started noticing that I wasn't getting any new spots. A year later after my skin started clearing up, my skin has remained clear except for the leftover dark marks, which I can say have continually faded. I still get mild acne, but when I say that I mean a pimple on my chin very few and far between and most of the time they are not cystic, also it 95% of the time is because I start picking/messing with a spot and could've prevented it. I am SO happy that OTC has cleared up my skin. My only fear is when I get off of it, my skin will freak out and that scares me like crazy. But for now, I am thankful!
This review is for those looking for a super detailed experience on this birth control. I relied heavily on the descriptive review of others before trying this BC and thanks to those people, it helped solidify my decision.
My backstory: I developed hormonal acne about two years ago out of no where (I was 21). My skin had been about 95% clear for years It was all along my lower jawline and it hurt so bad to the point where laying my face on my pillow to sleep hurt. I tried everything to make it go away. Switching topical cleansers, eating more clean. Switching beauty products. Even antibiotics and antibiotic creams from the derm. I felt like a monster and avoided going out. I had traveled out of the country and my acne mysteriously went away. Im talking in about a week and a half I was almost 100% clear. It was so strange. So I knew it was something in my environment that was triggering it. (The USA has so much bad crap in their products compared to other countries such as Sweden). So I decided to go the natural route first.
What helped: Out of all natural methods I tried, I found the most success with green Matcha tea. Green tea in general is good for acne and has so many good reviews! It was the only thing that kept me about 80% clear. I had previously tried spearmint tea, fish oil, vitamin C and sawgrass palmetto berry extract. All of these things block the production somewhat of androgens. However, my recent trip back from Sweden left my matcha tea not as effective and I had consistent acne on my forehead that would not go away and so I was about 65% clear and my back was worse. I caved and decided to try this route because I could not bear to hide any longer. I live in Florida and covering up is torture due to the heat.
Ortho tri cyclen review: I was hestitant about going on BC because of all the synthetic hormones it contains and the side effects but I was desperate. Upon starting this BC, I was a teeny bit nauseous the first week. Nothing unbearable and my boobs did get a little sore (but didnt get much bigger unfortunately). I noticed within a week the acne on my forehead was disappearing. The acne on my back was doing a little better but not significantly. Ive only been on it one month and am starting my second month. I was super worried about my hair falling out so Im still keeping on eye on that. I did get a bit emotional at times, especially as I got farther down the back. At the start of month two (now) my boobs are still sore so that is kind of annoying. What I will say is that it made my period the worst it has been in about 8 years. I thought BC was supposed to lighten your period. Instead, mine lasted NINE days and 7 of those days I had consistent cramping. I usually only cramp the first two days. It was terrible. I tried to refrain from taking painkillers every day for a week but after dealing with cramps for 5-7 hours a day trying to wait them out I would give in.
As for my acne: It hasnt totally disappeared. I still have some on my jawline so Im hoping that month two will bring better results. My forehead is almost clear and I occasionally get them on my neck/chest too. However, I am pleased enough with the improvement so I will continue it. Hope this helps everyone!!
If you have been on antibiotics and are still breaking out it may be hormonal.
My problem areas have been my chin and truly genetic since my mom suffered from acne as well. I have tiny ice pick scars very little on my cheeks from breakouts and red scarring on my forehead and chin from old breakouts. Since high school I had tried diffirin, multiple antibiotics, topical antibiotics, facial peels for the scarring and I'm on my fourth month of this BC and my cystic acne has disappeared!!! I never wanted to take BC but so far this has been the best decision for me at 24 years old I am currently taking BC and using retinA . RetinA is the best solution for black heads by the way if you use it consistently in a couple of months they come out by themselves, my skin is not crazily severe when broken out but it's bad and cystic acne is painful and other zits on top of that especially by your mouth is aesthetically unpleasant. I also decided to start the BC because I started breaking out on my cheeks which had been resulting in the zit leaving a hole aka a dark semi deep scar :( . I'm happy with my skin try it! Check out my YouTube channel I am starting a makeup and healthy skin lifestyle channel, let me know if you have any more questions! Marycasarreal
My derm put me on this med to help with my cystic acne. It helped, don't get me wrong, but I wasn't completely clear. It wasn't until I started taking it in conjunction with spironolactone that my acne was gone.
Tried this a year ago and it took about 3 months to really kick in. Then a combination of lots of sun and this bc and i was completely clear. Except like one tiny one right before my period that lasted like a day. I had dealt with moderate acne since I was 14 so this was huge for me. After like 10 months I got cocky and thought maybe I had just grown out of it finally. So I stopped and it slowly creeped back in not too severely at first. Then after a few months, starting at the beginning of this year, it's been horrible. I'm talking two new giant cysts on my face every day. And a breakout of like 5 new cysts on my back every week. I tried eliminating dairy/gluten/sugar, adding vitamins, working out, being very careful to do everything healthy for my skin and nothing has worked. I'm now on my 4th week back on Sprintec and at first it only made it worse. I've been pretty depressed and have been hiding in my house but I haven't had any new spots on my face/chest in two days, skin feels like it's calming down, and my back has been clear since the third week. I believe it will get better because it worked before.
That being said, I think bc is something you should reeeeaaally be careful about considering. Do you want to rely on it forever? It works for me and clears me up 99% but also occasionally gives me migraines and mood swings plus I'm afraid of being dependent on it forever. It's a choice of having clear skin and being happy but dealing with the long term downsides.
Within the first week of taking this medication, my acne cleared up DRAMATICALLY. A little background information: at age 22, I started getting hormonal cystic acne break outs along my left jawline and forehead. Prior to these persistent breakouts, I had no major problems with acne, just the occasional breakout at "that time of the month". After trying Retin-a for a few months with no progress, my dermatologist switched me to a regimen of a Differin and Acanya. Though this helped clear up my forehead acne, my jawline acne was still very persistent. It wasn't until I did a little research that I realize this type of acne was hormone related. Even though I was already taking a generic of Loestrin, I decided it was time to switch my pill. After telling my gynecologist of my troubles, she suggested Ortho tri-cyclen. Within the first week of taking this medication, my existing acne started clearing and no other pimples were appearing. Mind you, these were the persistent ones: painful to the touch with a large white head. I couldn't be happier with the results! A month into taking this medication, I haven't had one cystic pimple appear, it's like a miracle drug! If you have a similar story to me, definitely give it a try!
You have to give it TIME!!! I have been on it for six months after trying every topical cream/gel plus antibiotics (which worked wonders at first but I probably built a tolerance and it stopped working, was on them for probably a year, which was more than what the doctor wanted me to be on them, but was too scared to get off them, once I did, nothing really happened, so yea built a tolerance against them).... broke out really bad at first, to me it seemed like it was probably one of the worst breakouts, had acne everywhere even my back, but after 6 months now, I can truly say, its almost all gone, I still break out during that time of the month, but nothing I cant handle, very very glad I stuck through the initial phase, be patient, it will work hopefully the way it worked for me... btw I have hormonal acne, scared to death of what will happen when i need to get off these, but will take everything one day at a time. Use it along side with retin-A and a good moisturizer (clinique super surge) and that is all you will need.
I was having the occasional break out on my cheek and chin area. i went to my general doc and she suggested the pill in order to balance my hormones. It threw my body into such an unbalance. My period was all over the place, my acne had gotten 200X's worse then ever. I kept taking it for 3 months hoping it was just my body adjusting to the pill. needless to say i stopped taking it. my acne kept getting worse every month i was on it. after taking it it took me 6 months to come back to where i was before i started it.
I was on ortho lo which cost 50 dollars a month so after hearing great things about what ortho regular could do for my skin AND it was free i decided to make the switch.
The first month i didnt see much difference in my skin I was breaking out a bit but i heard that there was an initial breakout so i figured thats what must have been happening.
By month two my skin had erupted with small flesh colored bumps all over my skin! The kind that would just sit there no matter what i did but if i squeezed a hard plug would come out. Determined to believe the whole "it gets worse before it gets better" legend i tried to stick it out. I made appointments with estheticians, had glycolic peels, microderms...you name it. My face was red, bumpy, angry and flat out depressing. After end of month 2 start of month 3 i decided to switch back to Ortho lo...its been about a week and my skin is starting to return to normal. I suffered for 3 months hoping for some kind of miracle skin cure that would never come.
I've heard great things for others but unfortunately they didnt happen for me.