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Hopefully the only thing dramatic about this story will be the results!

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Day 24

Wow, almost a whole month down! Things are steadily continuing to get better, thank goodness! The cysts on the left side of my face have calmed down significantly (I caved and did a little, ahem, extracting which i KNOW is horrible, but that + neosporin really REALLy helped them go down, and now it looks less like I have a growth on my face. Plus they are drying up and shrinking everyday) Also, I haven't had any new cystic breakouts in about two weeks, its amazing. My skin is definitely a lot smoother aaaaaand I have like, zero oil, which is weird because I used to be OUT OF CONTROL oily. The Miss West Chester University pageant was held regardless of the fact that we had over a foot of snow outside! While everything else got cancelled, the show went on! I am happy to say we crowned another fabulous girl to represent the campus. It was funny, I was part of the makeup crew for the show (in addition to running the projector, handing out awards, being the directors personal assistand, and dealing with the girl's emotional crisis' hahaha) and I actually did the girl who won's makeup, and while I was doing it we were talking about skincare, and I mentioned how I was on accutane. Turns out she had also struggled with acne (she has nice clear skin now, but you could tell up close that she had a few scars) but luckily antibiotics had taken care of it for her. Its crazy how many people actually struggle with their skin, but when its you, you think you are the only one! Don't get me wrong, I had plenty of skin-envy while doing makeup for some of the girls, but it was a great experience. Oh, and I also may have a job in makeup artistry lined up for the future, the artist I worked with LOVED my work (not gonna lie, the women looked HOT!) Anyway, thats all for now. I slept in soooooooo much today and it felt amazing! Trying to shake the mental 'tane fog...y'all know what I mean! Oh, also going to start hitting the gym, I;ve heard that exercise helps the whole achy back/joints thing...has it helped anyone else??? Alright, all for now! -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

day 18

I AM HATING THE LEFT SIDE OF MY FACE RIGHT NOW. The two cysts I had there pre-tane that i THOUGHT were shrinking have morphed into one MEGA cyst and I think added another cyst with the conglomerate. The rest if my face is actually pretty smooth with makeup on, and this STUPID ULTRA MEGA CYST just sticks out and looks sooooo bad. You know when you get a group of cysts that make you look like you have deep scarring (because the raised surface makes the non-raised surface look like indents? I HATE THAT. I DONT HAVE INDENTS!!) So, even though I have pretty much retired from my pageant career, I'm attending the Miss West chester University Pageant this Saturday (I was Miss West Chester University 2008, formers usually come back to welcome the new titleholder) and I really don't want to show up to this with my face as much of a mess as it is. I have a hot-hot pink dress I bought to wear (makes my butt looking phenom-if I do say so myself, and I do hahaha) I'm also SICKLY pale, but obviously can't tan on the 'tane...so I can't believe I'm doing this, but after swearing off the mystic tan booth forever after leaving pageants....I might go get misted with some fake sun....the intellectual/feminist/humanist/real beauty advocate inside of me is dying a little bit inside right now. Maybe I'll just wear black and it won't matter that I'm pale. And have a cheek that looks like someone punched it. errrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. This is why I quit. Not because of acne, but because of getting wrapped up in things that are CLEARLY NOT IMPORTANT and believing they're hugely important. Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of positives, especially in the pageants I chose to compete in, but its getting to the point in my intellectual development where I can no longer defend my involvement in pageantry, as a self-professed 'artist'. But all in all, its paid for a couple years of school and taught me how to exercise and eat really effectively, so it definitely didn't hurt me! Anyway, I'm going to neosporin the shit out of my cheek this week. cross your fingers that my face becomes acceptable. -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 16

My nose is starting to do that thing where it seemingly overnight grew 1293809183-0128 blackheads. ew. I've never had blackheads, but of course from reading a zillion of these logs I know that is a sign that the 'tane is pushing all the gunk out of my skin. I The three cysts are still reducing in size, the two major ones that are on the left side of my face from before I started my course are starting to get dry and scaly too, but I'm thinking thats a good thing? I have also resisted the urge to pick and do little surgeries...touching/picking cysts is skin suicide, I already have some red, shallow scars from the few times I couldn't resist (my derm says the scars will definitely heal...I hope she's right). Anyway, besides that still happy about my lack of oil. Also my forehead is becoming soooooo smooth and the redness there is almost completely gone. I'm currently at my parents house to visit my baby bro before he leaves for the middle east, and my mom saw me this morning before my shower and looked at my face and said 'wow, you don't look like a burn victim anymore'. Thanks mom. You always know just what to say. But I'll take it! Went out to my grandparents today and saw a lot of my cousins. I have a cousin on my dads side who is two years older than me, and I noticed that she was having SERIOUS acne problems too (actually, hers is worse than mine ever was). I felt so bad. Her mom had mentioned to her that I was on accutane, so we talked about it for a long time and I basically told her its probably the best thing she'd ever do for herself. The thing that sucks for her is that she is working part time and doing school part time and doesn't have insurance. I told her to look into her options anyway...who knows? I really thank god my parents have awesome insurance and that my script only costs me $10 a month. I am really, really lucky. I hope my cousin really can get hooked up, we talked a lot about how NO ONE understands how much acne freakin devastates you, and shes such a pretty and smart girl, she doesnt deserve to have her self esteem suffer so much. None of us do. All I can think of is that soon its gonna be day 21...then day 30! Then dosage increase! then...clearer skin (I hope)! Well thats all for now, folks. -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Picture update!

A little comparison pic from day 1-day 15. Not a HUGE difference, but noticeable...same crappy lighting for each photo that makes it look 238217128 redder and grosser than it is, but whatevs....anyway! (I also think I lost most of my holiday weight, my face looks a lot thinner...w00t! ) http://www.flickr.com/photos/36380751@N04/4314907671/ -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 15

Woo! Halfway through the first month! So, for the last four or five days I've been pretty disenchanted with accutane, but I woke up this morning with my three remaining cysts decreased by more than half! Also, my skin is not oily AT ALL and I went the whole day yesterday without having to powder/touch up my makeup once (and I wore it for like ten hours straight). My skin's texture is also changing and becoming...dare I say...smooth?!?! Its getting to point (this is pathetic) where I am so pumped to pop my pill every night because its like yes! Here's to killing more and more of you evil zits and oil!!! I am very happy right now. My skin is FARRRRR from perfect or completely clear, but its on its way. Even though these cysts have been ridiculously stubborn since I started my course, they are finally decreasing, and I haven't had a new breakout at all this week. Awesome. I also started using an oil cleanser. I know, that sounds like the worst thing ever for acne-prone skin, but I've been using it for about a week now and I can't believe how amazingly soft it makes my skin. I only use it at night, and I don't need to use a moisturizer when I use it (my skin has barely been dry, just my lips). Anyway, I picked up this cleanser at an all-organic makeup and skincare boutique that just opened conveniently underneath my apartment. The cleanser is actually formulated for acne prone skin. I was hesitant (hello, acne people basically see oil = the root of all evil) but I decided to give it a try when the girl who sold it to me told me she had also been on accutane and used it during her course to keep her dryness down (and her skin looked BEAUTIFUL) well, I'm a sucker for a good testimonial. You basically massage this blend of oil into your skin for about two minutes, then take a hot washcloth and drape it over your face until its room temp (repeat this step as many times as you want) then take the washcloth and gently remove all make up etc off the skin. Then splash on some cold water to seal the pores back up, and pat face dry. Its really been the most awesome thing, hasnt made me break out, and definitely hasn't made me oily. Plus it takes off ALL my makeup (even eye makeup) so I don't need to use a remover then a cleanser on top of that. If any of you are interested in what I'm using, you can visit http://www.shop.exposedorganics.com/plain-jane-26.htm and order it for yourself. Its not uber expensive either, which is nice. God, you'd think I'm making commission off this or something ha. Anyway. On my way home, seeing my baby brother (well, he's 19) before he leaves for Afghanistan (he is in the Marines) and meeting his girlfriend for the first time. Pretty excited! Well accutane party people, I wish all of you steady improvement ! -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 10

Day 10 already! I know, day 10 of 150, but still! Side effects still not too bad, lips arent even that crazy dry yet, but I bombard them preemptively with aquaphor whether they feel dry or not. Still tired all the time, especially after taking my dose. Oiliness has calmed down a bit, but still gross at the end of the day. I am however noticing the texture of my skin start to change, ever so slightly, for the better. I have no real cysts right now, but I do have about four under the skin bumps that cropped up but already feel like they are going away. And a scabby "regular pimple" under my nose that I'm pretty sure will be just a red mark in a few days. And of course, my awesome post-inflamation redness from all my zits of the past year and a half. I seriously have so many red spots that on places like my cheeks, they melt together and kind of look like rosacea. not ok. anyway, I don't think I'll have any huge major scars....maybe a couple of scarred pores here and there, but nothing serious. I also plan on having dermabrasion after my course (I know, you have to wait like 6 months after finishing to get it done, im hoping to ask for it as a christmas gift next year haha) unless I finish the 'tane and my skin just looks perfect again! which would be awesome. Its starting to look like I have normalish skin WITH makeup on (lets face it, you can COVER acne but makeup still wont give you that 'I have good skin' look. Just makes it less red/obvious) so that is a plus. I'm actually excited to get bumped to 60mg next month, since I am already noticing improvements in the first ten days on the 30mg. Ahhhh I know the wait will be worth it! -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 6

WOW. Today my face was nothing but a huge oil slick. Really?? Uhg. I can deal with the little zits, but the oil is out of control. Anyway. My lips are slightly swollen, did that happen to anyone else? one of my guy friends was like...your lips..you look like a super model...yeah, one that is 5'3 with acne. hahaha. Oh well SUPER TIRED. It's the 'tane drain. Uhg. I switched to Eucerin Redness Relief cleanser, I'm wondering if the fact that I stopped using a SA wash has anything to do with my oiliness? probably not...is it day 160 yet? Ha. In other news, boys are dumb. Throw common sense at them. -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 5

huzzah for side effects! I'm feeling the 'tane drain (aka I'm SO freakin tired - no bueno either, cause today is the first day of classes!) Also, inside of my nose is incredibly dry and sore. Lips a little dry but overall still not too bad. More little whiteheadish pimples cropped up overnight, but I'm not too concerned. The little ones that came out the other night are already just little red flat spots. I officially have NO CYSTS currently (thanks neosporin!) but I know its not gonna stay that way most likely, But I'll tell you, I love that it doesn't hurt to smile! I've been keeping the aquaphor on pretty steadily, I already had some around cause I use it on my cuticles in the winter, but after classes today I popped into Rite-Aid to see what else I could pick up for the adventure, and I found aquaphor in a two-pack of mini tubes! I got so excited! I tell you, only people on accutane get that excited about portable aquaphor. Also picked up some eucerin redness relief cleanser, I'm hoping it will calm down some of this inflamation on my face that makes my acne look so much worse than it is. So, I've been reading a ton of logs on here, mostly from other girls my age in my position, so I feel alright kind of sharing a little personal stuff on here. Question for the ladies out there who are in relationships or dating: how do you handle the staying overnight thing with guys? I can make my skin look clear/passable during the day but I HATE sleeping in my makeup, and even if I do, it still wears off at night and then I just have mascara clumped eyes, patchy bronzer, and worn-off crusty concealer ON TOP of my redness and zits. SO ATTRACTIVE. I ask because I've been seeing this guy for a couple weeks now. Well actually, its a weird story. I met him three and a half years ago through friends, immediately after I broke up with my ex boyfriend of 4 and a half years (and who had been the only guy I'd ever, ahem, 'been with') needless to say, this guy (I'll call him photoguy, he's a photographer) was basically an immediate rebound, and for some godforsaken reason I just slept with him immediately after meeting him (eeesh! I know. I was 19, gimme a break). Anyway, I decided never to see him again after that, but through the past few years he has still kept in contact with me and talked to me (I never really understood why). Anyway, a few weeks ago we started really talking again, and he said he really wanted to hang out again. Now ladies and gents, I have been single for the past three years basically, and celibate for the last six months (by choice though ha) so I'm thinking, what the hell? Why not hang out. He's a perfectly normal, attractive guy who I just happened to embarrass myself with by sleeping with him way too soon, three years ago. Wow, thats a long sentence. anyway. I decide why not? So we went out to lunch, and it was fun and completely cool, and then i went over to his place (I live right outside of Philly, he lives in the city) and we decided to make dinner together (which turned out amazingly delicious, btw). So we mad dinner, drank wine all night, music, etc, really fun. And I got a little happy. Annnd I slept with him and stayed over. ok. Anyway, I kind of freaked out the next morning because my face was a MESS, there's no way he couldn't have noticed. Especially since the last time I saw him (three freakin years ago) my skin was perfect (and I weighed ten pounds less but ANYWAY)...he still wants to see me! And this is going to sound weird, but I'm not sure I'm that into him. Physically, yes, very much so, but I don't think we quite 'click' in the other ways the way I'd like us to. I'm pondering a 'casual' relationship with him (c'mon, girl's got needs) but I don't know. Those things don't usually work out the way you want them to...no matter how much you convince yourself they can haha. Ladies, thoughts? Should I give it some more time? Alright. On to dogsitting (best college job ever). -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Just a P.S

Does anyone else find the Claravis blister packs IMPOSSIBLE to open?? And seriously all the pregnant lady tabs??? It's kind of funny actually. Just in case i forgot to NOT get pregnant, I can look at the tab before I take the pill and go OH YEAH, I FORGOT I'M NOT SUPPOSED TO REPRODUCE. THANKS BARR LABORATORIES!!! Anyway. Thats it haha. -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

 

Day 4

Sooo I'm actually starting to notice changes! And of course by changes I in no way mean acne clearing, but the lips/eyes are definitely starting to dry, and I noticed after I came home last night from seeing a karaoke band play that I had two brand new white head pimples on my face. They literally cropped up in THREE HOURS. But the great thing about that is that I NEVER get whitehead pimples. My case of acute onset adult acne just bypassed blackheads, pimples, whiteheads, etc and went straight to CYSTS. Woke up this morning with three more whiteheadish, small pimples too. Is it weird that this actually makes me excited? I'm just thinking 1.Ok, meds are working 2. Thank GOD they aren't cysts! I'm not afraid of this IB, my skin has looked way worse than this in the past (I currently only have one diminishing cyst, the whitehead pimples, and of course, everyone's fav face full of inflammation) Face is also a little tight after washing, so I may skip clindamycin gel and do it either once a day or every other day depending on how my skin feels. Tomorrow I start classes for my LAST SEMESTER as an undergrad. Because I changed majors 3 times in my long and illustrious college career, I had to take an extra year of school (hence the 23 year old graduating senior. Whatever, it's extremely common these days). So, its not going to be long before I'm kicked off my parent's insurance (around June) so it was extremely important I do accutane NOW, cause lord knows when I'll have a job with health benefits...anyway. Thats about all, stop by and say hi if the spirit moves you!! -J

Jacattack86

Jacattack86

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