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another breakout! :(

I keep on getting these tiny pustules on my chin!! Aurghhh as soon as one goes away, another comes up again. The dermabrasion faded some of the red marks, but they are still very evident. Andd it seems like I have MORE tiny bumps on my chin now. Or maybe it's just all the mirror examining that is getting to me. In my distress, I am rather ashamed to admit that I have started picking at my skin again in an attempt to get rid of some of the clogged pores. It's rather disgusting as there is a string of trapped oil and fat which comes out. I do hope that I haven't done too much damage and created a bigger infection. It's such a vicious cycle! I just want to go make up free, which seems impossible at this point... I look like a completely different person with foundation on! I was going through some old pictures, and it's so depressing to see my skin just FOUR months ago. I don't understand how someone's skin can change that much in such a short amount of time. oh, hi low self esteem. Thanks for showing up again.

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10/16/2010

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10/16/2010

 

Dermasweep results!

I'll start by evaluating the process itself: So Dermasweep credits itself for being a painless microdermabrasion method which cleans out the pores and removes dead skin from the surface. Now let me say this: the process was NOT pain-free by any means. This could have been due to the sensitivity from the Differin gel, or it could have been the fact that the esthetician was being enthusiastic with the resurfacing, but I definitely think the pain was worth it. I'm soo thankful for the procedure! I still have some chin bumps from stubborn dry sebum plugs and active acne, but over all, it looks much better. I'm a little disappointed that the skin coloured bumps on my cheeks were not reduced by much, but my skin texture has definitely improved. Andd athe very least, after seeing all the skin that was collected (the esthetician wanted to show me how much I needed the procedure), I know that the topical gels I'm using are actually being absorbed better now! new products: I've started using a Jane Iredale press compact & concealer, as well as a deep cleaning astringent to take away the dry skin (both on the recommendation of my esthetician). I already have my next microderm appointment in three weeks and will be getting a consultation for a Limelight laser procedure, which will hopefully help with my red marks. Right now, my skin is completely two toned-- it looks like I have a red beard from the post-acne pigmentation-- very unsightly for a dark haired female. From the progress I've made in the last five weeks, I feel TONS better but am still obsessive about achieving perfection. Until I don't have any clogged pores, active pimples, AND red marks, I won't stop searching for the best solutions for my skin!

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10/14/2010

 

A little more insight into my skin

Hey readers! Hope everything has been going swell for all of you. I just wanted to thank the people on this website for their sense of community spirit! Even as an inactive member (with the exception of this blog), I have really appreciated the positive encouragement which everyone seems to be feeding off of. We're all going through the same struggles, and I wish everyone the best of luck with their journey. Three more days until my Dermasweep! I'm counting down the days like I used to count down the days until Christmas I realized that in my first post, I never really gave much insight into my possible reasoning for my sudden break out. I believe that there were several factors: 1) Makeup routine: I had been using liquid foundation in the summer for longer periods of time. I even went to sleep on more than one occasion with foundation on. During the day, I would reapply Bare Escentuals mineral veil to cover up the oil, which probably was making my pores cry out in suffocation. In addition, I wasn't properly cleaning my make up brushes. I had been doing so for a while, and with no active pimples, I didn't see the damage, but it definitely contributed to the spread of acne once I started breaking out. I know, I am hanging my head in shame. 2) BCP: In July, I started my first BCP-- Alesse for contraceptive reasons. From what I can recall, I had a few minor pimples which were bothering me at the time I was prescribed Alesse, but it wasn't so much of an issue that I brought up my acne with the practitioner when she gave me Alesse. It could have been coincidential, but my acne completely sky rocketed once I started it! By the third week of usage, I had really severe acne ONLY on my chin. 3) stress: self explanatory Long story short, I think Alesse was a really bad BCP for my body (considering it was when I started that pill that my chin area became really bad). Since being on Ortho tri cyclen, I've just been recovering from that one break out (yes, it's been about two months and I still have fairly moderate acne by my standards).

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10/10/2010

 

Dermasweep

Hey everyone! So my battle with acne has been a rollar coaster to say the least! As I was saying in my last post, I had an appointment booked with a different dermatologist regarding Isolaz. When I went in for my consultation, I told the doctor that I had just started accutane. He strongly advised me to stop the treatment as most of my problems were clogged surface pores and accutane would not help much and cause more internal problems than it was worth; to say the least, he was horrified that my prior dermatologist would even mention accutane to me... He recommended a microdermabrasion called Dermasweep which is supposed to flatten the little bumps which I have instead of the Isolaz (as that was more for deep acne). I also got prescription for Differin and Clindoxyl gels which I'm using at night. I have my appointment for Dermasweep next Tuesday. Considering all the changes in my regimen, I'll give you all an update: a.m: Cetaphil gentle cleanser Cetaphil moisturising cream a tiny dab of Clindoxyl (I used to use Benzaclin, but Clindoxyl goes on my skin much better) p.m: Cetaphil gentle cleanser Clindoxyl gel Differin gel Cetaphil moisturising cream Ortho tri cyclen pill makeup: I've been using Dior liquid foundation due to my need for heavy coverage. I am planning on switching to mineral powder after Tuesday because I know that the liquid foundation is only hindering my progress. My skin is actually looking much better lately with some of my congested pores magically disappearing. I do, unfortunately, have a severe amount of hyperpigmentation on my chin. For some reason, my skin has also become extremely oily. While I used to have some oil on my T-zone, by mid afternoon, my face is now as shiny as a newly waxed car.. I'm wondering if it has anything to do with the BCP? I can't wait until this nightmare ordeal is over! Hopefully all the changes I'm making with my skin care will give me lasting results!

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10/08/2010

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10/09/2010

 

2nd dose... New consideration: Isolaz?

Hey guys and gals, Second 40 mg dose done. So far, I haven't seen anything horrible or miraculous happen. A couple of red spots on the side of my cheek have been dormant for a while.. I thought they were scars from some deep cyst, but running my fingers on them, they seem to be pushing out now. The chin situation is still rather horrendous. There aren't any major pimples, but the whiteheads are a nightmare to look at! A lot of them have dried up, but as tempted as I am to fiddle with them, I don't want to risk any more scarring than I have! I went into accutane with a LOT of hyperpigmentation and virtually no textured scars. Hopefully these chin bumps will go smooth eventually... I had a conversation the other day with my mom about having started accutane, and she immediately condoned my decision to start it. Her response was booking me an appointment to see a derm about Isolaz laser theray. I'm seeing him on Wednesday for a consult. She now sees my desparation in the situation, and while I personally don't have the funds for Isolaz, she told me that she would finance it for me if it would help with my psychological issues-- bless her! Considering my situation with having just started only two low doses of accutane, I don't think it will be a problem with doing Isolaz. My dilemma will then be: should I stop the accutane for Isolaz treatment? I just want to have a permanent solution, and while Isolaz might help me with immediate results, my worst nightmare is having to deal with future break outs!! Ahh I don't know what to decide! Decisions, decisions.

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10/05/2010

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10/05/2010

 

First day!

Hey everyone! Just swallowed my first 40 mg pill minutes ago. I'm on 40 mg to be taken every other day. From what I can tell, this is a relatively low dose. Hopefully that doesn't affect the length of my results. The way I see it, I looked like a complete mess three weeks ago. Thank the heavens that Benzaclin has cured me to a partial mess. Worst thing that can happen now is I get an IB and look like another complete mess. BUT IT WILL BE WORTH IT. Hopefully this will be a relatively painless journey...

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10/03/2010

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10/03/2010

 

Everything took a turn for the worst

My life seriously is messed up. Since the last time I was on here, I: i) broke up with my boyfriend ii) cried for days on end iii) got horrid reception at school. A couple of my friends finally saw me since before this flare up started, and their faces were literally a jaw drop, followed by a "What happened to your face??" iv) cried so much that my mom considered taking me to the hospital for mental illness problems v) found out that, pre break-up, my boyfriend was seeing another girl to make matters worse, I weighed myself since the start of summer, and realized that I gained about 10 pounds. Whoohoo. update: I'm single, fat, and have horrid skin. and I am not, I repeat, am not overexaggerating by any means. So I guess any readers out there can feel better in that their life is not as bad as mine... On matters of my acne, I had scheduled an appointment with the derm last week and I guess the receptionist heard my desperation and squeezed me into an appointment. I saw her today and she took one look at my skin and said the A-word-- "Accutane". Condition of my skin: no severe cysts but hundreds of tiny comedonal bumps. In the light, I look like asphalt. Soo.. I'm going to get my blood work done tomorrow for it and I'm starting it ASAP. I am so desparate at this point that, despite all the negative feedback on the drug, I'm willing to sacrifice anything to have my skin back. Given everything I've gone through, at least clear skin will bring my self esteem up. Once I start Accutane, I'll keep posting more regularly to record the results. Wish me luck!

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10/01/2010

 

Somewhat better...

Wow.. I have become severely depressed within the last week-- due mostly to my insecurities with my skin, but also contributed to by my other problems, I completely broke down. I recently started school again and have felt unmotivated and embarassed by my skin. If only things would start really clearing up! I'm hoping for a better second week as Benzaclin claims that it takes at least two weeks to start seeing a noticeable improvement. Skin update: Less noticeable bumpiness Acne areas are very dry and sensitive Slight flare up two days ago, but pimples are overall smaller Hyperpigmentation (probably due to the Benzaclin application) Rest of face has nice glow The last two days, I cut back on using the AHA peel pads as my face has been quite sensitive. I am also suspecting that the clarisonic shouldn't be used on my acne areas as many of my pimples have popped with an exposed head. Still trying to fight through this!

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09/17/2010

 

Let's begin from the start

Wow.. I never thought this day would come; by this, I mean an all time low. Let me begin with an introduction with myself: Flash back one month ago, I was a socialable, confident, and most importantly, happy person. I always had the occasional pimple but it had never affected my self esteem. I even used to get compliments on how beautiful my face was. I recently have gone through a lot of major lifestyle changes and it was at the ensuite of this time, that my acne really started to break out. It started out as just a few whiteheads and clogged pores, until it spread and became inflamed and infected. As a picker, I realize now that it had only made matters worse, but alas, the damage has been done-- not only to my face but more severely to my psychological well-being. I have cried countless times and it has affected my social life-- in particular, my relationship. I used to see my boyfriend everyday, and even two days seemed like a lifetime. I've shyed away from seeing him for the last few days and I can see myself continuing to do so until my condition has improved significantly. I am admitting now that my acne is currently at a moderate stage (from null a month ago) and am praying that it will subside. My current regimen: a.m: Juice Beauty cleansing gel Clarisonic apply Benzaclin Neutrogena AHA moisturiser with added jojoba oil p.m: Juice Beauty cleansing gel Clarisonic Dr. Dennis Gross AHA peel apply Benzaclin Neutrogena AHA moisturiser with added jojoba oil I've only been using the Benzaclin for five days. My infected areas have significant subsided but I've been noticing some miniscule white spots which have surfaced in the same area... (I have my fingers crossed that they will disappear) This will be a blog about my ups and downs of conquering my psychological pains on my path to clear skin.

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09/13/2010

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