Its been about one year since i started my treatment! Lots to update everyone about. My skin is doing great, but not perfect! I do have some hyperpigmintation from the acne left over, but I don't really break out anymore Clear skin!..?
After my 30 day picking challenge, I had no urge to pick anymore! Success! Lol but it doesnt mean i don't pick at all anymore. If i have a massive blackhead sticking out of my face, i will pick it. The only difference now is that I don't FIND unnecessary things on my face to pick at. The sight of blackheads don’t bother me anymore. I just pick what needs to be picked. Which is like one or two things every month.
I kept going with my acne meds till mid July. Then I kinda weaned myself off of the antibiotics. I continued the duac for another two months. Then I stopped all together. It cleared majority of my old acne, but once in a while I would get massive cysts. I figured out what the cause was: sleep and lotion.
Sleep and Lotion
The tiny pimples on my face were the products of an irregular sleep pattern. Once I started sleeping on a fairly normal schedule, the tiny ones popped up no mo! Now, the cyst…. I’ve used Iope face lotion for many years and never did I think it seeded my cystic pimples. Until one day, I ran out and had to live off of etude sample lotions for a month. I had no new cysts! Even on my period! Then I bought a new bottle of Iope, and BaBAM! Two cysts on my chin. I was like, “no way!” so I tried out this experiment again. Stopped using Iope, then started again after a month. The next day I got a cyst in between my brow right away. Yeah.. all these years, my trusted Iope lotion was poisoning me T_T Such betrayal! So I just gave it to my mom cuz she loves the lotion and bought a cheap moisturizing lotion from Etude for $8. This was about 5 months ago and since then I haven’t had a cystic pimple even on my period J
The horrible thing….
Is that I think all that pimple medication slowed down or stunted my collagen growth, so I am now left with lots of indented scars! No ice picks, but boxcars and rolling…. T_T And my skin tone is uneven. For the past 3 months, I’ve tried dermarolling with 1.5 needles. I do have to say that I see 10% improvement. Gave that up though.
My skin, although its gots them indented scars, sometimes, it don’t look so bad….. When I catch my reflection here and there, my skin seems permissible… but then other times, it looks like Ive got caves on my face -_-;; I was very shocked last week when I saw my reflection on the elevator door….. OMG wtf is wrong with my face I thought. So I decided it’s time to get some lasering done. I went to three different dermatologists and found the one I like. The first clinic I went to, they said I’d need subcision and fraxel…… five times. LOL no fuckin way was it that bad. They just want my money. Anyways, the clinic I ended up choosing was having a package event. (Oh btw, I live in Korea now so all this shit is hella cheap compared to the US). It was 1 fraxel laser, 2 eTwo lasers, 3 shots of this thing called a Baby Needle(?) which is suppose to help collagen growth, and 3 facials(?). Total cost was $1000. I’m getting my first eTwo lasering done next Friday…. Soooooo the span of this whole process will be about 2 months? Hahaha I’m excited and once this is done, I will update again. I am also taking progress pictures
Updates! Its been 20 days already? Well, I went about a week and a half without duac ran out, so my derm prescribed me the two meds separately. and WOW it burned my skin at first ( I think I used too much, too) definitely more potent than the expired sample duac haha. I broke out a bit during my non-duac days.... sigh, i'm guessing I cant get off this stuff. But it gave my skin time to heal so a lot of the old red marks are gone! My skin isn't perfect yet, but its working its way, I can tell!
I also dermarolled today! its been a long time.... I was wearing make up everyday the past 2 weeks so I knew it wouldn't be safe to dermaroll. I love the plumpness of my skin in the morning thanks to micro swelling
Also, I don't pick no mo! well, I accidentally scratched off one tiny one lol. but I don't have the urge to constantly stick my face in the mirror and pick. and as a result, my face looks better! maybe not up close hahahaha iono what im saying. im just happy to see the improvements!
Updates! My skin has been doing great and I've been picking less! I think I picked two times within the week.. and it was the same spot haha, didn't do much damage I've really kicked the habit of gluing myself to the mirror and killing my skin. I just got a renewal on my minocycline prescription but my derm said that they ran out of duac samples! D: so I might be getting the BP and the clindamycin separately within the next week..... I cant wait for that!
As for pimples, I got one on my right cheek. I think its because I sleep on my side even though I change my pillow covers every day Dx whatever, its ok. My skin would still be considered to be clear of acne! The red marks on the other hand HAVE been lightening... but still there grrr.
I also finally bought that estee lauder double wear foundation. First time anything has matched my skin color! and good coverage too! however, it doesn't perfectly cover everything. The marks on my right lower cheek ends up looking a bit blue under the foundation like a bruise. but the rest of my face looks perfect not disappointed at all happy happy joy joy
Day 30- Did not pick today. Last day of my 30 day no picking challenge! I'd have to say, although it wasn't a complete success, because I did pick a little, it was still a great success! Ever since I started this blog, I went from picking at 15 things on my face to 1 or 2 or none! I went from a scabby pepperoni pizza face to a uh... red cupcake sprinkle face? haha I cant believe the results in only 30 days! Minimizing my picking definitely lowered the red mark counts on my face. The ones that are still there have started to fade, too! From now on, I won't be writing an entry everyday but i'll be back with updates at least once a week. Seeing this improvement has definitely motivated me to lessen my picking. Most days, I don't even have the urge. I actually feel two little plugs on my face right now, but I kinda don't care. wow wow Red mark healing on the way
Anyways, pictures will be at the end of the entry. Right now I feel like writing reviews for my antibiotics. I guess the above paragraph ^ is a review of the 30 day no picking challenge.
Week 11? I believe:
Duac - awesome. the duac I get from my derm are expired samples. Expired by two months, so I know they aren't as potent. Its either because of that or because my skin is so use to the abuse that it doesn't burn or hurt when I put duac on. Its like a night time moisturizer... that doesn't really moisturize. I get flaky skin once every 4 days, which I exfoliate without a problem. I've noticed the sample tubes that have been expired for more than 3 months don't even flake my skin :/ useless. But still, its gotten rid of my blackheads not even AHAs could do that for me.
Solodyn/minocycline - GREAT! it made my skin so freakin soft! even my body skin. Didn't go through a purging process. Killed majority of my acne in 2-3 weeks. The thing i'm most amaze about is my chin! I use to always have at least one cystic pimple on my chin the past 3 years. One disappears and a new one takes its place but since ive been on this drug, I've had NONE! NONE!!! CRAZY NONE! and i'm nearing my period right now (getting bad cramps already) but my chin is still clear! The scars from before are softening up. I do still get one pimple occasionally on my cheek, I assume its because I sleep on my side, but its no biggie. I did get some scares with those potential cystic pimples in between my brow, but they haven't emerged after 2 weeks or so... which i'm guessing that means they'll stay down. Now, the solodyn is a lot better because u can eat it with food and I didn't get any side effects, so i'd recommend it if u can afford it. THe minocycline, I had a bit of a problem with the food shit... it made me depressed at the beginning (not anymore) and its still causing fatigue. But i'm able to suck it up :/
OH! yeah, just gotta say, it's also fucked up my appetite: I'm always hungry and I gained weight.....
Anyways, the before/after pictures. the real reason why people are here anyways. LOL j/k j/k
These pictures were taken in my room after dark, so they don't have the best lighting, nor are they the best quality. sorry
Starting duac and solodyn:
I think this is when I started the 30 day no picking challenge:
THE END ^^
Day 29 - Did not pick today so tomorrow is day 30 and I will be posting pictures! I dermarolled today. I haven't been counting the days but I think its about 10 days since my first dermaroller session? Can't say ive seen good results (its just one session) but I haven't seen bad results which is still good news. I went a little rougher today since I was use to the pricking pain, but hopefully not too rough for my skin to handle.
I've done some research, and I think i'll be buying the estee lauder double wear foundation. Imma go to the mall this Saturday to find the right shade and purchase it excited
Also I started working out today. Ever since I started the meds ive been on a weird hungry food craving faze. I say its weird because I rarely crave food and i'm usually hungry for just one meal a day. Food has never been my top priority: i'd rather get more sleep than spend time eating LOL. But since the antibiotics, I eat 3 meals a day and 2 snacks. Yet, I still want to eat more! ive gained 10 lbs in 2-3 months! D: I didn't really mind a bit of chub until I discovered I developed a double chin and my skinny jeans don't fit no mo LOL. I need to get in shape, So i'll be working out every day and cutting out the snacks. I'll still eat 3 meals, but i'll be eating healthier. No coke, less fast food, no candy after the meal lol, no msg, and more fruits (maybe veggies).
Day 28 - Same as yesterday, I had to wear full coverage make up so I ended up using my dr. jart bb cream. After I took it off, I had 8 more new clogged pores which I picked out. Got out 7 clean and easy and clear, but one of them I broke skin. Its gonna scab. Ugh. dr jart silver label u are horrible. It doesn't last that long either. it looks good for the first 2 hrs. and then it starts cracking. not flaking, but little tiny cracks everywhere, like a dry desert floor. I think my skin oil dissolves it or something. iono. Anyways, i'm thinking about just buying liquid foundation for my full coverage routine which only happens like twice a month lol.
Day 27 - picked a bit to unclog some pores. No damage thankfully. The clogged pores are from my make up today. Dr. Jart silver label bb cream clogs pores! just a warning. I get at least 5 new clogged pores from that shit. But it does a great job giving me almost full coverage. Man, I need something better.
Day 26 - Didn't pick today either. great~ The minocycline is no longer making me depressed, but it still is making me really tired... actually, that's why I didn't pick today. Didn't have the energy. LOL
Another note, Duac is excellent for getting rid of the black heads on my nose. So crazy
Day 24 - washed my face and one of the big scabs came off. I thought to myself, oh so the other scab might be ready to come off too since they kind of happened at the same time. So I began to pick at the other scab and it initially started peeling off nicely.... I tore the whole thing off and I was wrong -_-;; there was still 10% that wasn't ready and it started to bleed a bit. It might just scab over again. Stupid of me.
Day 23 - picked at one spot. I was plucking my eyebrows and it ended up in me scouting out for things on my face T_T It was a small pick so not too damaging, but as of now I know have two dark scabs on my face from the picks before. The cyst on my brow has definitely decreased and I hope it stays that way. Hoping its not the calm before the storm type of deal! Man, I really wanna try prescription duac and not the expired samples my derm gives me.
Day 21 - Picked at a spot. Got the gunk out and did some damage to the surrounding skin, but not to the point till it was bleeding :/ oppies....
I got my dermaroller today! w00t! 1.0 mm. I rolled my chin and got some light spotted bleeding. I was surprised cuz that didn't happen when I rolled last year. It was pretty cool, not gonna lie. You can hear the needles piercing ur skin - sounded like mini bubble wrap being popped at once hahahaha didn't hurt! but definitely felt some sort of sensation afterwards. I just wiped off the spots of blood and didn't put anything on it after. I don't have anything for it T_T and I heard its ok to just leave it alone anyways. I'll be dermarolling at least once a week, pretty excited!
As for the cystic pimples between my brow-ish area... they've gotten smaller I think! less painful and seem to be shrinking! YEA!
I do feel like crap today, but not too depressed as yesterday
Day 20 - Entry's gonna be long.
Topic 1: minocycline side effects
Topic 2: what I picked on my face
Topic 3: pimple updates
Topic 4: vitamin c horrors
Skip around haha
I started off today feeling super tired and very crappy. I was a bit depressed, especially about my skin. It felt hopeless... I didn't know why but then I realized its probably my antibiotics every since I switched from solodyn brand to the generic minocycline, I started feeling super tired... more than I should have despite my lack to sleep. I was very unmotivated to do anything and, exaggerating a bit, didn't know why I was living on. LOL This just had to be a result of the drugs T_T. so I put on some make up, went out, and did a bit of window shopping cuz im too poor to actually shop HAHA. I felt happier getting out of the house my depression faded completely, but my fatigue did not. I was really really tired the whole time and wanted a wheel chair or something. I did get a bit of dizziness the first few days on the minocycline, but it only lasted like 5 sec and now it doesn't occur at all. So hopefully the fatigue and depression will go away too.
Anyways. to the picking! I picked at two. First, the one I tried to pick at but left alone yesterday. Easily got it out today. Then I picked at this thing near my nose. This thing, whitehead or milia or whatever, was a huge flesh colored bump that stayed for about 6 months now. I never picked at it before cuz I was never able to see the hole in the middle. for some reason, despite its huge size, it didn't bother me. Then I saw a black dot in the middle and thought this was my chance! I picked it and yes, something did easily come out... but it kept coming out. I kept pushing and pushing and the thing kept gushing and gushing. What an adventure. I'm now left with a very big red spot, but not too worried about it. My skin in that area seem to heal very fast.
Now, onto the pimples. The pimple I mentioned last entry on my right cheek hurts T_T but its not very noticeable. Its not red nor does it pop out. However, I did get another pimple on my left cheek that is very pimply T_T but it doesn't hurt. sigh.
The cyst on my eye-ish area actually stopped growing and doesn't hurt. YAY! I think its getting better. But bad news! i'm getting another cyst in the middle of my brow! WAHHHHHHH
So I have this vertical scar in the middle of my brow thanks to three horrible deep cystic pimples that ended up connecting with each other. It did sink in after the meds, but in order to help the processes I've been applying vitamin c serum the past two days. Ive had bad luck with vitamin c in the past. Its expensive and legit, but it caused me blackheads! And I know im not the only one... So I stopped, but I thought it would have been alright with just my between brow area. I was wrong. I feel a new cystic pimple erupting. The horror! I drowned it in duac, i'm hoping it was just an irritation and not a cyst. im too afraid. My biggest pet peeve is cystic acne between my brows cuz its so damn noticeable! I'd rather get one on my chin! But surprisingly, my chin has been so clear! its crazy- this has never happened. i'm happy about that, but CYST WHY U APPEAR!? I hate you
Day 19 - sucks I have to put on duac with my fingers.. cuz I feel bumps anyways, I picked at one spot but it wouldn't come out, so I stopped before I did any more damage. I'll try again tomorrow. And the cyst hasn't grown or gotten smaller today either - but it doesn't hurt anymore! and I think i'm getting a pimple on my right cheek. I THINK. lol. Probably cuz im nearing my period. AH I hate periods!
Day 18 - picked at two spots today. not too much damage really. got 4 hrs of sleep again -_- grr The cyst hasn't gotten bigger since yesterday, nor has it gotten smaller... so i'm still nervous of its outcome. It's drowning in expired duac. Im so tired. The red marks are slowly getting better still. Very slowly. The improvement isn't as dramatic as the first two weeks. still better than no improvement. right? so tired...
Day 17 - picked at two spots today. damn, and I was doing so well... but I needed some sort of relief. Life has been a bitch this week. I've also been only getting 4 hrs of sleep the past 5 days... which is why I think I got that pimple I mentioned in my last two blogs. Its most likely a cyst :'( I see the white head, but its too deep for me to get! ahhhh the horror of cysts. It hurts. Ive been drowning it in duac every morning and night, although I doubt that'll be much help since its expired duac :/ Im going to try and get good sleep from now on, so hopefully that'll help banish this ugly lump.
Day 15 - didn't pick today either. but I got a tiny tiny pimple around my eye... its a couple mm above the inner corner of my left eye.... and it hurts like a mother! its really tiny and I can see the white head, but its pretty deep, I think, cuz I cant pick it! and any pressure on it hurts! im hoping this wont turn into a cyst! its such an odd placing. ahhhh plz just be a regular pimple or go away.. I don't want a cyst T_T
Day 13- Didn't pick today. Now that im seeing good results, ive started to care less and obsess less about picking at my skin. I can't believe I didn't do this sooner! Im hoping I don't cave in
I shoulda went to the derm years ago! I was always scared of the initial break out so I put it off till now, but I didn't get any initial break outs... and apparently you're not suppose to with antibiotics which does make sense since its suppose to kill the bacteria, not purge it out. harharhar
Day 12 - didn't really pick at anything... cant report much today cept that I switched around my routine
a tablet of zinc after lunch, another one after dinner, then my antibiotic at midnight... since I figured that's when my stomach would be most empty? haha
Day 11 of trying to control my picking
Week 9 of my duac + solodyn treatment
Today, I stop taking solodyn and start taking the generic brand (financial reasons). My derm said I have to take the generic brand on an empty stomach... but my stomach is never empty!!! ahhhhh
I picked at one spot today, but it wasn't bad. Anyways, i'm excited to say that my skin is definitely improving! I wore make up for the first time in a month and it was awesome! I had to go somewhere quickly and hell no I wasn't going out bare faced, so I threw on some BB cream. It's medium coverage so usually I need to reinforce it with concealer, but not today!!!!!!!!!! my red marks/scars blended in well with the bb cream! Yea, it wasn't perfect... In bright lights or sunlight, my skin was kinda blotchy, but in the shade it looked fine/passable. Achieving that with only one layer of bb cream proves great progress! It makes me so happy Thank you LORD!
Oh, and if anyone needs recommendation on good bb cream, i'd have to say the BRTC brand line. you'll have to find which one suits your skin the best, but overall, I've never had any problems with it. I've tried them all and I stick to the silver one (whitening bb? I think). The BRTC brand coverage is light to medium.
I also have dr jart's silver label. I used it when my skin was the worst because it gives medium to full coverage. But since it's soooo white and matted, it gives a caked look. And it clogged my pores a bit. :/ not too happy with that bb, but the coverage was good.
Anyways, can't wait to see the results after the full 30 days
Day 10 - I picked at one spot this morning.. its cuz of my theory. I have this theory that a red mark won't fade if the infection (aka sebum, blackhead, whitehead, whatever) is still there. No matter how many years go by, if the infection is not removed (and usually it doesn't dissolve by itself :/) the redness will never go away!
Which forces me to pick it out by all means necessary ;; Maybe my theory makes me sound silly.. haha sorry
The spot I picked at today is a spot I picked at before unsuccessfully and caused it to scab. now that the scab has fallen, there is a red mark but the hard sebum is still stuck. So I attempted to get it out and I did! This time, the size of the wound isn't very big, but the redness is very bright
Its ok. better than two picks, right?
AND SOME GOOD NEWS! I've noticed my red marks have lightened up ever since I stopped picking at my skin like a crazy person I'd say by maybe 20%? also the fact that I have no more dark scabs on my face helps as well.
My face FEELS so healthy and good! no more painful pimples or crusty scabs! but it looks like a mess. at least this slight improvement is very encouraging
Day 9 - picked at a black head, got a good sucker out. Its on a part of my face that I can't really see, so I don't really care if it leaves a mark LOL. also picked at something on my nose.... i'm ashamed. two picks... need to get this under control!
I've decided to lessen my usage of duac to once every two days... I need my skin to heal and I know bp actually hinders it since it kills good and bad cells.
Also! I bought a 1.0mm dermaroller. it should arrive in 2 weeks. Ive used it before, and had slightly good results. cant wait for that!