No make up on
with Bare Minerals make-up
It has been awhile since my last update. I still get pimples, usually once a month a few will break out. I find this to be hormonal and guess I have to ride it out since I won’t take birth control or anything to help with my hormones. I am still using the BP, the Cetaphil face wash and moisturizer along with the cetaphil sunscreen. I use the retin-a at night on my forehead and nose. Then I dilute the retin-a with the Cetaphil moisturizer and put that on the rest of my face. I bounce between Bare Minerals & Napoleon Perdis make-up.
Acne wise, I feel it is hormonal until that evens out, the acne will continue to break me out. I feel the retin-a was too strong for my lower face, but is fine for my forehead and nose. I was so oily (throughout the day and when I woke up in the morning) prior to starting retin-a and now I am not so oily in those areas. I am hoping diluting the product will still help clear the acne discoloration I have and using full strength on my nose/forehead will keep the oil at bay and also help with my forehead wrinkle. I feel I have premature aging horizontal lines on my forehead and I haven’t seem much difference in the retin-a helping with those. I did just get botox injections on Thursday to help with those (can we tell I have a problem with aging? lol).
I hit 18 weeks. I took pictures at 17 weeks and think those look better than this weeks pictures. I will post the 17th and 18th week pictures. I feel it has gotten better than what it was. I still break out just not as bad as it was. I still am following my routine which is at night, wash with cetaphil, then retin a at night just on forehead and upper cheeks (not applying it on chin area other than gently swiping my fingers on it after already rubbing it in to the other areas of my face). Morning, wash with cetaphil, apply BP, apply moisturizer, apply sunscreen, then make up.
17 week pictures
18 week pictures
Today I hit 13 weeks. I did have a bump on my chin and another one off to the right but they never came to a head and are just going down. Hopefully they don't reappear later. Nothing new, waiting for discoloration to fade.
Nothing new. The spots are still there, they dont want to fade. I feel the natural lightening outside makes them stand out more, but my daughter told me it looks the same in either light. How nice to hear.... lol NOT! I am approaching my TOM and seem to have spot brewing on my chin and one to the right side. I wish the spots would go away.
I am actually on time for once blogging! Yay! So I hit 11 weeks and am not getting new bumps which I am happy about. I have all these brown spots/marks left over from the all the acne which is going to take time to fade (don't you just hate that they just don't fade away as quick as they popped up). I really feel the estroven is making a big difference. My face is still so oily around my t-zone area, comes through my make up through out the day. But hopefully my hormones level out sooner than later and it stops.
This last one is with makeup trying to cover spots up without looking so cakey.
Ahhhhhhh...... I feel like I am making progress. Last week was horrible. It really got worse even the pictures can't show how bad it really looked. My face was just not right. I really feel no matter what products I use, it doesn't make a difference. I been sticking with the Cetaphil gentle face wash and lotion and 50 sunblock, BP in the morning after face washing, then I changed to use less than a pea size retina a on my face not adding to my chin area and just using whatever cream left over that was maybe on my fingers and rubbing it on my chin/jaw area. The Bare Minerals I use to use just wasn't covering my spots so I tried Cover Girl and Loreal. Finally, broke down and went to Ulta where I ended up buying this completely expensive Napoleon stick foundation and powder which I guess hides them somewhat better than the other stuff, i wouldn't say $90 plus better. Anyhow, I really can't take much more and was about to throw in the towel and try the birth control pills which my doctor did give me before but I have a fear of birth control pills. I am pretty convinced my acne is related to hormones which my hormones really stated to go out of whack when I turned 30 and have been progressing to get worse and come through my face as well.
I went and bought some DIM, finished a bottle but didn't experience much difference in taking them. Last week, I went and got Estroven. I waited until my cycle finished and started the Estroven a week ago. I really feel it is making a difference, if not, then it could be just my TOM ended and my face is looking better until the next TOM. I been staying on the Estroven and taking one every morning and one every evening. Hopefully the pics look better too since I upgraded my phone finally.
It seems this week and last week, I have been a day off on my posting. I did take my pictures yesterday but didn't post on the blog. I have been using less retin a only focusing on my forehead/nose and upper cheek area. Once all spread in, I then swipe gently over my chin area. I don't feel it has made anything better. I am also having my wonderful TOM and it isn't helping either. Here are my pictures on 9 week mark.
It is 8 long weeks and my chin has a lot of spots. In fact, a lady I haven't seen in awhile even asked about my face. This is old, to say the least. So 2 nights ago I decided not to put the cream on my chin area. I put it on my forehead and nose and upper cheeks. Once rubbed in, I just skim my fingers over the chin area. I just can't no longer take the bumps nor anymore discoloration. My face after 8 weeks is still worse off than when I began. Hopefully, the cream will help aging but in the acne department, I am completely kicking myself for starting this. What was barely nothing before is more than enough now. Here are my pics, I took them yesterday and it is hard to tell but I have a new bump forming where it has already formed like 2 other times. It seems once I get a bump in a spot it just simmers down and pops up again later.
Today I have hit the 7th week mark. I looked back at photos and it does look slightly better than week 4. I am not as bumpy rough looking. Still have discoloration and some bumps, but not the huge ones I was getting. I just keep telling myself that the long term benefits outweigh the ugliness now like wrinkles/aging skin. Here are my 7th week pictures.
I am at the 6 week mark today. I think it is better than last week. I haven't had huge one after another coming up but still have discoloration but that be hidden with make up. The small under the skin bumps are really a bothersome. I don't know if it was because I was irritating my face using a washcloth to help clean the make up. I did have some before I started the cream, but just a few close together. It is like they wont go away or come to a head. Strangely, I also believe they get more noticeable in the late afternoon/evening hours. Like they become inflamed and you can see them more. As we know, make up isn't hiding these bumps and now since starting all the cream, my face is horrible. I have more dark spots, more of those under the skin bumps and big old pimples. I am hoping the big old pimples will stop forming now since it seems to slowly be calming down. Actually last night, I went picking (I know, I know bad bad bad) at those under the skin bumps. Since they wont seem to budge and I have actually tried before but get nowhere. They just seemed so inflamed last night, I actually made progress on a few of them and got white stuff out of them, it was red but the bump was gone. I did have blackheads on my nose before starting also and they seem to be gone. The pores still look big and I can tell oil is there but they don't have the black part, so hopefully with continued use the pores shrink up. And lightening plays a huge role in how they look also, I notice that daylight when I am out and about, the bumps seem to be more noticeable, plus make up probably makes them look worse, but hides the dark spots. It is a lose lose battle. If I remember, when it is later in the day, I will try to take a picture to show the small bumps becoming more inflamed as the day progresses.
Today is my 5th week using retin a. Still breaking out. It seems my chin area doesn't catch a break. The current pimples will finally start going down and then 2 new ones will brew up before the other are even gone. My face hasn't thanked me yet and I am starting to wonder if it ever will. My chin area seems to peel in only certain small sections and the peeling wasn't really bothering me. But in one area, if I stretch my mouth out to stretch the skin in that area, you can tell it doesn't seem like it could possible peel anymore. My peeling doesn't last all day either. It starts about 4ish in the afternoon and then just sheds off. But it is getting red, not tender or anything. Think along the lines of slight chemical burn but doesn't hurt. Around my eyes have been very dry also. Which is strange, because I don't rub the retin a there, like my eye lids are doing some weird snake skin look so I been putting on more moisturizer on them.
Since the Netrogena moisturizer continued to clump up with the sunscreen, I changed to Cetaphil moisturizer. The clumping has stopped and I feel it moisturizers my face better. I got better pictures this time using my phone. Had to get them in different lightening. I am worse off now then when I started. I am really hoping that this rough patch goes away, but it doesn't seem to be breaking at all. I do say it is better than week 2 and 3, but no where is my skin better than before I started. Hopefully, I can say SOON that it is all worth it.
Short catch up since I am 3 1/2 weeks in already.....
I am almost at the 4 week mark of using Retin A. Since hitting 30, my skin has taken a toll for the worse. The last 3 years, I have had blotchy skin, developed these tiny (top of pen size) under the skin flesh colored bumps that have come in clusters and wont leave, blackhead war zone on my nose, and pimples that usually come on my chin area a few times a month. In my teenage years, I never had any skin issues. I could count on one hand how many pimples I have had until I hit 30. Now, it wasn't so bad that people would comment on my skin, but it has been harder for me to face people especially since before 30 people would tell me how my skin was flawless.
I have been using mineral make up for years. I wash my face with bp wash. Use sunscreen and ROC Deep Wrinkle Night Cream because it had retinol in it but it didn't seem to be helping my face much. I went and got the Neutrogena Microdermabrasion kit and I broke out even more. I had an upcoming doctors appointment so I figured I would ask for some retin a after doing some research on it. He said sure and gave me a prescription for the tretinoin 0.025 cream. I wanted that on my face that night, but of course the pharmacy was out and I had to wait a few days.
Finally, I started the cream. So, I did a pea size amount the first night. No burning or redness and I figured my face had already been getting a weak retinol from the Roc so I shouldn't have a bad reaction. In that weak, my chin exploded into tons of red pimples. Between my eyes, I had developed these weird under the skin like pimples with no head. And my forehead has gotten a few red smaller than the chin size pimples. The last 3 weeks have been horrible. I wasn't shedding like I have read, I did get a little flakey around the chin but nothing too horrible. It was the pimples that have set me into a panic. Week 2 I wanted to quit. Week 3.... I wont lie, I am still contemplating to go on. I think it is a tad better than it was in week 3 but everytime one bump seems to go down, another or two emerge. Week 2, I even had this crazy huge one pop up right in between my eyes and once it finally went down, another big one popped up next to it. I feel like the chin is the worse and it just doesn't want to get better. Once the bump goes down, I am left with a brown spot. Granted, brown spots can be covered with make up but bumps just aren't seeming to hide away no matter how much I try.
I want to stick it out at least for 3 months. So I am hopefully I am over the rough patch and will start seeing some improvement. I did change my face routine since starting retin a. I wash at night with Cetaphil gentle face wash but I don't think it really gets the make up or dry skin flakes off so after washing, I take a washcloth and gently scrub my face, then wait 30 minutes to an hour and apply the retin a (I stopped using a pea size and went further down to half a pea size now). In the morning, I wash with Cetaphil gentle face wash, apply BP to my nose (because I am still very oily but the blackheads are gone but you can still see my pores and the oil), apply Neutrogena moisturizer for sensitive skin and then apply Cetaphil 50 sunblock.
I am still oily around my nose. After applying make up, my face just gets very shiny now. I can't seem to keep the shine down. I think it could be the sunblock. My chin is dry. Have lots of brown spots and pimples that still need to get all the way through and still have weird under the skin bumps that aren't seeming to budge. Adding pictures but my phone camera is horrible and can't ever decide on the light so it is hard to see the bumps I am talking about if you can see them at all. Hoping that sticking with the retin a will be beneficial in the long run because my face is worse than it was before starting the retin a.
This picture is from a few days ago and you can see I have lots of spots.
This is from yesterday. More pimples working up to the surface. But when I add make up it seems to settle the redness and brown spots but the bumps are making me self conscious.