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My tips for the Regimen

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I've seen a lot of posts in this forum about frustrated regimen users who are not experiencing the results that they had expected. Hang in there! I've been on the regimen since May 2005, and the regimen has been vastly more effective than all the medications my dermatologist gave me before I stumbled across Acne.org.

Along the way, I observed many patterns of breakouts while on the regimen, which led me to make various tiny changes in my daily life. For me, I attribute much of the success of the regimen to making these adjustments in my life. Every time I have tried to go back to the way things were before, I have experienced breakouts until I stopped again. So, first thing's first:

I almost never eat dairy-based food or drink milk. Dan mentions that certain foods can cause acne for certain people, and that dairy is fairly common. This was actually something I noticed in myself a few years before beginning the regimen. Believe me, I really do miss having milk with cereal in the morning, having cheese in my turkey sandwiches, and PIZZA. But instead I drink Silk soymilk and order cheeseless pizza when I can. As a college student, it is sometimes difficult to have to avoid eating pizza, but I've been telling people that I'm lactose-intolerant for so long that I believe it myself.

I guess you could call that a lifestyle change. It wasn't too easy for me and I can understand why people would not want to do this. I personally just hated having acne so badly when I stopped eating dairy that I was willing to do whatever it took. In any case, the rest of my advice is really about small things.

Every night, I sleep on my back. It took me a while to realize that sleeping on my stomach with my face in my pillow was causing massive amounts of irritation and breakouts. Aside from the dairy thing, this has probably made the largest difference. A few months ago, I started getting breakouts again (practically waking up to find new zits every morning) and realized that my skin had been clearest last year when I was sleeping on my back. I haven't had a breakout since I started sleeping on my back again.

In the shower, I wash my hair with my head tilted back, so that no shampoo gets on my face. I use Pert Plus, which I really like, but I used to just put my head down to rinse out the shampoo and allow it to get all over my face. This was causing some irritation. In general, I aim to keep all substances (other than BP, cleanser and moisturizer, obviously) away from my face.

I always wash my hands before washing my face or applying BP or moisturizer. Your hands get pretty oily and dirty, even if you haven't been handling anything or doing anything. Sometimes my hands get dry so I have hand moisturizer for this also. It's sometimes easy to neglect doing this, but I try to resist the urge to be lazy.

I shave with lather from my cleanser rather than shaving cream/gel. This might just be a personal preference, but a lot of shaving creams/gels have moisturizers and other weird chemicals in them that are supposed to help your skin. No offense Gillette, but I'll only put my skin the hands of products made my companies that know what's what about skin care. To be honest, never really cut myself very often using shave gel, and I still don't using cleanser lather.

I always stay hydrated. This one is actually very important for me as well. A lot of people don't really give water the credit that it's due, but I always, always feel better and more energetic when I'm well hydrated. I can't tell you exactly why drinking water is good for your skin, but it has cut down my breakouts tremendously. I usually drink 2-3 large glasses of water with lunch and dinner in addition to filling my nalgene bottle a couple times per day. I use a Brita pitcher, because I can't stand the taste of tap water, but I can't even imagine how much I would have had to pay for bottled water. I don't really miss other drinks that much, as I now also avoid unhealthy choices such as sodas.

And that's about it. I hope this helps.

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do it.

just sleep on your back every night, and dont allow yourself to switch positions. there arent really that many ways to train yourself to do something other than do it.

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Any tips on training yourself to sleep on your back?

You don't have to sleep entirely on your back. If you sleep kind of on your side it's not that big of a deal, as long as your face isn't pressed into your pillow.

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