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Lagomorph

Getting worse before it gets better

I've been using a few Paula's Choice products in an attempt to clear up my skin, which mostly suffers from blackheads on my nose, but have noticed that during the first week my skin has gotten visibly worse - blackheads on my nose are darker and more visible, red and dark spots are appearing on my nose, pimples are appearing on my cheeks and even my forehead (which has been clear for years.) One of the red marks on my nose turned into what looks almost like a flesh-coloured scab; I have no idea what that thing is and am hoping it disappears before it gains sentience and eats my face.

The odd thing is that my skin FEELS great. I've been using Paula's cleanser, followed by 2% BHA gel, and then applying Paula's sunscreen; at night I'm cleansing and then applying gel (I have moisturiser, but my skin has never felt dry, so I haven't used it.) With the new pimples emerging I've also been using spot treatment on them 2% BP. My skin actually feels better than before, it just looks worse.

I know a regimen takes at least a month to show effect, so should I stick with it? How long does it take to know if BHA is helping or hurting?

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wow, i use the BHA and I didnt have an IB or anything..my skin started to look better almost immediatley..stick with it at least a month.

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This is very early days for a new regimen .... but I will say with confidence, if the BHAs were hurting your skin, it wouldn't feel great. :)

For people with real blackheads, things often do have to look worse before they look better. Blackheads don't just melt away, unfortunately. They have to come out -- and there's only one way out. I think you are seeing the comedones that are clogging your pores gradually emerging from your skin.

Getting a facial with extractions can be very satisfying at this stage ... though I think I'd wait another week or two first!

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Yes, similar to my mother cleaning the house. It's going to look like a tornado touched down before it looks nice and clean... I've experienced with certain things that my skin would break out more before it got "better". I used the Paula's choice about a month ago before trying Proactive, and I must say that the Paula's choice helped my blackheads tremendously.

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IMO, this outbreak is a "good" sign so to speak because it shows that the pores are unplugging. I had a similar reaction when I started using it on my noce. I literally have never had a true pimple on my nose in my life. Within the first two weeks or so I had about 3-4 along with little whiteheads. Annoying but I took it as a sign that it's working, which it is.

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ZoeBee: I've been using them for about a week now.

Thanks for all the encouraging words! The redness seems to be fading this morning, though the pores and blackheads on/beside my nose are still looking dark and dangerous. I seem to have a few more dark, open pores than I did before, hopefully the BHA does something to at least clean those out. The acne outbreak on my forehead seems to be calming down though.

I'll be watching my face with interest over the next month, should be fun!

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For people with real blackheads, things often do have to look worse before they look better. Blackheads don't just melt away, unfortunately. They have to come out -- and there's only one way out. I think you are seeing the comedones that are clogging your pores gradually emerging from your skin.

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Hey, I'm experiencing the same purging you described with the 2% BHA. Yet again, I am still new to the BHA/retinol regimen so I expected this to happen. And so far, my skin seems to be clearing, very slowly but at least it's not getting worse than it is now. I'm definitely going to stick with this until the 3 month mark because that's usually how long it takes for BHA/retinol to show good results. I think you should stick with this too. Yeah, it sucks that our skin is getting worse but you'll never know if this is the "cure" for you if you don't stick it out.

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When I started using BHAs, I had already been using Green Cream for a year ... so my pores were already clear and I didn't really see much in the way of purging.

I think peridottie's advice is spot on, though. Once you decide on a regimen, you need to stick to it for 12 weeks ... UNLESS you start experiencing severe irritation. If that ever happens, you immediately stop using the products and re-assess the situation.

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You're right, peridottie; if I stopped now I'd always be wondering whether new improvement had been just around the corner.

A quick question: I have a lot of pores on my nose now that look like varyingly deep pinpricks, with dark skin/oil inside. From a distance or angle they look like blackheads, but when the light shines on them you can see they're indentations. Is there anything I can add to this cleanser/BHA reigmen to make them less noticeable,or will this regimen help them by itself?

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You're right, peridottie; if I stopped now I'd always be wondering whether new improvement had been just around the corner.

A quick question: I have a lot of pores on my nose now that look like varyingly deep pinpricks, with dark skin/oil inside. From a distance or angle they look like blackheads, but when the light shines on them you can see they're indentations. Is there anything I can add to this cleanser/BHA reigmen to make them less noticeable,or will this regimen help them by itself?

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Reviving my old thread!

I've now gone through the entire bottle of 2% BHA gel, and I haven't removed a single blackhead. Applied both day and night regularly, but it just didn't seem to do anything except burn a little (which became less and less, to the point I could've been putting water on my nose and I wouldn't have known the difference.)

Considering this, can anyone recommend what step should I take next?

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Reviving my old thread!

I've now gone through the entire bottle of 2% BHA gel, and I haven't removed a single blackhead. Applied both day and night regularly, but it just didn't seem to do anything except burn a little (which became less and less, to the point I could've been putting water on my nose and I wouldn't have known the difference.)

Considering this, can anyone recommend what step should I take next?

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