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DesertRat

DesertRat's Regimen w/Shaving Tips

Hello,

I'm new here but not new to acne. I'm a male and let's just say I'm about 40 years old. My acne is basically genetic. My father had bad acne and I've inherited it from him. Right now I have moderate to moderately severe acne. I have normal/oily and sensitive skin.

Here's my history:

1. Had normal teenage acne growing up, then in my early 20's developed cystic acne.

2. I was on every antibiotic in the book for about 3 years until I finally went on Accutane.

3. Had to stop my first course early due to elevated levels of alkaline phosphatase liver enzymes.

4. Went on a full course of Accutane about a year later, again with elevated enzymes, but completed full course.

5. My acne was clear for about a year and then I started breaking out again. Since then I've been on additional anti-biotics and BP.

I'm currently on Duac topical gel and just started using Retin-A .05% 2 weeks ago. My dermatologist has suggested that I go on another course of Accutane, and I may do that, but I'm resistant due to the fact that it elevates my liver enzymes. Other than that, I had the normal side affects of the drug.

In the course of trying to fight my acne I have tried just about every product ever made and spent lots of money. Face washes, shaving creams, scrubs, AHA, BHA, toners, moisturizers. You name it, I've probably used it. One thing I tried about a year ago was the Dr. Dubrow regimen from his book "The Acne Cure". Great book and I learned a lot from reading it but I found that the regimen was too harsh for my skin. After trying just about everything and talking to my doctor, I decided to start over and focus on a multi-faceted approach. Topicals, diet, exercise and, most importantly for me, my shaving regimen. More on that later.

For my topical face regimen, I've gone back to KISS. I think using too many products was affecting my skin negatively.

Here's my current face regimen:

Morning (Non-shave)

1. Purpose Gentle Face Cleanser

2. Duac Gel (5% BP, 1%clindamycin)

3. Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer (SPF30) or 3/10/2007 Added Desert Essense Organic Jojoba oil

Evening

1. Purpose Gentle Face Cleanser

2. Desert Essense Organic Jojoba Oil to regimen

3. Retin A .05%

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Here's my shaving routing and tips!

I shave every other day. My biggest problem with shaving is that because I have a coarse, thick beard that grows in many directions, I'm prone to ingrown hairs and razor bumps. The problem with this is that when I get them, because I over produce Sebum, the ingrown hair or razor bump almost always turns into a cyst. To that end, I've searched for the perfect way to shave based on these conditions. Yes, I'm still searching!

I've found some great sites on the proper way to shave. When I say shave, I'm talking about wet shaving. One of my favorite sites is www.shavemyface.com and also www.youtube.com/shavetutor. There's a user on youtube and SMF that has created some great videos of wetshaving.

Here are some tips that have helped me YMMV:

1. Shower before you shave

2. Don't towel dry your face

3. Apply shave cream or gel (no foams!!). Use a shave brush if you can with a good quality cream.

4. Shave with a single blade or double blade razor only. If you use a double blade, use the Gillette Good News disposable razor and then throw it out!! Also, the Bic Sensitive single blade is good as well. Use a disposable razor only once!!! Your razor should be sharp! You can also use an old fashioned safety razor which has a single blade. You have to focus on your technique with this razor as you can cut yourself. But these remain sharp longer and will help with ingrowns.

5. Shave with the grain only

6. If you use an aftershave, use a high quality one that does not contain alcohol. I actually use Duac as my aftershave!!

Here's my current shave regimen:

Morning

1. Shower

2. Purpose Gentle Face Cleanser

3. Menscience Face Scrub (AHA/BHA)

4. Shave w/ Smart Shave shaving cream

5. Duac topical gel

6. Neutrogena Healthy Defense Daily Moisturizer (SPF30)

Evening

1. Purpose Gentle Face Cleanser

2. Retin A .05%

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Here's my supplemental diet regimen:

Morning:

2 Nature’s Way Alive Multivitamin w/o Iron

2 Udo’s Choice (920mg Omega 3, 460mg Omega 6, 400mg Omega 9)

1 Zinc (30mg)

Afternoon:

1 Tbsp of Miracle Greens (Superfood)

2 teaspoons of Carlson’s lab Fish Oil (1600mg EPA, 1000mg DHA)

Evening:

1 Nature’s Way Alive Multivitamin w/o Iron

2 Udo’s Choice (920mg Omega 3, 460mg Omega 6, 400mg Omega 9)

1 R-ALA 100mg

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I should add, as if my post isn't long enough already, my Retin-A results so far:

2/15/2007 Started Tretinoin .05% cream, once every day at night.

2 weeks of use and I have some dryness and flaking but no IB yet. Actually, since I started my new KISS regimen, I've had no new breakouts. The only problem I still have is the occasional ingrown hair. I attack those with PFB Vanish and they go away quickly. I wonder if the Tretinoin cream is helping those ingrowns as well. Hmmmm..... :think:

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3rd week on Retin-A w/Duac 5%

Again, some dryness and flakiness but not too bad. No new breakouts.

Some ingrown hairs from shaving but they aren’t lasting long. 3 weeks of using Good News double blade razor and throwing out after each shave. This seems to be having the most positive effect on acne/ingrown hairs in my shaving area. I'm going to keep up with this for 2 months and see if it's still effective. I usually shave with a single blade Merkur safety razor. Also, I added Smart Shave aftershave and use that first before I put on the Duac. I'm hoping that this will sooth the skin and help moisturize.

1 week with Carlson EPA/DHA Omega 3 fish oil (2 teaspoons/day). Haven't noticed and difference with this yet but it's only been a week.

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Great. Just finished my 3rd week on Retin-A and woke up this morning with a pimple on my forehead and 2 in my shaving area on my left cheek.

Is this the start of the dreaded IB? Any advice on how to minimize the IB while on Retin-A?

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I was about three weeks into Diacneal when the IB started. I've heard that antibiotics can help lessen its effects.

Cam >B)

Great. Just finished my 3rd week on Retin-A and woke up this morning with a pimple on my forehead and 2 in my shaving area on my left cheek.

Is this the start of the dreaded IB? Any advice on how to minimize the IB while on Retin-A?

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I was about three weeks into Diacneal when the IB started. I've heard that antibiotics can help lessen its effects.

Cam >B)

Great. Just finished my 3rd week on Retin-A and woke up this morning with a pimple on my forehead and 2 in my shaving area on my left cheek.

Is this the start of the dreaded IB? Any advice on how to minimize the IB while on Retin-A?

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Aww Accutane seems like it sucks , iam glad i didnt go on it but i dont get how people thing such pills will clear them up forever...

I hope your regimen will work for you =).

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Aww Accutane seems like it sucks , iam glad i didnt go on it but i dont get how people thing such pills will clear them up forever...

I hope your regimen will work for you =).

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Agreed. I never would have survived my teenage years without Accutane. It was a definite god-send for me.

Cam >B)

Aww Accutane seems like it sucks , iam glad i didnt go on it but i dont get how people thing such pills will clear them up forever...

I hope your regimen will work for you =).

Thanks!

I'm not sure what you are getting at when you are referring to Accutane???? It did cure me of my cystic acne which was a major problem. I'm also one of the tough cases and I'm still fighting moderate acne. That being said, 60% of the people that go on Accutane do not need further treatment. But, again, I'm not sure what your point is.

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1 month on Retin-A.

I'm not having any issues with using it. No redness or irritation. Just some general dryness and flakiness but I'm controlling that by exfoliating and moisturizing.

No new breakouts besides the ones I had several days ago.

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5 weeks on Retin-A.

No real changes that I can notice. Less dryness and flaking. I've been using Jojoba Oil at night for a week so I wonder if that's helping with the dryness.

No new breakouts. Some ingrown hairs from shaving that are taking their sweet time going away.

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6 weeks on Retin-A.

Not much of a noticeable change. I have one large zit in my shaving area that started out as an ingrown hair, then got nice and infected. Also, have a whopper on my forehead.

I'll see the derm in about 2 weeks but I can't tell if the Retin-A is helping at all.

Also, I'm using Jojoba Oil at night and I like it but haven't noticed any improvement in my skin.

Getting pretty discouraged at this point. I'm sure my derm will bring up Accutane again.

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Well, I'm just entering my 7th week and I broke out pretty bad this weekend. I can't tell if it's the IB or if I had a bad shave which has led to ingrown hairs and acne. Maybe a combination. Most of the acne is in my shaving area. Cheeks and chin area.

I hope this is just part of the IB and that it gets better soon!!

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7 weeks on Retin-A

Is this the dreaded IB??

I have some nasty cyst like pimples in my shaving area. Cheeks and bottom of my jaw. It probably didn't help matters that I picked at them. I know better but I couldn't stop myself!!

I also performed the Menscience detox regimen on Sunday. Basically, you use their scrub which contains AHA/BHA and then a post shave toner. I'm wondering if this led to the breakout.

Hopefully this will clear up pretty soon.

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Stopped using Duac BP gel on Friday because I was gone for the weekend and my face seems pretty dry these days. Also, my health insurance raised the copayment for the Duac.

We'll see what happens to my face after not using BP for a while! :pray:

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8 weeks on Retin-A

So far haven't seen any improvements or changes in my skin. I'm going to my derm in the next couple of weeks for a follow up.

Had a nasty breakout last week but it seems to be calming down now. I'm taking a chance by not using BP but I want to see if letting my face recover a little will help. It's been 1 week without BP.

Now I'm thinking about the dreaded Accutane again. My gut tells me not to do it but I'm sick of putting things on my face everyday that are harsh and drying (BP) and I don't want to go on anti-biotics long term again.

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Have you tried doing a liver flush to control your acne? 40 years old and still getting acne that is a sign your body might not be optimal internally. thanks for the shaving tips, they'll help.

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Thanks! No, I haven't tried a liver flush but, honestly, my acne is genetic so I don't think that it will work that well. I've concluded that I probably have a high level of testosterone and create an excess amount of sebum. I don't think that a liver flush will help with that. Do you think it might help?

Thanks again.

9 weeks on Retin-A

Horrible, horrible breakout on my left cheek. Lots of small white head type pimples. Probably around 10-12 only in the shaving area. Bad enough that I haven't shaved the last couple of days. I guess my 2 week experiment of not using Duac has failed. I went right back to it this morning so hopefully that area will clear up soon.

I'm hoping that this I'm still in the IB phase and that it's not a sign that I need to use BP all the time or I'll get acne.

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Thanks! No, I haven't tried a liver flush but, honestly, my acne is genetic so I don't think that it will work that well. I've concluded that I probably have a high level of testosterone and create an excess amount of sebum. I don't think that a liver flush will help with that. Do you think it might help?

Thanks again.

9 weeks on Retin-A

Horrible, horrible breakout on my left cheek. Lots of small white head type pimples. Probably around 10-12 only in the shaving area. Bad enough that I haven't shaved the last couple of days. I guess my 2 week experiment of not using Duac has failed. I went right back to it this morning so hopefully that area will clear up soon.

I'm hoping that this I'm still in the IB phase and that it's not a sign that I need to use BP all the time or I'll get acne.

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