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HelloWorld12

To those struggling with differin

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I am a first time poster but LONG time reader as I have struggled to find any sort of regimen that has worked. I did the BP thing twice a day with gentle cleanser/moisturizer for two years and my face always had at least 3-4 pimples on it at a given time.

I decided to give the derm a try and they gave me differin .1 cream with duac/doxycycline. This worked right away actually and I was clear as anything for about two weeks. Then I had a terrible breakout that seemed to last 6+ months (off and on).

On one of my follow up appointments the derm gave me differen .3 gel. I used this for a while but it didnt really do anything(tried for about 3-4 months), so I got off the differin completely for 3 months and went back to the old bp twice per day regimen. Of course, my face was in the same state it was before ever going to the derm in the first place so I went back to the drawing board.

So what did I do? Well, I still had a bunch of refills left on the differin so I decided to get a new tube and start applying the stuff TWICE per day while using aveeno skin brightening moisturizer(discontinued unfortunately but I had a leftover bottle). I also started using panoxyl 10% wash at night as well because I don't think my face responds to gentle cleansers even though I have sensitive skin. But nonetheless, My face has cleared DRAMATICALLY. I mean red spots, brown spots, scars, acne...all fading at a RAPID pace. I still get a pimple every week but they are TINY ones that go away in 1 or 2 days. I have been on this regimen for around two months. I did not see results until around week 3, but every day I wake up my face is a little more clear. Before this regimen I had over 15 pimples spread all over my face. I now have ONE PIMPLE that hasnt even surfaced yet. I now actually wake up in the morning expecting NOT to have a pimple and am surprised to actually get one when I do.

I am posting because I keep seeing threads about Differin not working so I figured this may be a good thing to try for some.

My regimen is as follows:

Morning:

Wash with something :).

I have not found a good morning cleanser yet so I am doing some trial and error with certain products. I have tried Cetaphil, Dans, and a clearasil SA cleanser. I feel I get the least pimples with the SA cleanser but since I am using differin twice a day I feel it may be a bit much. The hunt continues...

Apply differin and wait 10 minutes

Apply BP to spot treat ONLY (I do not slather it all over my face!, this is key)

Use Aveeno skin brightening moisturizer (Only moisturizer EVER to not break me out)

Night:

Wash with 10% BP wash

Apply differin (its actually a little painful for 10 minutes because the skin is so TIGHT from the 10% wash)

Spot treat with BP again

Use Aveeno (Ahhh feels good )

My main goal is to get off BP completely so I am slowly phasing it out. I used to use it twice a day slathering it all over. Now I only spot treat with it and wash with it once per day. Eventually I am going to remove the spot treating and only wash with it. Then hopefully I will be off it completely once I phase out the wash. I am still searching for a good A.M cleanser that doesn't break me out so if you have any suggestions let me know. I hope this post was helpful in some way.

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That's great news that you've found something that works for you. From what you say, it doesn't sound like you're experiencing any noticeable irritation/redness/flakiness either.

Keep us updated on how things go ~ !

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The idea of Differin application night and day is interesting because I've been considering it myself for awhile now. I figure I should probably be medicating during the day instead of using Cetaphil cream alone, and I've never had a problem with irritation while using Differin. However, I've been told [by my dermatologist] that sunlight (UV) deactivates adapalene, but I suppose it depends on your exposure. I was wondering: how much sun do you get on the average day?

Like you, I started on 0.1% and moved to 0.3% with moderate success. It seems to help with inflammation more than anything else and prevents a decent number of lesions, although my breakouts are usually too strong to stop when they come on. Recently (about a week ago), my doctor put me on a stronger BP wash (Zoderm 5.75% BP in a 10% urea vehicle) which my skin has responded fairly well to. Apparently, the urea is supposed to help the BP penetrate significantly deeper than the typical wash (Brevoxyl, OTC 10%, etc.). I've read and experienced that BP and Differin work well in conjunction, so I think I'll probably wait to add a daytime application of Differin and see what the Zoderm can really do.

After a month or so, I may have to try the Differin during the day. I'm very curious about it, and besides the cost, I don't see how it could hurt.

By the way, are you applying the 0.3% twice a day? 0.1%? 0.1% and 0.3%? Thanks for the input!

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I apply the .3 every day but my skin is very used to differin so thats why I can use the strong stuff. I am not out in the sun during the day a lot because I work 9-5 and by the time I get home its already 7. Even if I did go outside, the moisturizer I use has SPF in it.

About the flakes...I do flake before I apply the moisturizer but once I apply it they go away.

I am still searching for a good morning cleanser that doesnt break me out. I used the neutrogena rapid clear today and I already have a large zit forming on my chin :(. Anyone know a good SA cleanser that doesnt dry you out too much or break you out?

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I apply the .3 every day but my skin is very used to differin so thats why I can use the strong stuff. I am not out in the sun during the day a lot because I work 9-5 and by the time I get home its already 7. Even if I did go outside, the moisturizer I use has SPF in it.

About the flakes...I do flake before I apply the moisturizer but once I apply it they go away.

I am still searching for a good morning cleanser that doesnt break me out. I used the neutrogena rapid clear today and I already have a large zit forming on my chin :(. Anyone know a good SA cleanser that doesnt dry you out too much or break you out?

My skin is also used to Differin. However, it has never reacted well to any kind of sunblock so I avoid the sun as much as I can. What I'm concerned about is how quickly adapalene degrades with even slight UV exposure. Although I also spend most of the day during the work week indoors, it's not easy to get no sun at all. You're obviously having success with it, but the SPF moisturizer you use is not an option for me, and hence that control is lost.

My doctor told me that when used together or at the same time, BP and SA essentially cancel each other out. If you're still using a BP topical or wash, have you considered the idea that it may not be something else in the SA wash you're using, but the SA itself that is causing you to have problems? Additionally, in my experience, SA was never as affective as BP, in any form (wash or topical).

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I only wash with BP at night. In the morning I have either been using an SA wash or a gentle cleanser. I would love to use the BP wash twice a day but that is just too much for my skin to handle. I thought I read somewhere that SA didnt cancel BP out, it was just too irritating to use both together so its not recommended. Nonetheless, the reason I wanted a good SA wash is because the clearest my face was is when I used the SA wash for a couple weeks. The problem was that it was too drying for my face with the differin twice/day. When I used cetaphil, the drying went away but I wasnt AS clear (although still pretty clear).

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I am updating this thread because my success has been amazing...

Ok so I originally posted this September 23rd...I was on the regimen for about a month. It is now November, and I don't have one pimple on my face. NOT ONE.

I changed up the routine a bit...my goal was to get off BP completely and I have.

What I did was, I washed with BP still for about 2-3 weeks but I got off applying it to my face afterwards. Now I have gone off the BP wash and gone on to cetaphil...I take a doxycycline every few days just incase of an initial break out. It has been over a week of no BP and I am still clear. I also changed to the cetaphil fragrance free moisturizer. It has made my skin so much better. The aveeno just wasnt moisturizing enough for the winter.

New routine is as follows:

Morning/Night

Wash with Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser

Apply differin .3

Apply Cetaphil Moisturizer

Every 2 or 3 days, take a doxycycline pill just to avoid any breakout from the routine change.

Guys, I have been on differin for over a year now...I did not see any changes until I used it twice a day. Please try this routine out before giving up on it. I truly believe it is the best medicine ever created for acne.

I would do this to start the routine...make sure you get a GOOD moisturizer because it will dry your face out like crazy.

For ONE month do as follows:

Morning:

Wash with a gentle cleanser

Apply Differin

Apply BP

Apply Moisturizer

Night:

Wash with a BP cleanser

Apply Differin

Apply BP

Apply Moisturizer

After the one month is up, I would do the following for 2 weeks:

Morning:

Wash with a gentle cleanser

Apply Differin

Spot treat with BP

Apply Moisturizer

Night:

Wash with a BP cleanser

Apply Differin

Spot treat with BP

Apply Moisturizer

After 1.5 months, I would do the following for 2 more weeks:

Morning:

Wash with a gentle cleanser

Apply Differin

Spot treat with BP

Apply Moisturizer

Night:

Wash with a gentle cleanser

Apply Differin

Spot treat with BP

Apply Moisturizer

Eventually, when comfortable, drop BP completely from the regimen.

This has worked wonders for my skin and my life has seriously completely changed. I only have minor scarring and redness, but who cares? Its rare to have perfect skin anyway and mild redness has no effect on my confidence. Bulging pimples do however...

TRY THIS BEFORE GIVING UP ON DIFFERIN!

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differin RUINED my skin. I'm still using it though, it's been a bit over a month. Before using differin my skin wasnt that bad at all but now it's so red, spread out and just bad. The only reason I continue to use it is because I'm hoping it'll clear me up for the long run and I really don't want to think that I started some thing, went through the damaging phase and just gave up.

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differin RUINED my skin. I'm still using it though, it's been a bit over a month. Before using differin my skin wasnt that bad at all but now it's so red, spread out and just bad. The only reason I continue to use it is because I'm hoping it'll clear me up for the long run and I really don't want to think that I started some thing, went through the damaging phase and just gave up.

One month isn't enough! Try for at least four months. There are some posts around about how retinoids work, please do find them and read them; it will give you an understanding of why the initial breakout happens and a reminder to stick it out.

If your derm doesn't disapprove of the use of a BP wash, it might actually help calm down your initial breakout. I don't remember when one is supposed to apply moisturizer when using differin, but you might consider using a moisturizer as well to help tone down the redness.

On your days off you might consider applying a thin film of vaseline petrolatum jelly or aquaphor to help soothe your skin. If you apply it lightly enough you might be able to get by with using it during the day when going to work or school.

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Sorry i meant i been using it for over 2 months. Yeah I continue to use it, and will atleast til new years but it's REALLY disappointing that my treatments have made my skin worse then ever before. Like Ive said before, I hope this is because it's bringing everything up that mighta come up in the future.

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this is interesting... i will try this twice a day thing out but i hope my skin doesn't get messed up because im out in the sun for at least 1 hour a day but i got a 15SPF moisterizer from PROACTIV

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Give it a try...it cant hurt. Just make sure you use that SPF :)

I did not even wash my face last night and I woke up with no breakout. I cant remember the last time that happened.

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HW12, it's great to hear your success story and thaks for sharing with us.

Question: what kind of BP wash do you use? Prescription or OTC?

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I used Benprox...it is prescription 5% with moisturizer in it...this did not dry me out. I used Panoxyl too but this dried me out a lot...but still was just as effective.

Right now I have no BP in my regimen...I am trying to never use it again. Even if I get a new pimple, I do not spot treat. I think the key is eventually getting off BP so you are not dependent on it.

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didn;'t it say somewhere that if u put on differin and too much sunlight gets on it face, it will make ur face darker or make red marks dark brown color??

because my face is 95 percent clear of pimples now, i just need to get rid of the brown/red marks that it left behind

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It helped raise my indented scars & red scars. They are not perfect yet, but you can see them smoothing out very well. Differin has worked very well for me along with Benzaclin (I hope I don't jinx myself) & I've been on it for 3 mos. Like I always say, it just depends for each person. Retin-a did nothing for me & i was on it for 2 mos.

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AllSmiles, retin-a did nothing for you? I'm currently using differin 0.3 but I don't hear nearly as many good things about it as retin-a...I kinda don't know if I should give it a chance or just quit and start using retin-a. You gave me hope though!

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AllSmiles, retin-a did nothing for you? I'm currently using differin 0.3 but I don't hear nearly as many good things about it as retin-a...I kinda don't know if I should give it a chance or just quit and start using retin-a. You gave me hope though!

FYI, when I started using differin for my mild acne it helped alot, still had to be strict with a lot of other things though (food/sports). I started using the 2Xday method (without the moistursizer! ran outt!) and I am seeing some good results (3rd day) and letting loose a bit with my diet. I stole the twice a day apply differen idea from Dan's twice a day BP regiem, then came across this similar thread. So far some good results, I can't wait to see the results in a week.

2 biggest cautions when jumping to twice a day Differin us

sensitive skin people- BE VERY CAREFUL with the new session amount. I can't believe how applying a little too much and redden or flake my skin.

2) Moisturize Moisturize.

Again, my results are looking pretty good and I've not been getting a good sleep and eating some unhealthy things these days (triggers for my acne on my old regime), pretty exciting

Edited by PoorDan
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