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How I cleared up my 7 years of moderate/severe acne in 8 months.

This is going to be long, but I hope at least ONE person reads it :)

It took a lot out of me. Waking up every day for so many years and looking in the mirror at such a horrible acne-ridden face was disheartening. Going to school, my peers weren't exactly kind to me with such an obvious skin condition, even though some of them suffered from mild acne themselves. I suppose mine was more severe than others, and to be honest, I don't think I ever saw someone who had it worse than me in any of my classes. When I graduated from high school, my face wasn't getting any clearer. In fact, it was getting worse. Not only was it spreading on my face (not just the "T" zone, where I usually got it, but now on the cheeks and jaw-line, and even some on the neck) but it was also slowly progressing to my back, where new acne was the most painful. After my first year of college, I decided that enough was enough. For years I had tried EVERYTHING under the sun to clear up my face. I spent thousands of dollars over the years trying to find something that would work, and it seemed nothing would. I went to several dermatologists, but they all recommended the same pills and topical treatments, which did nothing for me except made my skin dry and nasty. I tried specialty stores, local stores, and other places, searching for something that would help, but nothing worked. I never tried ProActiv because I didn't want to bother, and my best friend used it for years, and did nothing for him.

Now, I'm mainly of Italian descent, so my skin (especially the skin on my face) and hair is very greasy/oily. I understand that that is where most of my problems come from with my acne troubles. I needed to control the oil on my face, and to do that, I needed several things. I looked into Accutane, but unfortunately for me, I've been diagnosed with "depression" and so I was unable to use it. I thought I was never going to get rid of the horrible redness and pimpleness that was my face. However, starting about a year or two ago, I met a girl who I really liked (and am with now) and it was because of this that started my search for the right treatments to fix my face.

It started out simple. I washed my face in the morning the usual way, with a very gentle soap. After washing my face, I used rubbing alcohol (I've read several bad things about it, but I've never had a problem with it) on existing spots, but ONLY on existing spots. I then used witch-hazel and waited until that dried to then use dermabrasion pads. That was it. I did that for about a year and it didn't seem to help, though existing pimples did go away faster, the red marks left behind were bad, and it didn't help prevent anything.

So, back in February, I started looking up different vitamins and natural aids for acne prevention and treatment. I was extremely skeptical about it all because of what Accutane is (basically an overdose of vitamin A) and what the vitamins might do to my system. I mean, all I really wanted to do was to clear up my face, I didn't want anything bad to happen in the process though. So, I looked and I looked and eventually I decided to give in to the vitamins.

I started my major treatment in May. I washed my face twice a day (morning and night) and did the same routine as stated earlier (Alcohol, witch-hazel and dermabrasion pads), but then I added coritsone cream, a vitamin E oil, and a scar treatment called PerferOn (I actually felt embarrassed to buy it, because of the commercials and its reputation...as it seemed like a gimmick, but I swear to you, this stuff actually helps, A LOT...at least for me, or for people with small scars). Then, at night, I applied a zinc oxide "cream" that you can buy at CVS to existing acne. You can only do this at night though (or when there aren't people around the house) since it doesn't rub in and doesn't wash off easily either. Be aware, you should wear old clothes when using it too, it rubs off easily.

During the day, I took four vitamin E pills that were 400 IUs each. That may seem like a lot, but I had really bad redness, and my overall skin was bad, but it helped a lot. Along with that, I took B5 (yes, I know, there's a lot of topics about this stuff out there already). I only took about 5 grams of it, though, even though they recommend 10 grams. I didn't want to have THAT much of an overdose, because even 1 gram is a major OD. I also took 1000mg's of Biotin, once a day...twice if I felt like it.

I did this every day, and still am doing it today, though my acne is pretty much completely gone. I've downsized my B5 intake to only 1 gram a day, and so far no major breakouts have happened. Obviously the dosage is different for everyone, but I strongly recommend it. Occasionally (during exam weeks or something) I'll get a breakout on my chin, but that's just nerves.

I watch what I eat a lot now. I look for foods that are high in protein, since that can also help, and sometimes foods that are high in fat, since that can help with the absorption of vitamin E (plus, I'm really thin, so I could use it...). I try to stay away from junk food as best I can (though everyone indulges a little every now and then) and I started mixing fruit-drinks, so of course the healthy foods probably helped out a lot with my acne as well.

So in sum, my regimen consists/consisted of: Rubbing alcohol on existing spots ONLY, witch-hazel, dermabrasion pads, cortisone cream, vitamin E oil, PreferOn (three times a day), 5 grams (now 1 gram) of vitamin B5, vitamin E pills (4, 400IU's), 1000mgs of biotin and zinc oxide cream at night.

This combination helped me A LOT, and after 7 years of acne, I'm pretty much acne-free. I never thought I'd have a clear face, nor one that was even SLIGHTLY clear, but this helped a lot. I kept to it, and in the beginning, it didn't look like it was going to help, but I kept going, and it actually did. I encourage people to try this at least for 2 or 3 months and see how it works. It helped me a lot...

Oh, and, I also bought these oil-absorption pads from CVS, and I carry them around during the day to wipe my face, and clear it of the excess oil. So that helps as well.

Good luck! Sorry this is so long.

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