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BlueDove

Hormonal acne (31yo pregnant female)

As a teen, my skin was beautiful. Very few issues with acne... chronic blackheads on my nose and the occasional inflamed zit. Things began happening over the past few years and now I get miserable breakouts of huge, painful, cystic acne... mostly along and under my jawline and chin.

Things became much worse last year when I developed a bleeding problem (I had like a really heavy period for 6 weeks straight!) and had to discontinue my birth control. That was when I first found this site and tried Dan's Regimen.

So now I've nearly run out of my BP... but I don't think I want to order it again. My skin is sensitive and no matter how long I've used it, I just don't get "used" to the BP. I'm continually red and dry and flaky. My skin feels raw and painful... and the key to helping this issue seems to be jojoba oil, which I think I am allergic, or at least sensitive to.

So I really think I need another treatment option. I've noticed several people are using things like different varieties of AHA and BHA (salicylic acid), retinol, etc.

I'm currently pregnant, so I cannot use any prescription meds and I don't think I can use retinol either. I was just hoping to get some input from some one with acne issues like mine.

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Hey,

Are you applying a moisturiser after applying the BP gel?

Cetalphil Moisturiser is great for me, try giving it a go. It's odourless etc and goes on very easily.

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Yes, your options are very limited since you are pregnant. No antibiotics, spironolactone, birth control pills, or Retin-A. But something you can do is Isolaz. You can search it on this site (you will find a bunch of my posts, I'm sure!). And look at the website www.isolaz.com. This is a very safe laser and has helped my cystic acne, clearing me 95% now. I have extremely stubborn acne (I have taken multiple courses of accutane), and it worked for me so I am always encouraging people to at least try it if they can. And since you are pregnant, you have even better reason to try it. let me know if you have questions.

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Hey,

Are you applying a moisturiser after applying the BP gel?

Cetalphil Moisturiser is great for me, try giving it a go. It's odourless etc and goes on very easily.

I did in the beginning, yes. I used Dan's moisturizer... but it burned and stung so badly I had trouble going to sleep. Also it never seemed to absorb completely which led to transfer on my pillow to my eye area and terrible painful dryness around my eyes. So I had to switch to applying moisturizer before the BP.

I'm not just talking about my skin being dry, I mean it HURTS. Thanks for your input, but I really don't think the regimen is for me.

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BlueDove,

I feel your pain. I just posted something similar myself. I'm also pregnant. Most people seem to want us women that are preggers to stay away from BP and salicylic acid...though some doctors give it the ok. One thing I've pretty much heard everyone say to stay away from is retinol. Hope that helps SOME...I'm still struggling myself.

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Are you both trying the lowest BP gel of 2.5% (I'm not sure there is lower)? The lower the percentage, the less irritant it would be.

I'm not sure if this would be suitable, but instead of leaving on the BP gel all day/night, perhaps apply it, and then wash it off completely after a few hours? I am not sure whether this has any real benefit though, I would think it should have some benefit.

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BlueDove,

I feel your pain. I just posted something similar myself. I'm also pregnant. Most people seem to want us women that are preggers to stay away from BP and salicylic acid...though some doctors give it the ok. One thing I've pretty much heard everyone say to stay away from is retinol. Hope that helps SOME...I'm still struggling myself.

It really is hard isn't it! Here we are in a period of time when our skin is supposed to "glow" and now we have worse acne to deal with than normal... as if we didn't have enough issues with looking "pretty". :shy:

You know I really hadn't much considered that the BP could be bad for the baby... I've been using it sporadically since my skin eventually just gets so bad with the painful irritation that I have to give my skin breaks. I had also been using a 0.5% salicylic acid moisturizer. I knew it could be an issue as we are supposed to avoid aspirin... but I thought with it being topical and such a low percentage, it wouldn't be a problem.

I'm glad you mentioned it, I went and looked it up now: http://beauty.ivillage.com/0,,j1ph,00.html

What Pregnant Women Should Avoid:

* Avoid oral antibiotics often prescribed for acne. If you have a severe inflammation, ask your doctor about oral erythromycin, which is considered the safest for use during pregnancy. Usually, this medication is reserved for those who have very painful and inflamed lesions.

* Avoid daily use of benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid. "If you need to dry out a pimple now and then, dab on benzoyl peroxide," says Dr. Berson. "Just don't slather it all over your face every day. As for salicylic acid, no studies have been done." In both cases, she says, it's safe to use in a cleanser, which is rinsed off the skin.

* Avoid products that contain vitamin A and it's derivatives (retinals, including Retin-A, and retinoids). A vitamin-A derivative in Accutane, which is taken by mouth, has been shown to cause birth defects.

* Avoid alpha-hydroxy acids in creams you leave on your face.

* Avoid depilatories (cream hair removers) because the chemicals seep into the pores and loosen hair follicles. Shave while you're pregnant.

* Avoid self-tanners. They are probably safe, but require leaving the chemicals that dye skin cells on your skin for several hours. "Better safe than sorry," says Dr. Berson.

* Avoid hair dyes that cover your entire head as the dyes usually saturate the scalp and could be absorbed into your system. Theoretically, these are safer towards the end of your third trimester, but Dr. Berson cautions against hair dye because there are even safety questions about hair dye for non-pregnant women.

Looks like we are limited to AHA in cleanser only... I guess I will be combing the skin care aisle again today.

I think I may go ahead and try that Zeno electronic device. http://www.myzeno.com/ I've heard good things about it, and since it only applies localized heat, I don't think it could possibly be bad for baby... I'll update on my progress if I do.

And yes, marox, I was using Acne.org's BP which is a 2.5%. I just have very sensitive skin... I have trouble finding cleansers, moisturizers and sunscreens that don't irritate my skin, and that was before I was using BP.

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Blue Dove,

Zeno might help your cysts clear faster. But its really not for cysts, its more effective for papules. Did you look into Isolaz? That is for cysts! I'm only writing because it helped me and I care about other women who are going through this.

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I did do a quick search for isolaz... and as I suspected, it has to administered by dermatologist. My insurance doesn't cover dermatological treatment and I don't have the money to cover the expense. But I appreciate the suggestion, when my situation changes, I may look into it. :)

After double checking the definitions on what is a papule vs a pustule vs cyst, etc. I think I mainly suffer from pustule type acne. It generally starts as either a non inflamed whitehead or it develops as a hard, painful knot under the skin. Then it's a red, inflamed bump until it comes to a head. Generally I extract them at this point and then they scab over and either heal or come to a head again. But they certainly don't stick around for weeks on end and they are rarely more than 5mm across. (and when they are that big, they usually come to several heads)

So I do think Zeno can help me. We shall see, I went and bought one today at Walgreens. The standard unit with the rechargeable battery and 60 tips was on sale for $99. :dance:

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