Jump to content
Acne.org
Search In
Find results that contain...
Find results in...
severalwolves

Retin-A Micro Log W/pictures

Recommended Posts

Yes, I see the improvement too. BP isn't for everyone. Will today be the first day using the tea tree oil? You know, I had an allergic reaction to Bactrim. A day after taking it, my body broke out in hives. No, you make sense about peeling in a controlled manner. The peeling isn't significant enough to merit a full state of panic. I have used RAM before, and I didn't peel much after the first week. RAM didn't heal my ice pick scars, but it did reduce the redness and removed the irritation. That was all I was hoping for. I knew the scars would never heal completely.

I also have to say that I liked reading your log. It's a shame nobody has made a reply to give you some support.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nike:

i've been using the tea tree oil on and off for 4-5 days now. it hasn't caused any extra irritation (yet). i used it before i started RAM, and i like it best of the spot treatments i've experimented with (BP, SA, witch hazel).

that sounds like a terrifying bactrim experience! probs for the better though, i can't help but think that long-term strong antibiotics like this have to cause harm. i had a friend for whom bactrim cured a recurrent UTI...pretty heavy duty.

were you on any oral medications when you were prescribed RAM? and, related question: did you have an IB and how terrible/lasting was it?

thank you for the reply and nice words!! having an unpopular log is 100% okay. even just bare documentation of my face struggle is therapeutic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nike:

i've been using the tea tree oil on and off for 4-5 days now. it hasn't caused any extra irritation (yet). i used it before i started RAM, and i like it best of the spot treatments i've experimented with (BP, SA, witch hazel).

that sounds like a terrifying bactrim experience! probs for the better though, i can't help but think that long-term strong antibiotics like this have to cause harm. i had a friend for whom bactrim cured a recurrent UTI...pretty heavy duty.

were you on any oral medications when you were prescribed RAM? and, related question: did you have an IB and how terrible/lasting was it?

thank you for the reply and nice words!! having an unpopular log is 100% okay. even just bare documentation of my face struggle is therapeutic.

your face looks great and i enjoyed reading your log. i find it therapeutic as well to write about my progress. Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

confused..are you a guy or girl?? sorry for being rude :/ i think your a guy right? i didn't know guys could take birth control . anways, hope things work out for you :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

colormeclear:

thank you!

girlface:

last time i checked i was still a woman. just with really, really short (read: awesome) hair. no perceived rudeness; androgyny's a blast.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hey severalwolves!!

Just wanted to say good luck with your journey with retin-a!! and your face is getting much better i must say! :) I hope your IB isn't too severe as well again good luck and best wishes!

Dom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
were you on any oral medications when you were prescribed RAM? and, related question: did you have an IB and how terrible/lasting was it?

I was on Minocycline-RAM combo in September 2007. Cleared me up well. In three months I saw a dramatic improvement (until Mino became ineffective after the 7th month, but that's another story). I didn't experience an initial breakout, which surprised me, because other members have documented an IB within the first six weeks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Really hope that tea tree oil works out for you. No alcohol and cigarettes is very good! My father used to ask me "How can you expect to be clear skinned while using harmful substances?" The message was to strive for overall health.

I hate hyper-pigmentation with a passion. I still get those stubborn spots that take forever and a day to leave. Keep updating.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Honestly I reccomend Accutane. It's amazing. I'm on Day 36 and the results are astounding. You have cystic acne unfortunently, and terrible scarring. Topicals will do very little. If you had mild-moderate acne it would be great, but you honestly have a choice. You can continue living with acne and moderately improve your condition spending tons of dollars on hundreds of different topicals and whatnot, or you can give in and take accutane. As your skin improves im sure you will feel better about things. Sorry to be the harbringer of bad news but if you don't see a huge improvement with the Retin-A it could be Accutane or learning to cope.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sorry, I think you misunderstood me, I said the scars are 'terrible' on the one side of your face, I have no doubt the Retin-A is improving your acne. I did not mean to offend but I find people on these forums are sometimes just here to boost everyones ego.

I had acne similair to yours, not severe, but somehow moderate with cysts. I tried all these topicals, and they only help to a point. Basically they 'slow' down the production of your zits, but they will never truly stop the acne and the still constant flow of new zits prevents your face from truly healing. I believe topicals work on people without cysts, but cystic acne goes away one of two ways, Accutane, or waiting until it goes away naturally whenever that may be. You WILL continue to see improvement, but believe me, it will only improve so much. Strongly consider Accutane. It is not poison, these forums are simply a breeding ground for horror stories. If someone had 100% success on Accutane why would they be back here? They wouldn't be thinking about their skin at all, let alone coming to an acne website. For every "Accutane ruined my life" their is 1000 "Accutane had me completely clear forever in three months". I know tons of people who have been and are on Accutane, are clear, and the only side effect of this 'poison'

is they have to carry chapstick everywhere. Please consider it. It has gained a terrible stigma and even I was scared to take it, with little reason. I waited wayyyyy too long because of these 'horror stories' from some the people on this site. I wish I had taken it years ago. Please don't be offended, but there is a MUCH MUCH easier way. As easy as pop a pill, don't look in the mirror for the first month, call me back in May and thank me. Just one mans opinion though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I care! ;). Good stuff with the Dermatologist by the way. Hopefully this new regimen kills that hyperpigmentation!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
guys,

i've been reading this website's product descriptions and threads for nearly a year now. here's my story, and the log of what i hope to be some sort of resolution to my nagging acne...

until i was 19, i had perfect skin. flawless... minus the once-a-month hormone cheek-cyst that i would singe, cut off, prod, poke, etc. i never wore any sort of makeup, because i never had to. my teenage years were fantastic and i was pretty and painless and it's all because of ORTHO EVRA. i went on that BC patch when i was 15, just at the onset of puberty, and i went off it when i came to college (around october of 2006). why? because i smoke too many cigarettes. yes. that's right. my logic was: why protect myself from babies when i can keep smoking these disgusting, money-burning sticks (see-- bc and cigarettes aren't supposed to mix well, over 15 cigarettes a day and you put yourself at risk for strokes and heart problems etc. i smoke(d) a pack/pack-and-a-half).

when i went off the ortho evra i had no idea what would end up happening. in my younger, more innocent, clear-skin days, i never pieced together the hormonal puzzle. i never had to, because when you're blissfully clear you don't obsess over your skin-- you just take it for granted.

4 months after my last month of ortho evra, i started getting some intense nose blackheads. 6 months later, i noticed an increase in uh... peachfuzz. that is, my whole face was now a little fuzzy, actually a lot fuzzy. the hair was/is very very thin and nearly invisible unless i catch the light a certain way.

7 months later, in may of 2007, i got my first legitimate cyst. it was under my skin and painful, it surfaced slowly, it towered red and terrible over my face until september when it resolved. in the fall of 2007, i had a few bouts of cyst-clusters on my cheeks. they'd last forever, i.e. at least 3 weeks at a time. back then i refused to wear makeup. so i pretended like they didn't exist in public and as soon as i got home i'd slather on some BP. skin care was 100% new to me, because when i was a teenager i barely washed my face, and when i did i'd do it with HAND SOAP. i never broke out. i never used toners or masks or spot-treatments. the cysts sent me on a wild goose chase of OTC products. certain washes would work for a while, but i never got a good routine down.

early 2008 is when everything got really, really bad. i noticed in the rearview mirror one day an atrocious amount of whiteheads. tiny little white bumps all over. the worst were framing my chin and clouding up my cheeks. they were terrible. i started crying to my boyfriend "i guess i need proactive what is wrong with me." i never did proactive, instead, i went on a furious popping campaign. this lead to inflammatory zits like i had never encountered before, and scarring. my skin scars. even when i do nothing to the zit, my skin scars.

around march of 2008 i began seeing an aesthetician at a nearby spa. she asked about birth control, told me her story, and said that if i went back on i'd probably clear up. at this point i was very, very stubborn about taking medicines of any sort. i barely let myself take advil when i had headaches. i wanted to keep my body pure, so i decided to try to work at my face from the outside, in-- with way-too expensive spa products. i was on the BIOELEMENTS acne-prone skin system. it helped, for a few months, and then my skin got pissed off and started rebelling against it. whiteheads prevailed, scars uglied up my cheeks, and the summer of 2008 was full of painful under-the-skin cystic action.

early august i broke down and saw a derm. he put me on minocycline, BP wash, and a clindamycin topical. i was taking pills, and i hated myself for it, because, as i said above, i really dislike putting anything foreign/impure/man-made into my body. but i'm vain, and my face hurt so bad that i figured i'd give it a shot. mino gave me terrible mood swings. i'm manic depressive, and for some reason it exacerbated my condition. about 3 hours after taking a pill, my mood would drop, i would start crying, i would start thinking really terrible thoughts, yell at people, and so on. my way of dealing with this was to lock myself in my room for a few hours and take a nap. i was gonna have clear skin, dammit!!!

mino did nothing. it may have actually made things worse. mid-september i went in for a re-check and he bumped me up to bactrim. one horse pill, twice a day. it seemed to resolve some things initially, but i lost faith when i developed a weird arching line of interconnected cysts right beside my nasal-labial fold. these guys popped up in october, and haven't really resolved since. they are the bane of my existence. the line of cystic material travels from just outside my nostril, arches outward slightly, and ends at the same latitude as the corner of my mouth. at times it swells and feels watery, i can push around the material inside. i've had it injected twice, and the steroid serves only to render me looking like a burn-victim for two days and then the suckers flare back up. (side note: their now hard-scar status is the result of epsom salt soaks. 3 or 4 or as many times a day as i could, i used near-boiling water and way too much epsom salt and nearly scalded my face. once the biggest area started draining, the inflammation went down remarkably. these are nowhere near perfect, but they are no longer painful and somewhat concealable)

my derm used these cysts as evidence that i needed to go on accutane. i said no. vehemently. i don't have a car, i don't have the time, i drink, and i'm manic depressive. accutane may "work" for me, i'm sure it would, but it won't work for me. i'm terrified of it. if mino made me want to kill myself, surely accutane would be a terrible idea.

instead of accutane i went on YAZ, at the recommendation of my ob/gyn. supposedly it helps acne. i started it in november, just over 3 months ago, and all the information i've read about its effects on skin says it takes at least 3 months to show signs of progress. so far, i've noticed two side effects, neither of which i'm particularly upset about: bigger (much bigger) boobs and less peachfuzz. because of YAZ's antiandrogenic properties, and my combined onset of hair+cheek acne, i figure it will end up helping my skin...

in january i got anxious and went to a different derm. she suggested accutane, and i presented my case. i begged for retin-a. i've heard good things, and i've heard terrible things, but in my unprofessional opinion it makes sense to me. see, my cysts and whiteheads have to be due to slow sloughing off of skin. clogged pores. so, if retin-a speeds up the sloughing off process, then my pores won't have time to clog, right??? that's my logic. also i'd like some relief from these scars. the derm basically said "good luck" and handed me my prescription sheet: same bactrim routine, retin-a micro .04%, and neobenz 5.5%

january 22nd was my start date.

here is my skin regime right now:

---morning---

bactrim and a woman's multivitamin with breakfast

wash with cetaphil sensitive skin cleanser

apply pea-sized amount of neobenz to face

(wait half hour)

slather on cetaphil daily advance ultra-hydrating lotion

yaz at noon

reapply lotion as necessary

---night---

wash with cetaphil sensitive skin cleanser sometime between 10 and midnight

(wait at LEAST a half hour)

apply pea-sized amount (two pumps) of retin-a micro to face

i did not ease into the retin-a micro because 1. my doctor didn't tell me to and 2. it doesn't seem to bother my skin as much as some people on the board have experienced.

now, i'm on DAY 16 and this is what is going on:

no peeling. i've encountered no peeling whatsoever. i've had two new nodules since i started retin-a, but no new cysts popping up. i'm not sure at this point what that is attributable to-- the yaz, the bactrim, or the retin-a micro...

the past two days my skin has been a bit flushed. i feel as though i have a very slight, almost imperceptible sunburn. as such, i have been applying a bit more moisturizer than usual.

i'm terrified of the IB, but i've walked around with a monstrous throbbing nasal-labial cyst parade for weeks at a time, so whatever. i've spent more money on my face in the past year than is reasonable. my thoughts are that MAYBE if i'm SUPER LUCKY, the IB won't be soooooo terrible for me.... because i'm taking an antibiotic, and yaz, and i've got this neobenz stuff. we'll see!

long post, all apologies, but thank god for this website.

thank you to all the the other logs which have provided hope. it's scary reading everyone's days 30 through 60 or sometimes longer, but a lot of you seem to be doing very well. good luck!!

now, pictures. i look all greased-up because of the lotion i just put on.

here's my left side, ravaged my hyperpigmentation, two dying zits, but nothing active atm:

and my right side, with the remnants of the aforementioned cyst parade:

Wow, you can definitely see an improvement! Good luck and keep it up!! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
i really dislike putting anything foreign/impure/man-made into my body.

Hi, I have to agree with CoreyDB about the accutane. I used it when I was in my late teens, for about 6 months, and it changed my life--I never had inflammatory acne ever again. Now, ten years later, I'm on day 10 or 12 of a 0.05% Retin-A cream regimen, because, unfortunately, the accutane did nothing for my clogged pores.

The reason I bring this up is that I think you have an irrational fear of accutane. You say that you dislike putting impure things into your body, yet you admit to smoking heavily, which is probably the worst, most impure thing you could do your body. I am definitely not judging you (I am a smoker, too)--but I think you're letting an illogical point of view keep you from doing something that could really help you.

These are just my two cents. I see you haven't posted for a while, so I hope that this means you've found something that works for you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Personalized Advice Quiz - All of Acne.org in just a few minutes

×