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I have been battling acne for 30 years!! Yes, that's right I'm 48 years old and have been through it all. I have seen dermatologists in four different states and have been on every over-the-counter product, topical prescribed and oral acne medication known to medical science. I have even survived 5 courses of Accutane including a regimen of low-dose Accutane for a year. Yes, the Accutane cleared my skin while I was on it. My skin was blemish free. I didn't even need to moisturize because my skin is incredibly oily. I felt like crap, my eyes dryed out and have not recovered, but my skin was beautiful. The problem is about six months after stopping the Accutane therapy, my acne returned. I've also been on every type of antibiotic for acne and again, it stops working when you go off the medication.

Now after being off my last round of Accutane for almost a year, summer is here in Florida along with the heat and humidity and my skin is a nightmare. I am sick and tired of dermatologists who don't know what to do with me so I went back to what worked for me while living in California. At that time I saw a dermatologist by the name of James Fulton, M.D. He has a website by the name of acnebook.com While I was treated by Dr. Fulton my skin was clear and his regimen consisted of benzoyl peroxide and a a Vitamin A lotion (not prescription strength). The real key is the benzoyl peroxide. I encourage everyone to view the "Let's Talk Cosmetics" information he has posted on his site and/or read his book (see his website for more information) because many of the benzoyl peroxide lotions (prescription and over-the-counter) contain various chemicals that can make your acne worse. The ingredients listed on this site's lotion DO NOT contain any offending ingredients and I was shocked to see how inexpensive the gel was.

I'm going to try it and hope for the best. At this point there is nothing to lose and nothing really left.

Are there any other "old bags" like myself with acne out there? I'd be interested in finding out how you are surviving.

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Dr. Fulton's method seems a lot like Dan's Regimen. I've also been on Accutane and everything else under the sun. I was clear while I was on Accutane for a little while, but it came back. I'd pretty much given up, but I started on Dan's Regimen, and it's working wonders. You're right, Benzoyl Peroxide is the key. Dr. Fulton's method sounds very similar to Dan's BP Regimen...take a look at www.acne.org if you haven't already, and try his method. It's working better for me than anything else did! I was also extremely oily before, but the Regimen is keeping that under control too. smile.gif

Try Dan's method before Dr. Fultons...I'd been on Benzoyl Peroxide in the past with no great results, so I was skeptical about Dan's method at first. But if you follow it to the letter, doing it exactly like he outlines (except for the amount to use...I use a little less than he does), it may work for you. I couldn't blieve my eyes...because I *had* been on BP before and it didn't work...but his method really did work for me! It must have been the time I have to wait between the cleansing and BP or something, I don't know...that's the only difference I can see from what I was doing before with BP, when it didn't work. Oh, that and I used to use 10% BP instead of 2.5%. Use 2.5%...!!!

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Lisam... just curious how all these acne medications have affected your skin aging wise. I'm in my early 20's and worried that all these harsh medicines will make me wrinkle and age faster (because of all the dryness, chemicals, etc.)

Have you noticed that all these products have done a lot of harm? I do wear sunscreen everyday, but I have been on accutane (acne came back with a vengeance), proactive, differin gel, antibiotics, and more all before i was 20. Stupid dermatologists! Could you tell me how all the acne products have affected you throughout the years?

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I just turned 35 and I started with acne at like 32. I had cystic acne, came out of nowwhere. I had so many cortisone injections cause the few pimples I would get were freakin huge. I wouldn't want to leave the house nevermind date or go to work. Totally sucked. I went from having beautiful skin and body, and entered a nightmare. I want on Yasmin birth control pill and everything cleared up. I didn't really even think about it and when I went off the pill, two months later like 5 cycsts came on my face, my face was swollen. I ran to the dermatologist, cancelled my vegas trip, and sat home all weekend. I realized that it was going off the Yasmin birth control pill that brought it back with a vengence. The derm put me on antibiotics which helped me to not get more, but the few that were left on my face left scars. Horrible. So I went back on Yasmin and I also use Botchla's method with the clean and clear products and use Neutrogena on the spot BP cream but I don't really need it at all. The Yasmin works wonders for my skin. I am just scared to death to ever go off. Having nice skin is awesome and the expense of going to the derm (even with insurance) is a big pain in the you know what, nevermind always having to make an appointment and go during work and come back with my face loooking amess. Well that is my story! I just hope that maybe in a year or so, I will grow out of it and when I am ready to go off the pill this won't happen again? I can only hope.

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Dear lisam,

I too am 48 and been battling for over 30 yrs. About two years ago I tried an experiment on myself based on the idea that open pores were bad for you. My reasoning being that if your pores were big enough then soap could get down inside and wash the oil right out of the pore leaving an open pathway for bacteria. Now your body recognizes this threat and will attempt to plug the pore from the inside before bacteria can get in. Either way you've got a problem.

So my regimen was to wash with water only and use BP.

I think the experiment worked. My face is clear. My doubts lie in the fact that I also started using soy milk and drinking green tea at about the same time I started the experiment. Also there is the posibility I finally got too old for zits.

Anyway hang in there anythings possible.

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Thanks for everyone's reply and encouragement!! I ordered Dan's benzoyl peroxide, but am a little hesitant to moisturize. The reason is that my skin is so oily and many of the moisturizers have offending ingredients that can flare acne (at least in my case). When I use moisturizers, my skin feels like a greasy mess and I can feel the breakouts coming. I do like the idea of the lower strength benzoyl peroxide that Dan recommends because I have used the 10% and it really dries out the top layer of my skin.

As far as the question about the products aging my skin, I would say YES, YES AND YES!! I have been a triathlete, swimmer, runner all my life. I work out every day and love it. My body is in incredible shape and looks like a 20-year-olds, however, my face looks like I am about 60!! I have worn sunscreen on my face and body and haven't put my face in the sun or laid out since I was in my 20's (I'm 48). I don't lay out in the sun and am careful about the times I run and swim during the day. I feel the drying products might have done a number on my skin, but what's the alternative? If I don't use the benzoyl peroxide, I look horrible with all the acne lesions. Dr. Fulton's take on it is that the sun and genetics are what causes aging skin not lack of moisture. I don't know in my case. It could be the early years of baking in the sun in Southern California or the products. My biggest advice to the young people out there is stay out of the sun!! I have a 17-year old daughter (with beautiful, clear skin) and she never is outside without sunblock!!

I have been using Tazorac gel which is alot stronger than Retin-A, but all it does is peel my skin off. I'm going to use the benzoyl exclusively, but try the lower dose that Dan recommends. I won't try Accutane again because it only works while I am on it and yes, it definetly makes you have less energy. I can't take another course of it.

Again, thanks for the encouragement about Dan's regimen. I do think that Dr. Fulton's book has alot of good information about acne and the causes, etc. and I like the part about the offending ingredients in many cosmetics. I know my skin is especially sensitive to many of these cosmetics. By the way, I'm not promoting Dr. Fulton's products. They are expensive and if Dan's regimen works, it is much less expensive and much easier!!

Thanks!!!

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