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auburn416

Little tiny "seeds" under the skin

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Sometimes I get these tiny little seeds under my skin. If I leave them alone slowly they get bigger and bigger until it breaks out. About 80% of the time if I steam my face and squeeze gently all the gunk comes out and there is no breakout. But the other 20% it will just irritate it and will end up being a big pimple. Is there a better way to do this? Maybe a esthetician?

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What about the Clarisonic Skin Care brush? www.clarisonic.com

This brushes off dead skin cells and gets deep into your pores, perhaps it would help

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I'll copy/paste a helpful post from a former moderator:

UPDATE: This thread kind of wandered off course over time, so I've decided to close it. I have also rewritten this initial post to update and revise it based on current information and experience. If you have questions about the products I recommend, please feel free to PM me.

For those of you who don't know me: I have had acne since I was 12 or so, and I'm now in my mid-40s. Information I came across on this board has enabled me to clear up my mild/moderate acne to the point where no one ever realizes I have acne at all. And after spending a lot of time and money trying out various products, I'm finally down to a pretty simple regimen that is working well for me.

So ...... if you have primarily comedonal acne (clogged pores, whiteheads & blackheads), here is what I have found to work:

PAULA'S CHOICE BHAs (available at www.cosmeticscop.com)

Great product, at a very reasonable price. On the whole, I think this should be your first line of defense. I never thought salicylic acid would work on my face -- I've had horrid reactions to other SA products -- but this stuff is awesome!

I used the 2% BHA gel. The 1% wasn't strong enough for me; I think it's probably for people with highly sensitive skin. There's also a 2% liquid and a 2% lotion.

I recommend trying this product first because it is CHEAP -- about $15 for a 4 oz bottle, which will last you for months. You can get sample packets extremely cheaply if you want to try out the different formulations before placing a full order.

GREEN CREAM/DIACNEAL/Other mild OTC retinoids, such as Jan Marini and Vivant products

If the BHAs aren't quite enough to purge your pores, or if you want to improve the overall quality and radiance of your skin, I recommend these products. They are not cheap. GC goes for $40-50 per bottle, and a bottle lasts 4-6 weeks .... but it is one of the best products I have ever run across. It really works. There's a long GC thread in the OTC forum, and there's also a product website & message board: www.greencream.com

I buy my GC on amazon.com, but there are plenty of online sellers. Look for a list on the product website. Most people with normal skin can start with Level 6; if you have very sensitive skin, you may want to start with Level 3.

You can layer GC on top of BHAs. After cleansing, apply a thin layer of BHAs all over your face, wait 30 minutes, then apply Green Cream.

I did use Diacneal for awhile, and found it effective as well ... but GC just made my skin look prettier. If you live in Canada or Europe, Diacneal may be easier for you to get your hands on. It is made by Avene. And of course, there are other OTC retinoids as well: Vivant Vitamin A products, Jan Marini, Skinceuticals, etc.

EDIT: Just wanted to add that for people with mild acne, these OTC retinoids can actually be more effective than the stronger prescription products because the irritation factor is so much lower. I used Retin A for awhile, and although it cleared my pimples, it made my skin look horrible .... red, oily, and irritated. It's great for moderate/severe acne but I think it may be overkill for mild.

MANDELIC ACID

If your skin doesn't like BHAs ... try mandelic acid. It is awesome against blackheads especially, and there's a long mandelic thread in the Blackheads forum if you want more information.

If you have oily skin, the best mandelic product is probably the 15% Vivant mandelic serum, available at www.dianayvonne.com (I think she sells samples). If you have dry or sensitive skin, or are using topical retinoids, you are better off using the 10% or 15% alcohol-free serums from www.gardenofwisdom.com. Another wonderful formulation is made by Face Reality, but I think you have to be under their care to buy their products. You might check out their website: www.facereality.com

It's possible to combine mandelic with retinoids, but the peeling can be quite annoying. Best bet is to start with mandelic for a few months and ease into the retinoid after your skin is fully adjusted to mandelic.

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I have the exact same problem, but it's got to the point where I am quite torturous with my face when I squeeze them out, which causes lots of damage and huge breakouts. The only thing that helps me is light exfoliating every day/every other day and salicylic acid. Oh, and especially not picking anymore!

You should also use a clay mask once a week.

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