Jump to content
Search In
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

If u have used Tazorac or Accutane or both please help me out with the questions

Recommended Posts

Hey guys, Happy Holidays

so some of you that have been following my posts saw that I was suppose to start accutane 2 weeks ago but my doctor messed up and now im not starting til Jan 18th...

Questions -

1) I have been using Tazorac since Dec 4th - nothing getting better, just worse, much worse. I was never told to moisturize before ive just been doing that after... so I dont know if its NOT WORKING 100% because I wasnt moisturizing before? I guess ill switch it up tonight and see how it goes... I know we get an IB with this medicine and I sure hope thats whats going on and its not that my face is just breaking out worse from something else.

2) Since im using tazorac before accutane - will I still get another Initial Break out?

The one im having now on Tazorac is horendous... has anyone done this - gone from taz to tane??

and if so, when you started the accutane did you have to immediately stop using the tazorac and did that make your skin react horribly??? Im beyond nervous ONLY BECAUSE WE LEAVE FEB 27TH (READ BELOW)

3) Im going to the florida keys on a (long awaited) vacation with my boyfriend and two other couples. If I had acne the way I do now when we planned this trip I would have never said I wanted to go... If you had read my posts before, this trip is a HUGE issue for me... We leave Feb 27th and I am suppose to start accutane Jan 18th... as you can see thats 5 weeks til we leave. WHAT WOULD YOU ALL DO IF YOU WERE ME?????? Should I start it before we leave? or should i wait til we get back?

if i wait, thats another 5 weeks before I start it and all the other paper work etc, that Ill have to redo with ipledge... but if I start it, will i most likely be miserable on my trip - because of the potential inital break out...

I really am hoping since im doing Tazorac now, my initial break out on accutane will not as servere??

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi, what type of acne do you have and where do you break out? Can you describe your complexion (or post a pic)? I've used both Tazorac and Accutane (low-dose). Give me some details about yourself and the type of acne you have and how you are using the Tazorac. Also, what is your diet like? And how old are you and how long have you had acne?

Edited by crevin

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Im sorry to hear you're having such an awful time with the Tazorac. I went through the same thing, though. My derm never told me to apply moisturizer before I put it on, so I broke out horribly and had skin that was red and oily and dry and peeling at the same time. I kept on using it (the right way) almost right before I started Accutane. After I started Accutane all my pimples dried up and I didnt have an IB. There were a few bumps that were just emerging when I started Tane, but they came and left faster than ever. Accutane even helped with the redness of my bumps (you can check out my pics and see the difference)! I hope that this offers some kind of encouragement. Good luck with the Accutane and have fun on your trip!

Edited by cnjones83

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

you guys are awesome thank you for replying

cnjones83 - I really hope I have the same experience as you... Im so nervous about starting accutane for two reasons, my hair falling out more than it already has been lately and also the IB and our trip to the Keys... my boyfriend and I have been waiting for this trip for so long, sigh. Im so frustrated right now :(

Crevin - Hi - Im 28 year female who has had cystic acne on and off since I was 16. Off meaning after I stopped eating gluten in 2006 I was clear for a good 2 years (only time of my life I was clear for so long) My eating habits are very good - Gluten free, minimal dairy, eat mostly veggies and fruit, dont drink enough water id say so ive been working on that, and rarely eat red meat just turkey, chicken sometimes tuna and salmon - I love shrimp so I eat that when I want a treat... Im cutting back on yogurt, used to do that for bfast every morning... I hardly ever eat sweets.

My acne is on my lower cheeks (but now with the tazorac its popping up all over my cheeks) jawline and is starting to show up on my neck. I was recently diagnosed with PCOS so im assuming the acne I have now is hormonal because I did clear my face two years ago with cutting out Gluten completely - it was a miracle, I stopped eating Gluten and IMMEDIATELY I never had another cystic pimple... For about 8 months now ive been breaking out and now its worse than ever. I also was using proactiv for ever before switching to the tazorac at night, acanya in the morning routine which I started DEC 4. I have heard when anyone stops proactiv it tends to take a long time for the skin to bounce back so Im hoping because of the comibnation of the YEARS of using proactiv and the tazorac my skin is "turning over" ?

I decided to post pics from right now - hoping you guys can continue to help ...

as you can tell my acne is working its way all over my cheeks - is this normal??? I know its from the tazorac... i never have acne all over my face like this :(

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey, first of all, the first thing that comes to mind when I look at your picture is that you have really good skin! I can also tell you are really pretty. You do have some breakouts but your skin isn't blotchy or red or anything and looks amazing. Like a lot of people on here who have extremely mild acne, you are your own worst enemy every time you look in the mirror. I bet your boyfriend doesn't even notice it.

I'm "glad" to hear that you are older because from what I've read and gathered, Tazorac generally seems to work better for people 20+ with acne (I'm 25). My derm told me that it usually isn't as effective on teenage acne (maybe because teenagers aren't very good about sticking to prescription directions and always trying to fudge things because they want FAST results-- I remember when I was given retin-A when I was 18 or so and gave up on it after just a couple weeks-- or another time I was given Azalic acid and I mixed in BP after a few weeks because my skin broke out-- I sometimes wonder if I could have helped me acne a lot more if I stuck with a prescription the way I was supposed to). Tazorac is the first topical I've actually stuck with and carried through with. It has worked great for me, but I didn't really start to see GREAT results until after about 4-5 months of regular use. I never really got a bad intial breakout from it, but my skin did get red, flakey and irritated for the first 3-4 weeks, and then things returned to normal. I noticed slight improvement from then on until about six months when my complexion seemed to peak. Take my two cents for what it's worth, but if you started using it Dec 4th, and you don't leave until Feb, you will "probably" be over any type of IB by then and your skin will be on the upswing. But it also varies from person to person so don't hold me to that!

And how do you apply it? Only put it in areas where you reguarly get acne. Don't put it anywhere that is generally clear. If you have new stuff popping up on your cheeks... does that mean your cheeks were clear before using the Tazorac? If that's the case, then why are you putting it on your cheeks? Or was it there, but it just got worse with the Tazorac? Tazorac is a REALLY strong retinoid so it will take some time for your skin to build up some toughness to it.

There are different ways you can apply the Tazorac. If you check the website, they tell you to wash face, wait 20-30 mins, apply moisturizer, wait 20 mins, apply pea sized amount of Tazorac. My derm (and there are other posts where people do it like this) told me to apply the Tazorac to face, wait at least two minutes (up to 20 as tolerated) and rinse off SLOWLY with cool water. Then wait another 20-30 minutes and apply moisturizer.

Which brings me to something else-- what moisturizer do you use? And what cleanser? And what is your morning regimen and what all do you put on your face?

I started out using a BP wash in the morning, followed by topical clindamycin. In the evening I would put Taz on, wait 2-20 minutes, cleanse off with Cetaphil gentle cleanser, and apply Cetaphil moisturizer. I've tried using the Taz several different ways (including the eway on the website) and have tweaked my regimen over the past year, and have found that I get the best, most consistent results when 1) I rinse the Taz off with just WATER instead of a cleanser, and 2) I dropped out my morning regimen and don't even touch my face with anything-- not even water. At night I apply taz, wait 20 mins, rinse off with water, pat dry, wait 20 mins, apply moisturizer. That is how I've been doing it for the past three months and my skin has never been better.

Your acne also looks a lot like mine-- is your forehead completely clear? Mine is. I only get breakouts on my jaw, cheeks, lip area, and sides of my nose.

I started Accutane the first week of December. I was prescribed a really low dose-- 10mg/day. I took it every day for about a week and then had to stop because I got really bad joint pain and a horrible achy back. I've never had joint problems or back aches before. And honestly, I kind of laughed at the side effects part of it. I've never had any health problems or injuries and eat extremely well and exercise a lot. I figured that maybe "weak" people would have side effects (I know, that sounds really arrogant, but it's how I felt). I've never had problems with side effects from any medicine so I figured this wouldn't be any different.


I stopped taking Accutane after seven days because my joint pains got so bad that I couldn't run or workout anymore. One day I felt like I had carpel tunnel in my hands. Another day I felt like I had tennis elbow. It kind of varied from day to day. It didn't start until about the seventh day or so, at which point I immediately stopped taking it. I've been off it since and still am not 100%. I had really bad joint pains even for the week or two after getting off of it, and my joints still feel achy at times. I am noticeably better, though, but am still staying away from the gym until I feel 100%. I work out A LOT and really hard, so if you work out at all or run, I would advise you to not do so until you see how your joints do while on Accutane. Working out with weak joints could lead to a serious injury (I was running on the treadmill a couple weeks back and my ankle felt like it was going to pop-- a weird sensation I've never had before-- it just felt really fragile-- at that point I threw in the towel and have avoided the gym since).

BUT, I did NOT get any initial breakout. Take it for what it's worth, though, because I was only on it for seven days. I can say that my skin has never looked better, and it still looks good, even after such a LOW dose! Who would have thought that just 10 mg/day for a week could improve my skin so fast, especially when all I hear is about how it takes months to see improvement?! So I guess what I am saying is that it varies from person to person. My skin improved after just a week. I think you have extremely mild acne and your skin looks really, really good, so maybe find out what your prescription will be for. Go GOOGLE "low dose accutane" and you will find that it is pretty much a general consensus that side effects (and an initial breakout) are a lot less common when taking such a low dose. Granted, it might mean you have to be on it longer or might take longer for your skin to improve to the clarity that you want.

Maybe talk to your derm about it, and you could get started on a really low dose (like 10mg/day, or maybe even 10mg every other day), and do that for a month and then up it from there. It'll drastically decrease your chances of getting a bad IB or any side effects and at the same time you can get started on your course. I imagine you are like me or anyone else on the brink of starting Accutane-- YOU JUST WANNA GET STARTED SO THAT YOU CAN BE OVER AND DONE WITH IT ALL! You can't wait!!! And you definitely don't want to put it off another month while on vacation! I know how you feel. Your skin might improve within just a couple weeks as it did with me. And also you will be able to find out how your body reacts to it. It is a pretty hardcore drug. Some people don't react to it at all, and other people for whatever reason (like my sorry ass) can't handle 10 mg/day (once I am back to 100%, I am going to try 10 mg/every 2-3 days). My PERSONAL reccommendation-- (I know I spelled that wrong...) would be for you to start on a really low dose (like 10/mg a day) while you are gone, and then go from there when you get back from Florida. Find out what your derm wants to start you on dosage-wise. Keep it light because if you do experience side effects, you don't want it to happen while you are on vacation with your boyfriend. And at the same time, you can start your course. That sounds like the safe, sensible, middle-of-the-road plan to me...

Oh, and lastly, is your skin oily? Dry? Sensitive?

Sorry for all the questions and the jumbled post-- I hope you can make some sense out of it. I hope it helps somehow/someway-- and I'll be back to check on this thread! And sorry again it is so long... I am realllllly bored...

Stick in there-- you got way better skin than what you think!

Edited by crevin

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

you are too cute - thanks so much for spending all that time on your response!

I have oily skin and as far as where im putting the tazorac I have been just moving it up a bit every time i get a new break out in that direction so technically i think it was just a battle haha - here comes another pimple higher on my cheek, okay i guess i need to put some tazorac over that ... so tonight i think im going to try to really watch where im applying it.

For the first 3 weeks i have been washing my face with glytone (simple gel cleanser that the derm gave me) - applying the pea size amount of taz and then using this moisturizer that the derm gave me as well called Ultra light moisture dew cream - very lite but effective. I will say that i think this mositurizer might be causing more break outs but she keeps telling me there is no way... that the break outs are because of my skin turning over from the tazorac...just Yesterday i started applying the tazorac the way that the website is saying ... wash, pat dry, apply mosturizer, wait 30 then apply tazorac. i slept with it on all last night but tonight im definitely going to wash it off. with just water - i hope it still washes off even tho i have this moisturizer under neath.. aargh. i dont know which way is the best ha! my derm didnt really tell me what to do - it just said wash , apply taz for 30 minutes and try to leave it on all night every night if you can and apply moisturizer if necessary... ?!? i dont know what to do!

the pics didnt do me a lot of justice because my skin does get red and irritated very easily . i have very light skin and any bump turns red pretty quickly

im super nervous about the accutane but at this point in my life I keep telling myself what the hell am i waiting for - the body aches are something im seriously nervous about. I love to work out and I havent been lately thiking maybe that was why I have been breaking out so badly but I want to start getting back on the horse - especially since well if im going to be in the keys, I dont want me face and my body to look like shit so its good to have one of the two looking somewhat hot haha -

I think your comment about the boyfiend is right - we actually had quite the blow up tonight about things aka my negativity lately and that i need to just get over it and stop being such a negative person. I havent heard from him since the blow up and that was at least 5 hours ago... not a good sign for us AT ALL - hs the guy that likes a phone call in the morning, after work before bed etc.... I guess there comes a point where you have to wake up and realize its not the end of the world (the acne), and i need to realize that im affecting everyone around me... gotta live my life and stop being a hermit i guess

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites


I am sure you have tried topicals that make your break out right away because you kind of shock your skin and it freaks out. Then, after awhile, things tend to settle down. If I were you I would start out slower on the Tazorac and maybe try applying it and rinsing it off. I would NOT leave it on overnight. It might be freaking your skin out a little too much, too fast. People tend to want fast results and they usually equate with "heavier dose" or "more" with "faster," but often that isn't the case. A "heavier dose" or "more" or something can often cause a really bad IB. Just a thought, but maybe you could try what has been working for me--

1) apply pea sized Taz

2) wait 5-20 mins (I usually do ~10, more if my skin seems bad, less if my skin is good)

3) rinse off with COOL/luke-warm water

4)pat dry

5) apply moisturizer 30 mins later

Try that for a few days and see if your skin calms down. Taz is strong enough that it can really help by just leaving it on and letting it soak in for 20 mins or less. Overnight might be just too much for you.

And about the "aches" that might come with accutane--

You said you are 28. How long have you been battling this stuff and letting it affect you? Accutane is a godsend for so many people. How long do you want to wait to "grow out of it"? Or will you ever grow out of it? I think it's worth a shot-- and I would definitely talk to your derm about starting out on a low dose while you are out of town, especially since you'll be in the sun (Taz + Accutane = super sensitive skin!). If you can handle it fine, bump it up when you get back.

And it sounds like you have a really good boyfriend because it doesn't sound like he cares if you have breakouts or not. I know it's hard to tell yourself that because you are your worst enemy in how you think you are viewed.

Now get off your computer, go put a little Taz off, and WASH IT OFF WITH SOME COOL WATER!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive been letting it affect me for my whole life - even when I was clear the scars felt so noticable that I still was insecure about it... Covering my skin with my hair down , etc. So I think acne has been something I have obsessed over since I was in High School.. junior year it got bad. Wow, what a waste of 11 years.

Anyway, ill try it your way for a little bit - the only issue is a wear make up so ill need to wash the make up off, then apply the taz for a little while then the moisturizer. so basically ill just go back to what i was doing before!

I think you are right, i need to just try the accutane with a positive mindset and hope for the best. But if my hair starts to fall out, im going to stop. Since college my hair has been falling out, and it hasnt really stopped and it bothers me as much as my acne some times. Lets hope that side effect is one that I do not get :) crossing my fingers hehe.

I subscribe to the high on heath enewsletters (its free if u want to look it up) and the one i got this morning was rather good. It talked about self love and how if we cant love ourselves then we will never be able to make anyone else in our life love us 100% back. I have heard this many times before but after the fight yesterday (he ended up calling me in the middle of the night to say I love you and im sorry...) and the rough night of sleeping I think its time I focus on loving myself... maybe that will be my simple yet very complex new years resolution.

How are you doing with your skin - im so happy that you are getting clear with the taz - you can tell by your messages that your confidence is up and im happy you are to that point! Congrats. I really appreciate your messages btw

Have a great day!

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.

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