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I thought I'd write about my upcoming experience with Roaccutane because I've been reading people's stories on here and they're all very interesting and insightful.

So, I suppose I should start with my story..

I've just turned 29. I've had acne on and off.. actually mainly just on, there's been no off at all really.. since I was in my early teens. I just thought I would grow out of it when I was younger, as most of friends had pimples of some description so I looked quite normal. But as I got into my final high school years and went on to uni it just wouldn't leave. I went on a few different antibiotic treatments - I can't even remember what they were but I think it was tetracyclin, minamycin (sp?) and also differin gel.. no result. I went onto the pill, Brenda/Dianne, but after 3 months I put on 5kgs and went into a massive depressive hole. My photos of my 21st are just horrible, absolutely horrible. I'm sure I've destroyed them all. After that episode I went overseas for uni for 6 months and stayed reasonably clear but could always improve. Just before I went overseas I did a course of microsdermabrasion so that probably helped. At 24 I went back to the pill because I was in a long term relationship. I think I went onto Loette.. not sure... my skin got a little worse and by this age I was getting frustrated that I was still dealing with acne. I hesitantly tried Brenda again since it's supposed to be so good for your skin. I survived 4 months on it but had all sorts of anxiety attacks so had to stop. I went back to Loette and my doctor suggested taking Androcur for 10 days of my cycle and it worked! I was clear, still with minor breakouts but I figured that was as good as I was going to get. I stayed on that until I was 28. Getting a script for Androcur was hard though - I always saw different doctors at my local clinic and some didn't want to give me a script because they're not meant to perscribe it just for acne. You're meant to have excess hair and some other issues. Anyway, I did a bit of research into pills and found Loette isn't the best for your skin so I switched to Yasmin and stopped the Androcur also. A friend had really good results on Yasmin so I thought I might get the same result. Ughh, 3 months in and I start breaking out. I think, well Ill just ride it out til 6 months. By 6 months it was horrible! So at 7 months I stopped taking the pill altogether. I broke up with my boyfriend of 5 years and didn't want to get back into a relationship for a while so I figured I could go off birth control for a little while to let my hormones re-balance.

And that's where I am now. I've been off the pill for just over 3 months. I did a saliva hormone test after being off the pill for 2 months - it said I had really high estrogen and testosterone. I took the results to a good doctor who did blood hormone tests at 3 months. All normal. So today, I've finally gone to my first dermatologist appointment who has given me a script for Roaccutane. I'm having bloodwork done tomorrow to ensure I'm ok to start, then as soon as I'm given the all clear I can go fill my script and start. I'll be 20mg for 2 weeks, then bump up to 40mg pending my side effects. I'm quite petite - I'm 5'2 and 52kgs (I guess that translates to 158cms and 114lb). I'll be on it for 5-6 months, with potentially another month or two added at the end if I need it. God, I hope not. I was hoping I'd only need 4-5 months, and I'd start clearing up straight away but thats just wishful thinking obviously. It's the middle of winter here in Melbourne where I live. I was hoping I'd get clear by summer - so I could go swimming, not worry about sweating make up off, and go out with just a sheer tinted moisturiser on my face, not some heavy caked on foundation. But alas, looks like I'm going to be peeling and dry and red raw this summer instead. Oh well. So long as I get clear at the end of it; I'll have a lifetime of summers to enjoy after that I guess.

Anyway, that's about all I've got to write so far. I'm posting this then going to work out how to get some pics off my phone and onto here!

Edited by martini99
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Hello and welcome. Good luck to you on your course. Keep us posted on how your doing. Ev1 here is great and so supportive. Hope all goes smoothly for you. Check out all the recent logs (if you havent already) to get an idea of what to expect.

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hey there!

i totally relate :) i am 29, my bday being on october and i said enough! i am also your size... 5'1" and 54kgs... however, my derm started me at 60mg... so far so good (i am only 22 days in)

ok, good luck and keep us posted!

hope

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So I started today!

Bloodwork was all fine, so I got my script filled and just popped my first pill about 2 hours ago with dinner. :dance:

Am REALLY nervous though. If I thought my skin was horrible and embarrassing now, I'm really scared about IBs and things looking even worse! I know it won't be for long (I hope?!) but I just want it to clear asap. Anyway, will just have to wait and see I guess.

My derm has put my on 20mg for the first month, then up to 40mg for 4 months. That seems to be quite low compared to some people on here. Luckily I double checked the initial dose when they called me to say my bloodwork was ok - I thought I was on 20mg for only the first week! I hope that means any IB will be minimal. I guess I'll have another one when I go up to 40mg but I'd rather have two that I can partly hide with make up than one so horrible I can't leave the house. Eek.

So I stocked up on Cetaphil cleanser when I got my script filled. My derm gave me a pack of samples which was great - there's some carmex in there, some eye drops, about three different cleanser samples, some face and body moisturisers, sunscreen and some shower gel. I also bought some cetaphil ultra hydrating lotion - I dunno if this is meant to be face moisturiser or all over; doesn't really say. I guess I'll just keep it on hand for anything that dries out! I also got some executive B vitamins - I bought Blackmores as I've taken these exact ones before and could really notice their effect so hoping they keep me from getting too tired and stressed. I'm wondering whether I should get some glucosamine for joint pain? I don't have any pain yet of course, but maybe I should take it as a preventative... does it even work like that? Comments would be appreciated! And is there anything else I should stock up on to help me through this? I've got a good face moisturiser I use, I'm currently using anti-dandruff shampoo - never had dandruff in my life at all but it's helped keep the oiliness at bay, at least to get me through until the end of 2nd day after washing so I guess it's helping. I've got some great body butter too which I'll start using religiously on my body for dryness.

Oh and something else I was wondering about - does this stuff have any weight-related side effects? I went off the pill about 4 months ago (which has contributed to my now horrible skin) and I lost about 3kgs. I did switch to soy milk and cut out wheat products at the same time so I thought it was that causing the weight loss.. I know think maybe it was just going off the pill. Anyway, I want to keep it off but wondering if people experience weight gain or loss on accutane?

Well, since nothing much is going to change after taking 1 little pill I'm going to log off and go to bed. Oh - I will just post some pics for anyone who wants to look at some horrible skin! Actually, I'm really just posting all this for my own sanity and benefit at this stage so don't feel obliged to look. It's not that pretty anyway.

Night.

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GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It is a really crazy ride being on accutane... You need to really listen to your body, and HYDRATE. I have had a lot of things happen while ive been on this drug and in 19 days when its all over im going to write a recap but trust me, it was COMPLETELY worth it. Youu will grow to love your skin... You will grow to love looking in the mirror and most of all you will LOVE YOURSELF!!!!!! :) Congrats, Good Luck, and even if you do have an IB remember, accutane will help over time, nothings an over night fix, and to trust your doctor!!!!! If u need any questions answered please message me!

Edited by readytosmileagain
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Set your mind into knowing that through the first month or so your skin will look a little worse than normal, but when the moment comes to reheal itself it will get rid of 99percent of your acne.

I will say it will probably take around5-6 months for you to be clear. Depending on your dose.

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Thanks for your comments readytosmileagain and iXtReMe! I keep stalking other peoples logs on here and checking out their progress pics. I've feeling positive that I'll have skin like everyone else at the end of all this (still amazes me though). I am bracing for the IB. It's the not knowing how bad it'll be that makes it scary.

DAY 2

Skin felt a nice texture this morning, quite oily though. I forgot how gentle and nice cetaphil is to use. For the past 2 weeks or so I've been able to wash my hair every 2nd day. Before I switched to an anti-dandruff shampoo though my hair was getting oily by lunchtime on the 2nd day after washing. This morning I woke up with really oily hair - and it was only the MORNING after washing my hair! WTF?! So oily! Can't wait until this pill starts stripping out the oil from my hair. Yuck. Anyway, nothing to really comment on side-effect wise. Don't feel any different at all. Duh, is only day 2 afterall... !

I've planned out my routine for now. Until I work out how to put it in my sig, I'll just post it here:

AM

Wash with Cetaphil gentle cleanser

Witchhazel toner

Moisturise with Johnsons ph5.5 (just cos I'm half way through the tub)

A combination of different makeup products.. depending on the day.

Carmex

Lunch

Executive B vitamin

Swisse hair, skin and nails tablets (just bought these tonight; has zinc, vit c, silica, biotin, iron)

Both the above taken with food

PM

20mg Oratane (generic form of Roaccutane - will generic work as well as the proper stuff? I didn't think of that...)

Wash with Cetaphil gentle cleanser

Witchhazel toner

Moisturise with Johnsons ph5.5

zinc cream on spots - I do this every now and again; the zinc cream really dries them out. Will keep it up until my skin gets too dry

Carmex

Cetaphil ultra hydrating cream (on hands)

Eye drops

Bit nervous about breaking out next week. I have a big meeting for work next Wednesday and I'm really going to feel self-conscious if I'm having a breakout. No point stressing about it now I guess but Wednesday will be day 8 for me and lots of people seem to break out between days 7-14. I also have to fly from Melbourne to Sydney for this meeting so not only am I concerned about a breakout, but the air-con in the plane leaves my skin horrible even on a good day so god knows what it's going to look like if I get an IB!!! Hmm.. I also have a big party this saturday night (day 4) - I'm hoping things are ok looking for that. Come to think of it, I've got heaps of things coming up in the next month or so.. it's all making me nervous about breaking out and havin skin at my worst during these events. I just want to hide for the first few weeks! Like a catepillar forming a coccoon around itself, only coming out once it's a butterfly.

On that note, I'm off to bed!

Edited by martini99
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DAY 3

Actually I haven't taken my 3rd pill since I take it with dinner and I'm going out for dinner tonight so posting in the afternoon but whatever..

Woke this morning still with oily skin. It did look a lot less inflammed which I was happy with. Make up went on ok. I have a few cysts on neck now though - just under my jawline. At least they're kind of hidden. I do have a sore calf muscle, and a sore bicep. Both on my left side. But I think I can explain those. I wore some high heeled boots yesterday that I haven't worn in ages so my calf might have chucked a spaz at that. And my bicep would probably be sore since I carried a really heavy bag yesterday with my left hand - my arm was killing by the time I put it down. So I've probably just torn the muscle slightly. So guess I can't really call them side effects. Eyes are fine, slight headache but I've had headaches on and off for the past week so probably not related. BUT - I did have trouble getting to sleep last night AND I had some random dreams! I take my 'tane with dinner and whilst I can't imagine weird dreams being terribly annoying, if getting to sleep starts to become a problem I might switch to taking it in the morning. So I might elaborate on my dream but first I probably need to explain my relationship status... If you're only interested in my skin-related updates then I'd skip the next few paragraphs!

So I broke up with my boyfriend of 5 years 2 months ago. Don't worry about the :boohoo: - I broke it off and quite frankly had made my mind up a while ago so I'm totally ok with it. Actually, I'm ecstatic to be single again! :dance: My friends haven't seen me this happy in ages and keep checking with me to ensure that I'm really as ok as I say I am. Anyway.. so before my recent ex, I was seeing this other guy for about 6 months. He moved away after our thing ended and I hadn't seen him in like 6 years. The night I broke up with.. lets call him X.. I was out at a bar with girlfriends and X turned up. The previous guy, I'll call him Y. The bouncer turned out to be one of Y's friends who I hadn't seen in years either. Now 'bouncer' guy must have called Y (who'd moved home a few months earlier I know now) and told him I was there because the next thing you know, I've got both Y & X in the same bar and it gets really really awkward! I'll skip over all the explanation about why it was so awkward but to cut all this short - X & I broke up right there in the bar, X went home and I ended up hanging out with Y all night. Before you ask, absolutely nothing happened with Y - turns out he'd just split with his gf and moved home so he knew what I was going through and we basically just chatted and caught up.

Since then, over the past 2 months, I've seen Y again once - on my birthday 2 weeks ago. Now I'll get to my dream and how these 2 things relate...

I dreamt that Y was at my house, but he looked really UGLY and he was wearing this rediculous outfit. He'd also come over and totally surprised me and I was in a dressing gown since I'd just got out of the shower. So there I am in a dressing gown and trying to hide my horrible skin. He then asked me if I have a t-shirt he can borrow cos hes got this really ugly tank top on and for some reason he looks all fat (he's prob medium build in real life, hardly overweight). I tell him 'well, I've only got 1 of X's old t-shirts here but that won't fit you cos he was really slim, or I can try to find one that belongs to my brother who's more your size'. And errr.... that's all I remember!!! WTF??!! I don't even know why I bothered to share that it's so lame. At least now I've given you an update on my relationship status so if I start talking about X and Y you'll know who I mean.

Well, nothing much else to report... except I will say I love Carmex! Wow - this stuff stays on my lips forever! I woke up this morning with it still in place. I use a lot of lip balm, never lipstick, but my lips still get all gunky. But with Carmex my lips feel nice and silky smooth! I'm probably speaking too soon though, I'm sure they'll dry out and crack eventually.

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Hello neighbour! Coincidentally, I'm around the same build as you (160cm and 54 kg) AND I have similar acne (it's also focused around the mouth area)! My derm also gave me a nifty sample pack with carmex and all that other good stuff. I think it's a standard Aussie procedure (I'm from Sydney btw). And boy, your dream does sound wacky. It seems like your subconscious is trying to tell you something about how you see Y.. or maybe it's just the accutane talking, who knows!

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Best of luck to you! I just started at the beginning of this month, so we're right around the same place. I started on 60 mg/day, but had a friend who started on 20 mg/day and she saw nothing but improvement from the first day! Hope the same happens for you [:

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Haha thanks Amieable! Hopefully I see nothing but improvement too!

And maggipie - yes, I think it's my subsconscious telling me DO NOT HOOK UP WITH Y AGAIN!!! :shifty::lol:

DAY 4

So little pill number 4 is done and dusted. I don't really know why I'm bothering to post an update since nothing much is really happening.

Side effects

Uh, nothing major really. I don't think.. My face is really hot. I went to the dentist yesterday and had to get a filling, which also involved a local in my gum beforehand. My face was hot yesterday but thought it was the local wearing off. I guess it's the 'tane instead. Doesn't really look red or flushed, but my cheeks are hot like I've got a fever. Doesn't really bother me. I've had a few headaches, and another weird dream last night but I don't really remember much of it now (although I do remember that no ex boyfriends featured thank goodness!) - just woke up thinking, hmm... ok this is going to be a regular thing then is it. I'm a bit tired now, took my tablet about 4.5hrs ago so think I'm just feeling like a saturday afternoon catnap. Lips are totally fine, skin is a little oily but just the same as it has been for the past month or so really. Eyes feel a little dry though. I'm only using the eye drops at night but think I'll start carrying them around with me. I'm only really noticing dryness when I'm on the computer.. which sucks because I work all day on a computer for my job so this is going to get interesting.

Skin

Looking ok I suppose.. Didn't look too bad when I put make-up on this morning. Looks a bit yuck now that make-up is sliding off my oily skin. No huge breakouts yet, a few under my jaw that I mentioned yesterday I think. They're possibly smaller. I can't really count how many pimples or cysts I have. I don't know how people do that.. I've usually always got some scarring and some drying out sections, and then active spots all in between so without running my fingers over everything (which just depresses me frankly) I can't tell what is an actual live pimple or what is just an old scab. I don't really care about the numbers anyway, it's more about how my complexion looks with/without make-up, in different lighting, in mirrors/in photos for me. So long as I can make my skin look ok, I'm doing fine mentally at this stage.

Alcohol

I have a bit of a test tonight. I've got a friends birthday and it's going to be a big night. I should actually be getting ready for it now. Big night = alcohol. I'm not going to lie, I do like a drink. I probably have a glass of wine in the evening with dinner about twice a week, and I usually go out for work drinks on Friday nights. In winter I go out a lot less, and luckily it's winter now, but I can't remember the last time I went a whole weekend without having a drink. It's always social for me, my friends and I are big wine drinkers (I should say wine appreciators - sounds much better! :shifty: ) so I'm usually catching up with friends for a drink on weekends. So the next 6 months are going to be tough. It's probably better I get a reaction after drinking tonight (like getting drunk quite quickly) since I'll then be able to monitor it and realise when I'm drinking too much. If there's no real reaction, I'm a bit scared I'll just carry on drinking the way I do and come blood test time I'll have done some real damage to my liver. Having some side effects will probably help me keep a lid on it. I've told a grand total of 2 friends that I'm taking roaccutane. The first one I told was because we've always talked about our skin for years and we've been on the same BCP over the years. I went on Yasmin because she had great results on it - totally screwed my skin up so I guess everyone is different. I told another friend today who has no idea what Roaccutane is even is so she didn't really pass judgement on me other to say that its great I've got another option to try. This particular friend likes the odd wine but is much better at knowing when to say stop than me so I told her she has to keep me in line for the next 6 months! She does that anyway (always running after me with a glass of water telling me to drink it!) but she's going to keep a closer watch on my drinking shenanigans.

Anyway, I'd better go get ready to head out.. takes a looooong time to try to cover this horrible skin.

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DAY 5

Lazy Sunday today.. ah love it. So I went out last night, and I did drink alcohol, but you know, I didn't actually notice anything different, in fact, I didn't even get drunk after everything I drank! Not that I was trying to :whistle:. My skin actually looked ok too after I applied my makeup. Ok it looked like I had really heavy makeup on but I was in a dark nightclub most of the night so looked fine in that light. I was quite pleased but kept thinking this might be the last time I go out clubbing with ok skin for a while.

A friend stayed over last night since I live so much closer to the city where we'd been out and I live alone at the moment (so nice to have company) so plenty of room! Was really nervous about them seeing my skin in the morning though. I ended up sleeping in my makeup which was bad. BUT my skin actually looked ok this morning.

Skin

Still really oily, but cysts are pretty much all going. A few small bumps under there but they don't seem particularly aggrevated (yet..). I'm noticing a few blackheads are becoming inflammed. If that's my skin purging already then I'm fine with that. Beats huge red sore cysts any day! I haven't had blackheads that turn into pimples like that in ages. Had 2 tiny whiteheads this morning. Again, they appear to just be blackheads that are getting pushed to the surface and purging. Good stuff. About a month ago my chest started to get a whole heap of blackheads. Nothing actually broke out but it was quite bumpy and there were little black dots everywhere. This morning I noticed 1 had become inflammed, so I'm leaving that well alone. The blackheads also seem to be raised, kind of. I guess they're being pushed out.. Sooooo tempting to squeeze them to get rid of them but I'm being good! Still a little nervous about whether I'll make it through to Wednesday for my big meeting in Sydney without suffering a breakout but so far so good! I don't have any major events after Wednesday until 20 August so if I do get an IB, hopefully it'll happen between then.

Side effects

So after posting yesterday I noticed my face was getting more red. Seems to be ok today though. Felt really sleepy after taking my pill today but I did only get about 3 hrs sleep last night. I'm turning into a bit of an insomniac at night too. By the time I went to bed last night it was 6am (ok yes it was a bit of a big night :shifty: ) and I struggled to fall asleep. Hopefully with so little sleep last night, nodding off tonight shouldn't be any problem! That's about it so far. Lips doing fine still.

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Yay I'm glad that your cysts are already going away so quickly. Accutane seems to already be working for you and you're not even a week in yet! :D And I wonder why accutane causes people to have strange dreams.. it must really be playing with our brain chemistry. I would recommend maybe reading a good book before bed to calm your mind. That's what I'm planning to do tonight.

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DAY 6

Not a whole lot happening really but it makes me feel better to get all this off my chest, rather than just running over it all in my head all the time. Totally sorry if this makes for really boring reading!

Skin

Hmm.. still really oily. No dryness yet. Thought some was starting near the corners of my nose but nope, moisturiser on and there's no problem. Blackheads are coming to the surface and a few are getting inflammed. One near the left corner of my month, and another on the right below my lip are both inflammed and I made the mistake of thinking they were just little spots I could squeeze to sped them on their way. Yeah, nope. They both bled a little and are now red and scabby. But nothing like the huge red cysts I was getting before. Actually have no cysts right now :clap: .

Side effects

Well now I don't know if I was imagining all this now or what.. I took my pill after lunch around 2pm. But up until I took it I was suffering the following: really sore face, like it was burnt - although it didn't look red at all, but it hurt to press on it; queezy stomach; nausea; itchy arms; real lack of appetite (couldn't finish breakfast and didn't even feel like eating lunch until 2pm... weird...) and the sorest hips ever! I have dodgy hips from dancing as a teenager but they were killing me today! BUT - as soon as I took my tablet today, all that disappeared! It's now 10pm and I feel fine - hips don't hurt, no itchiness, face doesn't feel hot or flushed (is a little tight though) and no nausea. Weirdness.... :think:

Is every chance all the above relates to that time of the month for me. And the hips I could put down to dancing on the weekend I guess. So apart from a slightly hot face and itchy arms for a little while, there's no real side effects for me yet!

That's about it I guess.. Almost down with my first week! :dance::dance::dance:

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Yay I'm glad that your cysts are already going away so quickly. Accutane seems to already be working for you and you're not even a week in yet! :D And I wonder why accutane causes people to have strange dreams.. it must really be playing with our brain chemistry. I would recommend maybe reading a good book before bed to calm your mind. That's what I'm planning to do tonight.

Ha yeah some strange dreaming going on! Totally couldn't sleep last night either. I read and read and read... normally I start to nod off about 2 pages in but I read about 50pages last night and had to force myself to put it down! Maybe I should read something a little less rivetting, lol.

Thanks for stopping by!

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DAY 8

Gosh, I've been so busy.. My skin held out for my big meeting up in Sydney today - only just though! Could feel my skin getting very oily, and my hair that sits closest to my face was oily as soon as I woke up - I'd only washed it at 11pm the night before!!!! :cry: WHY?!?! Anyway, now that I'm home I can see (or rather feel) about 7 smallish bumps/cysts that have sprung up. 1 next to my nose, 4 all in a patch next to my right corner of my mouth and a few along my jawline. Ughh. Maybe this is the start of my IB.

No side effects to report really. Oh - I did have a really weird dream again last night! I dreamt there was a bushfire and it was coming towards the house I was in. I think my mum was there, and maybe some other people.. can't really remember.. but then the fire got too close for us to get away in time so someone told me to lie face down on the ground and wait til the fire passed over. Amazingly, it came up towards me and sort of just brushed over me.. after it had passed I was able to get up and I was fine! No burns, nothing... WEIRD!!!!! What on earth is going on in my brain?!?!!! :lol: I should look up a dream dictionary and find out what that represents...?

Well, nothing much else to report. I'm going to go wash my face and put on a mask. My skin is really really oily so using a clay mud mask will hopefully dry it out a bit. I know it's probably against what I should be doing, given the tane should be drying me out but it's yet to do that so I guess it couldn't hurt. I just really want to dry out these bumps that's have sprung up today :cry:

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Guest DireStraits
DAY 8

Gosh, I've been so busy.. My skin held out for my big meeting up in Sydney today - only just though! Could feel my skin getting very oily, and my hair that sits closest to my face was oily as soon as I woke up - I'd only washed it at 11pm the night before!!!! :cry: WHY?!?! Anyway, now that I'm home I can see (or rather feel) about 7 smallish bumps/cysts that have sprung up. 1 next to my nose, 4 all in a patch next to my right corner of my mouth and a few along my jawline. Ughh. Maybe this is the start of my IB.

No side effects to report really. Oh - I did have a really weird dream again last night! I dreamt there was a bushfire and it was coming towards the house I was in. I think my mum was there, and maybe some other people.. can't really remember.. but then the fire got too close for us to get away in time so someone told me to lie face down on the ground and wait til the fire passed over. Amazingly, it came up towards me and sort of just brushed over me.. after it had passed I was able to get up and I was fine! No burns, nothing... WEIRD!!!!! What on earth is going on in my brain?!?!!! :lol: I should look up a dream dictionary and find out what that represents...?

Well, nothing much else to report. I'm going to go wash my face and put on a mask. My skin is really really oily so using a clay mud mask will hopefully dry it out a bit. I know it's probably against what I should be doing, given the tane should be drying me out but it's yet to do that so I guess it couldn't hurt. I just really want to dry out these bumps that's have sprung up today :cry:

Hmm interesting. How did you find the weather in Sydney?

Cause its been shite the last 2 days due to it being windy and all.

Oh and what happened in the meeting? Sealed the deal?

GL with your course btw.

Edited by DireStraits
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Hey thanks for stopping by my log..the docs dont think it was at all tane related thank god!

My skin is so oily at the moment too! I will probably start moaning when it gets dry and flakey!!

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Hmm interesting. How did you find the weather in Sydney?

Cause its been shite the last 2 days due to it being windy and all.

Oh and what happened in the meeting? Sealed the deal?

GL with your course btw.

Weather in Sydney was nice - 18 and sunny.. where are you from DireStraights?

And the meeting went well too, thanks for asking!

DEL my oiliness seems to have gone now, thank goodness. Dryness hasn't set in yet either so I'm feeling quite balanced. I guess I'm prob a couple of days ahead of you now after your little interruption but hopefully it means your skin will balance out like mine very soon!

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DAY 11

Get the :boohoo::boohoo::boohoo: out - I think I'm going through my IB. :cry::cry::cry:

Ughhh.. horrible. All those bumps I was referring to a few days ago have gotten worse. They're all red and cyst-like. Yuck. Am so sad. I can't even count them. Some patches of my skin feel really nice and smooth, like on my forehead where I never get spots. But from the lower cheek down it's so bumpy and inflammed. Just running my fingers over my face I can feel it all under the surface and it's just bump after bump - far too hard to count.

I guess now I just have to wait it out. I don't even know what to put on my skin to help it. I read something on another log that gave me a bit of a lightbulb moment - when they're bumpy cysts like this, there's really nothing in them to squeeze - it's more an infection under the skin and you need to kill off the bacteria to get rid of them. I'm a big picker I tend to obsess over making my skin smooth. I generally don't worry about scarring; so long as I don't have scabs that can't be covered by make-up I'm ok with it. But I have been getting so many cysts lately. I need to remember that messing around with them isn't going to make them flatten out.

BUT - I guess there may be another explanation to my breakout. Any male readers might want to skip all this... I think I mentioned in my first post how I had recently gone off the pill. So that was back in April. Since then, I've been tracking my cycles. I mainly started doing it because I'd been so regular on the pill obviously, but had no idea what my cycles would be off it. I was also planning on doing a hormone test to see if that was the cause of my acne, and I had to time the test with my cycle. Yet another reason for tracking all this was because I wanted to rule out PCOS (which, after some tests with my dr, we have ruled out). I've got this cool app on my iphone, Period Tracker. You can record notes, your weight, temperature, moods and symptoms. So I now have about 4 months of cycle-related info. What I have noticed, is that right around the time I ovulate, I break out a little bit. Then it's fine for a few days, but then it comes back with a vengance! It lasts for like, a whole week and a half or so... and I only notice it calming down at the end of my period. Anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I may just be breaking out because of my cycle. AND - if that's the case, I should be able to estimate when I'll be clearing up again - and that would be approx 19/20 August. What was I saying a few days ago? That if my IB occured over the next few weeks, I'd be ok so long as it started to die down by the 20th because I've got an event on then. So after all that, I really shouldn't be complaining about my skin right now - it's timed it quite well and I should just remain positive that in 2 weeks time I'll be looking ok again! :pray:

Side effects - nothing really. I'm less oily which is great. Hair is less oily today too. It's day 2 after washing it and it feels fine and silky smooth. Go hair! :dance: I've been forgetting my eye drops lately but haven't noticed any difference really. Lips still need the carmex so I guess that's my only side effect at the moment. Any redness or flushing I was feeling in the first few days has gone now. I'm not flaky or peeling yet. I actually washed my face and went to bed without putting moisturiser on the other night too. I'm obsessed with face moisturiser. I can't wash my face without putting it on after. Cleanser then moisturiser just go hand in hand for me. But I washed my face and it felt (apart from all the cysts) soft and supple so I left the moisturiser in the cupboard. Was hard! But maybe it's done my skin some good.

Anyway, that's my update for today. I'm off to enjoy the rest of this weekend. :wavey:

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Oh my I also think that it's the dreaded IB.. but must be a sign that the accutane in your system is working! And yes hopefully it'll clear up soon in time for your meeting. I hope you enjoy your weekend! :dance:

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Day 12

:wall::wall::wall: Ughhhhh! Horrible, horrible skin.

So I felt a little better yesterday after I'd washed my face and put some make up on. And then this morning I thought things looked a little better, but once I'd put make up on today it looked horrible! Why does it look bad, then better with makeup some days, and the complete reverse other days? So not fair.

Anyway, my makeup looked all manky today so I wasn't in a very confident mood. To make things worse it was a really sunny day here and I was outside at the football so sun reflecting off my skin from every angle was just downright depressing. I went out last night thinking makeup could hide it - and yes, in the evening it probably looks ok but today it just looked like I'd put makeup on with a spatula!!! Yuck. Doesn't help that it's winter here, and the 'tane is making my normally olive skin look sooooo pale. My foundation is now too dark for me.

Skin

So what is actually happening with my skin? Well, I was getting a whole heap of bumps yesterday and was thinking, what are these bloody things? I just call them all pimples, but I guess I don't really know how to define a pimple, a cyst, a nodule, a papule... ewwww, why do they all not only look gross, but also have gross sounding names?!?!?!! So I guess whenever I get some huge red thing on my face I call it a cyst because it doesn't really have a head on it.... but after a bit of googling I think you would say I've sprung quite a few nodules in the past 48 hours, not cysts. Either way, it still sounds absolutely disgusting! I spent the afternoon icing them, and I popped some anti-inflammatories. I've never thought to do that. I think it helped because I went out a few hours later and make-up covered them ok. I'll have to do it again tonight as they're not looking too crash-hot.

Side effects

Manky lips... got a bit lazy with the lip balm over the last few days. I thought I'd left the carmex at work so was using this other dodgy lip balm but found my carmex at the bottom of my handbag today - not losing that again! I have this lip mask which I've rediscovered. It's some Mary Kay stuff I bought a few years ago at a cosemetic party. It works really well and helps clean out all the cruddy dry skin on my lips. Keeping that handy.

No other side effects really. Guess that's a plus.

I was feeling really shitty when I got home and totally planned to unleash it all here but now I almost can't be bothered. I went to the football today with a friend - we were in a corporate box which was great. There was a really hot guy there too but I just couldn't bring myself to talk to him. I'm so sad. My shitty skin really holds me back. I'm normally a really loud, funny, chatty kind of girl. I guess I still am but when I'm down about my skin I sort of don't bother with people. I like to hide. Before when I was still with my boyfriend I suppose I didn't care so much about my skin. He loved me the way I was, my friends didn't care about my skin and everything was fine. It still bothered me of course, but back then I was on the pill and it was under control. Now, I'm off the pill, I'm single, and I'm breaking out like nothing else. I broke things off with my boyfriend and thought, I'm really going to turn things around. I broke up because I wasn't happy with him, and I wanted to see what else was out there for me. Sad thing is that now I'm ready to meet someone new (or at least go out and have some fun meeting new people) after spending some quality time with myself, I'm just so embarrassed about my skin that I hide from every guy I potentially meet! I actually do not want to meet anyone with skin like this because I feel like a 16 year old girl, not a 29 year old woman. Nothing wrong with being 16 again but I'm passed that and more interested in 30 year old men, not teenage boys. My friends keep telling me I need a rebound - I need to go out and let my hair down and meet new guys but I just want to hide from them! I just feel like I can't compete for their attention against other girls my age.. I should have grown out of skin like this by now.

Anyway, rant over.

Here's some new pics. I decided to set up an album to link to. I've put a full faced pic of me up there too. I'm quite nervous about doing that; I'd die if anyone I knew ever saw this log. I might just leave it there until I'm finished my course of 'tane.

FEB 2010 - I'd just started breaking out on my new pill here but you can hardly tell. I want this skin back at the very least!

BEFORE STARTING ORATANE

RIGHT SIDE

LEFT SIDE

FOREHEAD

11 DAYS IN

LEFT SIDE

CHIN - WTF is THIS??

RIGHT SIDE

RIGHT SIDE - with make-up... ta da! Attempted pimple hiding.. not too successful unfortunately.

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Guest DireStraits

Wow, great smile.

If guys aren't approaching you in Melbourne then theres something wrong with them lol.

Im from Sydney btw.

Oh and about someone finding out who you are well, i know for a fact theres a guy on this forum who i went to high school with. I've found out who he is but he doesn't know who I am yet so its only a matter of time i guess.

Dont worry about it :P

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i hope by the time you read this, your IB is on its way out of your face. you are beautiful! you will have no issued finding yourself a new man. keep strong!

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