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richard_c

4 Year Update, Comments and Information

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I posted once before but it was probably 2 years back. I've had acne all my life, starting at 15 or 16 and going on over 20 years, I had tried everything: scubs, pads, creams, pills... everything but Accutane (I was worried about the side effects).

After trying everything, I had just given up and decided to live with it. I had some nasty cystic acne on my back that would hurt every once and a while and the resulting scars would literally take a year to go away. I noticed that if I didn't get enough sleep, I'd get a breakout, if I drank, I'd get a breakout and after a heavy workout in the gym, I'd also get a breakout.

Stress also caused breakouts. Worrying about breakouts caused breakouts :) High stress would cause the MOAB (my term for a large, underground, cystic zit) zits and I would name them based on what even caused the zit:

"That's the one Ben caused"

Then I could say things like:

"Ben's zit hurts like a bastard today."

Thanks Ben! You ass!

(That's a true story. Ben was a real ass and he did cause stress that gave me a MOAB zit. And if your name is Ben, I'm sorry. I'm not talking about you.)

About 4 years ago, at the age of 39, I decided to see if anything had changed in the world of treatments and came across this site. I read through everything and decided to try the "regime"

I started with a regime of the glycolic acid followed by BP in the morning and then BP at night. The glycolic acid caused redness and really dried out the skin on my face but was fine on my back so I quit using the glycolic acid on my face and just used on it on my back. I took photographs every day to track progress.

I think the photographs are very important. They show what is working, what isn't working, etc. I think everyone who tries the treatment should take a photo every day so they can track progress. Otherwise, you are just shooting the dark and have no idea whether it is working for you or not.

Now, here's an important part. I didn't clear up immediately. The photos let me track progress exactly.

How the BP works with me is this. If I have a zit that has already started, in any way, shape or form, it will go through its normal process to the end. No amount of BP will stop it from its course once it has started. In fact, nothing will stop it once it has started. And they aren't red when they start, they are just a pore that is sealed over.

So, I had all these "pre-zits" going on all over my body right when I started. It takes a few weeks for one zit to run its course with me and then 3 weeks to a year for the scar to finally heal. Back zit scars literally take a full year to heal for me (that's what the pictures showed, took a lot longer than I thought).

When I started the regime, my breakouts went on normally until about 3 weeks to a month because anything that had started, even if it wasn't an apparent red zit, was going to go on and complete its course of growing up, starting to cause trouble, getting worse, leaving home, getting tossed in jail, shanking a guard, escaping, going to a treatment center and then scar healing.

But what I started noticing is I wasn't getting any "new growth". And the pictures showed it. I'd see every zit I had at the start of the treatment, no matter how small, grow out. But after a while, nothing new was "growing up".

After a month, I stopped seeing new zit formation as my "pre-zits" were gone. Then my scars started healing and 8 months later the scars were almost all gone and a year later they were totally gone (the MOAB back zit scars take a year to totally heal, meaning disappear, for me).

Summary:

1. Take pictures

2. Track for a month

3. See if you are getting new growth after a month, expect to continue to get breakouts until existing "pre-zits" are gone

The treatment seems to start to work immediately by stopping new "pre-zits". It doesn't do anything to existing "pre-zits" or zits that have started. That's how it works for me, anyway. If you are still getting new zit formation after a month, then it isn't working for you like it worked for me. Ha ha! (sorry, just a joke, couldn't help it)

Over the year, I dropped using the BP twice a day to using it just once a day before I went to bed at night. This prevented new growth. And after a year, my skin was clear.

No more MOAB (large, underground, cystic) zits. I would get a little pimple here or there once and a while but it would pop up and go away quickly. They were a lot smaller than previous zits.

Another thing I noticed from my pictures, is that the MOAB zits I had previously on my body looked like they were simple odds-based things. There seemed to be a 1% chance of any given zit turning into a MOAB zit. So, if I had 100 little ones, I'd have one big one. Now, I don't have all the little ones and I haven't had a MOAB since the one month after I started the regime.

After a year on the regime and getting clear, I started noticing the zits were "escaping". I'd get them in areas that I wasn't putting BP on. For example, I'd get one on the front of my leg. Or behind my ear. I'd start putting a little BP on those areas.

These days, I cover my face, neck, my back, my upper chest/shoulders and I do a really light coat on the front legs and lower stomach every night. Feels kind of ridiculous to put it that much "all over" but it works. I've had zero side effects from the BP.

On a side note:

I was on a trip recently and forgot to take my BP and went and picked up two little 10% BP solution tubes from a local store (it was all they sold) to use while on the trip. It caused some serious redness/skin reaction. 10% is really overkill for me, the 2.5% solution seems optimal.

I don't even know why they sell those little tubes of 10% BP. They literally do nothing. First of all, they are too high in concentration so even on my skin it can cause redness and a bit of peeling. Secondly, they are too small to do anything at all. It is just ridiculous. And having used that stuff previously and the scrub pads, etc. when they irritate your skins, it can cause an underground painful MOAB like zit. It isn't like a normal zit, it is some kind of skin-irritation zit that seems to go away quicker than a normal zit but which is more painful.

After having zits for over 20 years, I am an expert when it comes to zit classification :cool:

OK, back to our regularly schedule program:

After close to a year taking pictures, I quit taking them because I was clear. I've been to a dermatologist a few times over the years since starting this thing and tried to talk to them about it in case they had patients who came in with issues. They didn't seem to care. Those guys are just hopeless.

One thing I'm happy about is I have 2 kids who aren't teenagers yet and when they hit that age, I'm guessing they'll have the same problems and hopefully this will work for them. I can't be certain because I only tried this when I was a lot older so I can't say for certain it would have worked for me when I was younger. My skin was so oily when I was 17 or so the oil was just about dripping off my face. But at least I know what doesn't work and maybe this would have worked for me back then as well.

It may not work for everyone but it worked 100% for me.

And I'd also say this. I know how self-conscious you get when you have zits. I was. I wouldn't want to go in the pool. Sometimes, I wouldn't even want to go out. In college, I'd get some nasty cystic acne on my face and I wouldn't want to go to class. I probably skipped 10% of my college classes because of acne.

But you know what? People don't really care. I've seen some people with horrible acne and it isn't something I find gross or disgusting. Actually, it makes me feel more empathetic for them. Not sorry for them but its like we are in the same boat. So, don't be too self-conscious about it. Seriously. Get out there anyway. When you get older, you won't regret the times you went out, you'll regret all the times you didn't. And honestly, women with a little bit of acne are cute.

Edited by richard_c

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Thanks for sharing your experiences, and congratulations on getting and staying clear. I find it nice to know that only using BP once/day is working for you. It's something I'm currently trying, and I hope it will work in the long run. My skin feels so much better than if I were to use it twice per day.

I agree completely with the final paragraph. I've realized that I have to get out there, or I'll regret it later on. Better to regret what you've done than regretting not doing it. I've got nothing to lose, really, so I'm going to stop worrying so much.

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You're welcome.

I should add that I stopped using the gycolic acid on my back as a prep after the first month and since then I've only use the BP. Nothing else (no moisturizer, etc.). I use the BP once a day after taking a shower and before going to sleep.

If the BP gets on your hair, it will discolor it. It will also discolor any colored clothes you are wearing. Since I just use it before going to sleep, the discoloration isn't too much of an issue.

I pulled up some of the old pictures from when I started the regime. I cropped them to cut out a pic of the left of my back from various weeks to show how things progress.

The thing to notice here is really week 1 to week 2. One thing to look at is the two zits near the top, a small proto-zit at week 1 (just a dot) and another one below it. The small one grows into a normal zit by week two. On week 3, they are done having their fun and they are starting to subside. Week 7 they are fairly faded. At 6 months they are basically gone but you can still faintly notice where they were.

The important takeaway here is that, for me anyway, the BP doesn't stop zit that are starting up. It only helps stop them from starting in the first place. You can see from the pics that from the first week to the third week, it looks like new zits are coming in since the ones that are there grow. But you can also see that there is no new formation over time and eventually things go clear. This is how my entire back was (along with shoulders, etc.)

So, if you have a breakout now and start using BP now, it isn't going to stop what is on its way in the near term. That is a lost cause. But that doesn't mean it won't work longer term. If it isn't stopping new growth after a month,you probably want to try something else, though.

post-152439-1307911784_thumb.jpg

post-152439-1307911784_thumb.jpg

Edited by richard_c

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