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Sudden Adverse Reactions

I had been using and loving the acne.org products for several months. I was up to the full dosage of benzoyl with zero issues. I followed all of Dan's suggestions, and my skin looked GREAT! But one day, I started noticing some irritation around one of my eyes. Over the course of three weeks, that irritation started showing up little by little in different areas. I started noticing that my skin was super itchy, especially right after applying the products. At the time I was using the acne.org benzoyl, aha and moisturizer. One morning I woke up to red, puffy, itchy eyes and itchy, red skin. I think my skin would be itchy at night so I scratched it in my sleep and that's what caused the puffiness. I tried lowering my product usage and then began eliminating products all together to find the culprit that was causing all of the irritation. It wasn't until I was off the products completely that I was no longer experiencing these symptoms.

I've been off the products for over three months now and my acne is back and AWFUL. I really want to go back on the acne.org products (it's the only system that truly cleared my skin), but I don't want to experience the symptoms I did before (they would last all day and it would cause people to ask "what happened?"). It was the weirdest thing though, because my skin adapted well to the products and I was fine for several months and then suddenly it was like my skin was severely allergic to ALL THREE products!

The only thing that I could link the cause to was the fact that I had started taking oral contraceptives shortly before I began having these reactions. I've recently switched pills because my skin has gotten worse acne-wise. It's been three weeks on the new pill and I think my skin has calmed down a bit.

My questions are: has anyone experienced these problems with the product after having been on them for awhile? Has anyone linked birth control pills to changing the way these products worked for them? I really want to use the products again!

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Ok, so I will try to keep this short :) I tend to give too many details, but I know exactly where you're coming from. :( I'm sorry you feel this let down, after something that was nearly miraculous is now causing damage. I've been there too many times.

Short story (I'll try lol): I used birth control from 12 years old til I was about 18 for the management of acne. My mom put me on it because she knew that my skin would break out horribly so she wanted to prevent it. Thank God she did. I was also using proactiv for years which also seemed to manage my mild acne. I decided to go off the pill when I was 18, partly because I hated being nauseated. :( That year my skin gradually got soooo bad- cysts and painful lesions I NEVER had in my life. I went on accutane in 2009 and back on a form of birth control. My skin cleared up, but I didn't go back to proactiv or benzoyl.

A year after I was off accutane (June 2010), I tried proactiv one night, and my face was a bright, red, swollen balloon. I couldn't move my face, my eyelids were so swollen and tight I could barely open them, and I had blisters all around my mouth. I was HORRIFIED the next morning!!! So I didn't use it ever again. I realized I had an allergic reaction to it for some reason.

Flash forward to January 2011. My skin had gotten as bad if not worse as it was before accutane. It was HORRIBLE and painful. My friend convinced me to start the regimen, since it did wonders for her and she has flawless glowing skin. I told her I'm allergic to benzoyl peroxide, but decided to get the products anyway. I had just switched back to the birth control I used in high school (ortho tricycline) around that time because I was on the wrong form....

In early february of this year I started the regimen. At first, my skin didn't react as bad as I thought. Actually, my body tolerated it quite well, and the acne cleared up on my back and chest. My skin on my face was red and tingly, but I was just hoping it would work. My skin got very very very dry no matter how much moisturizer I put on. It was super red the whole time, I got a bad break out, but then around 6 weeks of using it faithfully, my skin began to clear. Around week 8-9, I started to get these yellow, crusty, oozy patches on my cheek bones close to my eyes. I still used the BP, but just avoided those areas. Even though my skin was a red peely mess, I didn't have acne and I didn't want to give up on the Regimen so soon. One night I applied the BP on my back as usual, and within an hour my back was really itchy. I didn't really notice it, until I thought I could have been having an allergic reaction. :( I stopped using it altogether for a few days, After the rash went away, I tried it again in a spot on my back, and it was pink and itchy. So I decided that I had to stop doing damage to my skin and find another solution :( But I was like you... I wanted to keep using the products since nothing had cleared my skin that good.

So, to come to the bottom of it: I believe anything you expose yourself to for a long time you can become intolerant to it. For example, my friend who never had more than a dozen pimples in her life, suddenly started breaking out in cysts and pimples everywhere. She discovered it was a wheat allergy. Why did it show up and bother her at 24 years old? She probably developed an intolerance to wheat. Another example is my mom said that for years she used benzoyl peroxide products, and then one day just developed an allergic reaction and couldn't use it anymore. Unfortunately, this may be the case for you. I know it is for me.

I'm not sure if birth control has much to do with it reacting to the benzoyl, but it definitely can make your acne worse. All forms are different, especially generic brands. I used some brand (can't remember it) last year that I had never tried before...and my skin exploded with acne. It threw my hormones all out of whack. Luckily I had brains to use my old birth control that I knew managed my acne. I'm not sure what birth control to recommend to you though. I would avoid generic brands though. They aren't the same!

This year has been a very long journey to clear skin, with many many many ups and downs. Luckily, my derm is amazing and really listens to my concerns. After a bad reaction to a retin-A, he prescribed me finacea gel which has been the best decision I made as far as skin care goes. Since accutane, my skin is extremely sensitive to many products and chemicals. This topical though is very very mild and doesn't even irritate my skin or make it red. I had no initial breakout. It's taken a few weeks, but the $160 tube is worth it. All the clogged pores and blackheads and major pimples are gone. The breakouts I've had were from hormones or food, so my skin isn't perfect but....it's pain free, smooth, and 99% clear. I hope this greatly helps you!! Also, everything I've listed in my signature is how I've gotten clear. Keep me updated!

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I have the exact same problem. I've been using the bp from acne.org for at least over a year, and just now in the past month it has started to become very itchy and very dry, but not in the same way when i first began. So ive stopped using the treatment and my acne is coming back. Im looking to try other ways besides bp to get clear skin. That the first thing ive thought to do. Oh and im a guy, so the same thing happens to me with no birth control.

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I have had the same experience. I was loving the products which I think I first discovered around 9 or 10 months ago. Suddenly, after all these months, I started having itching, redness and swelling. After eliminating all skin products and reintroducing them one at a time, it seems that I cannot tolerate the AHA+ or the Moisturizer. I can use the Acne Treatment, thank goodness. I don't take any medications, so that can't be it. I thought it might be jojoba oil, but I reacted to using the AHA+ last night and I don't think there is any jojoba in it. Could it be the Lichochalcone (licorice)? That's the stuff that makes it yellow.

My symptoms are itching, swelling (after rubbing/scratching), particularly around my eyes. Then the skin starts flaking. When this first started the closest thing the reaction resembled was seborrheic dermatitis.

Without the Acne Treatment my skin breaks out badly. I'm glad I seem to be able to use it. Just can no longer use the yellow things. At least that is my theory so far!

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Hey, I've experienced the same thing... I was on the regimen for 5 years. I changed things around a bit, started to use jojoba oil stopped using jojoba oil (because I felt it was clogging my pores) then I stopped the regimen all together cause my skin was already clear and I tried to find an alternative (big mistake). I tried the regimen again using BP, then I experienced severe burning, itching, and swelling, which caused me to miss several days of work... probably an allergic reaction? I was on and off this for awhile, but BP is the only thing that worked for me. I'm only going to use a very teeny tiny amount and work my way up.. using it only once a day for the first week.

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