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First Time Accutane Use - 31F

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Ive been putting a hydrocortisone cream on the rash and it goes away in a couple days, just a generic $4 cream.. That rash was gross lol. Also, I bought a humidifier from the advice of someone on here, its made a HUGE difference in the dry eyes and dry nose when I wake up. I would def suggest getting one.

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Day 45

Same routine/products used, still absolutely LOVING the Mario Badescu Moisture Magnet. My skin feels pretty perfect with it on, very hydrated and, dare I say it, SILKY!

Not too much of a change in symptoms. Maybe a very slight reduction in dry eyes; either that, or I've just been more diligent about putting drops in. Still having trouble opening my eyes when I first wake up, though. Also, I exercised rather strenuously on Tuesday and my hips/hip flexors were RIDICULOUSLY sore for days...didn't really start feeling better until today. As for the acid reflux/headaches etc, both are pretty much gone...I really think the acid reflux must have been food and/or stress related. The rash on the backs of my hands has spread up to my forearms. sad.png I've been putting Aveeno Baby Eczema on it each night, and the Norwegian Formula hand cream on it during the day, which helps.

As far as acne is concerned, I think I'm in the middle of another small breakout. Nothing major, just clogged pores, blackheads and a few small pimples everywhere! Not as bad as round 1, though. And everything heals much quicker than it did pre-'tane, which is nice.

That's all for now! Off to catch up on your progress!! smile.png

Edited by LoveLouisV
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Glad everything is going so well! Are you still liking the double wear?

The hand rash is so strange! Mine spread up my arms, too, then went away, then came back, and now is gone again.

Isn't it amazing how far we have gotten already! I remember someone commenting to me when I started my course that I should be clear by February (the golden 4th month people always talk about), and thinking 'that is SO far away!'. Now it is right around the corner, and I think if my skin keeps improving at the rate it has, Feb will be awesome. Yay!

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SO...I spoke too soon. I raved and raved and raved about the Mario Badescu Moisture Magnet, and it seems like its magnetic powers finally wore off, because the skin on my cheeks/chin/around my mouth is like the freaking Sahara right now. sad.png No clue what I'm gonna try, moisturizer wise. Mulling over another MB moisturizer, the Clinique Moisture Surge, and a couple of others - guess I'll be going to Sephora and begging for samples. For anyone that wants to make suggestions, I'm up for it, as long as you don't suggest CeraVe or Cetaphil. Or Aveeno for that matter. Or Oil of Olay. There are so many brands my skin doesn't like...sigh. Skin still feels somewhat silky, though, and yes Kim28 I am still definitely loving the DoubleWear, even with my dry skin it still looks better than it does with the MUFE Mat Velvet +!

Pretty asymptomatic...standard dry eyes/dry lips (which fluctuate between peeling off in sheets and being very moisturized) and of course dry skin (and hair - although I'm def not complaining about not having oily hair at ALL...actually praying this side effect lasts). Still have the rash on my hands. Been working out too, not too sore at all.

Also going through another breakout, mostly purging blackheads again on my nose. And I think the very first zit I ever got, which was on my nose and which eventually turned into an extremely deep, consistently clogged pore/blackhead, is fighting me. It WILL. NOT. HEAL. It's doing the get irritated, get picked, get raw, scab over, pretend to heal, repeat ad infinitum dance. Sooo frustrating, I just want this sucker to go to hell.

Other than that, everything's good with me, although I'm missing my boyfriend...he's been out of state building race cars (I know, how rad is he??!! smile.png) for the past two weeks now sad.png I miss him!!!! :wub:

Anyway, off to read your logs...best of luck to all!

Ninja-edit: OH YEAH!! Went to my derm, my levels haven't budged whatsoever so I'm going to continue on with the 60mg. I've also been meaning to talk about drinking alcohol while on this drug in my posts. Some people say you shouldn't drink at all, and some people don't drink at all as a result. But I've been drinking throughout this entire course. Grranted, I haven't been drinking a *whole* lot - just 2-3 drinks maximum on any given night out over a period of several hours, and definitely never to the point of intoxication. I was a tiny bit worried about my liver levels when I got my blood test last Monday because I had three drinks while watching Championship Sunday football games last week. But as I said before, they were perfect. I asked my derm about it, and he said as long as I'm not getting shitfaced every night I should be good to go. So...cheers to that! cool2.gif

Edited by LoveLouisV
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glad to hear that your levels stayed the same! That had to be encouraging.

Have you come up with another moisturizer for your face? I actually ordered some of the Moisture Magnet, and it should arrive in a couple of days. I somehow wonder if rotating products helps?

My Sweetie has been gone since the beginning of January, though he isn't doing anything so rad as building race cars. He's been fishing. :P He will come home this weekend, and I can hardly wait!

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Everything sounds good so far! I am a college student, so avoiding alcohol isn't completely feasible. I talked to my derm and she also said that I can drink, so long as it is mostly just beer and not more than twice a week. I havent really followed those guidelines and my liver tests have showed no effects. badgrin.gif

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I have been thinking about cheating on my no alcohol rule, so it is definitely encouraging to hear your labs don't seem to be effected by it. I may ask my derm on the next visit what he thinks based on how my labs are looking so far.

Unfortunately, I don't have much input on the moisturizer front. I had to go back to Cerave because nothing else seemed to be working (I am just praying it doesn't break me out again this time, but it seems to be ok).

During the day I use Vichy Capital Soleil SPF 50 moisturizing cream for sensitive skin (I can only get it from Greece on Amazon, but the stuff is the only SPF moisturizer that doesn't break me out AND still moisturizes). The SPF does not give me ghost face, it helps with redness and it gives me a nice dewy look (that only lasts for about 1 hour on accutane, but still.).

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Also going through another breakout, mostly purging blackheads again on my nose. And I think the very first zit I ever got, which was on my nose and which eventually turned into an extremely deep, consistently clogged pore/blackhead, is fighting me. It WILL. NOT. HEAL. It's doing the get irritated, get picked, get raw, scab over, pretend to heal, repeat ad infinitum dance. Sooo frustrating, I just want this sucker to go to hell.

I have this ... spot (it's technically not a zit but a bunch of weird small zits) that is doing that same thing. It will heal and then a few days later BAM bright red and ugh ugly. Then I get this big white head, it pops and heals up and then before I know it the red spot is back. I have had this spot since I started the Accutane, and most of the time it's calm but every so often it rears it's ugly head. And the redness is just flat, normal skin that just looks....well red.

Edited by emmygirl
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Day 62

I can't believe I'm in my third month already - crazy!

Really not a whole lot of new stuff to report by way of symptoms or routine changes, other than being overall drier everywhere (body skin, skin on face, eyes, lips, hands etc). Prob my own fault, I haven't been drinking as much water. I'm still using the MB Moisture Magnet and I have good and bad days. I haven't made it to Sephora/Ulta yet to look for a new moisturizer, but I think that trip will have to happen this week. I have a couple in mind, and I'm hoping they have samples so I can try before I buy. I think I've seen the Vichy brand, megtree...maybe I'll get a sample of that too, if they have it!

Stupid spot on my nose is still doing the same thing. I also have another spot under my chin, kind of on my neck? Hard to explain the location, but yeah, it started out as a small, painful cyst, and then it finally popped and it's taking FOREVER to heal. Also still seem to be purging the blackheads, although at a slower rate than the first round (month 1). I would love to use a pore strip but can't because of the stupid thing on my nose. Grrrrr! Glad to know it's not just me, though, emmygirl!

Jess - the boyf comes home this Thursday! Seriously counting down the days... I hope you and your sweetie had a great weekend together

Oh, I did take some pics of what I'm using every night before bed and I swear my hands/eyes/lips love me for it in the mornings!



Edited by LoveLouisV
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Enjoy your BF's homecoming! :) Hope your nose is healing, and the spot on your jaw/neck, too. It is so nice to hear about other people's routines, and the products they use. I have discovered that Clinique All About Eyes is great for my eyelids, which had become very dry, but were too sensitive for any of the lotions/creams I had been using. It absorbs quickly, and doesn't leave the lids oily at all.

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I cannot believe I have finally hit 3 months!

But thought I would share with you some things that have really helped with the dry skin on my face.

Firstly, the balm cleanser by Clinique called "Take the day off". It is a bit of a splurge but it gets ALL the makeup off and leaves the skin feeling nice and not dry.. or that dreaded 'tight' feeling. It's made without any artificial ingredients, and (at least for me) does not break me out.

The second would be a sample I received from Sephora recently. It's the Fresh Seaberry Face Oil. This has been an absolute lifesaver! I put a drop into my moisturizer and then massage it into my skin. Most of the time I do it before going to bed, but if I feel my skin is on the drier side then I'll put some on in the morning. I only have the sample, but I may be willing to splurge on this as well because I am so content with how it works on the skin. Also, its important to mention that it does have a little bit of that "herbal" smell, but I don't find it to be something that I can't manage.

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Holy MOLY it's been a long time since I posted. All I have to say about that is, I'm an accountant, it's been year-end closing, and also, I recently found out I'm getting promoted, so I've been training for my new role!!! YAAY!!!

My SO came back from PA, too, for a couple of weeks, so I was spending time with him. Alas, he's been back in PA for a couple of weeks, and it's likely he'll be there on and off until the end of April MAJOR sad face. Ughhhh, it's like a punch to the stomach the sadness I feel when we're apart, but I'm dealing. I'm going to visit him this weekend, so that's a plus!

ANYWAY, back to the log.

Day 92

So...over the past month, my symptoms haven't really changed. My skin has been uber dry, especially on my face, but the body skin is so dry it's painful if I don't moisturize every day. The stupid zit on the underside of my chin went away and then came back and is going away again (very slowly, although it's really not going away, it's just not inflamed). Hand rash is still there, intensity comes and goes depending on how cold it is. And of course, my lips have been ridiculously dry. Oh yeah, still loving the side effect of not having to wash my hair every day. I usually go like 3 days so my hair doesn't freak out and get too dry and unmanageable, though, and I put Argan Oil on it every day when my hair is dry (or if I wash it, I put it on mid-length down before I blowdry and on the ends after I blowdry).

I've been using some of the same products as before but I have switched it up a bit...

  • Still using Aquaphor and Chapstick on my lips during the day and the Vaseline with Cocoa Butter Lip Therapy at night. The latter helps a TON only if I'm diligent about it, but I admit I slack sometimes.
  • On my hands, still using the Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy moisturizer during the day and the Neutrogena Norwegian Formula hand cream at night.
  • On my body, I switched to a slightly more moisturizing body wash (Caress Vanilla and Sandalwood) and Nivea CoQ10 Body Hydration moisturizer for my body, it's not as thick of a consistency as the Eucerin and therefore doesn't take forever to dry, which motivates me to use it more frequently.
  • On my face, I finally went to Ulta this past Saturday (the 1st of March) and talked to a sales rep, who recommended Exuviance Ultra Restorative Creme. It's a weird consistency (very similar to the Norwegian hand creme I'm using which is thicker and tackier than Aquaphor) and has no SPF. It's also green, which is kind of bizarre. I was hesitant to try it, but she said it was flying off the shelves. Also, after mentioning I was on accutane, she pointed out that it is non-comedogenic, non-acnegenic, and is safe for rosacea patients, so I gave it a whirl. So far, I really like it. I put it on my entire face, neck, and lips before bed; it actually looks matte once I rub it in, and sinks in very well.
  • As far as cleansers go, I'm still using the Neutrogena Fresh Foaming cleanser at night only. In the mornings, I either just rinse my face off with water only. But, a couple of times a week, I'll use the Clarisonic Mia with the delicate skin brush head and the Neutrogena Extra Gentle Cleanser (not to be confused with their Ultra Gentle Cleanser, although I did get a few samples of those last time I was at the dermatologist).

Speaking of my derm, labs are still perfect, and I'm still on the 40mg/80mg alternating (which equates to a net 60mg/day) dosage.

So, yeah! YAAY!! I'm pretty happy with my skin, just wish it wasn't so dry! My derm scared me though; he said my oil will return pretty much in full force a few months post-'tane, so I'm kind of sad about that. :( Hopefully it won't be as bad as before, or I'll probably get acne again and will have to go on another course of Accutane! Let's keep our fingers crossed that doesn't happen!

Edited by LoveLouisV
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SO glad to hear that your side-effects aren't getting worse. It sounds like you are seeing some improvement, too!

I love that you list everything you are using. I did end up getting the Mario Badescu Moisture Magnet, and I absolutely love it. It works SO well underneath my makeup. I am going to have to check out the stuff you are using at night, too (the green stuff).

Enjoy your weekend with your SO. :)

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Thanks for all the posts! Just starting Accutane here! It really helps to read posts from others who have gone through the process! Thanks!

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So, I’m back. I know I slacked during my course, but life was busy – I had gotten promoted and my workload doubled. Add to that, I was feeling somewhat depressed because my boyfriend and I hit a rough patch in our relationship due to us being long-distance. I also got diagnosed with PMDD (pre-menstrual dysmorphic disorder – Google it if you don’t know what it is), which was possibly exacerbated by the ‘tane – I was feeling especially anxious and depressed the last few months of my course, which only added to my relationship woes!

ANYWAY! I should catch y’all up on how the rest of my course went.

I last posted on Day 92, which was about 3 months in. I think I was on 60mg/day at that point. My skin finally cleared up completely in the 3rd & 4th months, and after using that Exuviance Ultra Restorative Crème, the dryness subsided (that stuff is a miracle product, let me tell you!). Lips ended up peeling off in sheets and cracking in the corners, which sucked. I did use Neosporin to help mitigate that issue.

Month 5 was a different story. I had a few little tiny breakouts, with little tiny pimples. They all healed pretty quickly, but it turns out it was a harbinger of bad things to come.

My final dose was Cinco de Mayo – May 5th. Skin was pretty clear at that point, although I did have the aforementioned tiny breakouts still occurring. For about 3-4 weeks after my last dose, my skin was perfect – no new acne, skin was not as dry, and lips/hands were healing. Hair was still not oily at all, and I was super happy!

At some point in mid-June, I noticed my skin becoming increasingly more oily throughout the day. Needing to use dry shampoo for my oily 2nd day hair became a thing again. I also got another little tiny breakout. I didn’t think much of it at the time. I had a derm appointment, and he prescribed me Retin-A again for maintenance, which I was thrilled to begin using again (for anti-aging purposes).

Breakouts/oiliness continued, and by mid-July, my skin was almost as oily as it was pre-‘tane, and I had at least one-two actives on my face at all times (during that time of the month, it was more like 6-8). My acne was back, and it was here to stay, it seemed.

In the meantime, I had tried a bunch of samples of products (BB creams, moisturizers, masks, serums, etc). I had also been going to the pool more, which meant using sunblock. And of course I was using the Retin-A. I decided a “cease-fire” on my face was necessary and stopped using everything except Ivory soap and my beloved Mario Badescu moisturizers (right now I love the Kera Moisturizer and The Moisture Magnet).

Skin reached an all-time low last week, and looked almost as bad as it did pre-tane. INNUMERABLE actives, oiliness, irritation, the works. I’m thinking I need to go back for a second course…

…but not before I finish up the last of my pills. I was over-prescribed and had about forty 40mg pills left after my course, so I began taking those last Thursday. In addition, I’ve been doing a TON of research on going dairy-free (DF), and I think I’m going to slowly ease into it while these last 40 pills clear me up/”reset” my skin.

Ideally I’ll be as DF as possible by the time my mini-course is done, and when I’m done it’ll be October. I’ll see how I do for the rest of 2014, and if I start breaking out AGAIN, I’m going back to my derm for another full-blown course.

Wish me luck!

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Sooo, my mini-course worked great - until early November. Then, all hell broke loose again. :( I broke out, not as bad as my July/August breakouts, but they were consistent - tons of tiny little bumps on my face and of course there were always (and still are) at *least* 3-4 angry/inflamed closed comedones or cysts.

Gotta say - I have noticed somewhat of a correlation between the acne flareups and my eating dairy. Every time I eat dairy, I get a breakout within two days. I haven't been able to entirely cut it out because I go out to eat a lot and it's nearly impossible, but when I am not purposely eating it, my skin looks better.

I did start Retin-A a couple weeks ago, and using the Mario Badescu Kera moisturizer and some pure aloe vera gel and have noticed a slight improvement since then. Skin is the clearest today that it's been since early November - but even today, I'm still "broken out". Mostly the really tiny bumps, and some PIH, and one or two inflamed comedones.

Went to my derm today and he gave me a 'script for Adapalene (basically Differin - but without the BP) and Benzaclin. I think I might have tried the Benzaclin before - not sure though. Also, he recommended PCA's Blemish Control Bar to use as a cleanser.

In all honesty, I don't know if I'm going to try all three of these things. My skin FREAKS out when I use a lot of different products at once, so *if* I try them, I'm going to do so verryyyyy slowly.

I think I might just stick with the Retin-A/aloe vera routine for now and see what happens (and maybe I'll sub out the Retin-A for the Adapalene), and will probably start off with using the Benzaclin and the Blemish Control cleanser once a week each. I really don't want to overwhelm my skin, or over-dry it.

So...we'll see what happens!

Derm said if all's not clear in 3-4 months, I might have to do a second round of 'tane. I'm hoping I don't have to go this route, but we shall see.

Wish me luck, my loves! :)

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Oh, hi! 

Sooo it's been a year since I updated, and about two since I first began taking Accutane, and guess what?  I'm about to start a second course. 

I actually also only took 30 of the 40 remaining pills I had leftover, because my skin cleared up so nicely that I didn't need to take all 40.  Over the past year, I've taken 7 of the remaining 10 during a period of horrible breaking out, and it's done wonders to keep me clear...I've been able to stay clear for about a month and a half with just one pill, and then I start breaking out again.  And yeah, I probably shouldn't be taking them without a doctor's supervision and yadda yadda but I have pretty much been abstinent (relationship ended in May :() and go to the doctor regularly for allergy shots and semi-annual bloodwork which is a benefit of the company I work for, and all is well on the health front :) 

It should be mentioned that my skin is not NEARLY as bad as it was before Accutane.  If my skin was a 10 on the "horrible" (for me) scale pre-tane, then these breakouts are probably like a 6-7.  But, for me, that's still bad - still causes me to not want to go out in public.  Skin oiliness isn't as bad, blackheads aren't as bad, BUT my skin is still not clear and breaks out routinely. 

I could make this post super long and go into detail on what I've tried, but for brevity's sake, here are the things I've tried over the past year and my results:

  • Oil-cleansing method about once a week - AMAZING for clearing blackheads from nose, cheeks just on the sides of nose, but I've noticed breakouts in other areas a few days afterward if oil gets onto those areas.  I use baby oil, aka mineral oil and per this comedogenicity guide, it's one of the better oils to use for OCM as it does not clog pores. 
  • Limited dairy diet - some noticeable improvement in skin, indeterminable long-term results
  • Going off limited dairy - worsening of skin, increase in breakouts
  • Testing to see if my acne was really pityrosporum folliculitis; used2% pyrithione zinc cleansing bar - noticeable improvement at first; skin adjusted
  • Adapalene - noticeable improvement at first; skin adjusted
  • Increasing doseage of topical tretinoin (Retin-A) - too harsh for my skin, not sustainable 
  • BenzaClin - noticeable improvement at first; skin adjusted.  Too drying/irritating.
  • PCA Skin Blemish Bar (sulfur based cleanser) - some improvement at first; skin adjusted
  • Switching up the brush head on my Clarisonic to the cashmere (softest brush head) - skin seems to like the milder exfoliation, but other than not being as sensitive, I noticed no difference in breakouts
  • Switching pillow cases, towels, wash cloths more regularly - some improvement in skin
  • Washing makeup brushes more regularly - some improvement in skin
  • Tony Moly Korean sheet masks - love these, and they really seem to hydrate my skin when it needs it (because it is still very sensitive); unclear on if they've contributed to breakouts (1/3 times I've used them I've gotten a breakout right after, but said breakout was likely due to other factors)

So, that's all for now.  I'm going to start another log once I start back up on Accutane.  I'll link to it when I do, but for now I'll just post here.  I just took my first blood/pregnancy test yesterday, so I've got a month to go before I'll start again.  Luckily, I still had 3 of my pills from my last course, so I took one last night, will take another on the 11th, and another on the 21st, and then I'll be on Accutane again :)  I'm totally cheating, but whatever.  Accutane works, and hopefully a full-fledged second course will keep me clear longer than like a month. 

Wish me luck!  <3

Edited by LoveLouisV
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On 12/16/2015, 2:31:31, LeftRidingCropInMortuary said:

Great diary, loads of info, thanks! 

Thanks!  Be sure to check out my new log :)  I'll be starting it today (just started 'tane again on Thursday Jan 7th)! 
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I have tried everything to get rid of my acne. I've had it for almost 10 years now. Last summer I went on Accutane but I only stayed on it for 4 months due to its outrageous price. You don't really see the best results within the first month or two. Usually u just notice how dry ur whole body is getting and all of the side effects. I was put on antidepressants while I was taking this because I was constantly crying. I had serious headaches and stomach aches while I was on it filled by periods of temporary blindness. I hated Accutanes side effects I felt horrible for those four months but my skin did clear up. It wasn't completely clear I still had a breakout every now and then but it worked great! I've been off of it for almost a year now and my acne is completely back and my skin looks horrible...

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