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Hi everyone,

As of today, I've been on Epiduo for a little under three months. To preface, I've never had terrible acne- its what I personally would call mild/moderate but relative to some on here, it is pretty mild. The toll that even this has taken on me has been huge- large enough to warrant multiple dermatologist visits, infinitely many OTCs, home remedies, you name it- I cant imagine having it any worse and I truly sympathize with everyone who does. It sucks. I do have very fair skin and so it seems to highlight redness and acne much more so than someone with a greater tan.

I started epiduo going on three months ago and haven't found it helpful, at least not yet. In my opinion, I have the same degree of acne I had before I began; however, it seems exacerbated because of the side effects I have experienced. My face seems to have a red tint to it which is a common concern, and resolved spots leave a darker redish spot which I guess is hyper-pigmentation. I have not experienced dryness or peeling at all but I have been consistent with a moisturizer.

The routine I currently follow is AM: Cerave cleanser followed by Cerave AM spf 30 and PM: Cerave cleanser followed by Epiduo. I have after a recommendation from a friend tried the Indian Healing Clay mask on multiple occasions since using Epiduo and I feel that may be contributing to the redness as well.

My questions are these. Should I consider a day off routine such as using it for 2 or 3 days and then just using a moisturizer on the day off? After three months, should I even continue with epiduo or pursue a non-BPO treatment? Any recommendations for reducing the redness/PIH/marks? My forehead, which I never apply Epiduo to or for that matter anything to aside from sunscreen, remains perfectly clear with only the rare pimple on my hairline- is that perhaps a sign that these treatments are only causing a greater problem and I go more minimalist?

I really appreciate any advice from someone who has had success with epiduo or is in anyway similar to me. This community really is the best thing going for acne sufferers, and I plan on keeping up with my progress (if there is any).

Thanks guys and for those suffering, remember there are things far far worse to have in this world than acne. Keep your head up!

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It looks like we have a similar skin type, and epiduo has worked really well for me.

Here are some tips/advice that my doctor gave me when he first prescribed epiduo.

1. Less is more - only apply a pea size amount to the whole of your face

2. When first starting using it, I was to only use it every 3rd day at night, and slowly build up from there.

3. Its important to moisturise after applying epiduo (waiting for about 10 mins for it to soak in properly before applying the moisturiser). Actually this is the part where you are probably struggling with. I know that I experimented a couple of months ago with dropping my night time moisturiser as I felt that my skin was getting too oily. What happened was my face was starting to get red in places, and I also started to break out again (only mild acne but after being clear it was concerning). After speaking to my doctor he asked if I'd changed anything and after telling him about the moisturiser he told me it was really important to keep my skin hydrated as it reduces inflamation and irritation.

4. Apply a topical antibiotic to any pimples that appear (after applying epiduo at night but can also spot treat during the day). I use eryacne (I'm in australia).

Anyway, those are all the tips I can give you apart from be really gentle with your face, leave out scrubs, masks or anything else that may irritate your skin and hopefully in a months time you'll see a big difference in your skin.

Good luck and let us know how you get on :)

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I really appreciate the tips AyeAye. I think you're right about irritation and the need to moisturize as one of my main problems, it just seems like my face is so oily already like you said. Do you still ever skip days or do anything to relieve redness? Its been 3 months for me so I have to imagine my skin is used to the epiduo but it still seems irritated. Also do you find that pimples linger or at least remain red longer with epiduo/bpo?

I've strongly been considering stepping down all of this stuff and gradually working my way away from all these products or at least using them much less frequently. My skin was never perfect before but considering it never looked like this or involved such a delicate balancing act, I'd give a lot to have it like it was.

Also AyeAye, Im sure you get this a ton but you look like a carbon copy of Alex from Orange Is the New Black, especially in your profile picture. The glasses are on point too.

Cheers guys

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Haha I had to google who Alex is. Never heard of the show but I'll concede that maybe the hair, lips and glasses are the same. She looks like me though, as I'm much MUCH older. Damn I hate it when people copy my look ;)

I know what you mean about wanting to stop all the treatment, however after trying to stop many many times over the years I've come to accept that acne will be my longest and closest companion for life. Hopefully you'll have better luck.

Before stopping anything, just try moisturizing at night. Who cares if you're greasy before going to bed, only your pillow can complain and I really do think that you'll see good results. You have mild acne so it's strange that the epiduo hasn't worked yet for you. So frustrating!

Your skin looks good to me, and don't forget we are our own worse critics. :)

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You're certainly right about being your own worst critic. Ive been moisturizing routinely and my skin feels great to the touch however I cant kick the redness in the active spots and old spots. As far as side effects go, prolonged redness seems to be the only one I've had. AyeAye, do you notice that the texture of your face is different on Epiduo than it was before?

I think how I will proceed now is by using epiduo on my cheeks (my main problem area) but ween myself off of it from my jawline and in between my eyebrows to see if Im creating this problem. Going back through old pictures, my old acne was incredibly mild and maybe only even there in the first place because of the cocktail of OTCs I tried. I have avoided using Epiduo on my forehead altogether and it is as close to perfect as my skin can be. I obviously don't want to undue any progress I have made, but I really cant help but think that Im making my skin worse so that it can (hopefully) be just about where it was before, especially if means my skin will be dependent on the gel.

My dermatologist has also given me a prescription for Oracea (doxycycline 40 mg) that I began yesterday. Apparently the antibiotic only functions as an anti-inflammatory and has none of the disadvantages of a higher dosage. I really don't know why but I feel optimistic at the Oracea so Im hoping for the best.

Again AyeAye thanks for chiming in- I'm not giving up yet!

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No I'm not experiencing the same thing as you while on Epiduo. My skin looks and feels really good, smooth, no dryness and soft to touch. I did follow the regimen first though and the first 2-3 months of following that was pure hell with burning, dryness and redness but once my skin adjusted to the BP, my acne cleared, my skin looked good and I've not looked back.

When switching from the regimen to epiduo I did find that my skin dried out a little (which was weird because I was using a lot less product by using epiduo) and I broke out a little too, but that all cleared up within a couple of months. Now I probably get 1-2 small pimples per month which is what I consider to be 'normal', eg what the average person gets. But I know for certain that the moment I stop using epiduo my skin will break out and my good friend acne and I will be reunited. :)

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