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acne continues, what else can I do?

I've had acne for a long time, I'm 23 now. I thought it would have gone away by now, but no. It's never been severe, except for one huge cyst I got once. I gave up with the common treatments and got prescribed clindamycin/benzoyl peroxide topical treatment. That really helped a lot but I am still having breakouts from time to time.

Lately they have been very strange, like cysts but painless, soft, very round, the size of dimes or nickels, and either very red or completely colorless. They are extremely variable in that they can appear suddenly or slowly, may last a day or a month, randomly and quickly change size, and may disappear completely and reappear many times. Exclusively on my forehead.

My skin is very strange. It is either dry and peeling, or very oily and peeling, just messy. I wash my face twice a day with oil-free soap, use the antibiotic as prescribed, and have started using the salicylic acid and additional benzoyl peroxide but this doesn't make a difference.

How can it be so dry and oily at the same time? What else can I do for my skin before seeking another prescription? Can I use a moisturizing product with the antibiotic?

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Simple, you're stripping your skin. When you strip it your skin will be dry, as in the surface of the epidermis. (Sometime you may get a really tight feeling). So the only way your body can get moisture to that part of your skin is, you guessed it, to produce oil (sebum). Now if you keep removing that it's going to be a positive feedback loop and just keep producing excessive amounts/produce more. 

You will still need you use your medication on you cystic like lesions but ditch the oil free cleanser and get an organic one with good oils and no parabens (why you have to go organic). Alternate between the oil cleanser and a glycolic cleanser (or just use a glycolic serum afterwards, before bed). 

For you right now: Oil-free cleanser, benzoyl peroxide = bad. Glycolic acid, salicylic acid and organic, oil based cleanser = good. Medication = a necessary evil to combat your cystic acne. 

Try it and see how it goes. Limit touching your face, still don't over wash, maybe look into 'oil cleansing'. You don't need expensive products, just good quality ingredients.

Oh and  yes, you can definitely use a moisturiser with the AB, however try to treat the cause rather than manage the symptom.

Good luck, let me know if I can help further.
 

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