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For the last 10 years, I've looked on acne.org for advice. Making this account was long overdue. And for the most part, things I've found on here have worked! But nothing completely got rid of my acne. Let me give you a background of my history.... 

I got my first whitehead when I was 11 years old, thought nothing of it. Scratched it away.  

From ages 11-12, I had a front fringe. I began to experience hundreds of tiny whiteheads all over my forehead, I presume due to the sweat and dirt accumulating. I also experienced bacne and on my chest too. 

This was the first time I went to my GP for medication. They prescribed me duac gel (benzoyl peroxide). I found that it worked for the most part, but my dumbass went outside with it on my face (young and clueless about skin sensitivity). It permanently caused my forehead to be dark and wrinkled. 

Ages 12-13. I had my first period... and the cystic acne began. :smileys_n_people_40:

Since then, I've been on pretty much every antibiotic: tetracycline (shit), doxycycline (meh, didn't do much), erythromycin (godsend! but can't keep going on it). 

I've tried zinc (not sure if I can see a consistent improvement), selenium, biotin, milk thistle, l-lysine. 

Theres probably more I've just forgotten now. The neutrogena light therapy mask is quite good, though I hate buying new activators. 

Currently, my skincare routine consists of jojoba oil or grapeseed oil as moisturisers, neem soap as a cleanser, witch hazel as a toner. 

For a good 3 years I've consistently had a clear forehead and just cysts concentrated on my jawline and chin. Though my previous hormone blood tests came out normal (I should have another). One picture attached with acne on my cheek, is when I was around 16. The other picture attached, with acne across the jawline was probably the worst I've had it. This was the most recent, at age 20. I'm 21 now going 22. 

I want to be prescribed Spironolactone but my GP AND endocrinologist say they cannot prescribe it. 

I haven't had a conclusive test on Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (I have 4 or something cysts, my periods used to be irregular and I have slight hirsutism). 

I've been too scared to use Accutane or Birth control, even though I've been offered it. I know it sounds stupid, if I'm SO desperate for my acne to vanish then why aren't I trying everything? I just can't fathom destroying my body in the long term, I think I can live with the hope that one day my skin will clear up, you know? 

Some days, I want to give up on my skin. Other days, like right now, it's okay but could be better. 

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10 years is a very long time. I could imagine the pain you've been through. Hope this year will be the last year of hell. Feel free to email me if you need someone to talk to. Wishing you luck^_^

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My story is pretty similar to yours! I'm sorry you've had it so long, I know that sucks. I also believe my cystic acne is hormonal and recently did a lot of blood tests only to find that my hormones are supposedly "normal". I looked into Spiro also and wanted to take it but I doubt my dr will prescribe it since I had normal bloodwork. I tried birth control several years ago and I think you are right to avoid it. It didn't help me, especially in the long run. I'm currently on Minocyline, and I think it's helping. Have you tried that antibiotic? It's gentler than doxy, which made me sick, and I haven't had any adverse effects from it yet. My acne has improved since I've been on it! Oh - and I've also been prescribed tretinoin cream (Retin-A) and although it is a bit drying (and makes my skin temporarily red), I've noticed that it has helped some as well! My skin took a little time to get used to it but I think it's definitely worth it!

Again, awfully sorry about your struggles with cystic acne. I'm no dermatologist, but I'd love to talk to you about it and see if either of us can help each other! Good luck with everything!

Edited by LavenderHummingbird

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On 12/4/2018 at 4:07 AM, MrBakery said:

The most coincidental thing is that before you commented this, I bought Nizoral for my partner's dandruff and read that it can have a positive effect on acne! I've been using it, so far nothing...

On 11/30/2018 at 5:48 PM, Agapito said:

10 years is a very long time. I could imagine the pain you've been through. Hope this year will be the last year of hell. Feel free to email me if you need someone to talk to. Wishing you luck^_^

I hope so too! Thank you ^_^

On 11/30/2018 at 6:33 PM, LavenderHummingbird said:

My story is pretty similar to yours! I'm sorry you've had it so long, I know that sucks. I also believe my cystic acne is hormonal and recently did a lot of blood tests only to find that my hormones are supposedly "normal". I looked into Spiro also and wanted to take it but I doubt my dr will prescribe it since I had normal bloodwork. I tried birth control several years ago and I think you are right to avoid it. It didn't help me, especially in the long run. I'm currently on Minocyline, and I think it's helping. Have you tried that antibiotic? It's gentler than doxy, which made me sick, and I haven't had any adverse effects from it yet. My acne has improved since I've been on it! Oh - and I've also been prescribed tretinoin cream (Retin-A) and although it is a bit drying (and makes my skin temporarily red), I've noticed that it has helped some as well! My skin took a little time to get used to it but I think it's definitely worth it!

Again, awfully sorry about your struggles with cystic acne. I'm no dermatologist, but I'd love to talk to you about it and see if either of us can help each other! Good luck with everything!

Knowing that I'm not alone in this is so comforting. Sometimes instead of derms, its better to see what worked/didnt worked for others to find your unique cure. Currently, I'm just taking l-lysine for collagen production and evening primrose oil capsules to alleviate PMS. When I was on erythromycin and doxy, I took milk thistle capsules to detox my liver. A lot of people on Accutane also take it. I think it made a difference. Perhaps start it when you come of Minocyline? 

I haven't tried Minocyline, did it give you an Initial break out? And did you have to wait long to see results? 

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On 12/10/2018 at 4:24 PM, thepsychologist said:

The most coincidental thing is that before you commented this, I bought Nizoral for my partner's dandruff and read that it can have a positive effect on acne! I've been using it, so far nothing...

I hope so too! Thank you ^_^

Knowing that I'm not alone in this is so comforting. Sometimes instead of derms, its better to see what worked/didnt worked for others to find your unique cure. Currently, I'm just taking l-lysine for collagen production and evening primrose oil capsules to alleviate PMS. When I was on erythromycin and doxy, I took milk thistle capsules to detox my liver. A lot of people on Accutane also take it. I think it made a difference. Perhaps start it when you come of Minocyline? 

I haven't tried Minocyline, did it give you an Initial break out? And did you have to wait long to see results? 

Sorry it's taken so long for me to reply, just saw this! I didn't experience an initial breakout from minocycline (at least that I noticed). I do have ONE big new ish cyst, but I think it was caused by a break in my diet. I am currently avoiding dairy and peanuts, both for my face and my gut (I'm lactose intolerant) and with my busy schedule I couldn't keep it up during crazy work hours and everything. The minocycline has kept the rest of everything at bay from what I can tell, and other problem areas have gradually (slowly) shrunk down and gotten better. I'm taking l-lysine as well! I haven't tried primrose oil or milk thistle, I might look into it.

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Dear retin a .1% gel worked for me and I was having the same exact acne as yours for 9 years.. plez try it if you haven't already.. you'll purage for months and all the closed comedones will come to the surface as inflammatory acne but its okay.. I was happy when I purged because I knew I'll be clear soon.. it has been a year since I started using it and it has made a drastic change on my skin.. however, you have to be strong and continue using it to the end.. if you stop acne will return again.. you can msg me in privet if you want to know more about my experience..

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