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halina

time is so tricky, isn't it?

i ditched the DKR regimen about a year ago. it wasn't doing anything for me anymore.

i went to my doctor and he put me on clindamycin pledgets & differin. the clindamycin worked for about 6 months, and, as usually, the differin had absolutely no effect on my face whatsoever. two tubes and $160 later, i'm...well, unhappy about that.

simultaneously, i also used carley's clear & smooth (or whatever it's called) as a treatment. i used their "exotic" moisturizer, too. blah on both.

about two weeks ago, i started some new things. here's my new routine:

AM:

cleanser: dr. bronner's peppermint castile soap

toner: alcohol-free witch hazel

moisturizer: cerave

PM:

cleanser: dr. bronner's peppermint castile soap

toner: alcohol-free witch hazel

moisturizer: cerave

extra: dan's AHA+

sleep: sleep on a fresh towel every night

also, i tend to throw some ACV on my face every once in awhile, and i drink some of it with apple juice when i feel like it.

i'm also going to start using queen helene's mint julep mask once per week. it felt amazing last week when i used it for the first time. also, i've done two egg white masks this week -- i think i'm going to make those a weekly event, too.

something's obviously working, even though i'm only about two weeks into this new regimen. i've only had ONE new zit on my forehead. i'm pretty blown away, especially since i'm PMSing right now and this is the time of month when my face usually explodes. when i first started posting on this blog, i got lots of cysts around period time. within the past two years, i've gotten fewer and fewer cysts. honestly, the cysts were only a problem when i was in grad school -- it was either the stress or my living environment. i'm still stressed out from work, so i'm guessing it was the living environment. a terrible, university-subsidized apartment with terribly recycled air and MOLD. yes, mold. the humidity in there was disgusting and it undoubtedly messed up my face, i'm thinking.

i should post a pic soon to compare with my pics from four-ish years ago! i'm twenty six now, so...hopefully all of this zit stuff is on the way out.

halina

LONG time!

wow, it has been a LONG TIME since i wrote a blog entry here. i've been doing "the regimen" for over a year now. i should really post some updated pics when i have the time. here's the story: after using the regimen posted below for a good 3 or 4 months, my face REALLY cleared up big time. the salicylic acid i added to my regimen really improved things. throughout the spring & summer, my face cleared and cleared and cleared. the AHA helped my red/brown spots to pretty much disappear. however, october rolled again and i started breaking out again. i guess my face just doesn't like cold weather.

anyway, i find it amazing that i've been using the same Purpose bar for over a year. that stuff LASTS.

here's my current regimen:

AM:

-wash with Purpose bar soap

-acne.org 2.5% BP

-acne.org AHA+

PM:

-wash with Purpose bar soap

-acne.org 2.5% BP

-acne.org AHA+

-acne.org Salicylic+

i look like a slave to acne.org, but the BP really IS the best deal out there. the AHA is cheaper by oz than the Alpha Hydrox brand that i was using, and the salicylic acid is MUCH cheaper by ounce than the clean & clear SA that i struggled to use every day. (the tube is so tiny and i'm certainly not made of money, so i tried to only apply very little. with the acne.org stuff, i can use as much as my face needs.)

a friend of mine started using goat's milk soap the other day. she said her redness has decreased DRAMATICALLY. any thoughts? i'm considering giving it a go.

woo! here's to hoping things get better.

halina

week 13!

Wow, happy week thirteen. I will be posting pictures soon, but my face has cleared up considerably since I started the regimen. Of course, I've added to it and tweaked with it a bit. Here's my schedule for both AM and PM:

1. wash with Purpose bar

2. use 2.5% BP (from acne.org)

3. AHA souffle (12% glycolic acid)

4. Cetaphil moisturizer

5. tiny dabs of clean & clear 2% SA on active zits

I'm still getting occasional cysts, especially before my period...but I really think my face has improved! There are soooo many red marks, it seems, but a fair amount of them are fading (especially in that problem area between my chin and right cheek).

Hurray!

halina

week 7: saturday

So, I have mono. I am still doing the regimen but it's not the first thing on my mind right now. My aching spleen is! Ughhhh. Still waiting for that period; I just had five cysts on my right cheek but they went away within a few days. I've got one on my left cheek now; whatever. I'm icing it and we'll see what happens.

halina

week 5: wednesday

still no period, and my face is still breaking out. well, it's pretty much confined to the area between my chin & cheek on the right side of my face. i am REALLY frustrated right now, as i was just looking at photos of my face from just ONE YEAR AGO. it was SO much better back then. i really miss it, and i wish i knew what the heck was causing all of this crap. i wish i could get off of my progestin-only birth control pill for a month or too to see if that would help, but i'd be too afraid of making accidental babies! :pray:

halina

week 4: friday

It feels as if my period's coming soon -- and I'm breaking out. It's NOT that bad, though, which is a fantastic thing. I've got a few zits but none of them are the super-painful kind. I'm still trudging on with the regimen, although I just recently switched to the Purpose bar cleanser (this was after my breakout began, so I know it's not from that!). It seems to work well so far, and the scent isn't all that bad. I just didn't want to continue using Cetaphil with its SLS after I spent a lot of money on a shampoo without SLS!

Also, it's worth noting that I'm finding it easier and easier to avoid touching my face during the day now! It's not the huge effort that it used to be. The one thing I've got to work on is how I often wake up on my side to find my hands tucked underneath whatever cheek is pressing the pillow! :pray:

halina

week 4: monday

So, I've been on the regimen for almost a month! Right now, my face is peeling like a BASTARD. My neck was really peely this past week, and right now it's mostly my chin and lower cheeks that are peeling like crazy. It burns mildly when I get it wet or put on lotion.

I think I might be getting BP too close to my lips, or something....they hurt quite a bit and are very dry. I've been using chapstick lately and it seems to burn when I put it on.

My forehead is entirely clear right now at this point, except for red spots and a few small dents that I think are going to end up as scars. The previously-active areas in front of my ears have toned down considerably! There's a lot of red marks, and maybe only one active zit on each side -- and they're not very large or painful. My chin has actually broken out MORE since I've been on the regimen, for some reason, but I dont' really mind because my chin is always quick to clear up for some reason. My neck is doing okay -- there one active zit on the left side of my neck, but a lot of red spots. The WORST spot, by far, is the jawline on my right-hand side (left, if in a mirror). I am getting three pimples there, but they're not very inflamed -- they're just hard lumps, sort of.

I am up to 2/3 of a finger of BP right now, and I'm not going to increase for awhile until this flaking/burning stops! I have also reduced my AHA application to once a day on the dry and painful parts. I'm also putting a (dry) cold compress on my face for about ten minutes each night.

I can't wait for this to get even better! :pray: I am still using all of the same products, but I did just recently buy the Purpose gentle cleansing bar. I've heard such good things about it and I really want to stop using stuff with SLS in it (Cetaphil) to see if that helps any. But, at the same time, I don't want to make a change right now to something with fragrance until my face gets a little less angry-feeling! :pray:\

halina

week 3: monday.

Sorry I skipped out on writing during week 2! It's probably because nothing much seemed to happen during week 2. Now, I am starting to notice some definite peeling on my neck and my chin. I am up to almost a half-finger of the BP -- but keep in mind, I have relatively small hands, so I don't think it's all that much yet.

I don't have any *huge* active pimples at this point. There are some mediocre ones, though. I'm diong my best to not touch and to leave them alone, but it always seems like more are forming (or are ready to form) on my right jawline.

I'm pretty happy with the left side of my face right now -- gosh, if only my entire face looked like that! Geez. All smooth, no bumps, just a few flat red marks and maybe a zit or two that are raised SLIGHTLY.

I am also pretty happy with my forehead right now -- despite one huge zit on the right, a formerly active zone on the left has quieted down and is now just composed of red spots.

I am using the 12% glycolic acid AHA cream as a spot treatment for newly-forming zits, and I am also testing it on two patches on the right side of my face. I've been doing this for about a week and a half, and I can't for sure comment about its effects quite yet.

halina

week 1: sunday

Okay, my week goes from Monday to Sunday on this thing. Today is the last day of week one, and I think my face is doing somewhat better. There are no huge "nodules", if I'm using the proper term, but I had a cold this week so I did get some zits on and around my nose. I think I've had a few tiny ones form on my jawline, but nothing too serious or noticeable. Some of the zits on my neck are itchy, I've noticed, and I wonder to what extent they might be some kind of allergic reaction. I have no idea.

My forehead is looking good; it has one small active zit right now. Otherwise, it's full of red marks. The right side of my face (my own right) is always the problematic side; there are a lot of red spots there now, but few active areas.

halina

week 1: friday

Well, it's friday now, and there are basically no active zits on my face -- maybe only one or two. I have a cold right now, and I know I've got one on my nose (probably from the irritation of all my gross nose-blowing!). Overall, I feel pretty good about my progress so far! I did receive the DK gel in the mail yesterday, so last night was my first night using it. It is SUCH a good value -- so cheap, compared to the Neutrogena on-the-spot stuff. The texture was pretty interesting too, and it sure didn't smell as bad as the Neutrogena stuff.

Time to take care of this cold first; my face really is on the back burner for now! That reminds me, I've got to do the regimen right now....I still haven't forgetten yet, at all. I guess that's a good sign!

halina

week 1: tuesday

So, today's my second day of the regimen. My face was really oily yesterday (I used generic Cetaphil moisturiser; I'm back on the name-brand stuff now, which is less oily I think!), and in the evening yesterday it started to get pretty itchy. Today's been pretty good so far, skin-wise! I did wake up with a nice big whitehead on my chin, and it looked ready to explode. I cleaned it up nicely with some hydrogen peroxide so it wouldn't spread to other areas.

Also, I've been dotting some of my new 12% Glycolic AHA cream on some select zits to see what kind of an effect it has. I haven't really noticed much improvement yet, but we'll see.

I also put my normal shampoo on the shelf and invested in some shampoo that has no laurel/laureth sulfates. Burt's Bees, pomegranate-scented! It DID cost about seven bucks, but hopefully it will stop some of the breakout near my hairline.

halina

week 1: monday

Hi everyone! So, last night was my first day of trying the regimen. I am using both name-brand and generic Cetaphyl cleanser (depending on if I'm in the shower or at my sink), Neutrogena On-the-spot 2.5% BP, and generic cetaphyl unscented lotion.

I really hope this works! It's been difficult so far, for the mere two applications I've done; I didn't realize how HARD I really press my face when I'm not thinking about it. I've also caught myself touching my face a lot during the day; I'm making a conscious effort to stop (or at least reduce) the number of times I do it.

It's sort of depressing that I own so much (wasted) salicylic acid stuff, and other really strong BP products, and even some prescriptions that I paid so much money for. Oh well; I hate throwing things away, so maybe I can give them away to friends who might be able to actually use them.

I'm actually quite excited about this -- I have a really positive outlook although I know the results might be mild. I'm willing to try anything, I guess, at this point. I am 23 and ready for this to be over! It's horomonal acne, though, and I've heard this sort of stuff REALLY likes to stick around. I just wish it weren't so painful! I guess I should feel fortunately that it's along my jawline and on my neck mostly, and by my ears...and not on my cheeks or anything. it's pretty prominent on my forehead, too.

I'm currently experimenting with the Aleve thing too; I took one yesterday and today. I figure that it can't hurt, mostly because I'm having cramps anyway and I would be taking a Tylenol anyhow.

Oh, I also bought some 12% AHA for spot treatment...I am currently testing it in an "inconspicuous area" to make sure it doesn't do weird things to me. I've used 10% before, all over my face, and I remember it working beautifully with scant side effects -- so I hope this stuff will be tolerable and work just fine.

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