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  1. I think after 12 weeks of tretinoin, your skin should be pretty well adjusted to it. What kind of climate do you live in? If you live in an area that experiences a harsh winter, it could just be the lack of humidity that's drying you out. I live in Wisconsin and it's just a fact of life that winter = dry air. The dry air sucks the moisture from your skin, so it's really important to find a good moisturizer (especially while on tretinoin!). My personal favorite for winter is ATOPalm MLE Inten
  2. I'm on my 11th week of Retin-A. During the first 2-6 weeks, I experienced the WORST breakout of my life. Thankfully, 99% of it is healed but I'm left with a face full of redmarks. I did a bit of research and found that the marks can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years (2 years being the absolute worst-case). The good news is that being on a retinoid, the redmarks will fade faster because your skin is turning over so quickly. An interesting tid bit: I read that the red marks are actually
  3. I had the same stomach issues with tetracycline. I would take it around 10AM, and around 11-11:30, I was queasy and had mild stomach cramps. So, I'd eat something small like a granola bar and then I'd be ok. Since I was told to take it every 12 hours, I would take it again around 10PM (before going to bed) so I could sleep through the upset stomach. Unfortunately, I didn't stay on it long enough to see any benefits. It did a great job of bringing everything out, so I have to believe it wo
  4. Jack, I'm using Benzamycin in addition to the tretinoin (it's benzoyl peroxide + erythromycin, an anti-biotic). I use the Benz in the morning and the tretinoin at night. I used this combination with great success about 10 years ago. It completely got everything under control... then, I went off my meds for a few years and progressively I ended up with the worst acne I've ever had. When I first inquired about going back on the topical meds, my doc gave me tetracycline 500mg, 2x daily. It
  5. Thanks for the encouragement, Nike. To answer your question, I use ATOPalm MLE Intensive Moisturizing Cream. I currently do not use sunscreen, since I rarely the sun this time of year (I'm in Wisconsin and our winters are rather brutal). ATOPalm is the only thing that can keep my skin moisturized in this climate, actually. In the summer I use Neutrogena Oil Free Moisturizer, which has sunscreen. I didn't know that the sun would make the red marks worse!! Thanks for the tip.
  6. I just had to post an update, now that it's been 8 weeks on tretinoin. I'm finally beginning to see some improvement! Things are starting to flatten out and my skin is pretty smooth (albeit sensitive and red!). That IB is ROUGH! I'm so glad it's over... although I still have a ways to go overall!
  7. Wow, I'm so glad I found this thread. I'm currently using benzamycin and retin-a. I'm 24 and this combo worked to clear me up when I was 14-15. I LOVE benzamycin! The only bad thing is it has to be refrigerated. Mala - yes, you can use makeup over benzamycin. Just be sure your skin absorbs it first. After your skin aborbs it, use a moisturizer. Let your skin absorb the moisturizer. Then dab on concealer as needed. Since benzamycin really dries your skin, moisturizing is important a
  8. That makes sense. It's SO hard to resist pulling them out and I'm ok refraining from picking at the ones that are nested w/in the skin. But when they're just hanging out of the pore having popped on their own, I feel like I have to do something. In that instance, I should remove the exposed puss and apply benzamycin? I think if I'd leave it alone and try to apply benzamycin, it would break open and do a lot more damage by not extracting the entire "sack"... I would think, anyway.
  9. This is worse than before I started tretinoin, but not much. I had a bunch of red marks that've come to the surface with a vengence! I'm cycling through whiteheads like crazy, and my skin is so red, flaky and sensitive. The silver lining is that I'm seeing improvement with a few cystic patches that are beginning to subside. I just wish this IB could be over! I've been on tretinoin in the past and it does work for me. I just need to get through this IB. It would be easier if I could take a
  10. Here's my face after using tretinion after 3-1/2 weeks of use. I feel like a total freak... I just want to stay home and hide! I'm so depressed and self-conscious. I guess I need encouragement, feedback, or confirmation of how terrible I look. Man, this sucks.
  11. I've been on Tretinion cream .025% for 3-1/2 weeks now and my skin is purging itself beyond belief. Before starting this treatment, the acne was way below the surface (cystic) and rarely came to a head. Now, I find I have 4-7 whiteheads per day. My skin is thinning, and even washing ever-so gently will make the pimples pop... I do NOT pop them intentionally! My skin is so sensitive w/ the tretinion that they pop on their own. Excuse my grossness, but after I wash my face I have a few expos
  12. It looks like we're on the same schedule - I started using tretinoin .025% on October 13! Today is officially 3 weeks for me. The first two weeks were HORRIBLE!!!! They were absolutely excrutiating! I actually called in sick to work on Oct 20th (a week after I started using it) because we had a staff meeting and I could not bare to have everyone in my department see my terrible, horrible, awful breakout. It brought EVERYTHING to the surface, and apparently, I had a ton of buried infections.
  13. In August my doc prescribed me tetracycline 500mg 2x daily (same as you). I have never had a problem with antibiotics and took it as suggested (on an empty stomach every 12 hours). An hour after taking it I started feeling ill, like I was going to get sick. I found that eating something an hour after taking it (and before the sickness set in), I was fine. Even something small worked; you don't have to sit down and eat a meal. I would typically have a Special-K bar, and that was all I need
  14. I thought I'd share this here for the rest of the acne sufferers out there. This cream is the absolute best moisturizer I've ever used and recently re-ordered for the winter season. I first used this about 2 years ago when I wasn't using any prescription acne meds. My skin was so dry it was literally cracking and any other moisturizer just irritated my skin and made my acne worse. Now that I'm back on Rx meds (benzimycin and tretinoin), I'm going to start using it again. It's a little price
  15. I've been using Retin-A cream .025% for 2-1/2 weeks now and I'm really broken out. My skin has never, ever been this bad before. I know it's just the initial breakout where everything is coming to the surface and I can deal with that, knowing that this stuff really works (I used this from 13-19). My skin is very irritated, red and flaky (to be expected), in addition to the acne being worse than ever. I wish I had the liberty of being able to hide at home (or preferably under a rock!) while