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Old 03-14-2013, 08:07 AM
 
Location: Columbus, OH
499 posts, read 900,010 times
Reputation: 745

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I'm a 35 year old female who began developing hormonal acne (jawline/chin/neck) about 4-5 years ago. My skin was never too bad before, even when I was a teenager, so this has thrown me for a huge loop. Over the years I've tried so many different treatments, and last year resorted to going to a dermatologist. She tried me on a total of 2 different oral meds and 4 different topical meds, and all of them actually made it WORSE. I've been on Aldactone on and off for the majority of that 4-5 years, and when I go off of it, my skin gets worse as well, so that's something I've been consistent about for 2 years now.

Right now, my current rundown of skincare is:

*the Simple skincare cleanser and moisturizer (no dyes, artificial perfumes, or harsh irritants)
*Mario Bedescu Buffering Lotion (works on cystic acne)
*Clarisonic
*Jane Iredale Pure Pressed mineral makeup (supposed to be the best of all mineral makeups for sensitive skin)
*occasional masks (honey/aspirin), oil cleansing method, facials
*I take Aldactone, zinc supplements, B vitamin supplements, drink water and eat a lot of fruit. I've started eating more veggies lately, too.

Right now, my skin looks the best it has in a long time with this regime, but it's so time consuming, and I still don't consider it looking good enough to not wear makeup. I've been at the end of my rope for so long, and it's actually made me shrink away from being on the front line at my job. I hate facing customers, so I find myself hiding in my office a lot.

In the past, I've tried just about everything under the sun that I've read about online. I have Chaseberry supplements coming from Amazon in a few days, which is my next addition to try. I really feel like I just can't take it anymore.

Has anybody experienced this and found a solution? Chances are, most everything that will be mentioned, I've probably tried already (!!!), but I'm willing to hear everything you've got!
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:05 AM
 
Location: North Shore Long Island
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What oral and topical meds were you on?

I'm assuming your hormone levels were tested by your derm which is why you're on your current med?
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:18 AM
 
Location: Columbus, OH
499 posts, read 900,010 times
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I've had periodic blood tests to make sure my potassium is normal, as Aldactone could cause it to go wonky. And about a year and a half ago, I had a CBC at an endocrinologist's office for other things, and from what I remember, everything checked out "within range" except for the B12, which is why I now take that.

One of the meds was Ziana, one was Aczone, but I can't remember the names of the others. It's been too long. If I heard the names, I'd remember them, but can't find them in my head right now!
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:29 AM
 
917 posts, read 1,702,763 times
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I have the same issue. Acne around my jaw, chin area. I heard drinking dandelion tea may help. I took birth control pills for a few months and I did notice my breakouts were less but I did not want to stay on it.

What is your diet like? I believe some foods can mess with your hormones. Watch out for meat, maybe switch to organic, eat less processed foods. Dairy and sugar are can exacerbate acne.
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Columbus, OH
499 posts, read 900,010 times
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I've been working on eating less junk. Unfortunately, dairy is my best friend! My favorite foods are cheese, sour cream, and chocolate milk :-( I gave a lot of thought to eliminating dairy, but I just don't realistically think I could do it.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:05 AM
 
Location: NJ
22,675 posts, read 28,568,174 times
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accutane is what cured my acne (in high school). the stuff is the miracle cure.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:07 AM
 
Location: US
5,145 posts, read 10,426,168 times
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Well if the dairy is causing it I would give it a try for a month. Maybe you just can get away with having it every other month or consuming smaller amounts. Go for hormone free dairy first and see if that helps.

Clarisonic or any manual exfoliation can make cystic acne worse.

I would try chemical peels to get off the dead skin if your skin isn't dry. Home versions are pretty effective.

Have you tried this combo?
Proactive cleanser + toner + BP follow up lotion + green tea moisturizer as needed.

The toner they have has glycolic acid so it helps get rid of the dead skin too.
Be careful though with combining chemical peels.

Personally I would start with the proactive and see if that gets the job done.
It took about 6 months to get fully clear for me. Then I did UV therapy in a base bed for tanning and it hasn't been back since. despite not tanning at all. ("acne free" wash used only when I get the normal hormonal breakout that is not cystic - its like a fake proactive but a BP product. It is less drying and has less exfoliation bits in it. Still like the proactive toner/BP leave on lotion though)

Good luck. Its annoying to deal with.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Columbus, OH
499 posts, read 900,010 times
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Oh God, Proactive wrecked my skin more than anything! And I can't do even short tanning sessions because the Aldactone causes a reaction with thousands of little teeny tiny bumps all over my face in addition to the cystic acne. Made that mistake once! It seems like when I try products with BP or the glycolic acids, it just irritates my face worse, too. That's why I'm using Simple now. Tried Cetaphil for a while, but it dried out my skin something terrible. I have really dry skin on my cheeks already, no matter how much I moisturize. I only use the Clarisonic once or twice in a week or two, and it seems to actually help when I do it infrequently. Too much and it does irritate, but it gets my makeup off and makes my skin feel cleaner for sure.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:52 AM
 
Location: US
5,145 posts, read 10,426,168 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cmjones311 View Post
Oh God, Proactive wrecked my skin more than anything! And I can't do even short tanning sessions because the Aldactone causes a reaction with thousands of little teeny tiny bumps all over my face in addition to the cystic acne. Made that mistake once! It seems like when I try products with BP or the glycolic acids, it just irritates my face worse, too. That's why I'm using Simple now. Tried Cetaphil for a while, but it dried out my skin something terrible. I have really dry skin on my cheeks already, no matter how much I moisturize. I only use the Clarisonic once or twice in a week or two, and it seems to actually help when I do it infrequently. Too much and it does irritate, but it gets my makeup off and makes my skin feel cleaner for sure.

Oh yeah...dry skin..you don't want acids or too much exfoliation. Did you try the regular proactive formula or the sensitive kind? Just curious. I had to wean it in. Every other day at first.

Have you ever tried cortisone shots in them or a cortisone cream?

What about AHA or BHA? I know its an acid I just wondered how your skin reacted if you tried it.
Have you ever tried oil cleansing?
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:06 AM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,632 posts, read 53,495,108 times
Reputation: 18538
I have roseacea which causes acne-like bumps that hurt as they harden but rarely come to a head. Ask your dermatologist about your diagnosis and was roseacea ruled out. I take a low dose of doxycycline daily and my skin looks great. I'm on it for life.
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