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ACNE Help & Questions


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Here's a new topic to ask any acne-related questions about your skin! We've got a few skincare divas in here that should be able to help you :3

(I actually need some help myself, gonna put it in another post)

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sorry for double post

Okay, so, I've always been acne-prone and it has its ups and downs. There'll be some years that it's horrible, and then it starts to clear up as I find decent routines. I started with forehead acne for years, and then that gradually cleared up, but then I started getting acne in other areas (like, I started getting chin acne, and one summer I got back acne). For the most part, my jaw/nose/cheek areas were really clear.

Veryyyy recently (within the past 2-3 months), I developed this horribly annoying jaw acne. They are literally hundreds of tiny, flesh-colored bumps (very few are red and swollen) that are clustered along my jaw and going up into my cheeks. It's so annoying because the rest of my skin is mostly clear from a bad breakout over the summer and BAM, this stupid shit comes along. (pictures in spoiler bc i dont wanna gross anyone out)

 

20150911_102912.thumb.jpeg.13d544147a54e

(right side, the worse side)

20150911_102934.thumb.jpeg.490e673641e03

(left side, the slightly better side)

my lips are sucked in btw, i dont look like that normally LOL

I started a pretty new routine AFTER this breakout occurred. It helped with the rest of my face acne, but doesn't seem to do anything with this section of my face. If anything, I think there are even more (and/or larger ones). So here's what I use:

Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser (Foaming Form) - day & night

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel - day & night

Tretinoin 0.05% - affected areas, M/W/F, night

PocketDerm Medication (4% Niacinamide, 1% Clindamycin, 4% Azelaic Acid) - whole face, T/TH/Sat/Sun, night

So I'm really trying to figure out what these things are and what I can do to prevent them. Any help? ; A;

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I would also love tips on back acne! No matter how much I exfoliate, it fixes nothing. :Alpacaconfused:

Read THIS link and see if there's anything here you're doing on the list. In high school I was bad with jaw acne, I realized after research that it was because I sat my my jaw in my hands in class all day! (I'll post the article in a spoiler in case you don't wanna click) I personally disagree with number 6 but overall a good article

15 Things Women With Perfect Skin Do Every Day

Everyone knows at least one woman with seemingly perfect skin. Every time you see her glowing face, you think, Seriously, how does she do it? What kind of magical procedures is she getting? Which expensive creams is she using? Here's the thing: Her secret is simple — she has flawless skin because she's nailed the best daily routine. Another secret? So can you.

1. She uses the correct cleanser for her skin type.

"For oily or acne prone skin, a salycylic gel or benzoyl peroxide wash works great," says Dr. Ava Shamban, a dermatologist in Santa Monica. "For dry mature skin, use either a moisturizing glycolic or milky cleanser. For skin with brown spots or melasma, use a brightening wash, such as an alpha hydroxy acid cleanser."

 

2. She drinks the right liquids.

Though it's tempting to grab a coffee the minute you wake up, Joanna Vargas, a skincare facialist in NYC, says choosing the right beverages can be a game changer. "Drink a shot of chlorophyll every morning to brighten, oxygenate, and hydrate your skin. Drinking chlorophyll also helps drain puffiness by stimulating the lymphatic system, so it's also good for cellulite." 

If you're not keen on downing a shot of the stuff, chlorophyll supplements can be found at many drugstores and health food stores. She also advised drinking green juices with lots of veggies in them: "It will transform your skin in a matter of days — and it helps oxygenate the skin and stimulates lymphatic drainage, so it's de-puffing, too."

3. She maintains a healthy diet.

"Your skin has a natural barrier to retain moisture, and essential to that is omega-3 fatty acid," Joanna Vargas advises. "Flax seeds on your salad or even walnuts will be an instant boost to your omega-3, thus increasing your skin's ability to hold onto moisture." And be sure to eat a diet low in foods with a high glycemic index (simple and complex carbohydrates).

4. She moisturizes every day and night.

"The best times to moisturize are right after you get out of the shower and right before you go to bed," explained Dr. Janet Prystowsky MD, an NYC-based dermatologist. Avoid lotions with heavy fragrances and be make sure you find a moisturizer gentle enough for every day use with zero irritation.

5. Her fingers never touch her face.

Dr. Julia Tzu, an NYC-based dermatologist, says this is very important. It doesn't just spread bacteria and cause breakouts — it can lead to scarring, an increase in wrinkles, and even the flu.

6. She doesn't use too many products.

Using more than one or two all at once is a big no-no, says Dr. Tzu. It can be harsh on the skin, resulting in more breakouts and clogged pores.

7. She wears sunscreen 365 days a year — rain or shine.

"Many people feel they only need to protect themselves on sunny days or when visiting the beach," says Dr. Debbie Palmer, a New York dermatologist. "But the truth is that we need to protect our skin even when we're driving a car, flying in an airplane, or running errands. It's the daily UV exposure that contributes to the visible signs of aging." What kind of sunscreen is best? Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a SPF of 30 or greater — and remember that it needs to be reapplied every 2 hours.

8. She hydrates — in every way possible.

Every skin expert we spoke to emphasized the importance of hydration. "A lack of water means less radiance and more sag," says Dr. Mona Gohara, a dermatologist in Connecticut. She suggests choosing products (cleansing, moisturizing, and anti-aging) that have hydrating formulas. And, of course, drink around eight glasses of water a day.

9. She avoids direct heat exposure.

Don't just watch out for the sun — getting too close to heaters and fireplaces can also wreak havoc on your skin. "It causes inflammation \and collagen breakdown. I recommend staying at least ten feet away," explains Dr. Palmer. So next time you're roasting chestnuts or s'mores over an open fire, take a step back.

10. She exfoliates a couple times per week.

"We lose 50 million skin cells a day, and without a little extra nudge, they may hang around leaving the skin looking sullen," says Dr. Gohara. To fight this, you should "choose a product that is pH neutral so it doesn't dry as it exfoliates." And don't just stop with your face — the skin on your body needs exfoliation, too.

11. She doesn't just eat her vitamins.

A balanced diet is important, but there's more than one way to give your skin vitamins. There's also topical antioxidants, which are serums and creams that contain ingredients that nourish the skin. "These can really help to repair the skin from sun damage and they also have natural sunscreen properties," says Dr. Palmer. Not sure how to use them? The best time to apply them is right after cleansing, or they can be layered under your sunscreen for added protection.

12. She cleans her makeup brushes regularly.

To fight infection and clogged pores, Dr. Prystowsky recommends washing concealer and foundationbrushes once a week. For brushes you use around your eyes, she recommends twice per month, and for any other brushes, once a month is fine. 

Here's how: Put a drop of a mild shampoo into the palm of your hand. Wet the bristles with lukewarm water. Then, massage the bristles into your palm to distribute the shampoo into the brush. Avoid getting the metal part of the brush wet/or the base of the brush hairs because the glue could soften and the bristles could fall out. Rinse the shampoo out and squeeze out the water with a towel. Lay the brushes on their side with the bristles hanging off the edge of the counter to dry.

We're talking SPF makeup, sunglasses, and broad-brimmed hats. "Preventing sun damage is a million times better for your skin than treating it after the fact," says Dr. Prystowsky.

14. Her skincare routine is easy to follow.

"Fad products and fancy ingredients are fun to try, and sometimes they work well," says Dr. Prystowsky, "but usually they're off the shelves just as quickly as they're on them." Find a cleanser and moisturizer that you know work for you, and keep them at the core of your routine.

15. She sleeps well.

It's not just about getting eight hours a night. Skin will also benefit from regularly using clean silk pillowcases. "The material glides easily and prevents creasing and wrinkles,"says Jesleen Ahluwalia, M.D., a dermatologist from Spring Street Dermatology in New York City."Silk is also easier on hair — it helps avoid tangles and breakage." Better hair and skin while you sleep? Yes, please.

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sorry for double post

Okay, so, I've always been acne-prone and it has its ups and downs. There'll be some years that it's horrible, and then it starts to clear up as I find decent routines. I started with forehead acne for years, and then that gradually cleared up, but then I started getting acne in other areas (like, I started getting chin acne, and one summer I got back acne). For the most part, my jaw/nose/cheek areas were really clear.

Veryyyy recently (within the past 2-3 months), I developed this horribly annoying jaw acne. They are literally hundreds of tiny, flesh-colored bumps (very few are red and swollen) that are clustered along my jaw and going up into my cheeks. It's so annoying because the rest of my skin is mostly clear from a bad breakout over the summer and BAM, this stupid shit comes along. (pictures in spoiler bc i dont wanna gross anyone out)

 

Hidden Content

I started a pretty new routine AFTER this breakout occurred. It helped with the rest of my face acne, but doesn't seem to do anything with this section of my face. If anything, I think there are even more (and/or larger ones). So here's what I use:

Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser (Foaming Form) - day & night

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel - day & night

Tretinoin 0.05% - affected areas, M/W/F, night

PocketDerm Medication (4% Niacinamide, 1% Clindamycin, 4% Azelaic Acid) - whole face, T/TH/Sat/Sun, night

So I'm really trying to figure out what these things are and what I can do to prevent them. Any help? ; A;

 

Your chin acne looks like a bit of swelling to me. I get some acne like that and if I were you I would try to put ice on some of the bigger ones to see if it goes down a bit. Yeah, I know it's not swelling but ice has helped when me I've had some of those (I don't know if this will really help but obviously it won't do any harm). DO NOT pop them because those little guys look tight and probably feel tight and will 1. hurt horribly before and after you pop them 2. will scar quickly 3. may be very deep .

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Did u tried the birth control pill? I had horribly acne when I was in High school due to stress. After my graduation thes just dissapeared in 2 months and now I have a clear skin. Do you have too much stress? 

 

And please go to a doctor, they are expensive but they know what to do. :) 

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Birth control isn't best for it

Edited by sandy011
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the only thing that helped for me is bb chocola pills from japan. 

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@Siwon: Thanks so much for the article! I wondered if the breakout was because of environmental things, too. Like, being in a new state with different air/temperature/water, or maybe my pillow was doing me dirty. Now that I think about it, it very well might be the pillow I slept on over the summer because when I rested my chin on it, my jaw became really itchy and I had to scratch it. I honestly think that's what it could be ; A;

As for back acne, this is what my dermatologist told me:

I recommend using a zinc pyrithione soap. Good choices include Ermis Labs Seborrheic Dermatitis and Dandruff Medicated Bar http://bit.ly/1GKPiSL (even though it’s not labeled for acne, zinc is what we’re after!), or Noble Formula 2% Pyrithione Zinc Bar Soap http://bit.ly/1bkktZG (non-vegan version, as the vegan bar has cocoa butter, which can trigger breakout in some people.)

I would use it every other day in the shower for your back / body and every other day on your face as well.

You may alternate the soap on the body with a benzoyl peroxide cleanser. (Hold off on the benzoyl peroxide on your face to give your skin time to adjust.)

Panoxyl 4% Benzoyl Peroxide Acne Creamy Wash (http://amzn.to/1mPHbrD) is a favorite with my patients. Clean & Clear Advantage 3-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser (5%) (amzn.com/B002UC5ZVA) and Topix Benzoyl Peroxide 5% Wash (amzn.com/B001MA9QQQ) are also good options; you will find others in your local drug store. 

Hopefully that helps you out!

@digital horror: Yeah, it'd be a good idea to keep the swelling down. These smaller ones actually don't even look like whiteheads, so I wouldn't even bother popping them.

@Ronie.97: I've had birth control (patch, not the pill), and it did seem to help my acne a lot. I've been off it for about 6 months, and my breakouts started happening again in May, so it makes me think that my acne is directly related to my hormones for sure (for some, it's more about products/environment, etc). I'm trying to get back on it in December, so for right now I'm trying to figure something out. 

Um, I do stress, and I did happen to stress around the time this jaw acne popped up, so I guess that could be it, too? Idk, everyone has stress so that's hard to just forget about.

I have been to a dermatologist, but it's not very fun having to use so many medications, plus a pill. But I think if my birth control doesn't clear it up, I might just have to go again.

Edited by Dyabolical
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@Siwon: Thanks so much for the article! I wondered if the breakout was because of environmental things, too. Like, being in a new state with different air/temperature/water,

This is a huge one, too. When I'm in dry California, my acne is worse. When I'm in more humid Asia, I notice my face stays very clear of whiteheads!

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I've battled with acne since I was like, what, 12 years old.. So about 9 years until this day. So yeah, I could say it's become an old acquiantance for me. :alpacabored:

I could say that the enviroment is a huge factor on it. I live in Finland, in the coast area, where the wind hurts like hell on my face. It also gets so cold, so that's why my skin gets all reddish and "fuck you"-mode. :alpacaworry2: I've also tried to keep an eye on keeping things clean that are on contact with my face (for example phone, hands, scarfes etc..). 

I've been to the doctors, but personally I don't like the idea of using some pills for these kind of matter. Mostly their side effects are terrible, and they really don't help finding a cure for acne; they just ease down a bit, that's all. I've also tried birth control pills, but they just dried out the whole skin and made my personality resemble a bitch-beast. :alpacadone:

As for makeup and other beauty products, I try to always buy the products that don't contain alcohol or oils. But at the same time I've tried to take advantage on the much more natural options; coconut oil as a makeup-remover and a intense moisturizing oil (especially great in winter time!), cinnamon mixed with honey is a great mask for drying out zits. All in all I always try to keep my skin well moisturized, because if your skin is oily, it doesn't mean it's dry; it's actually trying desperately to moisturize itself.

My acne nowadays isn't as bad as it used to be. It though took quite some time to actually try out different things and find out what's best for your skin. Our bodies are different, so what works for others might not work for you.

I hope my text is somehow readible, since english is not my native language, nor do I speak daily. Sowwy. :alpacaworry:

 

 

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@Siwon

That article is awesome! I find that it's all these little things that accumulate that lead to acne, especially bad diet, touching your face, and using too many products.

Another really good tip is to change your pillowcases as often as you can! Oils from your hair and dead skin gets all over there. I find I almost always get acne on my cheeks or jaw if I don't change my pillowcases for a few days.  I used to have pretty bad acne on my forehead and jaw during highschool, and after I started to wash my hands more often, stop touching my face, changing my pillowcases and changing my diet by cutting out pop, drinking TONS of water and making sure I get at least 6 or 7 fruits or veggies a day my skin stays pretty much 98% clear most of the time. 

Hormonal acne is a whole other thing though, that can be really hard to tackle D: 

Edited by Veevee
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@Siwon

That article is awesome! I find that it's all these little things that accumulate that lead to acne, especially bad diet, touching your face, and using too many products.

Another really good tip is to change your pillowcases as often as you can! Oils from your hair and dead skin gets all over there. I find I almost always get acne on my cheeks or jaw if I don't change my pillowcases for a few days.  I used to have pretty bad acne on my forehead and jaw during highschool, and after I started to wash my hands more often, stop touching my face, changing my pillowcases and changing my diet by cutting out pop, drinking TONS of water and making sure I get at least 6 or 7 fruits or veggies a day my skin stays pretty much 98% clear most of the time. 

Hormonal acne is a whole other thing though, that can be really hard to tackle D: 

 

The pillow case one is so big because so many miss it. After reading this article, I'm on the hunt for silk sheets and pillow cases now. Unfortunately I bury my face in my pillow case because I'm a tummy sleeper. :alpacadone:

I'm there with you on hormonal acne. No matter what I do, around menstrual cycle time my face gets 3-4 red pimples on my face that are painful.

Other little tips:
Keep hand-drying and face-drying towels separate and wash them both once a week.
Keep your phone clean and avoid letting it touch your face when possible. (Turns out phones are one of the dirtiest things we own nowadays)
Pull hair up when possible, as the natural oils rub on your face. When I'm at home, my hair is always out of my face. My acne has improved so much since teenage years!
Don't let pets sleep with you unless they've had a fresh bath. They can drag so much dirt in and it gets in your bed and causes more breakouts. ;~;

Edited by Siwon
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Might be an obvious one but do research before buying "miracle cures"!

I can only speak from personal experience but having bad skin really makes me desperate and I have been fooled time and time again by flashy advertisement, teenage beauty gurus (lol, I'm 23 so most tips aren't even meant for """"older""" skin) and various saleswomen that are just a little bit too eager to make money...which I don't blame them for but DAMN.

But ever since I started looking stuff up on Beautypedia I have learned more about what works/ doesn't work for my skin type and I also saved quite a bit of money. No more overpriced miniature tubes of mud masks that does literally nothing, huzzah! 

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Just wanted to slip in and give my advice on body/back acne. My trouble areas are actually my arms, which I will ever understand, but hey.

PanOxyl 10% Benzoyl Peroxide Bars (Amazon link)

Not any foams/washes or anything, the bar soap. This stuff works on back breakouts well too, I use it daily and almost never have body breakouts anymore. It also doesn't leave a weird sticky residue like lots of bar soaps do. It doesn't have a scent either, I just lather the bar soap into a textured shower towel (for exfoliation) and go. Whenever I'm in the States I will clear the shelves of Wal Mart buying it. It should be available at most drugstores, but definitely Wal Mart carries it.

The price on Amazon fluctuates, it retails at like $5 a bar max but on Amazon I think people are aware of it's magic powers and sellers will hike up the prices so you pay like $25 a bar. Don't do that, try to find it locally.

For spot acne treatment I use Acne Free's Max Strength Terminator 10 treatment (little orange tube). It's also 10% benzoyl peroxide and it will dry out your skin if you use it liberally, but if you apply just a small bit where you feel new acne breaking out, it will disrupt it. As long as you don't pick at it and apply the spot treatment daily, it usually will go away within a week without forming a red painful spot on your skin.

Benzoyl peroxide doesn't work for everyone's skin, but I have found these two products to be really helpful in clearing mine. Been using both for years, they are my life savers.

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^ I think I'll try that soap when I can cause lately I've been getting chest and back acne, which I think it's mostly cause of the heat here but it's really annoying and a lot of them are painful.

I've also been getting acne on my jaw/neck which I usually don't get so I thought maybe it's a hormonal imbalance or something. But I do admit I'm not very good at changing my pillow case. But the thing is I'd also need to change my blankets often cause I put them on my face too lol. Well, definitely I need to do a lot of changes, with my diet also :/ (I drink a lot of soda)

Having good skin is so hard pls.

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