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Retin A creating open pores and bad texture

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electricboom
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Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:11 pm      Reply with quote
Did you get enlarged pores or weird scarring as well from the retin a? I stopped (at the end of the month) 7 months ago, and My skin is looking better finally where I'm not a depressed crying mess. Some of the pin prick pores have closed and scarring looks lighter. The skin grows from the bottom up and renews every 28 days, from research and what I've heard so i guess that is why it has taken so long to get better. What did/do you use as a cleanser? Thanks for sharing. Ordered those supplements and hope they speed up my healing.
jade-1234
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Sun Aug 26, 2012 4:43 am      Reply with quote
I think your skin is in "repair" mode still.
Don't stop Retin-A. Be patient as good skin does not come overnight. It takes time, say at least 3 months or so to see great results. And if you are using Retin-A, don't use too much.

evol wrote:
Hi everyone,

I was prescribed .0025 Retin a cream about about 5 months ago. I actually had amazing results within the first month...I feel my skin never looked as good as it did then. However, after around the third month I noticed my pores getting huge on my cheeks where I used to have invisible pores/ orange peel texture as well as redness on my cheeks. I have stopped using it. I have been off of it for about 3 weeks or so. I have bought some emu oil, and am sure to use sunscreen everyday. (Also, for the record I used Retin A properly...pea size amount at night, always wore sunscreen, etc)

My question is, has this happened to others, and will the skin be able to regenerate/heal? If so, how long do you think it will take to rebound to the state it was before? I already have noticed the redness subsiding, which is good...and I also feel the texture may already be slightly better. Its pretty depressing since I never had texture/pore issues before retin A. Any thoughts?
Michi30
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Sun Aug 26, 2012 3:19 pm      Reply with quote
I had a similar experience with differin gel. After using it for seven weeks i was left with depressed areas where i had several cysts about seven months prior. They had not scarred until the dofferin. The differin also gave a wrinkly texture. I have been off for a few months and things have not improved. I now have to seek out scar treatment and have been totally devastated. I don know the science behind why this happy but seeing others with similar problems makes me realize I'm not crazy.
electricboom
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Tue Aug 28, 2012 12:28 pm      Reply with quote
michi, please do not do laser or ipl as a scar treatment or use harsh chemicals. Be gentle with it. It took me almost 7 months to see improvement and i hear it can take 6-12 months. It's a rare side effect. But i HAVE met online many that have developed this aweful affect. It gave me pinpricked pores, weird scarring all over the place, (i never even had any pores or scarring before this) was just doing a preventative treatment...turned 27 in april...but boy do I REGRET USING IT! I advise you to stop, try and use natural oils to cleanse your face and use a natural spf. DO NOT GET LASERS OR IPL. I promise that will make it worse. I haven't done it...but I learned about my retin-a nightmare on an ipl laser damage support board. Take as many good for your skin supplements as you can. PM me if you have any questions. And toss that retinol retin-a whatever crap in the garbage.
sunagainstmyskin
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:20 am      Reply with quote
I too am suffering from scarring, enlarged pores, and dehydrated hypersensitive skin after rougly 6 months of being on Retin-A Micro. I haven't used that medication for almost 7 months now and my skin is still continuing to scar and the dehydration is ridiculous. I am going to look into those hyaluronic acid supplements.

Michi30 wrote:
I had a similar experience with differin gel. After using it for seven weeks i was left with depressed areas where i had several cysts about seven months prior. They had not scarred until the dofferin. The differin also gave a wrinkly texture. I have been off for a few months and things have not improved. I now have to seek out scar treatment and have been totally devastated. I don know the science behind why this happy but seeing others with similar problems makes me realize I'm not crazy.

Michi, you are definitely not alone and you are not crazy. I never had even ONE depressed acne scar until I went on Retin-A Micro. Not a single one. If anyone has any other suggestions on how to recover from this disaster PLEASE let me know! I am beyond desperate and there is nothing I wouldn't give to go back in time and never use that topical on my face.
Michi30
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:48 am      Reply with quote
electricboom and sunagainstmyskin - Thanks for replying! I have also done manic research and have read all of the horror stories about IPL and laser. It would truly be a last resort form. What was your skin like before? For me, I have had hormonal acne on my lower face for years. I was prescribed duac (benzoyl peroxid) and differin .3 and was on that for several years, which worked pretty well to clear things up. What I wouldn't give to go back in time and have requested Spiro (hormonal antibiotic) rather than used these topicals. I probably did overuse them, and there were times I was in the sun because I was ignorant about that. By the end of several years I was getting wrinkles along my chin. I went off the meds when I got pregnant. The second I went off, I broke out in cysts on my chin (it had never been cystic before) that continued for the first half of pregnancy. I thought it was purely hormonal, but I have read so many stories now of people going off retinoids and breaking out bad because their skin is thinned and not turning itself over anymore - and I am wondering if this was the cause. So of course I didn't know that and went back on the differin for seven weeks - thinking it would help with texture. Well that is when the areas where there had been cystic acne became depressed. And this was months after the cysts had been there. So now I have acne scarring on my chin. So, so devastating. I went to a derm yesterday and of course he insisted it wasn't the differin, and that acne can scar months later (is that true?) and he prescribed me Retina- A! He said all the claims of people being hurt by it are from using it wrongly or not using it long enough. So I am not going to use it. I had one consult with a plastic surgeon who just wanted to do fraxel, and I have another coming up. I have been washing with cerave foaming face cleanser and just using a topical serum containing only niacinamide, aloe and witch hazel (called metazine) and that has worked to control inflammation from any new acne. I am terrified of putting anything on my face now or doing anything to make it worse! I don't know what to do! What has your skin routine been and what was your skin like? Did you have acne?
sunagainstmyskin
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:55 am      Reply with quote
electricboom wrote:
Evol, I had the same thing happen to me, but it was with a different brand...Skinceuticals 0.5 retinol serum and I used 1.0 for about a week and my skin was/is disastrous! I haven't used it in about 2 months and I am seeing a little improvement in some of my enormous pores, but it caused scarring/dents in areas of my cheeks! I only used the retinol product for a little over a month in december. (I was barely out in the sun)..Alot of other people have experienced this problem throughout my manic research...It could take a few months for the problem to go away and from many peoples advice that have given to me is to try not to use anything harsh for a while and let it heal. I'm going to a derm tomorrow, just to get a piece of mind and maybe get an antibiotic because I have clogged pores/blackheads esp. on my forehead from stopping use. Here is another link of a forum you can see other people discussing the same problem, You can see my horrendous picture as well..it won't let me post the link but if you google retin a toxic there is a website (ipldamagelaser support) and you can view the posts on there...

I took that picture about a month ago...i feel like my collagen might be slowly plumping back up, I'm 26...27 in a month so you can only know how traumatized I have been for the past few months. Hope this helps.


I just took a look at that website you mentioned, and wow - some of those posts literally sound like I could have written them myself, it's almost shocking. It's so comforting to know that I'm not in this alone. -_- If only I knew a year ago what I now know about acne and skin care, I wouldn't have touched that stuff.
I'm only 18 so I pray that my skin will heal and bounce back if I just continue to be gentle. I don't know what I'm going to do with myself if this ends up being permanent. I'm already extremely depressed about this whole situation.
sunagainstmyskin
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 1:05 pm      Reply with quote
Michi30 wrote:
electricboom and sunagainstmyskin - Thanks for replying! I have also done manic research and have read all of the horror stories about IPL and laser. It would truly be a last resort form. What was your skin like before? For me, I have had hormonal acne on my lower face for years. I was prescribed duac (benzoyl peroxid) and differin .3 and was on that for several years, which worked pretty well to clear things up. What I wouldn't give to go back in time and have requested Spiro (hormonal antibiotic) rather than used these topicals. I probably did overuse them, and there were times I was in the sun because I was ignorant about that. By the end of several years I was getting wrinkles along my chin. I went off the meds when I got pregnant. The second I went off, I broke out in cysts on my chin (it had never been cystic before) that continued for the first half of pregnancy. I thought it was purely hormonal, but I have read so many stories now of people going off retinoids and breaking out bad because their skin is thinned and not turning itself over anymore - and I am wondering if this was the cause. So of course I didn't know that and went back on the differin for seven weeks - thinking it would help with texture. Well that is when the areas where there had been cystic acne became depressed. And this was months after the cysts had been there. So now I have acne scarring on my chin. So, so devastating. I went to a derm yesterday and of course he insisted it wasn't the differin, and that acne can scar months later (is that true?) and he prescribed me Retina- A! He said all the claims of people being hurt by it are from using it wrongly or not using it long enough. So I am not going to use it. I had one consult with a plastic surgeon who just wanted to do fraxel, and I have another coming up. I have been washing with cerave foaming face cleanser and just using a topical serum containing only niacinamide, aloe and witch hazel (called metazine) and that has worked to control inflammation from any new acne. I am terrified of putting anything on my face now or doing anything to make it worse! I don't know what to do! What has your skin routine been and what was your skin like? Did you have acne?


Before using tretinoin last August, my skin was extremely congested. Blackheads and whiteheads covered every inch of my cheeks, chin, and forehead. I had a bit of inflammation but mostly I suffer from comedonal acne, which the occasional inflamed breakout around my period.
My skin has always been slightly sensitive and dehydrated which I'm sure stems from lack of proper knowledge on how to treat my acne. I had a lot of hyperpigmentation, but no scars. After several weeks of using this medication and recovering from the initial breakout, my acne improved but my skin became SO incredibly sensitive to the point where if anything or anyone touched my face I would break out. My oily skin became EXTREMELY oily to the point where my glasses would slide down my nose, and my face was always red, even through my dark complexion. It always looked inflamed and irritated. I noticed superficial lines on the surface of my skin from dehydration. Then I realized there were indentations appearing on my cheek, but no acne. I should have stopped using it when I noticed the very first scar appear, but of course I was too excited about the improvement in my acne to put 2 and 2 together...I used a pea sized amount every night as directed. Rolling Eyes

Fast forward to now, and the texture of my skin is flucked up. I continue to scar even though I'm not breaking out. My skin is just damaged and irritated no what I do. My skin care routine focuses on natural products and restoring hydration to the skin.
I have some hyaluronic acid serums and hydrosols, but at the moment all I'm using is a gentle cleanser (Organique by Himalaya Neem and Turmeric Face Wash), a toner (witch hazel distillate), and an oil-free moisturizer (Dr Dennis Gross Trifix Oil-Free Hydrating Moisturizer). I use Devita Solar Protective Moisturizer SPF30+ as a sunscreen. I also got my hands on some rosehip, lavender, and tea tree oil. I am avoiding all acids and exfoliants at all costs!

I actually have a log on acne.org which documents everything that's happened to my skin from last July until now, just in case if anyone's interested...it's pretty detailed.
I don't know if I can post links but just google "Vanessa's Personal Regimen" & it'll come up.

Personally, if I were you I would stay away from the Retin-A...but that's just me. If you are suffering from hormonal acne, I suggest trying a supplement that I've been taking since April. It's called Estrosmart Plus, I talk about it a bit in my acne log. I no longer have breakouts that coincide with my cycle, and my other PMS symptoms have improved drastically as well. Smile Anyway I won't ramble on any longer, lol.
electricboom
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 2:53 pm      Reply with quote
Sunagainstmyskin:
How long have you stopped using retin-a. I hear it can take 6 to 9 months...in other peoples cases a year to resolve and that it's temporary inflammation.. My skin "pinpricked" pores I would like to call it where almost gone! And then I was an idiot and started taking my anti anxiety meds again (after stopping usage for about a week) and i put two and two together...and saw that it made it worse again. Grrr. So no way Im taking those again! (I was on anti anxiety meds due to my skin issue...it made me severely depressed in the beginning and have been dealing with anxiety off and on...) but I have seen some improvement but I've just been gentle, I avoided the sun for some time...but im tired of living life like a vampire so i use Josie Maran Argan Oil moisturizer with spf 40, unfortunately, not really waterproof...boyfriend was trying to teach me to surf today...and def, got some color, but hopefully it won't cause permanent damage. Neutral
electricboom
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 2:55 pm      Reply with quote
Michi, I used my OTC retinol cream for a bout a little over the month in december, noticed the most severe of the damage in mid january...researched and found out that it was the culprit Sad I was just using it because I'm (currently 27) wanted to have "smooth glowy skin" like every friggen one proclaims retinol gives you and it gave me pores, scarring and depression. I hope it improves. Im never touching it again!
electricboom
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Wed Aug 29, 2012 4:50 pm      Reply with quote
BTW, sunagainstmyskin, i skimmed through your blog, and you need to lay off of the acids and harsh stuff. This might be a reason you are not healing. I stayed away from chemicals for a while now and the scarring improves, but it takes time and may fluctuate from time to time. I cleanse my face with a raw honey, royal jelly, 1/4 cup of ground sifted oatmeal and egg white concoction that someone recommended me and it has been working well to cleanse at night and no breakouts. You can googles the benefits of the ingredients on the skin. Your skin needs a break.
skindeep77
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Mon Jan 28, 2013 6:26 pm      Reply with quote
I posted here almost six months ago (see page one of this thread) and wanted to add an update and give encouragement to people who are suffering from the same horrendous side effects of Retin A that I once was Ė large open pores all over my face, severely dehydrated skin, expression lines made worse and new expression lines running down the sides of my face, loss of elasticity, redness, etc. If I scrunched up my face and then relaxed it, the lines caused by the scrunching would remain visible for several minutes. I was deeply depressed and didnít want to leave the house at times because I felt so awful about my appearance. I felt like I had aged ten years!

Itís now been two years since I stopped using Retin A (after light use over a three month period) and I can say that all the damage has been reversed and my skin has never looked better. I caught my reflection yesterday in a brightly lit store and I couldnít believe how flawless it looked. I understand now what people mean by an airbrushed look! Even the lines that prompted me to start using Retin A are barely visible and the tone of my skin is even and blemish-free.

This is a huge turnaround in a short period Ė I had noticed only slight improvement for the first year and half after stopping with Retin A, during which time I mostly used gentle and natural products. That was until I began taking a series of collagen and hyaluronic acid supplements seven months ago . BTW I have fine sensitive skin.

I would urge anyone suffering similar or the same effects as I did to try these supplements as they honestly have worked miracles for me. I have noticed the most dramatic improvement since I began using Source Naturals Skin Eternal DMAE (instead of Neocell Fish Collagen) about two months ago and Cerave Moisturizer PM. Yep a drug store moisturizer but now I understand why people rave about it. Itís packed full of fantastic ingredients to repair and strengthen the skin barrier. It plumps up my skin like no other product ever has.

Prior to that I had been using Elastica Bounceback cream Ė somewhere asked me about that and to answer that question, itís a moisturizer formulated to restore skin elasticity. I found it made a difference around my eyes and was moisturizing enough in the summer but when winter hit, my skin started looking a bit dehydrated again and so I switched to Cerave, which is WAY cheaper and FAR more effective.

So hereís my daily routine:

AM
toner made of rosewater with a few drops of glycerin (I spray this on before I hop in the shower as the glycerin helps your skin soak up moisture)
Cerave PM moisturizer
Sunscreen

PM
cleanser made of oatmeal soaked in hot water for about ten minutes Ė simple, moisturizing and does the trick!
toner again
Cerave PM moisturizer

Supplements
Source Naturals Skin Eternal Hyaluronic Acid (two twice a day, morn and eve)
Source Naturals Skin Eternal Hyaluronic Acid (two twice a day, morn and eve)
Evening Primrose Oil (two once a day, more)
Nutiva cold pressed hemp seed oil (three teaspoons a day, morn. I also pat this onto my eye area at night for extra moisturization)

I really hope this can be of help to someone as I know how distressing it can be to have this kind of damage. I think one of the worst things is the feeling that itís self-inflicted and that desperate desire to turn back time and undo the damage. This was what worked for me and I hope it can bring the same relief to others.

The good thing about taking supplements is that they benefit the skin all over your body and not just on your face and hopefully can prevent further aging as well. The key is to give them time. Donít just try them for a month and give up. Try them for six months as the effects are cumulative.

The funny thing about Cerave is that I first tried it just after my Retin A disaster and didnít find it had any effect. I think at the time my skin was too distressed to soak in any product, but Iím really glad I gave it another go. It did make my skin flush for the first week or so of us but I stuck with it in the hope that this side effect would disappear as my (sensitive) skin adjusted to it and happily, this is what happened.
Indium
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Tue Jan 29, 2013 2:24 pm      Reply with quote
Which version Retin-A were you using originally? Was it the original formula Retin-A cream or the Retin-A Micro version?

I wonder if the type of version formulation used makes a difference since the base ingredients are a little different and I wonder if this causes bad effects for some people, kind of like how a generic of a product may not give the same positive results as the original.
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Tue Jan 29, 2013 3:48 pm      Reply with quote
Sad

I can say I have seen the uglies with Retin A it made my pores look so large and skin very very dry and red. I used many different brands and nothing suits me so may be its not for everyone...I even used cream kind ( Refissa) instead of gel and it gave me rash that wont go away for weeks...so like every Other prescription drug its not for everyone ...
clueless
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Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:51 pm      Reply with quote
Hi Everyone I've just turned 27 and didn't have 1 line on my face other than very fine nasolabial lines appearing but was not noticeable. Then i had a severe allergic reaction and rubbed the under eye area very badly without knowing that by doing so i would cause severe lines to appear under my eyes i waited in hope that it would go back to normal but 6 months on and they are still there and getting worse Crying or Very sad Crying or Very sad Does anyone know of any real way to get rid of or at least significantly reduce these lines/wrinkles they are just getting worse and worse now and also any real way to firm the skin under the eye i am very desperate as i know look at-least 30 Crying or Very sad and i always looked at least 3-5 years younger than i actually was now i look older than i am Crying or Very sad Please help me i am now obsessed over this find it hard to go out with friends and refuse to have a relationship Crying or Very sad
TheresaMary
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Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:06 am      Reply with quote
Hi Clueless

Rubbing the area doesnít cause lines (if it did Iíd be lined left right and centre). Think of facial exercises, they involve pulling etc, and eyes would be the first place that shows signs of stress. If its wrinkles, then its probably a conversation about skin, more than anything. So what do you use around your eyes?

You are not alone when you say you are obsessed with things, and its scary to me as I read about people even younger than yourself saying the same things and when I was your age, I didnít give things like this a second though, but being twice your age and then some, its more obvious to me now when I see these things going on. I wonder if its society, but I would say that stopping your life for this or anything else and refusing to have relationship or going out with friends is silly. Donít stop living.

< mod snip >
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Fri Feb 15, 2013 1:02 am      Reply with quote
Hi, I would like to first thank evol, skindeep77, electricboom and others for sharing their stories (skindeep77 I tried to sent you a PM but it just stays in my outbox??). For others who have dealt with skin problems, including acne, only to watch their face go from bad to worse with new problems introducted by using retin-a or an equivelent tretinoin product, you are clearly not alone. Being a guy (I'm 28 by the way) it makes life that bit more difficult as you're not supposed to be at all concerned about your skin, not to mention there's not a lot we can do to cover up skin problems! When your skin affects your self esteem so greatly that you can't look others in the eye and avoid going out in public, you can't help but try to look for solutions.

I need to point out that in the past 8 years I have been on three courses of Roaccutane, each time this helped about 90% of the acne, but within 18 months my problems kept coming back again. Ironically I decided this time that I was concerned that I had damaged my body enough from Roaccutane, and that I would opt for a topical treatment as I felt it wouldn't be so invasive.

I used retin-a for about 5 months all over my face, including up around my cheek bones as I had read it also helped with sun damage which I had very slightly around that area. During that 5 months I had some of the worst outbreaks I had ever had, worse than being on Roaccutane, including cysts that would never come to a head. The only thing that kept me going was reading other peoples stories online saying things like 'Don't give up, it takes time, soon you'll be through the worst of it and it will make it all worthwhile'.

It was approaching the end of the 5th month, and I watched the area around my right cheeck bone transform within the space of a week, it was incredibly scary to watch. Broken capillaries, sun spots, general inflammation/redness and indented scars were forming right before my eyes. It is the worst feeling when you're not sure how much worse it is going to get. I stopped applying the cream immediately and threw out the tube. That area of my face was still changing though, the leathery and orange peel texture others have talked about seemed to develop over the following 2 months, along with the other markings and blotchiness. On a side note, I went to a reputable derm to ask if there was anything I could do to treat the damaged skin. Of all things he suggested IPL, to which my response was to walk away.

3 and a half months has now passed since I stopped retin a, and I'm trying to decide if my cheek is improving. There does seem to be patches of light skin coming through that look like they're trying to heal, but some days when I'm really dehydrated or tired and I look in the mirror, it feels like I'm back to the start again. I use cetaphil cleanser in the morning and at night before bed, and put jojoba oil on my cheek around the affected area to try and bring some moisture back to it. I also use cetaphil moisturiser during the day. After reading skindeep77's original post, I have bought some Nature's Way Hydraplenish Hyaluronic Acid tablets which I believe are similar to the Source Naturals tablets. I have been takin 1 in the morning and 1 at night for a month, and this does seem to help with general moisture retention throughout my body including my skin. I might try taking 2 a day as skindeep77 suggests, and maybe the other supplements.

I will post again in two months time to give an update. Hopefully by that point I will be able to give others hope. The only good news out of all of this is that my acne has been minimal since stopping retin a (still not worth it though), and I have started looking after myself a lot better than ever before.
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Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:27 am      Reply with quote
Hello skindeep77 Smile There's more to taking care of your skin than only using topical Retin-A. The fact that you have stress-related illness might be a reason that your skin is not responding... I would highly suggest that you heal from within by taking care of yourself first. One cause of skin not responding is related to stress. When we are stress, it affects our skin as well....
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Fri Feb 22, 2013 9:16 pm      Reply with quote
Skindeep, thank you for sharing your story and your solution - I'm so pleased to finally hear that someone has been able to reverse the damage caused to their skin. I am hoping like hell your skin care routine will work for me! I have spent months trying to find something that will help and yours is the only info I've found.
Thanks.
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Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:15 pm      Reply with quote
I posted a thread with the same problem. What's crazy is Differen is a more mild version of Retin-A and made my face dehydrated, constantly red, blotchy, and caused fine lines, and huge pores. I'm only 16 (my dermatologist put me on it for my acne) but I've stopped using Differen since September of last year and my skin still looks exactly the same as it did then, only more congested. I still constantly break out. This is getting out of hand. I've taken fish oil pills, put on sunscreen - nothing helps. I can't do anything in my life without stressing out over this skin. This sucks. I'm hoping to put in a bit more time, but damn - life is depressing as hell.
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Sun Feb 24, 2013 2:53 pm      Reply with quote
AncoraImparo wrote:
I posted a thread with the same problem. What's crazy is Differen is a more mild version of Retin-A and made my face dehydrated, constantly red, blotchy, and caused fine lines, and huge pores. I'm only 16 (my dermatologist put me on it for my acne) but I've stopped using Differen since September of last year and my skin still looks exactly the same as it did then, only more congested. I still constantly break out. This is getting out of hand. I've taken fish oil pills, put on sunscreen - nothing helps. I can't do anything in my life without stressing out over this skin. This sucks. I'm hoping to put in a bit more time, but damn - life is depressing as hell.

I know how you feel - I have moments of total despair when I look in the mirror. I have to avoid looking too closely otherwise I can't leave the house. My damage was caused by IPL laser I think and I went to a dermatologist who prescribed Tretinion (similar to Retin-A) - used it for 5 weeks and made my skin worse. Some days I feel so sick to my stomach that I brought this on myself having 1 IPL treatment. When I saw Skindeep's post about how she healed her skin I felt so positive I could follow this and my skin my recover too - I have been doing it for one week now. It's hard to remain positive when your face doesn't look like yours anymore. Maybe you could try Skindeep's skin care routine too?
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Sun Mar 10, 2013 8:19 pm      Reply with quote
shyguy wrote:
Hi, I would like to first thank evol, skindeep77, electricboom and others for sharing their stories (skindeep77 I tried to sent you a PM but it just stays in my outbox??). For others who have dealt with skin problems, including acne, only to watch their face go from bad to worse with new problems introducted by using retin-a or an equivelent tretinoin product, you are clearly not alone. Being a guy (I'm 28 by the way) it makes life that bit more difficult as you're not supposed to be at all concerned about your skin, not to mention there's not a lot we can do to cover up skin problems! When your skin affects your self esteem so greatly that you can't look others in the eye and avoid going out in public, you can't help but try to look for solutions.

I need to point out that in the past 8 years I have been on three courses of Roaccutane, each time this helped about 90% of the acne, but within 18 months my problems kept coming back again. Ironically I decided this time that I was concerned that I had damaged my body enough from Roaccutane, and that I would opt for a topical treatment as I felt it wouldn't be so invasive.

I used retin-a for about 5 months all over my face, including up around my cheek bones as I had read it also helped with sun damage which I had very slightly around that area. During that 5 months I had some of the worst outbreaks I had ever had, worse than being on Roaccutane, including cysts that would never come to a head. The only thing that kept me going was reading other peoples stories online saying things like 'Don't give up, it takes time, soon you'll be through the worst of it and it will make it all worthwhile'.

It was approaching the end of the 5th month, and I watched the area around my right cheeck bone transform within the space of a week, it was incredibly scary to watch. Broken capillaries, sun spots, general inflammation/redness and indented scars were forming right before my eyes. It is the worst feeling when you're not sure how much worse it is going to get. I stopped applying the cream immediately and threw out the tube. That area of my face was still changing though, the leathery and orange peel texture others have talked about seemed to develop over the following 2 months, along with the other markings and blotchiness. On a side note, I went to a reputable derm to ask if there was anything I could do to treat the damaged skin. Of all things he suggested IPL, to which my response was to walk away.

3 and a half months has now passed since I stopped retin a, and I'm trying to decide if my cheek is improving. There does seem to be patches of light skin coming through that look like they're trying to heal, but some days when I'm really dehydrated or tired and I look in the mirror, it feels like I'm back to the start again. I use cetaphil cleanser in the morning and at night before bed, and put jojoba oil on my cheek around the affected area to try and bring some moisture back to it. I also use cetaphil moisturiser during the day. After reading skindeep77's original post, I have bought some Nature's Way Hydraplenish Hyaluronic Acid tablets which I believe are similar to the Source Naturals tablets. I have been takin 1 in the morning and 1 at night for a month, and this does seem to help with general moisture retention throughout my body including my skin. I might try taking 2 a day as skindeep77 suggests, and maybe the other supplements.

I will post again in two months time to give an update. Hopefully by that point I will be able to give others hope. The only good news out of all of this is that my acne has been minimal since stopping retin a (still not worth it though), and I have started looking after myself a lot better than ever before.


Hi Shyguy, I've just been reading your post and see you mention you've been using the hyaluronic supplements. Just wondering how your skin is now? Do you notice any difference yet? I have started following the skin routine that Skindeep posted and taking the supplements - I've only been doing it about 3 weeks. I can't use the Cerave moisturiser cos they don't sell it where I live so I've started using the Hemp Seed Oil as a moisturiser as I've read it can penetrate the skin and help the lipids within the skin. By the way my skin is a mess - orange peel looking skin all over my face, fine lines all over my face and dull old looking complexion in general.

My friend is a beauty therapist and told me the open pores all over the face are caused by dehydration - basically the pores have opened up because they are gasping for moisture. The skin needs to be rehydrated and she told me it can take 6 months for skin to return to normal. I'm just happy hearing that there is a chance it will return to normal as I thought it was damaged forever.

Anyway, I'd been keen to hear how you are getting on. And from anyone else who has managed to sort their skin out.

Cheers
mew
pandora77
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Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:06 am      Reply with quote
I think that prescription strength retiniod products can make your skin look worse as they do dry out and strip the skin. They do however for many people help rebuild collegen and fight acne, discolouration but getting the balance right between getting the benefits and over doing it is really hard and something I am struggling with myself and I have used retin a for years. There must be a sweet spot that allows you to get the anti acne, antiaging benefits without ruining the skins barrier and making it look rotten.
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Mon Mar 11, 2013 11:31 am      Reply with quote
pandora77 wrote:
I think that prescription strength retiniod products can make your skin look worse as they do dry out and strip the skin. They do however for many people help rebuild collegen and fight acne, discolouration but getting the balance right between getting the benefits and over doing it is really hard and something I am struggling with myself and I have used retin a for years. There must be a sweet spot that allows you to get the anti acne, antiaging benefits without ruining the skins barrier and making it look rotten.


For some people it seems to be amazing but for others it is very damaging - perhaps it's sensitive skin types that get damaged. I only used it for 5 weeks to help with problems that are most likely caused by IPL and over exfoliation - it amazes me now that a dermatologist would prescribe Tretinion cream for my skin. After 5 weeks of light use my skin looked much worse - pigmentation was getting darker and the lines on my face were getting worse and it did nothing to minimise pores. A beauty therapist looked at my skin and told me it was dehydrated (that is why the pores all over my face are open) and gave me advice on how to rehydrate it and get my skin back to normal. Funny thing is she gave me much better advice for free unlike the dermatologist who charged $200 for a 15 minute consult and prescribed medication unsuitable for my skin!

I would urge anyone who has sensitive skin not to use harsh products on their skin and definitely don't have chemical peels or IPL.
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Tue Mar 12, 2013 8:03 pm      Reply with quote
mew wrote:
pandora77 wrote:
I think that prescription strength retiniod products can make your skin look worse as they do dry out and strip the skin. They do however for many people help rebuild collegen and fight acne, discolouration but getting the balance right between getting the benefits and over doing it is really hard and something I am struggling with myself and I have used retin a for years. There must be a sweet spot that allows you to get the anti acne, antiaging benefits without ruining the skins barrier and making it look rotten.


For some people it seems to be amazing but for others it is very damaging - perhaps it's sensitive skin types that get damaged. I only used it for 5 weeks to help with problems that are most likely caused by IPL and over exfoliation - it amazes me now that a dermatologist would prescribe Tretinion cream for my skin. After 5 weeks of light use my skin looked much worse - pigmentation was getting darker and the lines on my face were getting worse and it did nothing to minimise pores. A beauty therapist looked at my skin and told me it was dehydrated (that is why the pores all over my face are open) and gave me advice on how to rehydrate it and get my skin back to normal. Funny thing is she gave me much better advice for free unlike the dermatologist who charged $200 for a 15 minute consult and prescribed medication unsuitable for my skin!

I would urge anyone who has sensitive skin not to use harsh products on their skin and definitely don't have chemical peels or IPL.


Thanks a ton for your insight. Could you provide the tips your therapist gave? It would help a ton
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