I am SO sick of my skin breaking out

My skin is never clear, but it is terrible at the moment. My chin in particular has broken out like never before. I must have well over 20 spots on my chin alone (no exaggeration), with at least two marbles below the surface. It's painful. I'm breaking out over the rest of my face too. I'm really fed up. I feel so self-conscious and unattractive.
Yes, my tail is naturally curly.
No, it was NOT me who cried 'wee wee wee wee wee' all the way home.
I'm sorry, piglet. I've been there and it's no fun. Have you seen a dermatologist? They should be able to help and can also inject the cysts with cortisone to reduce the swelling.
Loose botticelli curls and waves
No silicones/no sulfates since March 2008
Have you considered food allergies or sensitivities? I know everyone shouts me down when I say this but sugar, for me, is a HUGE HUGE trigger for breakouts. Massive. If my skin breaks out, I can give up sugar and refined carbs for a while and my skin looks amazing. I've noticed the same thing with my husband (and even people in my family will comment that I must be off carbs again because my skin looks great).

Have you considered Accutane? I found it made a huge difference. It's not the most fun thing in the world (at the time I took it, I knew like 12 other people on it and the worst issues we had were dry skin and sensitivity sun but in the summer, that sucks!) but I didn't break out again till I got pregnant. Proactive worked well after I had S but it's very drying. I'm using Murad now and my skin looks really nice (even my cloggy pores are better). It's not as dramatic a change as Proactive and it took a while to really be free of breakouts (I'm sure I'll still get one here and there) but it's not drying at all.

Last edited by CGNYC; 06-20-2009 at 08:19 PM.
Have you considered food allergies or sensitivities? I know everyone shouts me down when I say this but sugar, for me, is a HUGE HUGE trigger for breakouts. Massive. If my skin breaks out, I can give up sugar and refined carbs for a while and my skin looks amazing. I've noticed the same thing with my husband (and even people in my family will comment that I must be off carbs again because my skin looks great).
Originally Posted by CGNYC
i agree about the sugar and the food allergies. i have a wheat intolerance, and when i eat it, i have pimples the next day. if i have too much sugar, i get these very soft white bumps in the creases of my nose and on my chin almost instantly.

try eliminating sugar and wheat for two weeks and see how your skin responds. also, if you drink a lot of milk, the milk could be causing the acne.

i have started amla/indian gooseberry powder as a mask, and this has helped a lot. you can also use to wash your face if you need a cleanser. it is cheap and easy. you can find it in an indian store.
Life shrinks or expands according to one's courage. Anais Nin
I have considered food sensitivities, but I'm not sure where to start. I went to the USA for two weeks in April and ate rubbish, admittedly. When I got back, my skin looked clearer than it had in a long time.

At the moment, I'm eating more healthily. I have cut out chocolate entirely. I'm eating fruit and yogurt instead.

Other thing, is that it is so hard to know whether my skin is reacting to a change or not. It flares up and down for no reason. Today my skin looks even worse. The breakout on my chin has multiplied, my cheeks are breaking down and I have cystic bumps on my forehead. I felt like crying when I looked in the mirror this morning.

I have not seen a dermatologist. Reason is that the doctor is being awkward about referring me and it costs a lot privately. I might have to go for it though.

I have considered Accutane. At the moment, I can't get it unless I see a dermatologist. I am concerned about the side effects, about it only dealing with the cystic and not the pimples and about the acne coming back in ten or so years. I am considering it more and more though. I think I'm going to have to go back to the doctor and pester a bit more. I know it sounds stupid, but I'm too self-conscious of how bad my skin looks to go out without make up. I feel like a freak - it's that bad.

Thanks a lot for the suggestions. I might try cutting out dairy or wheat and see how that goes, and then try cutting out the other. As far as wheat goes, I eat Shreddies for breakfast and some pasta sometimes (there's wheat in that, right?) I rarely eat bread. With dairy, I don't drink tea or coffee or milk (as a drink). I do have some milk on my cereal and one or two yogurts a day.
Yes, my tail is naturally curly.
No, it was NOT me who cried 'wee wee wee wee wee' all the way home.
Sugar makes my skin break out too. Same for dairy products. I noticed that if I avoid these two and take probiotics every day, my skin looks a whole lot better.
2a/b C ii/iii, low porosity, low elasticity
piglet,

if you are going to eliminate foods, then eliminate one food at a time. i would start with wheat and sugary foods.

no pasta, no shreddies...also the yogurt you are eating, make sure it isn't full of fillers and sugar. try to eat an all natural brand made with real sugar, but that is still low in sugar.

no sugary drinks...just water and plain, unsweetened tea.
Life shrinks or expands according to one's courage. Anais Nin
Definitely go back to the doctor and ask for a referral to the derm. I battled acne for more than 10 years before I finally took Accutane which was a lifesaver for me. I still get an occasional blemish, but my skin is under control and looks better now than it ever has. The only acne product I use now is Retin-A which I also use as wrinkle control. No more drying topical lotions, no more oral antibiotics.

I didn't find the side effects of Accutane to be bad at all. I had some dryness, but nothing else. It was well worth the risk and the money to take it.

Good luck!
Loose botticelli curls and waves
No silicones/no sulfates since March 2008
Sugar makes my skin break out too. Same for dairy products. I noticed that if I avoid these two and take probiotics every day, my skin looks a whole lot better.
Originally Posted by Naina
ditto!!

i'm a big believer in the food/skin connection...i'm reading clear skin diet

also i posted in another thread how acids (salicylic acid 5% and lactic acid peels 55%) are doing wonders for my skin. check that thread out...
a dreamy pisces
please recycle, it matters...
i change lives...through fitness
i'm more relaxed being natural
Thanks everyone for your responses.

I've decided to give the bc pill another go before starting on antibiotics again. When I took it before, it did clear my skin up a reasonable amount. The reason I stopped taking it was because it was making me depressed, causing hot flushes and making me hungrier. I think I'll try another pill. I also have heavy, painful periods.

As for there being a link with food, I've read up a bit about it and it sounds plausible (and I don't doubt the results you've all had) but my skin was looking good after getting back from the USA. When I was over there, I was drinking at least one hot chocolate a day, a lot of melted cheese and a ton of wheat.

And, as previously stated, because my skin is so nuts, it's so hard to know whether it is freaking out because of diet, products or whatever, or just because it wants to have a freak out.

My skin is getting worse at the moment. I counted around 50 spots on my chin. Some are as tiny as pinpricks (but still red) and others are cystic. My forehead is breaking out in cystic acne (it's usually clear) and my cheeks are breaking out more and more on a daily basis. It's like some hideous rash that's spreading over my face, only it's not a rash. My skin look so horrible, I was embarassed to go out this morning. I'm spending 30 minutes on applying foundation only to still look awful when I'm done. I don't feel I can dress up or put mascara or lippie on because I don't want to draw attention to myself. It's seriously affecting my confidence and self-esteem and I don't have bags of that at the best of times. I hope so much it calms down soon.
Yes, my tail is naturally curly.
No, it was NOT me who cried 'wee wee wee wee wee' all the way home.
my skin was looking good after getting back from the USA.
Could you be having problems with something in your house? Like a detergent you're using on your pillowcases and towels or something? Were you getting sun every day on your vacation? I'd try to figure out what's different and try one thing at a time.

I've had my skin issuesand I know it sucks. I hope you figure it out soon.
I hope the pill helps you but if not, or if the side effects are bad, I encourage you to see a derm. He or she will be able to tell if it is acne or dermatitis or allergy.

I battled acne before accutane existed and I went to 3 derms before I found one who helped me. Not fun. I isolated myself because I was so embarrassed.

My nephew got horrible acne and accutane worked extremely well for him.

If you aren't better soon, don't wait a long time before going to a derm. Acne can cause scarring. Good luck and keep us posted.
2/c and some 3A. Modified CG.
Protein sensitive
Highly porous. Color over grey.
Best 1st day method: Super Soaker
Conditioners: Curl Junkie Beauticurls Strengthening Conditioner,
Deep condish: Curl Junkie Curl Rehab
Stylers: Mix Curls in a Bottle into everything for shine. Terrible pj
Sometimes try roller sets - classic glamor but I prefer my curls.
Every day is a gift
I've been using the Antibacterial Enzyme Gel from PSF for about a month & a half now and it has stopped me completely from breaking out! I haven't had one break out since I started using it. It is my new HG acne product! My brother got back 2 weeks ago from Iraq & his skin was a mess. Big, cystic acne pustules on his cheeks & jawline - very red & swollen and painful. I gave him my bottle of enzyme gel, which was still about half full & within 2 weeks his face is almost completely clear. He still has redness (I think he will end up with scars), but he isn't getting any more active pimples. If you can't afford to go to a derm or are worried about Accutane, maybe give this a try first? It's incredible to me how this just "stops" your skin from breaking out and it's cheap since a little bit goes a long way. One pump does my whole face & neck. It doesn't dry up existing pimples, but seems to stop you from getting any new ones. HTH!
Acne and scarring sucks. A good book that helped me is The Clear Skin Prescription written by Dr. Perricone. It is probably similar to the book that LuvMyLocs mentioned. It advocates for eliminating caffeine, refined sugar and refined wheat from the diet because they cause inflammation which results in breakouts. Also drinking lots of water flushes out the toxins in the body. I have also used the 5% Salycilic (sp?) acid from www.psfskincare.com and the neem soap from Chagrin Valley with great results. Let us know what you do.
3b/c, medium-coarse, low porosity, high density
HG: Jessicurl Too Shea and Kinky Curly Curling Custard
Shampoo: nonsulfate shampoo and Suave Naturals sulfate shampoo when needed
Thanks a ton for all the responses. I really appreciate them.

My skin is still getting worse. Nothing is healing and it's getting a little worse every day. I've got Dianette. BC pills haven't agreed with me in the past, but I want to give this a go.

CGNYC - I was getting sun every day on holiday. My mum thinks though that my skin looked better because I wasn't stressed and was enjoying myself.

Thanks a lot for the recs. I'm going to start with Dianette and see how it goes. If it doesn't agree with me or doesn't work too well, I will start trying out more recs on here.

I have tried 2% BHA and the PSF cleanser before. I struggle with dryness as well. My skin is just weird.
Yes, my tail is naturally curly.
No, it was NOT me who cried 'wee wee wee wee wee' all the way home.
I hope that you eventually find something. Stress causes inflammation which leads to break outs. Have you ever read the book The Skin Type Solution by Leslie Baumann, M.D.? It breaks skin types down by oiliness/dryness, sensitivity/resistant, pigmented/nonpigmented and wrinkled/tight. I found it informative and explains questions why some people get scarring/brown spots while others don't or why some people break out when they're overheated and stressed out while others don't.
3b/c, medium-coarse, low porosity, high density
HG: Jessicurl Too Shea and Kinky Curly Curling Custard
Shampoo: nonsulfate shampoo and Suave Naturals sulfate shampoo when needed
I hope that you eventually find something. Stress causes inflammation which leads to break outs. Have you ever read the book The Skin Type Solution by Leslie Baumann, M.D.? It breaks skin types down by oiliness/dryness, sensitivity/resistant, pigmented/nonpigmented and wrinkled/tight. I found it informative and explains questions why some people get scarring/brown spots while others don't or why some people break out when they're overheated and stressed out while others don't.
Originally Posted by multicultcurly
i have this book too...it's also good. thanks for the reminder multicultcurly
a dreamy pisces
please recycle, it matters...
i change lives...through fitness
i'm more relaxed being natural

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