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Hello everyone,

I would really appreciated it if any of you can tell me what you think.

Here's some background info on my skin condition:
My skin has always been fairly nice (get compliments) and occasionally I get 1 pimple around my period time in my T-zone area. However, last September around my exam time I broke out with 6 big red pimples around my T-zone. I went crazy! I went to the local drugstore and bought a salicylic acid cleanser as well as a benzoyl peroxide cleanser and 2.5% benzoyl peroxide cream. I washed my face twice a day with the cleansers and didn't moisturize my face because I read somewhere moisturizing can make you break out (been doing this for a month). Anyway, my pimples eventually disappeared but I started getting these red itchy bumps on my cheeks (never had any pimples there in my life before (I used to put moisturizing cream and a thin layer of vaseline on my face everyday). I wasn't sure what to do so I started to put the 2.5% benzoyl peroxide on my cheeks. My cheeks got SUPER dry and irritated so I eventually stop putting on the BP and the red bumps went away. I also stopped using the cleansers because they were drying out my skin. I went crazy buying/trying different cosmetic products. During this time my skin was always feeling itchy and I would constantly get these little red bumps.
For the last 5 months I have not used any moisturizing cream/lotion on my face. My skin is getting drier and drier. I live in Toronto and the weather here is very cold. I'm scared to use the moisturizer. When I feel my skin now, it is rough with crusty patches and there are always flakes falling off. Even if I just wash with water, my skin feels tight. I constantly feel like I am wearing a mask. When I smile there are little wrinkles on my face. My skin is extremely dehydrated. I am also breaking out with little red bumps everywhere that is dry (my T-zone has been clear for 5 months). My skin feels bumpy with little under the skin bumps. I've noticed these red bumps would appear more so on the dry areas. When I scratch my skin lightly there's a faint white line of dead skin.

So today I went to see a dermatologist/cosmetic dermatologist and a esthician who works for a cosmetic surgeon. Both are well known in the field and have been in many forms of the media.

Diagnosis 1: the dermatologist said I had very mild rosacea on my cheeks and mild to moderate acne. She recommended clearlight treatments and v-beam for the rosacea. The treatment is expensive and may not produce any results.
Note: no-one who has ever seem me thinks I have a acne problem, even with the bumps(3-4 bumps a week, sometimes just 1 a week). The dermatologist did not look at me under a light or anything, just across her desk. The dermatologist told me not to moisturize since I was breaking out.

Diagnosis 2: the esthician at the well respected cosmetic surgeon looked at my skin under a light and said she did not think I have rosacea or acne. She thinks my skin is very dehydrated, stressed and dry. She believes the red bumps (never with any pus) are clogged pores because the natural oils in my skin can't penetrate the rough scaly skin. She recommended microdermabrasion to get all the dead skin off and a good home regimen that included a gentle cleanser, moisturizer and regular exfoliating. She told me to do 1 microderm to see what I thought.

My question now is WHO should I believe? and what do you all think? can dry skin cause the breakouts I never use to have or is it really acne. Is 1-3 red bumps mild-moderate acne which needs clearlight treatments? What do you think I should do. Any opinions would be much appreciated. Sorry for the long post. Thank you all. I know you won't be giving professional opinions. I just want to know what you think. I've been feeling very down lately, tried so many things. Dunno what to do. Starting to think all this is going to get worse and never better....I've always had depression, so I've been having some very bad thoughts lately. If it wasn't for my very loving boyfriend I really might do something stupid.





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