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I have been using Hydrogen Peroxide 3% for a month now after I read about it on this great board -and after doing some of my own research.

I use it after my Cetaphil gentle cleanser in place of toner and I love it, the results are really great. I'm 26 and I have moderate to sever acne. (Sever when their are cysts to do battle with) I have tried everything but Accutaine in my search for clear, predictable skin.

I was always reluctant to use it because of the common perception that Hydrogen Peroxide has as being too harsh, but this simply isnít true. Many progressive, honest Dermatologists (those being the non-cash grabbing kind) recommend it as an integral step in controlling oil production and as a effective, GENTEL, acne bacteria killer. And at $2 a bottle, itís a very affordable alternative as well.

I you feel like trying it, use a cotton pad to apply it evenly on your face. It will sting a bit the first week but this decreases with continual use. Just be sure to watch those side burns and eye brows! -because it will lighten them big time. (It won't, however, bleach your skin at the 3% solution, just hair pigmentation hence its use in hair salons)
Be sure to wait about 4 min after applying the HP to absorb and then apply a good, light moisturizer.

The only byproduct of Hydrogen Peroxide after it absorbs into the skin is water and oxygen! Which of course are both naturally occurring in our bodies. It is the oxidation process that kills the bad bacteria that produces acne. This in conjunction with a good diet (no dairy, reduced sugar consumption, no sodas, bleached flour, ect. ect. See Prometheus great threads on diet and what to avoid) has done wonders for me.

Another reason why most Doctors don't recommend Hydrogen Peroxide is that it's non patentable and hence, not profitable.

Best of Luck
ethan how come you havent tried accutane? i took it and it worked wonders, it cleared my back and chest and face 90%. i had huge cycsts all over and my doc said i was the top 1% in america as far as acne goes. and a year later my acne came back very very mildly and i think will never be as bad as it was, hell i dont even get cysts anymore on my face just regular pimples and redness.
Hey Blowing Random, I guess I'm just freaked out about the side affects from taking accutain, mainly the dryness in eyes/lips, the eyes because I'm about to do wave front lasik for vision correction and I can't have dry eyes.
How was your reaction to it? I have thought about going on it a lot but I always try to go as natural as I can I guess. Thanks for the good testimonial though, I'll see how It goes with my current experiment a bit longer.
Hi I have really bad oily issues on my face. Will this help with that? Its not like alcohol that dries it but really revs up your oils glands right?
I just stated this on another post, but will do so again because I don't want people destroying their skin with Hydrogen Peroxide. Dermatologists don't recommend it because it is way too harsh. I used it for 6 months because I had oily skin (no acne) and it seemed to dry my skin out and made it feel really good. I also used it as a mouth wash and constantly got compliments on how white my teeth were. After 6 months, I developed adult acne and major teeth problems. My pimples began to blow up, the acne was out of control and damaged skin could not repair itself. I had destroyed essential parts of my skin with the HP. In my mouth, I got infections on my gums, the gums had receeded a great deal, and I had got several cavities (which is weird because I am obsessive about taking care of my teeth). Ihad stripped my teeth of essential layers as well. Hydrogen Peroxide is fine in small amounts - like in Witch Hazel or over the counter toothpastes - but please - do not destroy your skin with using it pure from the bottle. It is deceiving.
Hi coloradogirl, what concentration of HP were you using?? Thanks for the warning, I will consider it. I have spoke to 3 dermatologists who reccomend it in their practices, so some do support it. How were you applying it? thanks
I used cotton balls to apply it. I'm not sure about the concentration of HP that I was using, I didn't know that it varied that much or made that much of a difference. It was the basic kind that you buy at Wal-Mart or the grocery store. If you really like it, I seriously suggest Witch Hazel. It is really light and won't disturb the balance of your skin. When I went to see my derm about the HP problem he explained skin as a balancing act. You can't overdo it one way, or it will fight you and go in the opposite direction. The idea in the repair of skin is to gently find the balance that keeps you clear, if you are too harsh with anything, it will just be too difficult to acheive that balance. I don't know - it makes sense.
Here's what I know from talking to my Derm and other research on HP.

Propionibacterium Acnes is a bacteria responsible for many of the acne problems. As we all know, many acne treatments on the market use benzoyl peroxide. Peroxides releases oxygen in chemical reactions. Benzoyl peroxide was used, for this purpose, to liberate oxygen. At the time, it was more stable than hydrogen peroxide and could be formulated in several forms, for application to the skin.

The following is very basic chemistry, and should make all this clear.

Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2), has a molecular weigh of 34.02. It is 94.06% oxygen and 5.94% hydrogen. It breaks down to oxygen and water.

Benzoyl Peroxide (C14H1004), has a molecular weigh of 242.22. It is 69.42% carbon, 4.16% hydrogen and 26.42% oxygen.

Based on the percentages of oxygen available in each of the above, there is no question about which peroxide can liberate more oxygen. This has been known for a long time. The problem was, hydrogen peroxide was not available in a form suitable for use as a skin application. It isn't very stable in creams or gels but it is fairly stable in its liquid, diluted form that you will find in any drug store.
I will not argue with you in the effects of oxygen - bacteria cannot live in it, that is how our skin heals itself. In other countries, they use pure oxygen to fight major diseases and infections such as cancer. Here in the US, however, the medical field would never explore the uses of oxygen in curing diseases (including acne) because it would destroy their economy - everything from drug companies to insurance companies to medical schools. People have known about the power of oxygen for a long time. Some companies have tried to bottle it to sell to acne sufferers (oxzit) but it is not that simple. Yes, oxygen is the cure to acne, but not through hydrogen peroxide or benzoyl peroxide. They are both way too harsh and in killing some bacteria, they will destroy your skin. If you are a scientific guy(?) like you sound that you are, please help us find this oxygen cure, not just for acne but for even more destructive diseases. Sorry to go on, perhaps this should be another thread. I'm just saying that I see where you are coming from with HP but I still would not recommend it, it upsets the chemistry of your skin.
Well I'm starting to use the HP as a toner today............ I tried it once and I liked it so far!
Thanks hopefully my face gets better! I have mild acne, and I'm just sick of the last few pimples :rolleyes:
Hi again coloradogirl, thx for your input on this topic. You have obviously done some major digging of your own. What are you currently using and is it effective for you? I will give witch hazel a try I think and see if I can continue the results I get from HP. It's just so hard to stop something when you are seeing results. In the meantime I am using HP sparingly and watching for signs of skin damage. There used to be some others on this board using HP and I hope that they share their experiences as well.
Anyone eles using 3% hydrogen peroxide for their skin?
How about you monminkellan, you still using it?

Im currently on accutane, but just had a breakout on my chin, so i am going to try this, ill let you know how it goes.
There has been a lot of new research done on hydrogen peroxid and it is not recommended like it used to be, here's a little info. from Paula Begouns site.

Hydrogen Peroxide
Given what is now known about free-radical damage, I no longer recommend hydrogen peroxide as a topical disinfectant for acne. Oxygen is clearly a problem for skin, and hydrogen peroxide is a significant oxidizing agent. The way hydrogen peroxide works is by releasing an unstable oxygen molecule onto the skin, and that generates free-radical damage. The extra oxygen molecule that makes up hydrogen peroxide is extremely unstable. That's why hydrogen peroxide is packaged in a dark brown, airtight container.

On exposure to air, hydrogen peroxide's extra oxygen molecule is released and the product becomes plain water. For skin prone to acne this extra oxygen molecule is capable of killing the bacteria that cause blemishes. Acne bacteria are anaerobic, meaning they don't like oxygen. But because of the problems that stem from impacting the skin with a substance that is known to generate free-radical damage, other options need to be sought.
Always consider the source of a point of view and their inherent self serving interests that may be behind it.

some info for those who are interested (sry for the long post!)

-I would also recommend those who apply HP for an extended period also take a good vitamin E and other anti oxidants as a daily supplement to ward of the remote chance of free radical damage.

Scientific evidence strongly encourages the development of ways to enhance oxygenation of skin, and perhaps all other organs as well. Several means exist to accomplish this objective, but one with the longest history of safety is to apply stabilized hydrogen peroxide lotions to the skin.

Critics of this cosmetic formulation concept raise a cry against adding (hydrogen) peroxide to the skin, but say nothing about the widespread use of (benzoyl) peroxide.

Cosmetic class hydrogen peroxide emulsions are an economical and effective source of oxygen for hypoxic adult skin. Oxygen is released rapidly upon topical application which decreases remaining hydrogen peroxide. Solubility of oxygen in lipid domains of epidermal cells does not raise concentrations higher than attained by ortho and hyperbaric oxygenations. vitamins E and C protect epidermal cells against lipoperoxidation, and are included in hydrogen peroxide cosmetic emulsions.

Hydrogen peroxide is FDA safe and effective as and anti-infective and cleansing agent for open wounds. It is used extensively in dental products. Years of use by mass market consumers have not revealed dangerous side effects that would prohibit continues application to skin surface.

Upon comparison with benzoyl peroxide, hydrogen peroxide is much less a risk for tumor induction and promotion of epidermal skin cells. Benzoyl peroxide is of such far greater risk that the FDA Anti-Acne Final Monograph removed benzoyl peroxide from safe and effective classification. Efficacy is not the issue; safety is being reviewed extensively with animal studies to determine its risk for long term human use.

It must also be pointed out that hydrogen peroxide is readily available, as a 3% aqueous solution for use as an antiseptic, on broken skin and is used orally for periodontal conditions. Since the gums and lining of the mouth, are soft tissue mucosa, if hydrogen peroxide, was in any way detrimental, it would have been a well-published fact, decades ago and its use would have been restricted by the FDA. Hydrogen peroxide has been in use for over a century.

Controversy will always exist. Like the AHAís, varying opinions always abound concerning formulations, buffers, pH, percentages, benefits, disadvantages, etc. The number of papers published on oxygen, free radicals and alpha hydroxy acids proves that there is great scientific interest in these subjects and the emerging technologies behind such products. In addition to the scientific interests in these subject matters, there are also financial and legal issues.

As with everything in life, use some commonsense. Review the available information; test the products or the technology; evaluate the results, and then make up your own mind.
My problem essentially consists in periodic visitations of tiny whiteheads around my mouth and nose area, rarely containing anything in the way of pus. I'm very interested in exploring hydrogen peroxide as an alternative to other cleansers that leave my skin far too dry. I have never had an issue with oily skin, and I suspect that these tiny pimples are the result of irritation due to dryness - my skin, for instance, tends to be far clearer when I have a few days growth of facial hair, and far more prone to breakouts in the first days after a close shave. Will hydrogen peroxide not be too harsh for my skin, which is ordinarily dry and highly sensitive? I have experimented with every variety of product containing benzyol (sp?) peroxide, and generally find that they leave my skin far too dry. Quite frankly, the word peroxide sets off alarm bells whenever I see it. Thanks very much.

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