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I have been suffering from acne on and off again in my twenties. I notice that when I have tried some new product, or go off of the Proactiv for a period of time, that is when I break out. I went off of it this past year since my skin had cleared up tremendously. It was only a matter of time and I began having regular breakouts again. This last one was pretty bad, so I went back to Proactiv and my skin is looking it's best again. I do believe that there are OTC treatments that will work just the same, since Proactiv is basicly a BP treatment; however, with my busy schedule and frustration with trying different things, Proactiv works best for me. I use the toner followed by the repairing lotion religously every night. In the mornings I use Camelia Oil to moisturize then the repairing lotion on pimples under my makeup. The only reason I really stopped was because I kept hearing how it can damage your skin. Honestly, I have been using Proactiv now for about 3 years and my skin still looks young and healthy.I really just think you have to avoid your eyes, other than that I don't see any long term damage. I recently started using their sulfur mask after that big breakout and it really cleared up my skin even faster. I use it now when I feel a zit coming on and the zit never really amounts to anything. Even my red marks are fading, but that may be contributed to the Camelia Oil. The only other advice I have is to definitly use a moisturizer every day and SPF when in the sun. I'm sure there are cheaper ways, but really I only spend about $100/year on it since I don't need shipments as frequently. The stuff lasts quite a while. It's nice just to have two products to use every night and know I don't have to run around drugstores trying new things.
Hope this helps!
With Proactiv...
I use Camelia Oil to moisturize after I apply the toner. Then I apply the repairing lotion when my skin is really dry. Otherwise, I use it only in the A.M. before I apply my makeup. It really keeps my skin refreshed so the only time my skin looks flaky from the Proactiv is right after I wash my face. I use Eucerin facial wash and/or Cetaphil, not the Proactiv cleanser. I also use the sulphur mask when I have a breakout. I never get huge bumps anymore. And the few pimples that are lingering go away before they amount to anything. My red marks are also fading. For some reason, Proactiv also is the only thing that has ever worked for me. I think you have to learn how to adjust to using it. Like, some people can't use the wash or use another type of moisturizer, etc. I really think all you need are the toner and reparing lotion but it must be used with another brand of moisturizer.

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