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When I was 19 my skin had finally cleared up and life was good. Then, I spent the summer in Costa Rica and a week after I came home, I woke up one morning and had both cheeks full of big, red, painful zits. They were huge! I was so upset and I immediately made an appointment to go to the dermatologist. She put me on Retin-A and antibiotics. The worst part was, my friends from Chile were coming to visit and we were planning to go to the beach and a lot of other places. Did I mention that these friends are all gorgeous and have perflect complexions? All I wanted to do was cry and not leave the house, but I had no choice? I was so mortified! So, I spent the next year on Retin-A and antiobiotics. BIG MISTAKE!!! They helped a little, but not too much. They did help me get a lot of extra zits, scars, and discoloration and a bright red face :( Anyway, my derm agreed to let me go on Accutane. So, a month before, I started Ortho Tri Cyclen and my face cleared up during that same month. (My acne is mostly hormonal) Then, I started accutane and my face stayed clear. After using accutane for a month, I had to discontinue it because it gave me a swollen brain and so I decided that it wasn't worth it. After I quit using accutane, my face exploded once again. It was worse than before. After about 5-6 months I got my face under control. I stopped using Retin-A and just used BC and OTC things from the drug store. My face still breaks out once a month, but only with one or two zits. Before I had 4-5 big zits on each cheek (sometimes more) all the time. Also, that month when I didn't use OTC my face got really bad again like before, so I knew for sure that it did help my skin. I haven't had any problems with it at all.

I think the effectiveness of BC depends on the type you use your body. I know some people who are on BC and it breaks them out really bad. It helps me though. If you think your acne may be hormone related, then just try it and see. I also started using Evening Primrose Oil and Chaste Tree Berry extract (also called Vitex) two weeks ago. I heard these two things help with hormonal acne. I'll keep you all updated on how it works.

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