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Hi Lizzie, your problem sounds very much like mine except I began suffering from hormonal induced acne in my late 30's. For 5 years I was on minocycoline (sp) and visited the dermo regularly for injectons. In my late teens and early 20's I had very minor breakouts.

I researched "natural remedies" for adult acne and have been on this protocol for over a year now. I have seen the dermo once - this past month for two cysts which "married" to one giant blood blister on my chin area. I did get an injection which helped bring down the swelling.

I take: 1 capsule of 450 mg Saw Palmetto; 1 50 mg Zinc (watch daily zinc intake as it can be hard on the stomach - most women's diet is lacking in zinc); 1 Flaxseed oil capsule (sometimes 2 daily); one tablet of Apple Cider Vinegar and a regular daily vitamin. It took a good 2 months to get my acne under control. If I experiene a cycstic breakout I use white wine vinegar dabbed on a cotton ball to help shrink it but I haven't had to do this in 6 months.

I also use Head & Shoulders (which contains zinc) to wash my hair and I sometime wash my face with it.

I've only recently added a moisterizer to my daily regimen as I tend to have oily skin. Washing too much caused my acne to increase. I also purchased a professional extractor and have given myself some nice scars using it - I've boxed it up and put it away and only use it for "huge" cysts when I can't take the pain and need to drain (usually one in the groin area from shaving). I no longer squeeze as much as I used too and try not to touch my face and create more bacteria.

I can't recommend Saw Palmetto capsule, 50 mg Zinc, Flaxseed oil, Apple Cider Vinegar caplet enough. Plus, I try to get 7-8 of sleep.

Good luck - it's trying dealing with cystic acne. At one point, at age 40, I lost a number of family/friends in a short period. I do believe extreme stress causes flare ups - anything you can do to keep your stress manageable (exercise) should help too.

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