Just Starting Retina for Acne and Blemish Treatment! My Journey :) - Jakarta, ID

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A little background about my skin : oily,...

A little background about my skin : oily, acne-prone, with a lot of acne scars
I'm 20 years old, been struggling with acne since I was 13 years old. I never tried any strong medication to heal my skin, just a few prescription cream and antibiotics from dermatologist, but none of them really heal my skin. Never been on accutane because I think I can't handle the breakout it will caused before healing, some people had break outs for quite a long time. Since my skin is not getting any better (I'm desperate, really) I decided to try retin-A, after did some research on internet of course. So I start with retin-A 0,05 (I randomly chose 0,05 instead of 0,01 or 0,025. I just thought 0,05 is somewhere in between so it will not work too slow or too irritating) I bought it from pharmacy, here in Indonesia you don't really need any prescription to get it. I'm scared with the purging phase :( but it's better than not getting any better forever.

Week 1
On 3rd day I start getting a little bit of peeling here and there, some whiteheads surfacing, and some of my acne scars are drying and the day after they peeled off of my skin leaving pink marks (it's soooo much better because they were so dark before). I had two cysts on my cheek and between my brows, the white puss had came out, they are so much better now, almost gone but now I have to deal with the marks they left. But they aren't really bad, they first turned to scabs and now it's just red with a little bit of peelings skin around them. I wash my face with Cetaphil gentle cleanser every day, and i felt this stinging sensation every time I wash my face. I never use any sunscreen on my face before because my face is so oily and putting sunscreen on my face make me feel greasy and sometimes caused me more acne. People say it's important to use sun screen when in retin-A medication but I never had problems with sun so I shrug it off and going outside without any, I never been so wrong in my life, I spent quite a while facing the sun outside I didn't feel anything so I thought it was just fine but when I get home took off my makeup and wash my face omg my cheeks were so red due to the sun exposing and it's really itchy :(. So I apply olive oil all over my face and now it's better, not as red but I can still feel itch and this burned feeling :(. At least my acne has gotten better when I look in the mirror.

Broke out from make up :(

Last Saturday I broke out horribly, I wasn't really sure if it was caused by purging phase or my foundation. Well...the foundation had broke me out before so I guess it was the culprit. It was terrible, 4 cysts acne on my cheeks and 2 cysts on my forehead and a lot of mild acne. I almost cried because it was awful but thank God my significant other calmed me down. In the morning I could see the mild acne had calmed down a bit, and some were peeled when I washed my face. I still put on my make up (can't go out without it!) but this time I put on lighter foundation so my skin can breathe. And the next day I could see some acne had dried. I still apply retin-a every night, and this morning I could see the white puss from my acne start to came out, whiteheads had surfaced. I washed my face and cleaned all the dead skin away with just cotton pad. Some whiteheads also got cleared up. I still feel itchy sometimes when I washed my face and my skin still peels a little bit.
I'm thankful the acne from past breakout had stopped. :)

week 2

More breakouts :( I skip for one day to avoid my skin for getting more irritated. It's really itchy and burning sometimes I had to wash my face in the middle of the night.

week 3

more acne pops out everywhere :( less peeling and I don't feel any itch nor burning, also less redness. I can see my skin looks dry during the day though it's oily.

week 4

Horrible skin, still have acne everywhere and peeling, so I skip for 2 days because it was getting too irritating and it hurts to look in the mirror. After 2 nights without retin-A my skin has calmed down so I started using it again. At the end of the week my skin has gotten better, there's some new white heads but my other acne has dried. There was so many acne around my forehead, they were red and just look horrible but now I can see they have gotten better and the scars they left still there but they aren't as red as they were before.

week 5

85% of my acne has cleared up. My skin is getting better even with the acne scars. It's still far from perfect but I can see the retin-a does make my skin better, so much better in the last few months! Although I have to go through the worst breakout of my life before getting better, but it's worth it. Also it helps to control my oily face, I always woke up with greasy face but now it's just a little bit oily. All the past acne left dry patches on my skin, I'm gonna use olive oil and scrub my face to make it better. I don't know if I'm gonna get another breakout later (I really hope not) but for now my skin is good with the regimen.

week 6

my skin is getting clearer day by day, I only have 1 active acne on my left cheek. Acne scars has gotten a lot better, I can see them fade. I'm amazed by how much retin-A has changed my skin. So far so good.

week 7-8

I had breakouts, pretty bad with bumps on my cheek and forehead I guess it was because my time of the month was about to came and when it did the breakout just stop and my skin is getting back to normal though I'm left with scars. I still have white heads or black heads sometimes but not as much as I had before the treatment.


So far my skin has gotten better. It's so much better than ever before. I also get rid of stuff that has potential to breakout my skin, like, a few of makeups. My acne scars has faded though not completely gone. But I hope for the best :D It's impressive cause I have no pimple at all! I usually have 1-2 active acne in a week, but now...NONE!!! Also no black heads and white heads would still appear if I put on make up for too long but that's okay. My skin is not flawless, I still have few acne scars, they're red-dish and I'm still applying retin-A every night and would skip for 1-2 days if my skin peels or itch too much
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