Fraxel Laser

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Hi Everyone.. I have not had Fraxel done but I...

Hi Everyone.. I have not had Fraxel done but I have had the terrible orange peel texture side effect from using Retin A that many fraxel users have experienced. I used Retin A approx. 3/4 times and my pores enlarged all over my face and I got all these weird lines on my my face look exactly like an orange peel when you looked at it in the natural light. It was horrific and horrifying. I have probably read every single thing on the internet pertaining to orange peel texture. Here is some interesting things I have discovered...

Retin A, over exfoliating, microdermabrasion, dermabrasion, rosacea, peels, and lasers can all produce orange peel texture. But why? That was my question. Why do all of these things produce the same terrible side effect. The answer, I believe, is inflammation. When you get a burn, you get inflammation. When your barrier is damaged, you get inflammation. So, whether it is a chemical burn, a laser burn, a damaged skin barrier or inflammation within the body (Rosacea) it can do the same thing: create orange peel texture.

I mean, when you look at the texture, even if it's not red, it just looks like inflamed skin, doesn't it? So once I realized that the problem was inflammation it was much easier to know how to resolve it.

I have been experiencing this for 2 and a half months now and I knew I had to go over my skin routine and see if there was anything at all that could be irritating my skin ( even just a little) which would lead to more inflammation. I looked at the ingredients again in my "extremely gentle" face wash and skin barrier cream. My skin barrier cream had nothing irritating- all gentle oils that should not bother the skin. My "extremely gentle" face wash, however, had vitamin C and lactic acid!!!!!!! OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Those are NOT gentle!! At least not for skin like ours.

So for the past five days I have changed my skin routine and have been looking at my skin in the worst possible light. I'd like to add that these are the things I have been suffering with recently..

1. #11 lines that are all weird and crinkly that appeared from NOWHERE between my brows. Wrinkles that come over night?? What the heck??!

2. Redness around the nose and even down my nasolabial folds a bit. ugh.

3. Worse nasolabial folds. Skin looked saggier there as well. So confusing!

4. More fine lines

5 Crinkly skin when I smile on either side of my mouth. Looks like severely dehydrates skin

6. Broken caps on nostril

7. Holes all over my face and lines. ( orange peel texture/enlarged pores) *worst thing of all.

Five days ago I began this routine..

In the am, put raw honey on my face for 2-5 minutes. Rinse off. Put on Montana Emu oil all over my face. Not too much. Lightly blot areas where extra residue is. On nose and between brows ( oilier areas) put cerave am. On drier places ( rest of face) put on ceractive by cellceuticals. Wait 15 minutes and put on insivible zinc sunscreen by skin ceuticals.

Night: Raw honey on face.. wash off with warm water. Emu oil all over face- do not blot extra. Rub in ceractive while face is still moist with emu oil. Cerave am on nose and between brows. ( my cerative cream is a bit heavier so I don't put in on my t-zone, just in case)

That's it. That has been my routine and I have LITERALLY watched my pores disappear before my very eyes in the past 5 days. It;s seriously miraculous. My broken caps are disappearing. My red around my nose is completely gone. My skin looks lifted and tighter. NO MORE 11 wrinkles between my brows!! OMG they were there for over 2 months!!! Skin plumping up! Fine lines disappearing. Best of all my pores are 90% GONE. I still have a bit of crinkly skin on sides of my mouth when I smile but I feel 100% confident this will all go away.

This routine will help your skin. I am sure of it. For some, it will completely fix it. What I learned: You cannot irritate your skin with exfoliation or peels or any, even slightly harsh chemicals on your face if you have orange peel texture. Do not put vitamin C on your face!!!

****If you have had orange peel texture for a year a more, do this routine but add in dermarolling ( microneedling) with a .5 needle. I read ONE doc (every other doc suggested lasers) who said that microneedling with break up the scar tissue and weird formation of collagen on the dermis that is creating orange peel texture. I think if you have had this problem long term you need to break up the tissue on the rdermis so that it can smooth out. It will not cause the problems that a laser or retin a cause because you are not burning your top layer of skin off. Dermaroll and then put on nothing but emu oil. I would dermaroll once a week with .5 ( not super agressively) and see how your skin reacts. If it's ok, up it to 2x a week.

This is the best advice I can give to anyone who is experiencing orange peel texture. My skin looks amazing now and I am SO SO SO relieved!!!!!!!

It's very difficult to capture the damage using a cell phone camera..

but here it is. This is in the healing phase, mind you. Do you see the tiny dots? Those are all over my face- everywhere. They used to be three times as big though. I am laying in bed with my baby and will try to get a better shot later.

Ok.. here it is...

This is my skin in the worst possible light. This is the light that I have been inspecting it in every morning. The pores used to be three times as big.. I will post a photo that shows how I used to look. This is my healing skin but you can still see major orange peel texture. Before retin a I had poreless skin. I only used retin a for preventive reasons, ie: fine lines.

How my skin looked when damage first happened.

This is not my photo, but what I looked like in the beginning. The pores might have even been bigger. Here you can see how my above skin is such a huge improvement for only one week of the most gentle care.

Next on my quest for healing skin..

I am going to see how my skin does when I go a day without any cleansing. If this helps, I will only wash my face at night before bed. I will update you all if there is any progress. Trying to fine tune my routine and finally get my poreless skin back completely. I'd like to note that my skin definitely looks firmer. I think a destroyed skin barrier gives the impression of saggier skin. You def. want to repair your barrier.

More good news!!

I have been washing my face only once a day and have noticed even more improvement in my skin/pores!!!! I think giving my skin a break has been very healing. I feel so optimistic today!! Last night I mixed a little cetaphil with my raw honey and used my extra gentle cleanser from cell ceuticals on my nose only and my skin was very happy with this. I noticed the honey was giving me blackheads on my nose so I am going to wash with a cleanser from now on. I don't have any pores on my nose so I feel comfortable doing this. Plus I hate blackheads!! I haven't had any for so long. Frustrating. Anyway, I felt my skin could use a bit more cleansing with the only once a day wash so mixing the cetaphil with the raw honey was the best I could come up with. It worked great. Will post photos soon!!!!

More healing!!!!!

I just want to let everyone know.. I stopped using my ceractive as I want to use only the least amount of product necessary. I also want to stay as gentle and natural as I can possibly get. At this point I am ONLY using raw honey and emu oil. My face is dramatically improving. It's incredible. Please, if you have sudden onset orange peel texture/enlarged pores be as gentle as possible on your skin. Use natural oils and natural face washes. THIS is how your skin will heal- and it should heal. I cannot believe the difference once I removed the ceractive.


My pores are GONE. gone. gone gone.

I stopped everything and ONLY washed by face with raw, local honey- organically harvested and then put on emu oil. Nothing else- not even make up or sunscreen. (stayed home and out of sun- it's dead of winter here) It's been a few days of that- just a few and my skin completely healed. It's dry but there are no pores, I can *barely* barely see the broken caps- very light, the 11's are totally gone. My skin is healed. It's healed. I am SO happy! photos to come.

healed skin

healed skin

healed skin

Hope for laser/peel victims.

I know that some of you think that because my damage was from a cream that there is no hope for you. I don't believe that. My damage was bad. I was sickened by it and could not photograph it. I was also in denial and would turn away if a saw it in natural light. My skin, at its worst, looked just like these photos.

Hello everyone!!!

I am SO happy my post is helping so many. And I understand your stress.. it is very scary. But please do whatever you can to stay positive and help yourself through whatever anxiety/depression you are feeling due to your skin. I'd like to go over some things again bc they might have gotten lost in the comments. First- this routine did NOT get rid of my broken caps. It seemed that way at first because the redness diminished so much. But nope. they are still there ( :-( ) I am going to have to laser off those bad boys and that scares me.****** STAY AWAY FROM LASERS AND PEELS IF YOU HAVE ORANGE PEEL SKIN DUE TO INFLAMMATION***** I cannot stress this enough! It will NOT help your skin. No chance. No way. No how. I have read countless doctors say that lasers and peels never shrink pores ANYWAY. And they certainly won't shrink pores that re inflamed because they inflame the skin more. SO please. Please do not do it.

Second.. you must be patient. I have to say I am good at being patient and I really believe that helped me. Don't change up your routine unless your *pores* are getting bigger. If your skin gets dry, etc. keep at it. If the pores stay the same or shrink, keep at it. ANything that makes your pores bigger should be immediately stopped. Check your skin every morning in the natural light by a window where you can really inspect it. It will takes months for your skin to improve with this regime so don't expect miracles over night. Just stick with it.

Remember- your honey should be TOP QUALITY. It must be raw. it MUST be raw. Local. Harvested in ways that do not use pesticides. I would be wary of any honey that claims it's organic. You can't really have organic honey. You want raw honey that is of the best quality. You want to make sure they harvest the honey in the best ways. This is where I get my honey if you want to make sure you are getting the best: you can buy from here.

Get top notch emu oil too. Do NOT buy it from Amazon or some such place. I buy mine from montana ranch. It should come in a glass bottle not plastic. The emu oil can leach chemicals from plastic bottles.

Be gentle with your skin. Any time you can avoid make up or sunscreen and stay indoors, do it. Give your skin a breather. Wash with luke warm water. Use the raw honey just like you would a cleanser. Don't over apply the emu. You can spot treat acne. I use salcycic acid acne treatments because they are anti-inflammatory. Just spot treat though and do not spread on your face. I hope this helps. I think aloe from an aloe plant might be ok as well. Remember- patience patience patience. And tp quality products. No scrubs. nothing harsh. Raw honey and emu oil- that's it. Your skin will heal. Just give it time! :-)

Keep update

I know I say not use lasers right after I say I am going to use a laser. Sounds stupid right? But I am just going to laser ONE broken cap and see how it goes. If it's ok I will laser the other two. But I will NOT laser any other part of my face. Just where the cap is. I don;t want to do it but these things are permanent and I hate them.

Quick update-

I meant quick update

Another update *PLEASE READ*

I'm getting lots of questions. If you have sudden onset enlarged open pores that look like orange peel texture, this is what you should do:

Wash your face with warm water and RAW (MUST BE RAW!!!) honey. Lightly pat dry.
Apply emu oil that comes from a glass bottle ( NOT plastic) I buy my emu oil from montana ranch

THAT IS IT. That is all you should do . Check your skin every day in the natural light to see how your pores are doing. Your skin might get dry but if your pores are shrinking or at least not getting bigger, keep up this routine. It could take up to 6-9 months for your pores to completely go back to normal. Maybe even longer. Please be patient.

The more stuff you put on your skin the more you will irritate it. Any cream, make up and sunscreen has chemicals that will irritate your pores so avoid them when ever necessary. Now sunscreen is VERY important if you are going to be outside so you must apply it. If you are going to be indoors or at home all day- don't apply make up or sunscreen. Give your skin a break.

Do not use a chemical sunscreen. Use a mineral suncreen with zinc. I use skinceuticals zinc sunscreen. I love it. The sun will inflame your skin and damage it so do not tan, etc. Try and keep your skin out of the sun ( using hats, stand in shade) whenever possible.

Personally, I would not use any creams or any other face washes. I STILL only use raw honey and emu and zinc suncreen with I go out side. That is all I use and my pores are gone. I'm being safe. So just keep it simple. If your skin is really dry, you can add in some aloe directly from an aloe plant. If this makes your pores larger, stop. So, again. Keep it simple, be patient and only use RAW honey and emu oil. That's it. :-) Hope this helps.

emu oil- montana ranch
raw honey- honeyrun farm
suncreen-skinceuticals ultimate uv defense with invisible zinc

Update: Orange Peel Texture HEALED

Hello everyone!! I just wanted to update.. it's been awhile. I've been getting a lot of messages. I want to reiterate that your skin WILL heal completely!! It has almost been a year (about ten months) since the damage and my skin if finally 100% back to normal. The last time I wrote my pores had closed but I still had little lines on my skin that had not been there before the damage. It looked like dehydrated skin. This was part of the healing process I learned. I also learned that it takes 12-14 months (possibly) longer to fully heal from retin a damage. Very interesting. (read this from a derm). About two months ago I decided to change up my skin routine because I had used the emu oil and raw honey exclusively for months and had not exfoliated in so long my skin was thick with dead skin. (eww). It still had a bit of that scaly/little lines thing going on but the pores were gone so I felt confident in trying something else. I had proactive from a year ago stil out on my counter so I used it. NOTE: Please be cautious using proactive if your skin is still damaged***

Anyway, I used my proactive and it was awesome!! I had not exfoliated my skin in so long.. my skin was very happy to lose all those dead skin cells. For the past two months I use my proactive in the morning followed by argon oil. I ran out of emu and started using Josie Maran's Argon oil. LOVE IT. In the night I use my raw honey- really thick amt and massage it in really well. Followed my Argon oil. Well, my skin is now 100% mine. The way it was before all this mess. I also had my broken caps lasered off one month ago and they are fading nicely. All in all my skin is doing so well. I will add a photo of my skin in the natural light to show you. Oh.. btw... the very worst light for me.. my reflection in the window outside my car with the sun shining on my face.. my skin now looks flawless in that light. That was my ultimate test that my skin was completely healed.

Please remember: the reason why my skin healed is because I gave it time. I allowed it to heal. I see people giving up on the emu/honey after ONE WEEK!! Your skin won't heal for months no matter what you do!!! Your only chance for a quicker healing is to LET it heal by being gentle. I think I used the raw honey and emu for 6 months straight- nothing else. It was so worth it. I am so relieved to be completely done with all this and have smooth, plump skin again. Best of luck to all of you.

ONe more thing. I think what some of had/ have is Rosacea triggered by peels/lasers and creams. Read about how people with Rosacea take care of their skin. Rosacea is basically inflammation. If you go read about people with Rosacea you will notice they almost all use gentle oils and gentle cleansers. They are very aware of how sensitive their skin is. So, one idea is to treat your skin as if you have rosacea. Hope this info helps!
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