Thursday, July 29, 2010

Accutane Update Day 63

Im on the third day of taking the 40mg Accutane which was upped from the original 20mg, and so far so good! My skin is looking and feeling like its starting to tighten up again, and as for the problems that I mentioned in the previous have subsided a lot. I think they’ve all gone away because I started taking some melatonin chews to help me sleep at night, and being well rested is helping me stay in a really good mood! The only thing now is that I smashed up my right ring-finger really bad to the point where I think it might even be broken! So I’m bummed out cause I can’t play games, I can’t lift weights, I can’t really do anything with my right hand because my finger is throbbing so bad! I uploaded a video of my finger to youtube, check it out!

Take it easy everyone, I'll update you on my progress in a few days!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Can Masturbating Cause Acne?

Almost everyone does it (whether or not they’ll ever admit it.), some more than others especially if you’re a teenager/young adult going through puberty or with raging hormones. This is another one of the acne topics that has mixed speculation. I hear or read from people and even professionals that masturbating in any way or form can’t cause acne, but there is also a flip-side where they say that it does. So like everything with acne it comes down to you and your personal experiences. One thing that is for known for sure is masturbation can help relieve anxiety and stress and that it can be healthy in ways!

Check out this article I found from

“Does masturbation cause acne?

History: There is no specific scientific evidence linking masturbation and acne. However, for hundreds if not thousands of years, societies around the world, in their attempt to prevent young people from engaging in premarital sex, have latched onto the myth that sex/masturbation and acne are in some way related. Let’s take a moment now to look at modern science and see if we can help unravel this controversy.

What does research say?: As of 2009, there are no published studies attempting to link masturbation or sex with acne. Until researchers produce those studies, let’s take a step back. We do know that hormones and acne are linked, particularly when it comes to increased levels of androgens such as testosterone. So let’s look at how arousal and the sex act affect hormone levels. First, it’s worth mentioning that we know far more on this topic when it comes to animals such as rats and monkeys than we do about humans. Science is spotty in the area of human hormonal production and sex. According to a study in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine, “…small differences in methodology and data interpretation may easily produce contrasting results.” A survey of the evidence bears this out.

What the evidence shows: Several studies show very small increases in testosterone after orgasm in both men and women, while others show statistically insignificant differences. Studies specific to arousal show from very small increases in hormone levels to insignificant changes. However, even when changes are apparent, levels return back to baseline within minutes. As you can see, we have little if any compelling evidence. To complicate matters even more, a study in the Journal of Zhejiang University SCIENCE in 2003 showed a marked increase in testosterone on the 7th day of abstinence, which the authors posit is possibly due to sperm formation and maturation.

Conclusion: We simply do not know whether masturbation or sex is related to acne, or for that matter human hormonal balance. More research is needed. Current research tends to point toward very small hormonal changes after arousal or sex, if any. Whether these changes are beneficial or detrimental for acne remains unknown.

My common sense hypothesis: We know that humans with high androgen levels tend to experience more severe acne symptoms. We also know that humans with higher androgen levels tend to have a higher sex drive. This may explain why some people who are more sexually active, with themselves or partners, may at times experience more acne symptoms. Whether abstinence would increase or decrease acne in such individuals is up for debate.”

So whether you do it 20 times a day (that’s gotta hurt!) or once a week, or even less, it all comes down to how your acne/skin reacts!


Sunday, July 25, 2010

12 Ways To Ensure The Effectiveness of Your Routine

Are you convinced that your acne treatment (washes, cleansers, creams, medications, etc.) isn’t working or helping your acne at all? I for one will admit that if I didn’t start seeing results within the first few weeks of whatever it was that I was using I thought that it wasn’t working. Shortly after I would usually stop using it and move onto a different product, treatment, or whatever. Though I hear a lot now that no matter what it is that you may be using you should at the least try it for a full 6 weeks before deciding if it’s working or not. I mean for all I know maybe some of the stuff that I’ve tried in the past would’ve started working if I would’ve stayed with it for a few more weeks, but I really don’t think so. I could literally feel that it wasn’t working for my skin, and I could feel my skin’s condition worsening at times, but who knows maybe that’s what is supposed to happen. So I guess the point is don’t lose all hope if your treatment doesn’t start working right away… you have to think past all of the things you read and here and there about products that say things like that, “clears acne in just 3 days…” Things like that I just don’t think are possible, and if it does work I can almost guarantee that the acne will come back within a few weeks.

Here are some things that you can do to make your treatment the most effective that it can be! I got them from, check them out…

“AcneNet Spotlight Article

12 Ways to Get Better Results from Acne Treatment

Effective Acne Treatment Often Requires More Than Medication

Do you wish that your acne medication left you with clearer skin? Better results may not come from trying the latest acne treatment or a stronger acne-fighting cream — but from making some simple changes.

For those seeing a dermatologist

1. Use your acne treatments exactly as prescribed. Acne only clears when the treatment targets everything that is causing the acne. Since most acne medications target only 1 or 2 causes, 2 or 3 products are often necessary. To see clearer skin, these products must be used as prescribed.

2. Stop using acne treatments not prescribed by your dermatologist. Using acne products that are not part of the treatment plan prescribed by your dermatologist can irritate your skin. Irritated skin usually leads to more breakouts. For best results, dermatologists recommend using only the acne-fighting products and medications in your treatment plan.

3. Speak up. Dermatologists do not want patients to feel confused about acne treatment. If you do not understand something, ask about it. If an acne treatment option not prescribed by your dermatologist interests you, be sure to mention it. Asking questions is often the answer to effective acne treatment.

For everyone treating acne, including those seeing a dermatologist

4. Never pop, squeeze, or pick acne. Popping and squeezing pimples, whiteheads, blackheads, and cysts tends to make acne worse. All this does is make the acne last longer. This can make it difficult to see clearer skin no matter what treatment you are using. Trying to get rid of a pimple by popping or picking also can lead to scarring, which can be permanent.

5. Avoid abrasive soap, facial scrub, toner, astringent, and masks. These can irritate the skin, and irritated skin is more likely to break out. Irritated skin also makes it more difficult to tolerate acne medication. A mild cleanser used twice a day to wash the skin is actually more effective for controlling acne and preventing breakouts.

6. Do not scrub your skin clean. While scrubbing away oil and grime may seem like a good idea, scrubbing actually irritates acne-prone skin. Irritating the skin generally leads to breakouts.

When washing the skin, use lukewarm (not hot) water and gently apply a mild cleanser with your fingertips. Washcloths and puffs tend to be too abrasive. Limiting washing to twice a day can help reduce irritation and dryness.

7. Wait 5 to 15 minutes to apply acne medication. Applying acne medication right after you shower or wash your face can irritate the skin and lead to breakouts. Wet skin is most absorbent. To avoid irritation, dermatologists recommend waiting 5 to 15 minutes before applying acne medication.

8. Use only oil-free skin care and hair care products. Makeup, hair gel, and other products used by people with acne-prone skin should not contain oil. Oil tends to clog pores and lead to breakouts. Look for products that are labeled “oil free,” “nonacnegenic,” or “noncomedogenic.” This means the product does not clog pores.

9. Apply acne medication before makeup. Wearing an oil-free makeup is fine, but make sure it does not prevent the acne medication from working. Makeup should always be applied after topical acne medication.

10. Continue using the medication when skin clears. To keep skin blemish free, most people with acne need to continue using at least 1 acne medication. If you have been using an over-the-counter product, you may be able to taper your use to a few times a week.

11. Gently cleanse skin after sweating. Sweating, especially under a hat or helmet, can aggravate acne-prone skin. Gently cleansing the skin as quickly as possible afterwards can help prevent breakouts. When cleansing the skin, avoid the temptation to rub or scrub sweat from the skin. This can irritate the skin and cause breakouts.

12. Give acne-fighting products enough time to work. As a rule of thumb, it takes 6 to 8 weeks before you begin to see an improvement. Improvement does not mean blemish-free skin, but a noticeable difference. It generally takes about 6 months to see clear skin.

Effective Treatment Possible

Tremendous gains have been made in acne treatment. Today, virtually every case of acne can be resolved. If these tips do not help clear your skin, speak with a dermatologist. “

Take it easy everyone!


Friday, July 23, 2010

Accutane Update Day 58

Went to the dermatologist yesterday and he seemed a little surprised that my skin wasn’t doing so well; he said something like, “Yeah you’re still little red here and there.” So he upped my dosage form 20mg to 40mg and said he’d see me in a month. I was not able to pick up my prescription yet, because there was a questionnaire on the Ipledge website that I have to do first (if you haven’t already heard Ipledge is a total pain in the ass!), but when I logged onto the site it said that I had no questionnaire to do and that I could pick up my prescription, arghhh! Either way I still have a couple of 20mg capsules left, so I’ll be set for the next couple of days.

Also there are other things that I have been noticing for the past few weeks that have been bothering me. I’ve been having trouble sleeping every night and I’m always exhausted because of it. I noticed that I can become very stressed and angry very quickly and easily over the slightest thing. I’ve been having mood swings where one minute I’ll be happy, the next I’ll be sad. My head/brain feels fuzzy almost; it’s hard to explain, sometimes it feels like my brain is shrinking and growing. At first, a few weeks ago I didn’t think much of it and I thought that maybe I was just having a bad day or something; basically just trying to convince myself that it had nothing to do with the Accutane. Today though when I was looking at my Ipledge card it clearly says Stop using Isotretinoin (which is Accutane) and call your doctor right away if you experience any of the following… And sure enough all of the symptoms I have been experiencing are on the card! I mean I don’t know if maybe everyone experiences these things just not as bad as others, but one thing is for sure I don’t want to stop Accutane unless I physically feel like I’m dying! I don’t want to tell my doctor or my derm about it just because I don’t want them to take me off it. So I’m kind of anxious about starting the 40mg because I know if these things get worse I’m definitely going to have to tell my doctor and dermatologist. I’ll definitely keep you guys updated every couple of days, and if there are any of you have experienced anything like this while on Accutane let me know!


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Does Shaving Cause Acne?

Now it’s not entirely known if shaving causes acne, or makes it worse if you already have it, but I for one believe that it does have an effect. For some people they claim that shaving actually helps clear them up, while others have the opposite effect. Some people who don’t have acne tend to only have breakouts after they shave. Now a lot of things can come into play like how long each person waits before shaving, what kind of shaving cream/gel they use, if they use an ordinary razor or an electric one, etc. For a while I was using some fancy shaving cream that my mom had given to me, and every time after I shaved I was always breaking out. So I finally bought some regular foamy shaving cream for sensitive skin at the store and my breakouts after shaving subsided. Also depending on what skin you have you need to be careful on what you choose to put on your skin after shaving. Some people leave it dry, some people use aftershave, and some just use their ordinary moisturizer. In the end though all that matters is that you experiment and figure out what works best for your skin!

Here is a quick little article from:, check it out!

“Many men and women when they shave get acne-like outbreaks, which are commonly known as shaving bumps. The shaving bumps are the result of inflammation of the hair follicle which happens due to shaving. However, these shaving bumps, medically known as pseudofolliculitis barbae, can occur also due to waxing or plucking, wherein the hair gets trapped in the follicle leading to irritation and swelling.

Shaving bumps can occur any time but people who have curly hair have a tendency to get them more often. These bumps can be avoided by learning to shave smart so that you have fewer outbreaks.

It is important to prepare your skin for the shave. This means washing and wiping the face with warm water. The water helps to hydrate the skin and thus making it more pliable. In addition, the warm water dilates the blood vessels and the blood flow to skin increases. That is the reason why many people prefer to shave while taking a shower even though they may not know the reason behind it.

You can reduce the number of shaving bumps by using a good quality shaving cream or foam. The cream or the foam should be filmy and thin. This will help the razor to slide easily over the skin and reducing irritation to the skin. Even choosing the right razor can make a big difference. Whenever possible, try using an electric razor. Although the shave may not be as close as you want but the possibility of pseudofolliculitis barbae reduces substantially. However, if you are the type who only uses blades for shaving, then use a new single blade each time you shave. Remember, double edged blades tend to lift the hair out of the follicle and the resultant shave is actually done below the epidermis. When the epidermis starts to grow back, it does so by growing over the opening of the hair follicle. As the hair grows, it struggles to get out of the hair follicle, which is now closed, and this causes skin inflammation.

In addition, while shaving, make sure that the razor strokes are in the direction of the hair growth, that is downward strokes. This will reduce irritation and also keep the number of cuts down.

Immediately after shaving, use an alcohol-free toner or antibacterial gel. This will destroy the bacteria on the surface of the skin before they reach the hair follicles and will prevent shaving bumps from developing. Benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid is available in gel form and you can use them to stop shaving bumps and the resultant acne from developing.”

Happy shaving.


Back To School Stress

Being this time of year things can get to be pretty stressful. If you’re like me then your probly preparing for college, trying to figure things out, seeing what you want to do for the rest of your life, wondering how to pay for it, and the list goes on and on… This stress can sometimes become overwhelming causing you to be short-tempered, have anxiety, make you breakout etc. Sometimes when I find myself becoming stressed or beginning to have anxiety I find that simply just stopping everything for a minute or two and taking a few deep breathes drastically helps calm me every time! Also I workout just about every day to every other day, and it’s incredibly noticeable how good and clear your mind and body will feel afterwards! It doesn’t matter what you do from weightlifting, yoga, running/jogging, swimming, just about anything that gets your blood going and gets you sweating will help with stress. Also when you sweat from exercise it clears your pores helping your acne, just be sure to wash/rinse your face afterwards. In my opinion you should try and get in a little exercise (30 minutes- 1 hour) at least 3 times a week, and try to eat as healthy as you can.

As for the Accutane I am still breaking out consistently every day, and I rescheduled my appointment today to be on Thursday, so I will let you know what the dermatologist says tomorrow!

Take it easy everyone!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Quick Update

Hope everyone had a good weekend, and that you are all enjoying your summer. I just wanted to update everyone on a few things like Accutane. It’s funny because I swear that after I wrote that Accutane Update Day 45 entry that I started to breakout. It is a little alarming because they’re coming in big and in pairs almost, and not only that but because Accutane makes your skin sensitive it hurts super bad to even try and pop them. So I don’t know if this is normal or if my body is getting used to the medication and I need to be brought up to a higher dose. Either way my next appointment with my dermatologist is this Wednesday, and I know he will be able to answer my questions and hopefully bring me back peace of mind. So when Wednesday comes I’ll let you know what he says, but in the meantime don’t forget to be drinking plenty of water during this time of year especially if you have acne. You need plenty of water during this time of year even if you don’t feel thirsty, because your body is using more of that water and sweating it out as well. Although you might not be drenched in sweat all the time your body actually is perspiring (sweating) a lot more.

So like I said I’ll let you guys know what my derm says on Wednesday; in the meantime though check this video out! It’s not Acne related, but it’s just so damn gnarly that I had to share!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

What Is Microdermabrasion

My dermatologist says that after the Accutane I still might have some scarring, so microdermabrasion is something that I might do! Here is cool article that sums it up rather nice and quick; it’s from

“Microdermabrasion is mechanical exfoliation that removes the uppermost layer of dead skin cells from the face, chest and hands. For best results, it is recommended you get a series of treatments and use in conjunction with anti-aging skin care products.

The price for a single microdermabrasion treatment usually ranges from $100 - $150. With a series, you might get one free. Microdermabrasion takes about 20-30 minutes and there's no down-time for the skin to recover. That's why it's also sometimes called a "lunchtime peel."

Benefits of Microdermabrasion

* Microdermabrasion leaves skin with a fresher, more glowing look.

* Microdermabrasion diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, enlarged pores, and coarse textured skin.

* Microdermabrasion makes it easy for high-tech skin care products to actually penetrate into the deeper layers of the skin and help build collagen, which gives skin its youthful appearance.

Other Names for Microdermabrasion

Microdermabrasion is also known as particle resurfacing, power peel, derma-peel or Parisian peel.

How Microdermabrasion Works

Microdermabrasion uses a powerful device to spray microcrystals of aluminum dioxide (corundum powder) across the skin’s surface. The aluminum dioxide is a very fine, very hard, sand-like material that blasts away the uppermost layer of dead skin cells on the skin's epidermis.

Microdermabrasion can be uncomfortable around the sensitive tissue of the mouth and nose, but should not be painful. After the treatment, the technician vacuums away the traces of the corundum powder.

Cautions on Microdermabrasion

*Check on the training of the person who is going to give you the microdermabrasion treatment. Results depend in part on their expertise.

*Make sure all traces of the aluminum dioxide is removed from your skin.

*Apply sunscreen and stay out of the sun after your treatment. Along with the dead skin cells, you have removed some of your protection.

*Microdermabrasion is not recommended for sensitive skin, skin that easily reddens (called couperous), or skin with acne breakouts.

*Aging skin is already thin. Overdoing microdermabrasion treatments can make it even thinner.”

What do you think? Are then any better options?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Annoying Blackheads On My Nose!

Does anyone else ever get those stubborn blackheads on your nose that never go away? I try my best to squeeze them all out only to end up with a red, swollen clown-nose, and for what they just come back literally within a day! I have super oily skin in that area and I know that it has to be one of the major contributors to the blackheads. I know a lot of people have this problem too, but I seem to have it the worst out of anyone I know! You can literally see mine from almost across the room, and when I squeeze them out the pores on my nose look huge! Every time my pores fill up with this crap I can’t even breathe right through my nose till I get it out; it’s ridiculous. I swear If I could just get rid of these things alone my complexion would look ten-times better! The Accutane has definitely been helping them go away though, as my pores have slowly begun to shrink so that’s good. I still want to try and get rid of them now though. So I looked around a lot at what kind of things work and the best thing I found were these strips you can put on your nose, and when you peel them off they’re supposed to take out all of your blackheads. Now I know they’ll end up just coming back, but at least I won’t be giving my nose a beating anymore trying to squeeze them out. So I think I’m going to get some and give them a try, and I’ll let you know how things go! Also if you know anyhting on the matter, or any remedies let me know! In the meantime enjoy this video!


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Can The Changing Seasons Effect Your Acne?

Does your skin tend to change along with the ever changing seasons like mine? Check out this article from: and see what could causing yours to change!

“Our skin makes up a big part of the outer shell we present to the world each day, and we want to keep it happy and healthy-looking. But, like most relationships, the arrangements people develop with their skin are complicated. Our skin isn’t always great at telling us what it needs: even trained professionals have trouble translating its signals of bumps and blotches. And so, we struggle with creams, gels and exfoliating scrubs, trying to achieve perfect dermatological harmony. Then, just when we think we have it figured out, a breakout or a mysterious rash crops up, reminding us that our skin does not have an exclusive relationship with us; it interacts with other factors–mainly, the environment.

Weather, for one, has a huge effect on our skin. When it’s too hot or dry outside, our skin lets us know it. The winter months bring harsh, cold winds that irritate the delicate skin on our face and hands. Winter also brings dry conditions that strip skin of its natural moisture. This dryness can lead to red patches and excess dead skin cells that clog pores, causing acne. According to some skin-care experts, winter is the worst season for acne. It’s unclear whether these breakouts are due to the weather alone, or are an indirect effect of all the lotions we apply to counteract wintry conditions.

For many, summer brings the promise of clear, easy-to-manage skin. The humidity of summer softens skin and brings back the moisture lost in winter. Some people attribute their improved complexions to increased sun exposure, but the American Dermatological Association says there is no evidence to substantiate this claim. In fact, dermatologists advise patients taking acne medication to avoid the sun’s rays when possible, as many of these drugs increase sensitivity to ultraviolet radiation, which can lead to skin cancer.

Moreover, not everyone says summer helps their skin. Acne has the potential to get worse as the weather gets hotter. There are several explanations for why this happens. For one, excess heat and humidity increase sweat production, which means more oil available to clog pores. Also, summer activities – such as hanging out in swimming pools – can have negative effects on our skin. Chlorinated chemicals can cause a particularly bad form of acne called chloracne. Additionally, sunscreens, while great for protecting users from UV rays, can aggravate the skin, which is why many dermatologists recommend oil-free varieties for patients prone to acne flare-ups.

Extreme heat and humidity can also facilitate bacterial and fungal infections. In the Vietnam War, dermatological problems accounted for 12 percent of outpatient cases, according to one report. Many of these cases involved bacterial and fungal infections, which the doctors involved blamed on Vietnam’s muggy climate. They reported a high incidence of the bacterial infection impetigo and tinea pedis, a fungal infection more commonly known as athlete’s foot. In addition, numerous soldiers contracted a condition called tropical acne that only occurs in especially hot and humid areas. Tropical acne is a lot like regular acne but much more painful: many of the soldiers who had it were physically unable to carry their backpacks.

Of course, when the temperatures reach all-time highs here in the U.S., we stay inside and crank up the air conditioning. Our skin probably doesn’t like that much either. Both air conditioning and central heating can dry skin out. The struggle to create conditions our skin will find favorable can get frustrating, but what choice do we have? Until researchers come up with a way to prevent our skin from reacting to environmental factors, there is little we can do except cleanse, moisturize and hope for the best.”

Hope you are all enjoying your summer by the way!


Monday, July 12, 2010

Does Flying Make You Breakout?

Hey everyone! So I fly/ travel a lot each year; around 4-5 times sometimes more. Most of the time I fly it is usually going to and from New York from Arizona, which is about 5-6 hours. I almost always notice that I break out for the next day or two after flying. Sometimes it can be a bad breakout other times just a few pimples, but something always happens after I get done flying for sure. When I get off the plane my skin is oily and feels really gross and congested almost, like I can literally feel my pores being clogged. No matter if I rinse my face on the plane or as soon as I get home the pimps inevitably will come; it’s pretty damn annoying! I have looked this up on Google but I have not found too much info on what it could be; although there are plenty of other people who experience it too! Some of my guesses for why this could happen are: The change in air pressure for extended amounts of time can cause everything to come out. Or the stress of just the whole going to the airport/security/boarding thing, because it can be very stressful. Another possibility is it could just be exhaustion, at least for me as I usually don’t sleep that much before I fly because I try to get tired so I can sleep on the plane (which never happens I might add). Another could be that I just don’t drink a lot of fluids throughout the whole day when going to the airport and flying, because lets face it who likes to use the bathroom on the plane 10 times (no one!). I will continue to look further into this subject and let you guys know if I happen to find anything. In the meantime though if you have had any of the same experiences, or know something that I don’t then please share! Anything you can say, add, or comment about on this blog is always greatly appreciated and valued!

Have a good one everyone!


Sunday, July 11, 2010

Accutane Update Day 45!

Hey guys I know it’s been a long time since the last entry, I apologize I’ve been out of town for the past few weeks, but I return with good news! My skin is still doing really well, and getting better every week that goes by! I’m now on day 45, or about 1 month and 15 days (whichever sounds better) and I can honestly say that I have had only 3 legitimate new pimples surface since I last wrote. I have had a few more baby pimples but they don’t count because they’re gone within a day. Besides all of my scarring (which is slowly, but surely getting better) and a few pimples under the skin near my ears, I can safely say that my skin is pimple free! Don’t get me wrong I still have a long ways to go but it is such a huge improvement from what my skin looked like a month or 2 ago. Also I have still yet to experience any of the side-effects like: super-dry flakey skin, chapped or cracked lips, and lower back pain just to name a few. I mean I do notice that my skin is slightly dry sometimes but one layer of moisturizer will do the trick. As for lips it’s the same thing, I might need to put chap stick on every couple of hours, but none of these things are serious or have gotten worse since I started. At first I thought I was very lucky because I haven’t had any of these issues, but when I asked my buddy who did Accutane about his experience (which by the way made his skin flawless, and he had terrible acne!) he explained to me that he didn’t experience any of these symptoms either until the end of the third month. He said that the end of the third month his skin was so dry that he was putting lotion on every 30 minutes even at school, and I too even remember his skin was very flakey too! So I have my fingers crossed and I’m hoping that I won’t experience these symptoms as roughly as he did, after all I’d say I’m a fairly healthy dude and I drink more than enough water each day. Either way I don’t care as long as I know it’s moving my skin forward in a better, clearer direction and possibly even clear for life!

So again guys I apologize for the absence of any new entries for a while, and I will try and have some new pics of my skin up in a few days!

Take it easy!