(Feel free to click on the month to go to the original post)
Month One: I went into this prescription super-excited and a little too high and mighty about the whole actives/purging thing. Lets just say I got taken down a few pegs…and then some.
Month Two: My skin got angry at the prescription, dried out, and broke out. Basically, it threw a nasty temper tantrum like a small child, causing me to throw nasty temper tantrums like a small child. I had to really up my moisturizing game and fiddle around with the application to get things back under control. I just about ditched my prescription it was *that bad.*
And this fiddling around worked…for a little while. Which brings us all to month three.
Month three is the month where results are supposed to start happening. It’s when all the pain and suffering from the previous months is supposed to become worth the tears and frantic derm messages. Results are supposed to start showing up.
But my skin is actually worse for wear than when I first started this whole thing 3 months ago. No other way to put it.
Part of it has to do with what I am trying to treat; the small acne army that’s been camping out on my chin and neck area for quite some time is still there, doing the same clear up for a few days, get bad for a few days, then clear up again thing, over and over again. Talk about some stubborn acne! Even when I was full-on vegan, it didn’t clear up despite the rest of my skin being crystal clear.
My azelaic acid Curology prescription has basically just made my skin drier, which in turn has made my breaking out worse. As in, looking back, I’m 98% sure that that “purging” was honestly breakout aggravation.
Makeup (plus decent lighting) can hide the redness, but not the texture. And while my skin regime has done wonders for my face (I’m looking at you ex-cystic acne), it seems certain parts haven’t gotten the all-clear memo quite yet.
The second bottle of my original prescription arrived automatically in the mail just two days after I finished the first bottle. But given the lack of improvement, I’ve messaged my derm, and we have been weighing some options as to what to do with this first world problem of mine.
As of right now, we have formed a new action plan as this old formulation has been doing ziltch:
-a reformulation of my prescription to take out azelaic acid and switch it to a low concentration of zinc pyrithione which should more directly target the infection (whether it’s “normal” bacterial acne, an actual skin infection, or fungal in origin *shudder*). It will also (supposedly) help immensely with the dryness factor. The new bottle is on its way to me now.
-supplementing my current prescription with an antibiotic pill known as doxycycline. I’ll be starting it soon and taking it for about a month. Bonus: it may help with my dry eyes too…or just permanently discolor my teeth. How I love thee, modern medicine 😅
-she also suggested using vinegar diluted in water to dry the evil suckers out in the meanwhile. Will definitely report back if this method successfully kills off pimples in a future post.
And a heads up about the Curology dermatologists: they are all so attentive and wonderful!
My old derm retired and I was (automatically) matched with another one. My new derm is fantastic, and I so appreciate how much she is trying to work with me to solve this problem. I hate to say it, but she really is making my old derm look like a slacker. She has been very attentive, asking me lots of good questions about my skin routine, stress levels, and such (that was such a long message cuz 10+ steps or die, all day, every day). And when I uploaded more pictures, she was like “you don’t need to deal with this anymore. We are changing your prescription, and here is this optional antibiotic to speed things along if you’d like.” My old derm was like “it’s too early. Just sit tight and let’s see what happens. Try this soap and reduce application.” May I mention, however, my old derm did say the medication basically needed a full 3 months to work and when I was assigned to her, I was not yet at that mark. I think the new derm caught me at the fun able-to-tweak-RX time.
Anyway, what matters is that things have now changed around here, and I hope it’s not going to be another three months of purging/breaking out/more of the same, and instead a three months of my trouble areas clearing up, and my skin returning from its desert-dry state.
Azelaic acid is a pretty amazing substance, but it seems my acne may either be ridicuously stubborn (yay) or not really acne at all, but a fungus (double yay) or a skin infection (triple yay). I never dreamed I’d say this, but I really, REALLY hope it’s just acne 😅
Now that I’ve made Curology sound absolutely terrible (they honestly aren’t one bit at all), here is my invite link for a FREE first month to Curology should you feel so inclined to delve into the world of prescription-strength actives. Disclaimer: I am NOT affiliated with Curology, and recieve a 10$ credit for every “referral.” This money helps me pay for the prescription. So please, help this broke blogger achieve her #skingoals if you decide to try them out 🙂
So that’s the full update. If you’d like another month-by-month update (as it’s technically a whole new prescription), please like this post or comment below!