Wednesday, August 20, 2014

My experience with Iontophoresis Treatment

After I had bad breakouts as teenager (circa 1995). I was left with a lot of deep acne scars and hyper pigmentations. My doctor decided to put me through a series of Iontophoresis Treatment (once a week). For about 1 year. I saw big improvement in every way. My skin was smooth, bright and clear. I didn't have any more hyper pigmentation or indentation. I'm very thankful for it. I don't see any place offer this treatment anymore. I'm not sure if it's because it require several treatments. Or it's an old technology. But it worked well and has no side effect. I think it's better than laser in my opinion.

Iontophoresis is a process using a low electrical current to create ion field to drive vitamins or medication through the skin surface. Each treatment lasts about 30 mins and it's painless.
My experience with Iontophoresis Treatment acne scars
photo via estheticamd

Accutane and Differin, the combo that saved my teenage life!

Years ago (in 1995) when I was still a teenager I had really bad hormonal acne. My doctor have tried many things on my skin from prescription antibiotics, Benzoyl, Salicylic acid, AHA, Sulfur...etc. Nothing worked on my skin. Finally she decided that the only way to stop my acne was to take Accutane. I was unsure at first because the medication was quite expensive and my parents was quite alarmed by the side effects they have read. But I have to say that was the best acne solution ever! After 3 months, I could see that my face gotten so much better. My friends actually noticed that I no longer have pimples on my face. At the same time I was also prescribed Differin gel. The combination made my face very dry. My scalp was flaky, my skin was flaky, my lips were always peeling. It went on for 6 months. Until my doctor decided that I would be ok to ease off from the dosage and finally stop all the meds altogether. I was graceful. My skin was acne free(for many years). I would say this is the combo that saved my teenage life. Nothing else worked on my skin.

After that my doctor put me through a course of Iontophoresis to get rid of the acne scars.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Chinese herbal supplement that worked for me

A few years ago, I had minor breakout when I stopped birth control pill. My friend recommended me this herb which I absolutely love. It worked really well. But it's no over night miracle. It took me 4 months to see a result. But this time around I'm trying to get pregnant so I wasn't sure if I could take this supplement. I have contacted them and they told me that I shouldn't take it. But if any of you (who isn't trying to get pregnant) wanna give it a try. I highly recommend this herb. It really worked for me. The herbal formula created by Dr. Merry Li in San Fransico. It's made in the US. So it's quite legit.
chinese herbal supplement for acne
Acneed Chinese herbal supplement available here

List of ingredient: 
Rehmannia unprocessed root
Salvia root & rhizome Red peony root 
Moutan root bark 
Scute root 
Gardenia fruit 
Lonicera flower bud 
Forsythia fruit 
Anemarrhena rhizome 
Dandelion whole plant 
Lycium bark 
Platycodon root

These ingredients help to eliminate toxic substances in the bloodstream, strengthen liver function, balance the hormones, and nourish the damaged skin caused by acne or rosacea.

Products responsible for my acne breakout

These 2 products came highly on top of my cross off list. I found out that after using these I started to have bumps all over my face and quickly escalated to big painful cystic acne. Neutrogena shampoo broke me out badly 7 years ago. These 2 has the same Ingredients in common which are Methylparaben and Propylparaben. They are common preservatives in a lot of cosmetics and shampoo. These are popular products with a lot of good reviews. But for some reason my skin don't react well to them at all. 
Neutrogena Shampoo - Clean Replenishing Moisturizing allergic reaction. the worst acne breakout in my life
Neutrogena Shampoo - Clean Replenishing Moisturizing

Ingredients: Water, Ammonium Lauryl Sulfate, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Cocamide MEA, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Olealkonium Chloride, Panthenol, Dimethicone Bisamino Hydroxypropyl Copolyol, PEG-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Tetrasodium EDTA, Benzophenone-4, Phenoxyethanol, BHT, Citric Acid, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Yellow 6, Red 40, Violet 2, Fragrance.

Philosophy Purity Made Simple One-step Facial cleanser bad allergic reaction. acne breakout. the worst in my life
Philosophy Purity Made Simple One-step Facial cleanser

Ingredients: Water, Sodium Lauroamphoacetate, Sodium Trideceth Sulfate, Limnanthes Alba (Meadowfoam) Seed Oil, Coco-Glucoside, Coconut Alcohol, Peg-120 Methyl Glucose Dioleate, Aniba Rosaeodora (Rosewood) Wood Oil, Geranium Maculatum Oil, Guaiac (Guaiacum Officinale) Extract, Cymbopogon Martini Oil, Rosa Damascena Extract, Amyris Balsamifera Bark Oil, Santalum Album (Sandalwood) Oil, Salvia Officinalis (Sage) Oil, Cinnamomum Cassia Leaf Oil, Anthemis Nobilis Flower Oil, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Seed Oil, Piper Nigrum (Pepper) Seed Extract, Polysorbate 20, Glycerin, Carbomer, Triethanolamine, Methylparaben, Propylparaben, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Yellow 5 (Ci 19140).

Saturday, August 16, 2014

first visit to a dermatologist

The first dermatologist appointment I can get is 4 weeks after my skin broke. It's a little too late but this is the earliest appointment I can get from any dermatologist around here.

acne breakouts, clogged pores, asian skin, hyper pigmentation, closed comedo, whiteheads
I got some steroid injections on the big cysts on this side of my cheeks. And they resolved well in a couple days. My lesson learned. I previously got injection from a doctor at medical spa. Not only it was super expensive ($200), but it didn't work at all. So if you have a serious acne, you need to see someone who deal with acne a lot. 

I got prescription of minocyclin 100mg, Fninacea gel, Sulfur face wash. I will do a review on these next week. I have to put pregnancy on hold while I'm using these medications. The doctor said I do not have any other choice. Or else I can just leave the acne alone and get pregnant. I can't really do that since my skin scar very easy. I would rather stop the breakout before it done too much damage than to spend a lot of money fixing the scars later. 

benzoyl peroxide | not for me!

After my visit to a medical spa. They sold me some benzoyl peroxide acne spot treatment. In the beginning it looked like the pimples gotten flat. But after a week of using, my skin started to peel....And it went down hills from there.
acne breakouts, clogged pores, asian skin, hyper pigmentation, closed comedo, whiteheads, benzoyl peroxide

acne breakouts, clogged pores, asian skin, hyper pigmentation, closed comedo, whiteheads, benzoyl peroxide
These 2 photos above is when I started using benzoyl peroxide cream. All looks promising. And then boom! Skin peels all red bumps everywhere!

Going to see a doctor

Since I live in Los Angeles, going to see a dermatologist for acne is quite a challenge. Most dermatologists around here don't see acne patients anymore. I have called several offices just to be told that I have to wait several months for the doctor to be available or I can see a nurse instead. So I decided to go to a medical spa to see any doctor (not a dermatologist). I thought at least I can start taking antibiotics or something. At this point some of the bumps already developed in to big painful cysts. I don't even wanna show my face outside anymore. 
acne breakouts, clogged pores, asian skin, hyper pigmentation, closed comedo, whiteheads, benzoyl peroxide

acne breakouts, clogged pores, asian skin, hyper pigmentation, closed comedo, whiteheads, benzoyl peroxide, cystic acne

When the doctor saw my face. She said oh it's severe you need to see a specialist, meaning a dermatologist. You need to see someone who really know what they are doing because with your type of skin you can scar really bad. Hmm that's comforting to know....Then she offered to do steroid injection on those big cysts for $200. It's expensive I know! I was quite desperate. It didn't work though. I think she is just used to injecting botox than treating acne. 

Friday, August 15, 2014

How it started....

One day I woke up with these bumps all over my face. They are these tiny bumps like clogged pores but not active acne. I left them alone because I thought they could resolve on their own. But I was wrong. A few days later...they turning in to pimples one by one. I just got totally freaked out. Here are  the photos of when it just started.
cystic acne, clogged pores, acne breakouts, allergic reaction

cystic acne, clogged pores, acne breakouts