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Susan's Spa

Your number one stop for beauty and blogging tips, all in one fabulous blog!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Zapping Zits

A reader asked me the other day if I had any information about Accutane. I've never had any personal experience with this medication, so I did a little research and what I found was more negative, than positive. Accutane, a medication taken orally, has been often prescribed by dermatologists for a few years now, to treat moderate to severe acne. Although, it is probably warranted in some cases, newer studies reveal that it is probably over prescribed and, considering the numerous side effects, should probably be the last option in treating acne. Acne has been described as the skin's inability to peel itself, trapping oil and dirt underlayers of dead skin cells. As a result, continuous breakouts occur on the face, neck and sometimes back area. However, there is much more to choose from in the way of treatments. The active ingredient, Benzoyl Peroxide, was introduced some years ago, as a treatment for acne (usually 5% in over-the-counter treatment). Although, this has been found effective, this alone cannot do the job. Products containing Salicylic Acid are very popular now and can be found in many over-the-counter treatments, including Proactiv. Another ingredient found to help fight and stave off acne is glycolic acid. This used in combination with products containing Salicylic Acid work wonders in helping the skin to peel itself in order to properly remove all oil and dirt to prevent breakouts. Neutrogena is always adding new products to their acne line. These products are affordable and easily accessible and include a line of foundation with Salicylic Acid for women. One of my favorite product lines is from Serious Skin Care, which can be found on Home Shopping and in Ulta ( and They have a complete acne line called Continuously Clear which includes their moisturizer, which helps to keep skin from becoming too dry, but will not clog skin pores. This product also contains Salicylic Acid. They also have a daily Glycolic Cleanser, which although is not part of the acne line, when used in conjunction with their acne treatments, can help clear up skin and keep it clear. Since I believe in a holistic approach to everything, it's important to eat a healthy, balanced diet and find ways to alleviate stress. Both diet and stress can be culprits in acne break out as well.


At 4/18/2006 7:27 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thanks for taking the time to answer my question! I would also love to exchange links with you. I will put you in my links section today! Have a great day!

Beauty Secrets 101

At 4/18/2006 10:30 AM, Blogger Amber said...

Hey Susan~

I just had to comment here and I am really glad that you brought up Accutane. I know of a testimony from a lady who was like one of the first people to go on Accutane way back when and do you know that all 5 of her biological children ended up contracting terminal illnesses. They have concluded along with the doctors that the only thing that could of caused it was the Accutane. How sad is that!

Just wanted to share........

At 4/18/2006 12:27 PM, Anonymous Beth said...

Hi there. I've been on Accutane twice and so have some first hand experience with it. I struggled with really stubborn acne starting around the time I turned 18 (I'm now 27). I tried everything under the sun to help clear it up, over the counter products, prescriptions, modifications to my diet, just about anything that anyone suggested I tried. When I was first offered Accutane, I declined. I'd heard some really negative things about it and it just sounded too scary. A few years later, I had changed my tune. I was depressed all the time because my skin was so bad, and nothing I did helped to clear it up. Accutane was a miracle for me! (I had to go on it a 2nd time 2 years afterwards because my dose had not been strong enough on the first course.) I made the decision to go on it after reading some people's real experiences with it in Accutane journals. It didn't sound as scary when I heard about it from people who were actually on the medication. Aside from being VERY dry and slightly achy, I did great on Accutane. It really has been a lifesaver for me. People now would never believe that I had suffered with such bad skin for so many years.
I will agree that it should be reserved for the most stubborn and severe of cases, and that there are cases where very bad side effects have been observed (as with all medications, pretty much!).
I just stumbled along while perusing beauty blogs and wanted to add in my personal experience. =)

At 4/18/2006 5:35 PM, Blogger Ashley said...

Great post on this Susan. I've never tried this. But I think when it comes to acne. I think you have to try different things. B/c what might work for someone may not work for you. Just my 2 cents.

At 4/18/2006 7:15 PM, Blogger Susan said...

Ashley - Very true. Not all treatments are right for everyone and some people do very well on medication, while others only need topical treatment.


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