Skincare Series: Acne and my Epiduo Journey

This blog post was originally intended for another blog that I was working on before I created this one. Due to it’s skincare nature, I decided that it would be better suited for here since skincare and skin issues are related to beauty and the way we choose our  beauty products. 

For any one that struggles with Acne it is easy to understand the feelings associated with the disorder. Self confidence can be severely affected despite knowing that looks aren’t supposed to be the most important thing. Imagine going through this experience as an adult that had the luck of skipping the dreaded awkward teenage Acne curse. I started having skin issues about 3 years ago…many years removed from being a teenager. Eventually, my treatment options brought me to Epiduo.

I started taking pictures to document the evolution of my experience with Epiduo after noticing the comments of various websites and blogs by users that declared Epiduo to be a bad product based on their expectations and experiences. I will continue to document the journey to give new Epiduo users an idea of what COULD be their experience. One of the things I noticed has been the impatience of some people and how quickly they will give up on a treatment because they feel the results were too slow or they thought that the initial purging (acne gets worse before it gets better) meant that the treatment wouldn’t work. For those people I thought it was important that they know real world experience from actual users…and it’s also important that they actually read the information provided with their RX (side effects for example) so they can know what MIGHT happen and be better prepared. Of course, for some people Epiduo will not work for them. But as is the case with any treatment, you have to actually give the treatment a chance. Consult with your dermatologist with any concerns you may have about your own experience and side effects.

Trust me when I say that I struggled with sharing this because who wants to show everyone photos of their skin when it’s at its worst? The pictures below were taken over a 20 day span. Unfortunately, I ended up being too busy to continue documenting the progress but I will say that my skin did get significantly better. I will add on a few pictures that show my skin right now. It’s not at it’s best (I had slacked on my regime and my skin begin to let me know it lol) but it is nowhere near what it was through the photos you see below. I want to show you today’s photos so you can see how much better it is now with Epiduo in my skincare regime. Then, you can see what I was dealing with and what I had to work my way from to get to where I am now.

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Here are the photos that show my progress from day 1, day 8, day 12, and day 20. It definitely isn’t pretty and it was the most painful days of my journey. When I started, the acne on my face literally hurt…the ones you could see and the even more painful cysts that were below the surface. This is also why my journey wasn’t as quick as I would have liked…I had a lot going on that needed to be healed. My skin has since been at worst, the way it looks in the pictures from 10/31/2012 but usually much better for several months. So I don’t want anyone to think that it took until the end of October for Epiduo to truly work. By late June/early July my skin was close to what it looks like now with exception of some residual pigmentation.

Day 1 – 5/7/2012

Day 8 – 5/15/2012

Day 12 – 5/20/2012

Day 20 –5/28/2012

12 thoughts on “Skincare Series: Acne and my Epiduo Journey

  1. Very good write-up, I’m a frequent visitor of your blog. I enjoy reading your articles.

  2. Priscilla says:

    Hi, thank you for your blog. How is your Epiduo journey gong now? I started Epiduo 2.5 months ago (it’s been 6 weeks with using it every night as I eased onto it) and my skin has gone downhill since – it is the worst it has ever been with painful lumps and many, many pimples! 😦 Did you experience this? Thank you.

    • Hi Priscilla!
      My journey is a lot better now. At this point I don’t really have to use Epiduo on a regular basis anymore. I was transistioned to Tazorac gel which I use at night and only use Epiduo for a few days a month around my hormonal breakout timeframe where I’ll get one or two cystic type acne spots (they will be very small and nothing like what I used to get but when they come up using the Epiduo fights them off).

      I did experience a longer “purging” period when I started using Epiduo again after I first stopped using it due to my insurance not covering it and not being able to afford the high out of pocket cost. I think I mentioned this in my blog post (at least I hope I did!). That was when my acne was at it’s worst and it was so painful. It feels like it takes forever to get improvement but of your acne is anywhere near as bad as mine had become (where you are in not only emotional pain from how it looks but physical pain from how it feels, especially below the surface) or if it’s worse then it’s very possible that your journey may take more than 6 weeks to see improvement. I know that is difficult to hear and trust me…I feel for you. It’s hard to say if Epiduo isn’t working for you or if you just need to give it more time but I would think you may need to give it more time. You may also need to discuss it with your dermatologist. My journey took me well over 6 weeks so I definitely think that more time may be the answer. At some point when I started seeing some improvement but I realized it stalled and didn’t seem to get as clear as it did the first time I used it I introduced the Clarisonic Mia Acne brush into my routine. That along with my Epiduo (initially only used the brush a few times a week and only once a day. Never twice)got my skin to such a great place. I wouldn’t recommend you doing that now…not if you’re still in the painful stage, but it’s something to consider. Talk to your derm first to make sure they agree. Mine was ok with me doing it and it was the best thing ever for me. I still use my Clarisonic now. Once a day at least 4-5 times a week (I try every night but I get lazy lol).

      I hope everything works out for you! Feel free to ask me anything any time and I’ll try to help as much as I can. I’m no expert. I just know the struggle that I go through with my acne, even today. It’s so much better now but I have to continue to work on my skin to keep it at a decent place. I don’t want to go back to the place where those pics I posted show!

  3. Gabriel says:

    Hmm seems like like your website ate my first comment (it was super long)
    so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m
    totally enjoying your blog. I as well am an ambitious blogger however I’m still new to everything.
    Do you have any points for newbie blog writers? I’d surely treasure it.

    • Thank you so much! As far as advice…I guess the main thing is to make sure you pick a subject you really love…that way you’re more apt to keep blogging actively. I honestly don’t think there is just one way to do it…you just have to find what works best for you. I know that’s kind of vague, but it really just depends on what your target market is and your blog content. Hope that helps a little. If not, ask away. I’ll try to answer what I can!

  4. EJ Brake says:

    I know this is an old post but I still hope you see this because thank you for posting photos of your journey! I just started and my skin has gotten worse but this has given me some hope that it will be worth it in the end!

  5. Alice says:

    Hi Butterfly eyes, I know this is an old post, but i’m currently on epiduo week 5 (purging period) i’m wondering if the redness will ever go away? Will it hurt/burn my skin and make it sensitive?

    However, it has shrinked all my pimples, I almost only have the scars or whatever the red marks I guess.

    • Your redness should go away. It may take some time but if it appears to get worse versus slowly getting better definitely check with your dermatologist to make sure all is ok with your skin. My skin was sensitive and burned for a bit as my skin adjusted…so I had to be very careful with what products I used to lessen the discomfort. I believe that’s when I started using Philosophy Purity Made Simple for my face wash (which I still use most of the time because it is gently but works great. My acne issues are definitely much better now but I stick with Purity because it just works).
      Hope that helps! Feel free to reach out any time! And good luck!

  6. Sami says:

    Hi Priscilla!

    I am using epiduo and it’s my 6th week and i can’t stop thinking about one thing. When I exercise and sweat my face kinda burns/stings and becomes red, after the exercise session when i’ve calmed down it disappears and i’ve notice after I apply my moisturizer (Propyless) *it contains aqua* it kinda burns/stings a bit too and makes my face red (goes away after a couple mins). When I shower my face becomes red aswell, but it doesn’t sting or burn it feels warm when I touch it. (I wash/shower with luke warm water) I don’t have any allergics agianst epiduo whatsoever, is it a side effect? Because tbh it’s not a big deal. It becomes a bit red and it stings a bit, it was much worse before but I think it was because my face was adapting to the epiduo.

    Did you ever experience such things?


    • As your skin becomes more accustomed to the epiduo you will have less stinging and redness. I definitely experienced burning and redness when I initially started using it and for awhile afterwards. It’s definitely one of the side effects associated with epiduo and many other prescription acne medications.

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