Originally Posted by egoiste
blank -- A word of advice for the benzoyl peroxide (BP). If you don't use bp as a routine, your acne can come back. I would try to do the same thing once I saw results on my face, but weeks later, I would have pimples here and there. An alternative can be tea tree oil (TTO) as TTO has antiseptic and antibacterial properties which can clear the skin of acne scars and blemishes. TTO isn't as effective as BP and it takes longer to work, but it is a safer alternative to bp as bp has been shown to age your face quicker due to the release of free radicals. Plus, it's really harsh and drying on your face. I'm using TTO now after using BP for about 2 years and it's been working. Secondly, salicylic acid may be another alternative, though it is still quite harsh on skin.
As for washing your face during the day, make sure to re-moisturize. An alternative to washing your face can be using a toner to refresh your face. Use a cotton pad and wipe your face with it removing the dirt and debris (and you'll see lots of it on the pad afterwards!). You can also use oil removing strips (Clean & Clear Oil Absorbing Sheets) and use them on oily areas.
For acne scars, there are a variety of options. Chemical peels are costly ($500+), but are effective on mild acne scars and you would need to go to a professional doctor to do so. This basically removes the upper layer of your skin.
You can also go the natural route, though they are less effective and may take longer to work. However, they are the cheapest route! Some natural alternatives are:
1) Aloe vera--apply topically as a gel or drink aloe vera juice.
2) Lemon juice--bleaches skin: apply topically (1-2x a day) only on acne scars with a cotton pad, let stand for 10-15 minutes, rinse with water. Lemon juice is a natural alpha hydroxy acid. Thus, it can be overdrying and sting skin.
3) Cucumbers -- apply cucumber juice topically over entire face with a cotton pad and leave on skin overnight. Not as harsh as lemon juice and thus can be used over entire face.
Lastly, you can purchase products in creams or gels ($30+). Look for ingredients in products such as kojic acid, licorice extract, vitamin c, vitamin a, retinol, glycolic acid, lactic acid, hydroquinone, azelaic acid, mulberry extracts, etc.
Some products: Murad's Post-Acne Spot Lightening Gel, Lancome BRIGHT EXPERT - Intense Brightening Spot Correcting Serum, Dior DiorSnow Pure UV Ultra-Whitening Spot Corrector SPF 30 , PH Advantage Boosters: Pigmentation Fader, Clarins Bright Plus HP On-the-Spot Brightening Corrector, Peter Thomas Roth Potent Skin Lightening Gel Complex (also comes in a gentle formula), DDF-Doctor's Dermatologic Formula Fade Gel 4, Korres Wild Rose Imperfection-Targeting Oil, Shiseido White Lucent Concentrated Brightening Serum.
Finally, for your skin care regimen. Simply adjust accordingly. If you use differin at night, then a night cream isn't needed. Focus on the morning regimen the most and preventing acne and sun damage. For BP, I put on BP and wait about 10 minutes until it sinks into my skin, then put on my sunscreen and/or nightcream.
Mate, thank you for the reply. It is very helpful. I agree that BP has done some very harsh things to my face and it might be the reason that my face looks weathered. My acne is not bad anymore -- I might get one blemish a week, if that. And I'm sure you know how this goes, but depending on how your face feels, so goes your acne, I think.
I am going to try to use the Baxter Toner in the morning.
I bought the Men-U antiseptic wash that features Tea Tree Oil, so I will try to switch over to that in the morning after the toner, moisturizing with the Baxter Oil-Free (which is very nice).
Let's see what happens!