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Old 08-11-2003, 12:33 AM   #1
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Post Ethnic skin: Can anyone relate?

Hi all,
I'm new to this board and i figured i probably find some people sharing the sames questions that I have.

I don't mean to exclude anyone from this post, but i'm looking to find out if black skin should be treated differently than white, asian, even east indian type of skin. I've done a little research and this always seem to be an unexplained or unattended subject. Wouldn't it make sense that products that would be effective of caucasians wouldn't be for other type of skins?

I'm want to hear from any one who has expenrience with black skin (their own, or with other) and what's good to use. In my case, i've had acne since i was 19 yrs old (am now 22) and i have EXTREMELY oily skin (gets oily 15 minutes after i wa****). I was my face 3-4 times a day because of all the oil it secretes. I am of a fairly dark complexion. My doctors have prescribed tons and tons of soaps, creams, pills, gels you name it. At first, they work for the first 1-2 month and clears up my skin. But as soon as it clears up, it break outs even worst than the last time. There has never been a product that i've used that worked for me. I've used retin-a, diane-35, clindets,peroxide based creams, natural hand made soaps, clinique products, pro-activ, clarins, spectro gel, glycerin soaps, avon, avalon organic products and i'm probably forgetting a few.

Any advice? I would appreciate any suggestions or opinions on this.

Jah bless...
Me! :-)
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Old 08-11-2003, 01:42 AM   #2
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Welcome to the board =)
You are correct about African Americans requiring different skin needs. Not only are we prone to hyperpigmentation, but also ingrown hairs. Sigh...both problems that I face. However, outside of the above, treating our skin for acne is no different. Just make sure that you use products that are effective enough to treat your acne, but gentle enough to prevent/reduce hyperpigmentation. If you use something strong, like Benzyol Peroxide, it may irritate your skin and consequently cause hyperpigmention. So if that's a problem for you, avoid BP ;-) Otherwise my only other suggestion would be that the sooner you treat your acne effectively the less acne and hyperpigmention you will have.

So tell me, of all the products you've tried, which was the MOST effective for you? Is it REALLY neccessary to wash your face that often? You are only making it worse, even though it bothers you. I used to blot my face with a tissue (every trip to the bathroom) or use one of those acne pads to wipe my face with (1x a day). Perhaps that might help reducesa teeny bit of your oil. Or you could use oil control-mattifying products, like The Body Shop's Tea Tree Mattifying Gel or something that your Derm could prescribe. I tried 2 types years ago, and they somewhat worked, but I don't remember the brand (think one was an over the counter product).

Is acne your only problem or have you begun to exhibit signs of having a deeper hormonal imbalance such as irregular cycles, hirsutism, body acne, etc?Also, these breakout periods you get, have you noticed what time they happen? Certain time of the month or season?

Hopefully there's still a few more things you can try out, or maybe you'll just "grow out of it" ;-)

Night

 
Old 08-11-2003, 02:11 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply SweetJade,

To be honest with you, all the products i've (except for cetaphil and pro-activ) worked, but for a short period of time. I guess my issue is that my skin seems to adapt to products very quickly and after a while, it doesn't have any effect on my skin and i go back to breaking out.

I do have some serious hormone problem. I was diagnose with PCOS, have hirsutism and acne on my back!! Lucky me, hen!!! That's why my doctor prescribe the Diane-35, thinking that it would take care of it all. It just makes me more sick though.

I'm seeing my doc tomorrow actually, we'll see what she says, even though i don't really believe in docs!
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Old 08-11-2003, 02:24 AM   #4
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Yes I also agree that African American skin needs to be treated different. I am half black half white so Im a light brown skin tone and I noticed that my skin cant really handle some of the creams/gels that My Derm gives me.
Ive tried lots of products and medication just like you (I dont really have a favourite Im still looking for one) but what Ive noticed was that I cant put anything to harsh on my skin. I really like Neutragena Healthy Skin Lotion with Spf 15 because it hepls get rid of acne marks/Discoloration that colored people have a big problem with.

sorry I couldnt be much help....

 
Old 08-11-2003, 03:51 AM   #5
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I third that too,
Afro-Caribbean definately needs to be treated differently most of the time our skin is too sensitive for what the Dr has in mind for us..

Im not sure if i can be of any help but i will write out my regimen for you if it helps. Im a 19 yr old light skinned (like beyonce Knowles/Halle berry complexion)Afro-Caribbean female who's had acne since i was 12. This is my Regimen..

Am,
Wash with Neutrogena Deep cream wash
Jojoba oil to moisturise
500MG Erythromycin
50mg Acidophilus
Drink plenty of water +
4 cups of herbal tea (Cerassie)

The P.m is also the same...

I've stopped usuing gels/creams etc.. from my doctor as they always seem to do more harm than good. I've been doing to Regimen for awhile now and my acne has gone from Moderate to Mild/moderate.It's mainly my forehead that's the problem

I really don't think you need to wash your face so much because remember black skin has its natural oils which ur taking away, so it will only makes things worst...hope i've helped!!

~*K*~

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[This message has been edited by xKaShyLahx (edited 08-11-2003).]
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Old 08-11-2003, 06:24 AM   #6
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In terms of how to topically treat black skin there are definitely some differences. Like you I have been through that list of treatment options you mentioned and more. I have acne any and every where. If a pimple shows up on one shoulder, it has a twin on the other. I have severe scarring on my back/arms/chest. The lazer treatment options are supposedly too risky for our complexion as are the chemical peels. I have tried microdermabrasion - waste of my money. Too bad Diane-35 did not work for you. I used it for several years until it lost its effect. Generally however all antibiotics and hormone regulators lose their effectiveness if the dosage is not increased. I have dumped the minocin my derma just gave me and am trying a natural approach. A whole body cleanse. Sadly I ate so much fried food this weekend and its showing up on my face. I am also doing a chemical peel (with my fingers crossed) and the cutan' oil I use(a drying oil skin prep.) keeps me from breaking out everywhere else. I assume thats why my face is rebelling. I usually don't breakout on my face. The cutan 'oil is a product by Nelly Devyrst. I have also been using HQRA- a combination of retin-a and hydroquinone.

Sorry for rambling...we've all got a long story to tell huh?

 
Old 08-11-2003, 10:48 AM   #7
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Voodoo,
LOL, you and I could be sisters ;-) Everything that you talked about, sounds just like the way I was. Iv'e had some form of acne for 16 years and I started seeing a Dermatologist when I was either 10 or 11 for my facial and body acne. I would use topical creams that improved my skin only for me to breakout again. All that HARD work, trying to get rid of the acne and then lighten the marks only to have to do it again and AGAIN! Every time this happened, it was ALWAYS such a disappointment that it leaked into the way I started to handle school. Throughout the years, I had a good dermatologist that said, "yeah, you're acne is hormonal." LOL, and then went through 2 mildly helpful Endocrinologists and some Regular doctors that were VERY helpful before hitting the jackpot with my current Endocrinologist.

I was diagnosed 2 summers ago as either PCOS or Insulin Resistant (was 20 at the time). However, prior to that I was on BC (tri-levlen) and 200mg of Spironolactone (anti-androgen) for 3 years (still had a breakout cycle). Once DX, I was on Glucophage, which made me sick, so I switched to Avandia (2mg). Since it wasn't doing enough (fast enough) I started to take 150mg of Spironolactone along with it. I stayed on this regimen for a little over a year, briefly switching to 4mg of Avandia, before I completely stopped taking it ;-)

The reason I stopped taking something that worked a little better than BC pills and reduced my menstrual pain, was because I still exhibited a breakout cycle and because I found something BETTER! ;-) Now, it looks to me that your Endocrinologist (?) needs to put you on some sort of Insulin Sensitizing drug. Whether you are PCOS or IR the treatments are still the SAME. I just mentioned the most popular ones above. If you are underweight, you'll want to take the Avandia, becuase it put 10lbs on me ;-) Of course, I lost it within months of stopping the medication.

You'll also want to take your diet into account. My doctor told me that I would get better results if I low carb while on the medication and I didn't think that I needed to because I wasn't overweight ;-) Thing is I got AMAZING results, to the point that it surpassed the effect of the medicine (eliminated my menstrual pain). So far it's been 1 year since I've been on my Gluten Free diet (& 150mg of Spiro) and my skin get's better every day.

Now, please don't be mistaken that it's the Spiro that's doing all the work, because my skin NEVER looked this way while I was usng Spiro & BC or Spiro & Avandia. Although, Spiro alone could work for you. Yet, what I've noticed from visiting PCOS websites is that these women are rarely on ONE medication. It seems some people get better results going the natural-alternative route such as some type of Low Carb diet, Saw Palmetto, NAC (n-acetyl cysteine), D-chirol Inositol, NPC (natural progesterone cream) and/or Vitex. While others insist on battling it with tons of medication, some of which really do need it =(


So there's a couple of things you MUST mention to your doctor:

- If you have irregular or no menstrual cycles you'll want to take progesterone and that could balance everything out.

- For the Hirutism and Acne you are going to need to try another Anti-Androgen. Spronolactone or Flutamide are probably better than Cyproterone (in Diane-35) since I've never heard of Cyproterone being used alone. Spironolactone is the more popular because it works and has less serious side effects.

- For your Acne you'll need to utilize some method of Insulin Control. You can take Insulin Sensitizng Drugs, Supplements (Fish Oils, Alpha Lipoic Acid), or try to control your hormones through a form of Low Carbing. This method is soo effective for some women with PCOS that not only did it give them a menstrual cycle but they were able to conceive =)


So I hope I thoroughly overwhelmed you with plenty of things to "throw" at your doctor ;-)

Please keep us updated

 
Old 08-11-2003, 01:09 PM   #8
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I am hispanic. I have brown, oily skin, but never had much of an acne problem just a pimple here or there. I went through a whole year of trying all kinds of products because I hated my oily skin, large pores on T-zone, milia on forehead, and other symptoms of ethnic skin. I used acne washes, glycolic gel, clay masques quite frequently and ended up damaging my t-zone. It's not that bad but I cleansed out my pores like I wanted to but it opened them up and now they are bigger than before and because I was constantly stripping oil from my face, it now has a blotchy texture.

I read Dr. Perricones book he talks about each skin type, and in my opinion ethnic skin has many more advantages over dry or light skin.Your oil is a natural lubricant that minimizes wrinkles, sun cancer, sun damage, sun spots, flakiness, and keeps you looking younger. I can definetly agree with this because I am always told I look at least 5 years younger than what I am and I'm only 26. My father is 65 and he looks younger than most 50 year olds, he has hardly any wrinkles, lines, and he still has alot of elastcity. Anyway, my whole point is try not to do to much to decrease your oilness, just control it, use a gentle cleanser and just apply like a salicylic/glycolic gel on specific spots. It made me realize I was going agaist nature by constantly stripping my skin of it's protection and it was compensating for it in a bad way.

I have a few areas that I want to improve. I want to clear up my forehead of faint whiteheads that have been there forever. Improve some superficial hyperpigmentation around my T-zone, and improve the texture where my skin is now blotchy. I know now that most products wont get me my desired reults. I just cleanse with a gentle cleanser everyday, use a cucumber scrub once a week, and apply glycolic gel only on the pimple when I get one. I believe a quality microdermabrasion machine or light chemical peels will get me hopefully 30-50% improvement for what I want. I will be very content with this.

 
Old 08-18-2003, 04:50 PM   #9
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definitely low carb works to control pcos and so will help with the acne.
for my acne and scarring i use obagi products but with azelex instead of retin a. it is agressive but the results are miraculous, gets rid of the acne and the scarring at the same time.just try it!

 
Old 08-18-2003, 06:40 PM   #10
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the person doing Smoothbeam to me told me she won't even do it for black ppl. since i'm asian, she said, she would have to put it on a setting of 9. she did a 12, 11, 10 on the thick skin on the back of my neck. the 12's got scabbed and afterwards, brown. i'm seeing her tm and i don't think i'll go ahead with it. there's too much risk.

my scars have been looking better btw, by drinking lemon water. this is quite a popular regime by ********.

 
Old 08-25-2003, 01:59 AM   #11
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Hey,
Do any of you guys here have hyperpigmentation? or know how it can be treated on ethnic skin?

~*K*~

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Old 08-25-2003, 01:08 PM   #12
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VoodooQueen I understand what you are saying- of course different types of skin have special needs, but please (I know Im being pedantic) dont say ETHNIC as shorthand for darker skin.

We all have our own ethnic backgrounds that we are proud of whether we are of Asian, African, European, Latin or Middle Eastern descent (any many others besides) and absence or lesser degree of skin pigment shouldnt be equated with absence of ethnic background. I am not criticising you as such, just the way certain ethnic backgrounds are pigeonholed and labelled.

[This message has been edited by Flora_Mac (edited 08-25-2003).]

 
Old 08-25-2003, 01:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mandilyn:
Yes I also agree that African American skin needs to be treated different. I am half black half white so Im a light brown skin tone and I noticed that my skin cant really handle some of the creams/gels that My Derm gives me.
Ive tried lots of products and medication just like you (I dont really have a favourite Im still looking for one) but what Ive noticed was that I cant put anything to harsh on my skin. I really like Neutragena Healthy Skin Lotion with Spf 15 because it hepls get rid of acne marks/Discoloration that colored people have a big problem with.

sorry I couldnt be much help....

Is it me or is the Neutragena Healthy Skin Lotion with Spf 15 hard to find in my area.... All the drug stores in my area doesn't have a variety of products but I'll keep trying... What's most likely the best store to find that in??? I have heard great things on that product..... especially dark skin!!


 
Old 08-25-2003, 01:24 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by xKaShyLahx:
Hey,
Do any of you guys here have hyperpigmentation? or know how it can be treated on ethnic skin?

~*K*~

I have this problem too... my facial tone has gotten 3 shades darker than the rest of my body... It's like 2 different skin tones. My body tone is a more lighter smooth tone... I'm originally Peanut butter brown... but my face has gotten really dark & black, blotchy like.... I am african american too.

 
Old 08-25-2003, 07:00 PM   #15
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Depressedboy,
You can find Neutragena Healthy Skin Lotion SPF 15 almost anywhere. In shoppers Drug Mart, Wal-mart and almost anywhere they sell Neutragena skin care products, I know you will find it just look harder or ask someone.
my skin was like yours, my face was darker than the rest of my body and it was caused from all those topical creams/gels from the Derm. Just try not to use to much stuff on your face and use more gentle products.

 
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