Posted by Brooklynbeliever (New York, Ny) on 02/03/2012
Hi there, Thank you so much for this website. It literally changed my life!
Let me just say I have suffered from acne and eczema since I was a teenager and now at 31 years old, I finally have both under control. About six months ago I had perioral dermatitis (from now on: PD), which I got from stupidly applying Clobetasol to a red, dry and pimply patch of skin near my mouth. My dermatologist had advised me not to use it, but only said that it was "too strong" and did not mention the reprecussions of using it my face. I have been using Clobetasol for years, sparingly, to treat eczema spots on my legs and hands. But for the past 4-5 years I have gotten this pesky dry/pimply spot near my mouth, always in the same place, usually in winter. This past fall I got it really bad. Every time I thought it had healed, it would come back again with avengence. I tried so many expensive creams, derm-recomended over-the-counter moisterizers, expensive creams from Sephora, etc. I spent hundreds of dollars on this problem.
Then I got a rash--ALL OVER MY FACE--as a result of using Clobetasol. I self-diagnosed the problem after several days of research (during which I did not leave the house once! ). I also discovered the Earth Clinic website. After reading dozens and dozens of people's testimonies, I decided to STOP doing a variety of things: 1) using any kind of moisturizer, 2) using any kind of cleanser on my face, 3) washing my face with more than water, 4) wearing makeup.
Then I tried three natural remedies. The first was apple cider vinegar. Initially I used too much, which did not help my skin's redness, although the ACV did noticably help dry out the bacterial infection. Then I diluted just a couple drops in water with an organic cotton ball and dabbed it across my face, about once a day. The second remedy was organic raw honey. This I slapped on my face once a day for its good bacteria benefits, finding that it also reduced the redness and softened my flaky skin. Third, I made a yogurt mask twice a day (full fat and probiotic are best. ) My doctor eventually put me on antibiotics, so I cannot claim that these remedies alone got rid of the PD. However, in reaching this 'rock bottom' I completely changed my skin cleaning and moisterizing routine--and THAT has kept my skin looking better than it ever has in my life now that I'm off the antibiotics.
What is that routine? Well, not much of one to be honest! I now wake up in the morning and splash my face with room temperature water, then pat it dry. When my skin's fully dry I apply a minimal amount of Smashbox Healthy FX foundation, usually with an unused cosmetic sponge (rather than my fingers. ) I only wear foundation 4-5 days of the week, as to avoid clogging pours.
Then at night, I use a couple drops of California baby shampoo and room temp water to gently rise my face. I pat dry with a towel. I NEVER use moisterizer.
Once a week I do a yogurt mask for an hour before bed. Coach Farm probiotic yogurt, full fat. The good bacteria helps fight bad bacteria on my face. The next day my skin is noticeably softer. If I had more time, I'd do this every other night!
And that's it. I also try to eat yogurt often, to keep good bacteria in my system. And during the winter months, I spray my face with rose water from the health food store just to keep it from over-drying. The cost of this routine is negligable!
I still get to wear makeup but need a whole lot less than I used to. It's so nice to wake up to healthy skin! And no more dry patches near my mouth (even though it's January and I don't have a humidifier.)
Thanks, Earth Clinic, and everyone who has written about their experiences. Without all of these helpful accounts of trial and error, I might still be stuck in my room hiding with a rash!