Best products for Cystic Acne?

Greetings all.   I come before you with hope that someone will have a suggestion as to what over the counter treatment may work well for cystic acne?  I have seen a dermatologist for this, and they prescribed Retin-A as treatment.  However, it dried my skin out so bad that I had to discontinue after a month's use.  To get that prescription was like pulling teeth from the dermatologist, because she flat out told me that I should just go on birth control and that will solve all of my cystic acne issues. However, at this point - birth control as a form of acne treatment is not an option due to the fact that my gynecologist wants me off of it as an experiment to see if I can rid myself of other female symptoms. make a very long story short, I am at my wits end.


I understand the fact that nothing is truly going to rid me of my cystic acne, but I would be so happy to find a product that would at least shrink the ones I have a little faster, that way they aren't as painful for so long.  I spend most of my day on the phone, and nearly 10 times a day, I'm banging the receiver into my jaw and it hits a cyst and it makes me want to cry! 


As it stands now, I'm using Philosophy's Purity Made Simple, and their new On A Clear Day acne face wash.   For moisturizer, I've been using Fresh's Umbrian Clay Oil Free moisturizer.   As for spot treatment, I have PTR Acne Spot Treatment.  However, I don't feel as though this combination is aiding in riding myself of my usual acne, nor aiding in the healing of my cystic acne.


I'd be ever so happy for any suggestions ya'll might have!  Thank you!


- Jessica

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I was on the pill for 10+ years and went off it about a year ago after getting married. After about 6 months I started getting really red painful cystic acne on my chin and jaw line. I would get them all month long with a major outbreak about a week before my period. I was so miserable, It really took a toll on my confidence.

I got online and tried pretty much everything I could think of, gentle cleansers, Benzoyl peroxide, apple cedar vinegar, ice, aspirin masks, Retin A, Proactive. You name it I tried it!

Someone on Make-up Ally mentioned breaking open Evening Primrose oil caplets and putting it directly on the skin. I tried this for a few weeks and found that while it kept the cystic acne at bay it made me break out in small white heads so I stopped. Cystic acne came back within a month. I still had a whole bottle of EPO so I started taking 1000mg in pill form a day.

It's been 6 months and while I still get at least one zit around my TOM I am pretty much breakout free the rest of the month.

It has literally changed my life, it also has the added benefit of managing cramps and other menstrual symptoms.

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