If you are a Youtube makeup tutorials fan like me, chances are you have already heard about the Acne.org regimen. I saw clips from multiple youtubers who went for blemished faces to clear complexions in a few months and they attributed the improvement to the Acne.org regimen.
About the regimen
The regimen is a three step process
- a mild cleanser
- the treatment with 2.5% benzoyl peroxide
- a moisturizer
With the products come very specific instructions. See for instance (from the Acne.org website)
When you wash:
Gently wash problem areas with your bare hands for 10 seconds or less. This may seem different from what you’re used to but do not wash for longer than 10 seconds. Do not use a wash cloth or any other cleansing device, as they are far too irritating compared to bare hands.
When you apply the treatment
Dispense the recommended amount (see dosage chart above) of Acne.org Treatment (Benzoyl Peroxide – 2.5%) and spread it on your face very gently with your fingers. Carefully avoid the delicate area around the eyes. Do not rub. Just allow your fingers to glide over your skin, spreading it around and letting it absorb on its own. Applying this way may take a couple of minutes. If after 3 minutes, the benzoyl peroxide is not fully absorbed, allow the rest to absorb on its own.
Wait 5-15 minutes for your skin to dry. Do not rinse off the benzoyl peroxide. Once it is applied, you will leave it on the skin.
When you apply the moisturizer
Apply Acne.org Moisturizer very gently with your fingers much like you applied the benzoyl peroxide. Avoid the delicate eye area because the moisturizer can pick up the underlying benzoyl peroxide. Do not rub. Allow your fingers to gently glide over the skin. This should take no longer than 3 minutes. If after 3 minutes, the moisturizer is not fully absorbed, allow the rest to absorb on its own.
And these are only some of the instructions that are very carefully detailed on the regimen. As stated on acne.org, the process is just as important as the products. It is essential that you follow the steps closely and vigilantly. Veering away from the guide will sabotage your success.
I started the regimen in February of this year. Here are my impressions.
The cleanser is a very mild, has no perfume and does not lather too much. It did a good job of removing most of the makeup I wore. My only issue was the limit of 10 seconds of washing recommended by the treatment. It seemed to be way too little time. But I followed the recommendation anyway.
The treatment is a white lotion with a gel-like consistency. Contrary to other benzoyl peroxide treatments I had used before it did not have a gritty texture, The gel goes on smooth and does take a while to absorb, especially in the quantities you have to apply. You need two full pumps as recommended by the regimen. After the first week of application, morning and evening, my skin got extremely dry and tight. I had dry patches on my cheeks and forehead. My skin started to flake. Overall my skin felt very dry and I had to add jojoba oil (as recommended by the regimen) on top of the moisturizer to get some relief. My skin got back to normal around 5 weeks into the treatment.
The moisturizer itself I really did not care for. It has a yellowish color, has a very unpleasant chemical smell and a thin consistency. It takes a while to absorb as well and I honestly simply disliked using it. Was it the smell? Was it the time it took to fully absorb because of the quantity I had to apply (again, two full pumps of product are recommended, see below)? Was it the fact that it did not made my skin feel replenished or healthy? I don’t know. But I did not like it at all.
Now for the overall treatment. I’m sure you are wondering if it ended up working for me.
My skin situation, as you know, has never been perfect. During my pregnancy and a few months postpartum my skin was absolutely great. But unfortunately, when I went to Senegal my skin broke out big time and I have been trying to heal it ever since.
I had very high hopes when it came to the acne.org regimen but, alas, it did not work for me. I think it is mainly because the process was a bit too much for me. It would, literally take around 30 minutes from start to finish. From letting my skin dry f
ully before applying the benzoyl peroxide, to rubbing the 2 full pumps on my skin and again letting that dry and again rubbing another 2 full pumps of runny moisturizer on my face and having to let that sink in in order to be able to apply make up out and then run out the door…that was just too much time. In the words of Sweet Brown, ain’t nobody got time for that.
Plus, even though I disliked the process and did not care much for the products, I stuck with the program and 8 weeks in saw no improvement whatsoever. So, I threw in the towel. I have stuck with hard treatments before, as I told you here, I went through 2 rounds of Accutane and that is a really hard treatment to endure. But unfortunately the Acne.org treatment just wasn’t right for me. Maybe the fact that I am now much busier in the mornings and that, in the evenings, it felt like a chore more than anything else. In the evening I need an element of relaxation and pleasure in my routine, just to end the day on a high note. And this treatment didn’t do it for me.
So I feel like this treatment did not work for subjective reasons more than for reasons linked to the actual effectiveness of the product. Maybe the effect really kicks in around the 3rd or 4th month of use. But I didn’t stick around long enough to find out.
The Acne.org Regimen Big Kit is supposed to last around 2.5 to 3 months (it does) and costs 76.70 USD. Unfortunately the shipping cost to Canada is quite expensive, I payed 27.23 USD. So overall, I paid 133 CAD for the a three-month supply. It’s not cheap, but I have spent more on skincare before so it is acceptable for the amount of product you get.
The silver lining
The good news is I did learn something that helped my skin. The regimen requires you to be extremely gentle with your skin in order to avoid irritation. Irritation does cause your skin to react and, even if I have always considered my skin to be quite resilient, I have noticed that treating it gently and removing most of the potential sources of irritation in the form of fragrance and unnecessary ingredients in my skincare products has been quite helpful. So at least the treatment taught me to show my skin more love.
Did the acne.org regimen work for you? Let me know in the comments!