Contact dermatitis: one week update


As you may know, I saw my dermatologist a week ago today and discovered that I have contact dermatitis. 

I've done a full post on it here, but essentially I have some white patches all over my face that have likely come from using a vitamin c product that didn't agree with me.

While that doesn't sound good, you can't actually see them unless you know they're there (my dermatologist couldn't find them with his huge magnifying glass: I had to show them to him), and the only reason I even knew I had them is because they don't hold product when I apply makeup. 

That is, everything will look ok until I apply coloured powder products like blush and bronzer. That's when the white patches show up because the rest of my face holds the colour but the white patches don't, meaning it's currently impossible for me to do my makeup without looking patchy.

I'll live ; )

Anyhoo. I thought it might be useful to check in once a week and let you know how my skin's doing and how it has reacted to the treatment I've been prescribed. 

I'm not the first person to have reacted badly to an active ingredient in skincare and I certainly won't be the last, so I thought these update posts tracking my skin's behaviour might be helpful.

I plan to do them once a week, until the six-week mark when I see my doctor again and he tells me whether I can go back to my usual skincare or whether I need further treatment. I'll keep you in the loop about what happens, too.

As you may know, I've been told to put DermAid 1% on my face twice a day and nothing else. Yes I can wear sunscreen when needed and yes I can use moisturiser if I'm dry (which I am), and I'm allowed to wear makeup if I go out. That's it.

My skin doesn't like the DermAid, I must say. It's more like a barrier cream so it's not hydrating, meaning my face is in a state of perpetual dryness: even if I do put moisturiser on throughout the day, it doesn't penetrate as well as I would like through the DermAid so I'm in a bit of skin discomfort.

My fine lines look more pronounced because I'm dry and dehydrated, and I can't treat those issues as I normally would with oils, serums and any item that contains active ingredients (this includes my beloved Alpha-H Liquid Gold).

Also, my face looks a bit ashy and dead from the treatment. It's not terrible, but I'm aware of it. I can only hope this means it's working. I should know by the end of the second week whether it's working or not, and if I do notice a change in the white patches by the end of week two, I'm to drop the DermAid down to once daily applications.

The other odd thing that's happened is: I've been breaking out in a few pimples around my nose and chin. While oily skinned lasses would be used to this situation, I'm dry so I don't normally get these larger white pimples (I get little heads of the black and white variety). 

Sure I can live with those but it's annoying and I can't put any of my pimple treatment on them to calm them down because I'm meant to be giving my skin a break from my normal products. Foo.

The above things are all I've noticed with my skin so far, so I don't have a huge amount to report this week. I'm hoping I'll have some good news by the end of next week, and that I'll start to see a change in the white patches. Otherwise this will all be for nothing!

I guess the only other thing to mention is that I did contact my dermatologist after the appointment to ask whether I could put makeup on every day in the half-hour before my shower (just because I don't know how I'll mentally survive the next six weeks without at least one of my makeup or skincare rituals!), and he said yes to that. Yay.

While it might sound silly to some, I was super pleased about this: I have two toddlers so makeup and skincare are really all I do for myself each day, meaning that it's not easy for me to let them go for an extended period. 

And this week did feel really slow: I spend most of my life looking after the kids, so the days feel long and the nights even longer when I can't sleep (there's my hyper-arousal insomnia for you).

In sum

That's all from me!

I hope you found this post interesting or useful in some way. Do let me know in the comments whether you have any questions for me and I'll be happy to answer them.

I'd also love to hear whether you've ever had a skin issue like this and how you went with it. For example, how long did it persist and what were you prescribed to treat it?

Hope all's well with you, and speak soon x

* All images courtesy of

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