So I started paleo to get rid of chronic folliculitis on my face. Previous to havng that I ha acne throughout my teens and used all the standard topical medications, as well as took Accutane. My folliculitis improved with plaeo but went away 100% when I stopped putting anything on my skin... no soap, no lotion, no cleansers etc etc. Well, since then, my skin has either begun an awful shedding process that does not seem to end or can;t seem to heal/repair itself. This is only the skin on my face as well, everywhere else is perfect. It is either very dry with flakes and redness, but sometimes nice and moist and oily. If I don't manually exfoliate after about maybe a week or two, it gets irritated by it's own dead skin and sweat and I get alot of redness... but then the exfloliationg causes more redness and irritation. I am using a microfiber cloth for the exfoliation.
Vitamin D level is good. Thyroid is fine. I started taking Iosol a month ago to help because I read anectodally that it helps with flaky, red skin. It does a bit. Have been taking FLCO about 2-4ml daily since January to help this... I actually think this is not doing me any favors with the Vitamin A... but the problem was there before FLCO. Switching to FIsh oil and borage oil to see if this helps.
I realize acne topicals + accutane probably damaged my face... but I am stumped as to why it doesn't really seem to heal itself. I am drinking LOADS of bone broth with extra gelatin and Vit C as well. Eating enough for sure. Diet ratios dont seem to change it either.
ANd as I said... all topicals flare the folliculitis very badly. Especially now that my skin gets so flaky, the flakes clog the pores and the flare up is unbelievable. Tried emu oil 4 months ago and the flare up was so bad I can't imagine using anything on my face ever again.
ANy ideas as to whats going on here? My skin barrier is obviously damaged and not properly moisturizing itself. My forehead can be very oily one minute then a bit flaky the next. WHy has this not healed 4+ months no soap, barely any water contact and minimal manual exfoliation?
Derms never seem to have a clue, they just throw topicals at me.
I do seem do have a flaky, but not dry scalp too. I have been "Paleo" for over a year. On and off raw dairy consumption but cut it out 4-5 weeks ago. Did VLC, LC, now trying moderate-higher carb paleo. Lots of beef, beef heart, sometimes liver (2 a month maybe) yams, white potatoes. No fruit, lots of greens. Probiotics.
asked byBill_4 (2539)
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on May 27, 2011
at 09:59 AM
I had/have Seborrheic Dermatitis on my face and sometimes on my arms, together with acne on my face.
2 things have totally removed my once horrid condition and when using them it NEVER comes back. These two wonderfully awesome things are 100% organic witchhazel as a toner and 100% organic extra virgin coconut oil as a moisturizer.
This works well for me and as you can see below my skin is pretty clean now:
I also have flakey scalp issues but not when I use Dr.bronner's tea tree.
on May 26, 2011
at 10:50 PM
i have an idea. My husband found out through a family member that his nephew had a similar problem as he did with only the skin on his face. His nephew started using toothpaste without mint and it helped him, did the same thing for my husband. Got rid of the flaky face skin around his beard area.
My husband was substitute teaching and mentioned the mint toothpaste thing on the downlow to a girl in his class who was having the same problem (hiding her face with her hair). Very recently she came up to him and high fived him. He didn't recognize her until she said thanks and that the mint thing had totally worked. She had a lot more confidence and her face looked great. (i thought that was a cool story, i was proud of him).
So 3 out of 3 people - maybe try getting rid of mint toothpaste/mouthwash. It's really in just about every toothpaste out there. Weleda Calendula is good w/o mint but my husband doesn't like it so much. I do though.
on May 27, 2011
at 06:01 AM
I'd be willing to bet it's a yeast/fungal thing. All that topical stuff probably eliminated all the normal beneficial microbiota on your skin, making it easy for some other less pleasant business to take over. You might experiment (topically) with: diluted ACV, as previously mentioned, or verrry dilute tea-tree oil, or very very VERY dilute GSE. I'd give it at least four days, as long as there is no exacerbation- this isn't a gets-worse-before-it-gets-better thing. Hell, if you're desperate, (i know i would be) it might even behoove you to skip the 'natural' route - esp if you don't already have that stuff on hand - and cautiously try some regular drugstore OTC anti-fungal preparations..
Sounds like your diet is pretty solid, i'd for sure continue to vigilantly avoid sugar and fruit until you're all cleared up. Good Luck!
on May 27, 2011
at 12:25 PM
I had the same thing, it always seemed to be around my face/mouth, scalp, and behind my ears. I was forced to shave off my beautiful man-fur (beard) because of it, I had facial dandruff, scalp dandruff, and I would scratch my beard until I bled while sleeping.
I discovered it was fungal, after (on a whim) I washed my scalp and beard with apple cider vinegar. Besides stinging like the dickens, it completely cured my itchy scalp and face, no more dandruff, no more itching.
So now I wash my scalp, face, and any other affected area (elbows and behind the ears) with ACV once a week or so, and it works great.
on May 27, 2011
at 04:59 AM
I think it mainly comes down to accutane - which has been known to cause ongoing dryness due to its semi--longterm-permanent effects on the sebaceous glands.
Cold showers will do amazing things for you. I find even just having a comfortable warm stream of water will strip off far more oil than a cold shower. I believe the cold shower has therapeutic benefits as well.
on May 26, 2011
at 11:12 PM
Have you tried the oil cleansing method? Pure water might be a little too drying for your skin. I know that oil helps me a lot when I am either too dry, too oily or having breakouts.
on August 11, 2017
at 09:32 PM
Have you ever tried grass-fed tallow?
I've been using tallow for a few years now, and the results have truly been amazing. I had many skin problems, and once I started using tallow, the results were nearly immediate and I found long-term relief.
I use Balm of Gilead, from AllNaturalBalm. They also make a Butter Balm that is unlike anything I've tried. It is so light and fluffy, and absorbs so well. I use it on my face and on my body.
The main benefit to tallow is that it is nearly identical to the natural oils your body makes - so it is vastly different from how botanical oils are absorbed by your skin. Tallow is rich in vitamins, and so it really absorbs into your skin and nourishes at a deeper level.
Diet certainly can help, but proper skin care is essential. It is important that ingredients are non-reactive....so I'd recommend natural.
I hope that helps!
on May 27, 2011
at 02:29 PM
I have been having skin issues since I was 12 and my skin issues are one of the main reasons I got into healthy dieting, but I have yet to find a solution and a diagnosis to my problems. Every single area on my face is affected, except around the eyes (like a racoon), with small red bumps, clogged pores, dryness/greasiness(?), sensitivity and redness. Manuel exfoliation seems to help with the clogged pores, but it makes my face extremely red and irritated. My face is also very sensitive to temperature changes. I have tried almost everything but nothing seems to work.
on May 27, 2011
at 06:59 AM
Yeah, I know what you're talking about. 5 bzillion different creams and nothing fixes it. Visits to the dermatologists, naturopaths, etc.
I cleared up all of my skin issues on my face with a light application of coconut oil right before bed. I tried it once because I was reading something on a paleo site about going no shampoo, and they had another post about what they did for their skin. Started talking about coconut oil, and since I had some in the cabinet for cooking, I figured I would try it.
I was quite surprised, I've always had a couple issues with flaking, and a lot of redness, especially around my beard. 2 days after I started it I lost all of the redness. My doctor asked me what I did, because she had never seen such a difference.
on May 27, 2011
at 04:01 AM
You might want to try putting some high quality raw honey on a small area, leaving it for 5 minutes, and washing it off. My son has dry, flakey skin (not sure if it is exactly the same as what you have) and it made a surprising difference.
on May 27, 2011
at 12:08 AM
I recently received a diagnosis of seborrheic dermatitis from my dermatologist after many years of dry, flaky red skin that seemed to need an endless supply of moisturizers being switched every month or so. Worst, it is apparently exacerbated by "too much" saturated fat in the diet. Anyway, it is apparently a matter of the skin's reaction to the yeasts commonly living on it, and so it's not a matter of being able to heal with time since the yeast never goes away. Hopefully this is not your issue, but if you haven't ruled this out then it might be something you'd want to look into.
on June 03, 2017
at 11:56 AM
I'm not a doctor or a professional in this field but I currently have some skin issues I'm working on and I just wanted to share because it might help someone. I know first hand how challenging skin issues can get especially when it's on the face. For me I believe it all started when I used to have asthma really bad as a child. All of the medications given to me for so many years just built up i believe and in the last 2 years especially after contracting herpes from an Australian woman (that's a different story). Great person, I just wish we haven't had kissed. Anyway, so this opened up a can of worms for me because ever since then I've had skin issues ranging from full body eczema, which I am currently curing naturally to staph infections. The herpes I cured through h202 (hydrogen peroxide) and the eczema, which is what I was diagnosed with by my Dermotoligist ( I don't know what to believe anymore), is 95% gone on my legs and 75% gone from my arms, and still healing well, I'll explain how I tackled this below. On my face according to my other Dermotoligist, I have at times impetigo and or staph. My recommendation is to stay away from the steroids if you can, I strongly recommend to not even start it due to the side effects and dependency. I tried them and I looked great for a few months but then it came back even stronger. I'm currently now on the natural path and I just recently finished a 21 day water fast only which I believe is what is allowing my body to repair itself from the inside out from all of the years of taking in toxins. I changed my diet and mostly (90%) eat veggies and fruit. What I've learned from order of most importance to least importance is 1) sleep 2)water intake 8-12 glasses a day, 3)exercise 3-5 x a week (sweat) and then 4)diet (your intake). I'm a work in progress. Here's a miracle I believe which helps me remove redness and help heal cracking of the skin naturally and quickly. Take a cold shower for at least 5 minutes (helps reduce inflammation fast and also beneficial in other ways too). When you come out of the shower, leave your face 50% wet, especially the problem areas, apply some myrrh oil (20% oil blend essential oil) make sure it states that its pre-diluted, onto your problem areas that are cracking and are reddish only. Let it soak in for a minute or two and then apply some African shea butter by patting it on your non- problem areas first then lightly patting on top of problem areas. I have dry skin so I then pat on some lotion (fragrance free) lightly all over my face. If you really have dry patches or if those problem areas are still dry, add some aquaphor ointment to help ease the dryness. Good luck and rest rest rest. Nyvt3 @ hotmail dot com.
on July 09, 2012
at 01:28 AM
Hi I am actually in the same boat as you. My brother supposedly was too. And honestly my brother has had gorgeous skin for years now. And he does drugs and shit and I have no idea how his skin was clear and mine wasn't. Well he told me he used xolegel. It is an anti fungal used to treat skin in our condition. Supposedly there is a bacteria that is constantly on our skin making it dry and flaky, red and irritated. I am gonna visit my derm and discuss this option I will let you know how it goes.
on January 16, 2012
at 01:57 PM
Thank you for the suggestion on this post. I almost killed myself, seriously, because the redness and cracking had taken over my face and neck. I could not go in public. Doctors were worthless. PREDNISolone helped for a couple days and then it came back. I tried limiting most foods, but did not help. I tried so many things and none worked. tea tree, honey, clay mask, anti-dandruff shampoo, etc
I was really lost before I found this site. I started using organic black soap with an exfoliator pad and deluted ACV in shower. and witchhazel toner after. It worked! I am grateful for the people, especially Uggla for sharing their ideas. I also use Aquaphor on any redness which seems to help.
on November 27, 2011
at 08:26 PM
skin is the largest organ of the body. It makes no sense to 'love' it by slathering potions all day if you eat badly. Skin reflects your INTERNAL and overall health...primarily of the liver, kidneys and digestive functions. if you have breakouts and psoriasis type inflammation it is DEFINITELY something you are eating. Toxins build up over a long period of time and them the body can take no more. This surfaces eventually through skin inflammation and joint pain. Big culprits are potatos, nightshade vegies, and ALL grains. Eat load of fruit and less fat and protein which cause toxins. Dr Steve
on May 27, 2011
at 06:37 AM
you can build up your skin barrier slowly by using products like CeraVe AM / PM line along with an extremely gentle cleanser like Toleriane Dermo Cleanser. additionally, you can try a strong ROS inhibitor like PyratineXR Lotion and/or some green tea serum with 90% ECGC with Hyaluronic Acid like the Replenix brand. if that doesn't work, i'd recommend you get a Red 660nm / Infrared 880nm LED array for everyday use which promotes soothing and accelerates healing.