Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Perioral Dermatitis Treatment: My Story

Hiding behind a coffee cup...my favorite place to be with perioral dermatitis.
UPDATED 10/1/16: For my most recent update, including new products, tips & tricks, check out my new Perioral Dermatitis Post here!

UPDATED 1/14/16:

First of all, thank you for all the emails and comments on this post. I never dreamed my story would be able to help as many people as it has, but I'm so glad it did.

Clotrimazole 1% , the over-the-counter antifungal cream that cured my POD, has continued to work its magic for the past eight months. If my perioral dermatitis flares up, I use a small amount of the cream and it goes away. Clotrimazole is NOT a corticosteroid (ie hydrocortisone)--those medications can make POD much, much worse. It's an antifungal and sold in most pharmacies as a treatment for athlete's foot. 

I recently saw an incredible allergist for an unrelated problem (OMG what a year) who confirmed (as the two dermatologists I saw previously did NOT) that my perioral dermatitis WAS a fungal infection, caused by yeast, which is related to allergies. In fact, he's written the premier study in the field on this exact topic, and he confirmed that the use of Lotrimin or the equivalent generic is an appropriate treatment. For once, my obsessive 3:00am medical Googling turned out to be right!

PLEASE NOTE that I'm not a medical doctor, and that any time you undergo any treatment, even non-prescription, as Lotrimin and its generics are, you should consult your regular doctor about it. Even my above statement regarding my allergist's recommendations don't count as actual medical advice. 

My original post:

What is perioral dermatitis? Slightly itchy, slightly bumpy, reddish and really really annoying inflammation of the skin around the mouth. It affects mostly women between the ages of 20-50 and might have a hormonal element. Ugh.

I was diagnosed with this condition about a year ago, after a stubborn, bumpy red rash under my nose and on my chin just wouldn't go away and I finally dragged myself to a dermatologist (NOT the way I'd prefer to spend my rare kid-free, work-free hours.) Though the doctor laughed when I suggested it, I'm fairly certain the perioral dermatitis was brought on by over-zealous use of my Clarisonic Mia--I've always been a huge fan of exfoliating and just couldn't help myself with all those scrubby rotating bristles...but then this rash broke out and it looked TERRIBLE and no matter what I did, it wouldn't go away. The Clarisonic just made it worse, and I finally had to stop exfoliating all together.

The dermatologist sent me home with a month's worth of oral antibiotics and a prescription for sulfur face wash. I really, really hate taking antibiotics unless it's absolutely necessary--but I also hated having a gross embarrassing rash on my face. So I took the antibiotics, I used the face wash...and nothing happened. The rash cleared up a tiny bit (maybe?) with the antibiotics, and then the minute I stopped taking them? It came right back.

I tried just the face wash. I tried drinking more water. I tried a different face lotion (typically I only moisturize with coconut oil). Nothing helped.

A few months later and fed up again, I went back to the dermatologist. This time I was given Finacea cream, Metronidazole gel, and more sulfur face wash. All of which was expensive and, for me at least, totally ineffective. I used all three as directed for several weeks and saw absolutely NO change in my POD. The label on the Finacea says it can take up to eight weeks to see results...really?! Because this rash was ON MY FACE. Where OTHER PEOPLE COULD SEE IT. Eight (more) weeks just wasn't an option.

So I went where I probably should have gone in the first place: the internet. I scoured every blog post and article and comment I could find on perioral dermatitis treatment, specifically looking for natural remedies for perioral dermatitis, since I've been trying to rid our home of as many chemicals as possible and really hoped for a cure that would not only get rid of the rash, but be as natural as possible.

Below is a breakdown of what I tried, what worked and what didn't, and what finally ended up being the cure--for me. I write this blog post with the hope that someone, somewhere, finds it helpful in beating a stubborn, truly awful condition.

After all my research, a ton of trial and error, and hundreds of treatment dollars spent, the truth about perioral dermatitis seems to be this: no one really knows what causes it. No one really knows how to treat it. But most importantly, the cause--and the cure--seem to be different for every person. So the best advice I can give anyone suffering from POD and looking for a solution is to try everything you can, keep an open mind about possible causes and treatments, and know you're not alone in the struggle.

What Didn't Work:

  • Oral antibiotics
  • Finacea
  • Metronidazole
  • Tea tree oil
  • Sulfur face wash
  • Aloe vera 
  • Oral zinc tablets
  • Evening primrose oil capsules
  • Calendula salve

What Helped (a lot!) but didn't actually fix the problem:

  • Switching to a fluoride-free toothpaste
  • No more sodium lauryl sulfates (SLS) in beauty or household products**
  • Switching to SLS-free makeup (and tossing out all the old stuff!)
  • Taking a daily probiotic
  • Using BB creamwith zinc oxide as the active ingredient
  • Washing my face only once a day with cleanser (I fell in love with this one) and using ONLY water in the morning/after working out
  • Aloe vera gel
    (used once daily as a toner, pre-coconut oil)
  • Coconut oil as moisturizer*
*I should note here that my perioral dermatitis has always been classified as MILD--so mild, in fact, that J continues to deny ever noticing I even had it (this, of course, is because he loves me and thinks I'm beautiful no matter what kind of creepy skin condition I have, but still...) Anyway. I DID have it, but it wasn't nearly as bad as it could have been. If you Google image POD you'll find some seriously scary stuff, and I'm blessed to have never had this condition to the full extent possible. I am 100% convinced that using coconut oil as a daily moisturizer kept the worst of my perioral dermatitis at bay. 

While it wasn't strong enough to get rid of the POD totally, coconut oil is a natural antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant and has worked absolute wonders on my skin. And my hair. And on bug bites, sunburn, and eczema. And my cholesterol, which my doctor called "fantastic" at my last checkup. It's also amazing on toast. And in my coffee. OK, so I'm a bit of a fanatic. If you want more information on the (seriously amazing) health benefits of coconut oil before I get around to writing a love letter blog post about it, check out the book The Coconut Oil Miracle.

** for almost three years, I've been practicing something called the Curly Girl Method for Wavy hair (you can read my blog post about it here) and gave up hair products containing SLS ages ago...and I've never used those products on my kids. But I was much less diligent when it came to body wash, dishwashing liquids, hand soaps, etc...I had no idea that all those sulfates could be harming my skin just as much as they were harming my hair!

What I Never Got Around to Trying (but the internet says might work):

  • Apple cider vinegar (topically. I take a few tablespoons a day mixed with hot water and lemon for general health reasons, which I highly recommend. Using ACV as a toner is a popular suggestions for natural treatment of perioral dermatitis, but I never got around to trying it.)
  • Diaper rash cream containing zinc oxide
  • Violet extract
  • Calendula cream (different than calendula salve, above)
And finally...

What WORKED!!! (for me):

Clotrimazole cream, 1%

Yep. You read that right. After almost twelve consecutive months of frustration, trial and error, and hating the way my face looked in the mirror, the only treatment for perioral dermatitis that actually WORKED was Clotrimazole, a $4.99 tube of anti-fungal cream, most commonly used to treat athlete's foot. I found this humble suggestion buried DEEP in the comment section of another blogger's frustrated post about her battle with POD. The comment was short and to the point. It said that perioral dermatitis was nothing more than a common yeast infection, and the cure was equally as common: buy a tube of Lotrimin (or generic, which Clotrimazole is) anti-fungal cream at the drugstore and call it a day.

I ran to the drugstore basically right that minute and applied the cream that night before bed. Within hours (because yes I got up in the middle of the night and checked), the bumps had gone away and my skin was noticeably smoother. By morning, my perioral dermatitis had improved by 80%. 24 hours later? It was almost completely gone.

It's now been a full week, and other than some residual redness around my nose, my perioral dermatitis is a distant memory and I can leave the house without makeup on for the first time in a full year without feeling like everyone is staring at my weird face rash thing. I'll continue to use the clotrimazole cream for two full weeks to make sure the infection is gone, as the directions on the package suggest. Finding a cure for my POD is liberating, exciting, and such an incredible relief. Thank you, THANK YOU, anonymous internet commenter...you've saved my skin.

Will clotrimazole cream work for everyone with POD? I truly don't know, and my guess is that because so many different factors contribute to and exacerbate POD (hormonal, environmental, nutrition, etc) that it probably won't work for some people. I've read blog posts that tout miracle cures for perioral dermatitis that simply didn't work for me. But if you're suffering from POD and haven't found your cure yet, this is definitely something worth trying!

After finally finding a cure for my perioral dermatitis, I'm surprised and thrilled to say my skin looks better than it has in my entire adult life, thanks to some awesome new products I've discovered along the way. Here's a list of products I've kept as part of my daily routine that are truly outstanding...I love them all!
I suppose I should have an "after" picture to post here...and at the moment, I don't (and no "before" pictures, either...because who wants THAT documented for posterity??) But if I get around to taking one, I'll update the post. For now, you'll just have to take my word for it...

Do you suffer from POD? Did you find a perioral dermatitis treatment that worked for you? Please share in the comments below...I'd love to hear your story!

130 comments:

  1. Found this blog in a google search. I will be giving Clotrimazole a try, thank you so much for sharing! I feel like it may be the only treatment that I have not yet given a shot. Feeling hopeful!

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  2. I did a lot of these things too. It was really bad. I tried cortisone, vinegar, antibiotics, antifungals, zinc, tea tree oils, and treatments for demodex mites (i would try anything!). The vinegar seemed to help a little, but then my skin felt pretty raw. The cortisone helped but then there's the side effects of permanent skin thinning that freaked me out. Then i really started thinking about it. It clearly seems like some kind of skin biome malfunction- otherwise why would doctors usually prescribe antibiotics and antifungals, and those treatments help people... seemingly mostly temporarily. The only way to really improve things is with a probiotic. You can fight the bad stuff all you want but if you don't seed your skin with good bacteria the bad will just keep coming back. Which I think is where the unfiltered vinegar and yogurts come in and help people (and me) a little. But those could introduce a lot of potentially bad biotics too... I read about studies where people with good skin were found to have a certain bacteria in higher concentrations than people with bad or reactive skin. So i searched and tried the simplest probiotic i found (literally only probiotic and water). The instructions are to use NOTHING else, and it was hard, but my skin started calming. I REAALLLYYY recommend it. I don't have my before and afters on me but maybe i'll get those together soon. It feels like a miracle. anyway I think there are some different probiotics out there but I would avoid the ones mixed with various lotions and oils (they were also more expensive too anyway). It would be too hard to figure out which ingredient helped or not. This one is called Probiotic Action, and it's only $13.95. I wouldn't recommend the cleanser they sell, although it's cheap, it has sulfates which can be irritating (I agree with you too, I cut out all toothpaste and shampoo and face soap with sulfates!!!). It took a couple weeks for it to really settle down, and now i'm just maintaining and hoping some of the scarring will improve!

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  3. I am so glad I found this post. I have seen 2 dermatologists, spent a lot of money on prescriptions and after reading your post I went out and bought the Clotrimazole Cream and after one day my POD is already looking better and I hope it continues. Can you tell me how you use the Aloe Vera Gel and when you use it in your face routine. Thank you so much for sharing your story…it was a HUGE help to me. Cindy

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  4. Did your PD come back with vengeance? Or are you still clear? Its my understanding from years of research on this HORRIBLE skin condition. that the lotrimin is a steroid cream that clears it at first but can make it come back worse?

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    1. Nope. Lotrimin is NOT a steroid; it's an antifungal. I do get occasional POD flares and have learned to identify the triggers (diet, stress, hormonal changes). Lotrimin treats the problem, but it does not cure it, which is why it comes back from time to time. But that terrible steroid cycle of "better, way way worse" does not happen with an antifungal. Hope this helps and good luck!

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  5. I'm having it right now and it is truly frustrating but with your advice, I want to make a progress. Thanks.

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  6. Thank you for posting this. Today I brought my 12 year old daughter to the dermatologist and we left with a diagnosis of POD and a prescription for doxycycline and a warning about the medicine that went something like ..."if you don't eat before taking it (twice a day) you will throw up". Good times. Off we went to grab a 1 MONTH supply! Yikes - and a refill just in case we need it. So here I sit searching for another way. After reading this I am heading out tomorrow to give this a try before I let her start taking these pills! I realize it may not work for her, but it may, and that is what I am looking for right now. So thank you again.

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    1. Just in case: toothpaste with "whitening" is a huge trigger for me. If your daughter uses that, try ditching it...

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  7. So did your condition stay away? I'm using ACV and coconut oil. Also watching my diet since that has a lot to do with it. Thanks!

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    1. Hi and thanks for the question. While the Clotrimazole continues to treat the problem, it didn't make the entire condition go away. I get POD flares from time to time and have learned to identify triggers (diet, hormonal changes, stress) and then I use the cream to soothe the flare back down. And YES to diet having a lot to do it! I recently suffered a major auto immune flare (out of nowhere, I've never had allergies in my life!) and the allergist assured me the POD is part of the equation. I'm doing a whole30 now and just a week in I can already see major improvements in my skin. Thanks for reading and good luck!

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  8. I just found this post scouring the internet on information to help me with my own Perioral dermatitis outbreak. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  9. I'm so glad that you posted this!.
    After reading your blog, I pulled together a few symptoms and realized that my tongue has been really sensitive too- hmm... possible thrush? In conjunction with your cream suggestion, I'm adapting a candida ridding diet to address possible yeast overgrowth.
    I'll see a holistic doctor this week to see if my suspicions of candida overgrowth are correct.
    thanks for posting, without it, I would never have connected my skin with a possible gut issue!

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  10. I've been battling PD for about six weeks which isn't that long but for those of you who have it, it seems like an eternity. I noticed a small rash and like a lot of others used an old steroid cream that I had lying around, very bad, it got much worse when I stopped using it. I took to the internet, self diagnosed and set out to try and fix it before I could get a dermatologist apt. I switched toothpaste, shampoo, tried to avoid makeup, dropped a small fortune at whole foods on various all natural products. Tried apple cider vinegar, calendula cream, tea tree oil wipes, everything. Some sites said to stop drinking coffee and wine, bahahahaha, that's cute. Finally got into the dermatologist who confirmed it indeed was periorial dermatitis. She gave me an oral and topical antibiotic. The topical seemed to make it worse so I ditched that after about a day (likely because its an ointment not a cream). While the oral seems to be working its magic, I stumbled upon a product which I think is mostly responsible for my face cleaning up. I found Osmia Organics in my hunt. They have products that were specifically made by the creator (former dr) for PD, no I do not work for them, I just want to share the info because I truly believe it had a large part in clearing my PD. I ordered the soothing starter sample set at 15$ which includes a sample of their black clay soap, toning gel and moisturizing cream. Within a couple of uses I noticed about a 50% improvement, within a week, it is 80% better. I have stopped obsessing in the mirror about my face and can actually feel ok working out (sans makeup) I immediately ordered the large sizes. It is expensive but I will never use another product on my face, everything is all natural and I've noticed a difference in my skin overall not just in the PD areas. Just wanted to share my story in case it helps just one person, check them out and good luck!

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    1. Has this continued to work for you? I have also tried everything under the sun. Recently my dermatologist prescribed me tacrolimus ointment. My HUGE issue is one of the side effects is lymphoma cancer. I was incredulous that this is prescribed to people.

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  11. Thank you so much! Treatment! Finally! Helped me! Thank you! Thank you! <3

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  12. I've just discovered Hope's Relief which was recommended to me by a professional make up artist. Two weeks later there are no bumps or flakes. It's going to take a while before the scarring goes completely but this stuff has been a godsend.

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  13. Thank you! I've had small outbreaks of PD for years, never really knowing what it. It never spread further than around my nose so I just assumed it was dry skin. About 2 months ago, it came back for what feels like the millionth time, except this time it spread all around my mouth and was even starting to pop up around my eyes. I self diagnosed myself and then started researching ways to treat it. I tried so many things. I changed to an almost completely fluoride and SLS free regime. I stopped using my face wash. I used apple cider vinegar religiously. I moisturized with coconut oil only. I was almost to the point of going to see a dermatologist to get antibiotics, even though I've read that they don't always work.

    The clotrimazole worked within days. It's so amazing that I could cry. A week later and I still have a bit of redness, but for the most part, it's almost all gone. Seriously, this blog post saved my face. I'm obviously going to keep using it for at least a week after it all clears up, but it's so good to know that if my PD comes back (and I've got my fingers crossed that it won't), I'll know exactly what to reach for. THANK YOU.

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  14. Thank you for sharing this post...

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  15. I had this condition for over nine months and tried so much. Refused to take what the doctor prescribed. I used the vinegar, yogurt, and tried many types of plain soaps for cleansing and avoided moisturizers. It was a bummer that nothing worked. THEN, I began cleansing myself internally. I took probiotics, did an internal cleanse and gave up eating all possible triggers including sugar (the hardest), coffee, wine :-( , gluten, dairy. In two weeks, my friends exclaimed that not only did I seem to be clearing up, but I had lost weight on such a rigorous diet. I began taking things in again little by little to determine the direct link to the causes of my perioral dermatitis. Long story short, it is Gluten!! I have given it up completely. I have accidently eaten traces of it and can tell because I get slightly bumpy, but it was just a confirmation that gluten is my enemy. PD is certainly not the only rash that people get through a gluten allergy so it is also highly correlated to skin rashes. Give it a try as it has not only cleared me completely for over 5 months now, but I am much healthier and slimmer. --Hottie is back better than ever. :-)

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  16. Everything I have read has been amazing....I tried a cream called hydrocortisol (I'm pretty sure this is the same thing or almost that everyone has had success with) that worked great. I eat super clean take probiotics a lot but I like to drink. Not crazy, but I like nice wine.

    I haven't tried coconut oil yet but want to. Tried Metrogel and it sucks!!!

    Stay away from that shit and don't support a worthless pharmaceutical money grab. It just dries out your skin which almost makes the embarrassing condition harder to conceal.

    I just want to hear from someone who has beat this after discontinuing the cortisol type creams....I want an actual solution.

    any comments or suggestions are welcome

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  17. Tried it on Wednesday. Bought a tube of generic Clotrimazole cream, 1% from CVS. 24 hrs later and my face is almost clear. Thank you so much.

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  18. The relief you feel to hear other people feel like you do, brings tears to your eyes. Ugly, frustrated, monster, depressed - all words that I have felt. Reading your blog made me cry. It has been 6 months, 1 month on a powerful antibiotic,after formally being diagnosed with PD. It cleared up after 2 days on the antibiotic, was gone for 2 weeks and came back worse after the second week. It has not improved much and my 30 day med treatment is up. I am moving to natural remedies and the clotrimazole. My son was given it to treat athlete's foot. I started it on Thanksgiving night - 2015 and already am noticing small improvements. Thank you for inspiring me to take charge of my own health!!

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  19. Oh. My. Goddess, God, and Child. This post, this godsend of a blog post has saved my chin.
    Thank you!

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  20. I found a cream from La Roche Posay(French) kereum ds healed my POD within 1-2weeks. Costs about €14 from most of the bigger chemists. Before this I always needed antibiotics.

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  21. Do I follow the anti-fungal cream directions and only use it twice a day?

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    1. Yep! I used a small amount in the morning and a small amount again at night (like super small, I'm still on the same tube) after washing my face, either with plain water or the e-Organics face wash listed above.

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    2. Hi!!! This all sounds great and I'm so exciting to give it a try. I've just applied my first application, but the skin around my nose is feeling really tight and uncomfortable/super itchy - do you put any coconut oil on after the anti fungal application to soothe the dryness or just leave it alone? Thanks!!!

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  22. I do not usually comment on things at all, but this time I feel I owe it to every girl and boy out there who feel helpless and desperate and lost because of this condition around their mouth.

    Mine started a long time ago as a little dry pigmented patch on my chin. I did not know what it was and it was so small that it didn't really bother me. My mom gave me her "magic cream" - she has been using this cream to treat her eczema for years, I later found out - and it made the patch disappear overnight. I used this magic cream for at least half a year, every now and then. At some point, a bit of redness and dryness travelled from my chin up to the side of my nose. The patches on my chin and nose started to come back more frequently. This was going on up until one night in mid November, when I woke up with a swollen eye and got scared that maybe the cream got in my eyes when I applied it the night before. I finally googled the cream I've been using for eight. months. only to find out how big of an idiot I am.

    This magic cream was a class 2 potent topical steroid.
    The one you are not supposed to put on your face at all. I stopped using this steroid cream the same day. Only three days later, faster than any other time, the rash came back both on my chin and on the side of my nose. A week later it spread to the other side of my nose. One more week later it dragged itself downwards from my nose and spread out in a circular manner towards my mouth; my chin rash also expanded. I was crying and googling and crying again. The rash itself had become bright red, sore, crusty and at times weeped. It affected such a large portion of my face that I just could not forget about it or ignore it. It was hell and my self-esteem plummeted. No matter how hard I tried, I could not cover it up with make-up at all; it actually seemed to get worse every time I tried to. After the first week of not doing much about my rash in hopes it would subside on its own, I changed to SLS free products, all natural no mint toothpaste, tried yogurt masks with probiotics in it (made it better after 3 days of 5 masks a day, but only up to a point), tried ACV (tried for a week, did not seem to make it much better at all, dried it out even more), didn't apply make-up on my rash, used calendula salve, used nappy cream, etc etc etc. Everything I read online I tried.

    With 2 weeks to go until my doctors appointment, I decided I cannot face my family and friends looking like this any longer. At that point, I've already seen this blog post weeks ago, but it was out of the question to try an anti-fungal. I was afraid of using anything that came from the pharmacy without medical approval. And after what happened with my mom's "magic cream" it was only natural.

    However, when I finally went and bought an OTC anti fungal (they gave me Nizoral cream)..... my rash got better within days!!!!!!!!! A week into the treatment, rash was 80% better with some pigmentation left over and now I'm at 1,5 weeks of treatment and all the pigmentation is almost gone.

    This is why I also strongly believe that in many cases, a perioral dermatitis rash is actually a fungus growing on your skin after the area has been weakened by steroid creams or some other potent external/internal factor.

    Unlike steroid creams, anti-fungals cannot really harm you, especially not short term, so it is worth a try. You should nonetheless talk to your doctor to clarify the appropriate duration of the treatment, but if the rash on your face is in fact a fungus you will see improvements within 2-4 days. It will flake (a lot!), the redness of the area will most likely subside veeeery slowly, but either way, you should see it work quite soon. Just please make sure that the cream you buy is PURELY an anti-fungal and does not have any steroids in it, since this combination is quite common.

    I wish you all best of luck getting rid of your rash. I believe it is 100% possible! :)

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  23. I am suffering from perioral dermatitis as well, and was wondering if this was at all a steroid cream, because if I were to stop using it if I decide to start it, would it not flare up once you stop using it similar to hydrocortisone cream?

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    1. Hi! Thanks for the question. In my experience, this has not been the case. Once it's gone, it pretty much stays gone. However, I do get POD flares from time to time and have learned to identify triggers (diet, hormonal changes, stress) and in those instances I use the Lotrimin again to get it under control. The difference between the steroid creams and the antifungal is that the steroids are masking the problem (ie suppressing immune response) as opposed to the antifungal, which is treating the problem itself. Hope this helps and good luck!

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  24. Hi I have been suffering with perioral dermatitis as well, I was wondering if the lotrimin is a steroid and if I use it will it make it worse if I stop using it?

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    1. Thanks for the question! No, lotrimin is NOT a steroid (or more specifically, a corticosteroid which is what hydrocortisone, etc are.) Lotrimin is an anti-fungal, which is totally different. It might not make your POD better, but it will not make it worse if you try. In my experience, the Lotrimin isn't a permanent cure. My POD does tend to flare from time to time (diet, hormonal changes, stress) but when it does I use the cream and it goes away again. Hope this helps and good luck!

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  25. I came across this post last night and immediately put some anti-fungal cream on before I went to bed and noticed a huge difference this morning.
    I have had a small red and dry patch next to my nose for about 7 years or so but during exams last semester it spread to both sides of my nose and my entire chin. I cut out fluoride, SLS, and only moisturized with coconut oil the last few weeks, all of which helped slightly but nothing got rid of it completely. I am so excited about finding this tip and how well it is working so far. Thank you so much!!!

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  26. I'm almost afraid of saying it out loud, but after 2 days the cream is already working!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH!! It's terrible to walk around with a "pizzaface".

    THNKS ��

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  27. After 2 months of a dry, red, bumpy chin and weeks of refusing to take pictures, I finally went searching for some help online. That is when I stumbled across your post. I have never posted in the comments section before, but I wanted to acknowledge you for sharing your story, and let you know how appreciative I am. I have tried everything from no face wash/moisturizer, coconut oil and cetaphil combinations, to cutting out dairy and soy... all to no avail. I am trying the anti-fungal cream you suggested this morning, and am crossing my fingers tightly for some relief! Thank you again!

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  28. Can you recommend some facial products and make-up? I am in my 40s so I need products that will help for aging skin. I also have brown spots and would like something to treat that as well as my dark circles.

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  29. Mine started in November and has cyclically gone from bad to ok to terrible. I've tried all the natural recommendations and did oils (melaleuca, lavender, frankincense and oregano) mixed with coconut oil. While I think they kept me from getting really, really bad they certainly not stopped the problem. I am on day 3 of Lotrimin and have significantly improved!!! I thank God I came across your blog!!! I no longer am thinking about my itchy, burning face all day! Whew! I feel like a new woman!

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  30. Thanks for posting this. I didn't see results with Lotrimin, but to be fair, I only treated my son's perioral dermatitis with it for a couple days tops, and it was an older tube. What we are seeing results with thus far is California Baby's calendula cream (old formula). It was the one thing that really helped with bottom rashes when he was younger, and when I saw it on your list of "mights", I felt confident to try it. The healing is slow but steady and marked. I'm about to run out of the old formula, so I had to pick up a new jar. It's creamier, so I was a little nervous as I worry about greasier things causing flare-ups - like Neosporin that we used initially - YIKES. That's the one reason I haven't tried coconut oil, to be honest - the greasiness. But so far, so good with this new calendula cream.

    Anyway. Best of luck with keeping this under control and at bay. I had it myself a couple decades ago, in my early 20s, around where my nose and cheeks make a crease. It was really persistent. Treatment was initially ineffective, or worsened it, and was expensive. After reading your post, now it makes sense that it is most likely fungal, and I can treat it more effectively should I or my kiddo get it again. Thank you.

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    1. I know this may sound ridiculous, but I have found that I can use an Alum powder ( the kind you make dill pickles with) paste on my perioral dermatitis and got dramatic results over night.I tried everything and then read you comments about Lotramin.I happen to remember that Alum powder is amazing on clearing Yeast Infection in the mouth after taking antibiotics. You just take a small pinch in your mouth and swish it around, it will be very bitter and drawing feeling, but don't drink or eat anything for an hour.You can do this 3 times a day if you want faster results. Cured my Yeast Infection over night. This is an old home remedy that is a miracle worker for me. My perioral dermatitis is about gone after 2 times of putting the Alum on my rash, no redness at all, no itching, most bumps gone.I will keep you posted on the results.

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  31. I felt I should come back and amend what I wrote before: My son's PD was doing well (slow but steady) with the California Baby old-formula calendula cream. However, after a couple days of the new formula, his face got worse, like significantly! I'm very disappointed by this. It could be coincidence, but I doubt it. Cue the Lotrmin AF (a new tube). I put some on him after school yesterday, and it looks slightly better today. Hoping for the best.


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  32. You must try baking soda and coconut oil mixed together to make a face wash/cleanser.... I noticed an improvement from the first wash. The baking soda brings the ph balance helps to bring back in your skin
    About 2 tsp of baking soda and just a little more coconut oil mix with a dribble of warm water and wash face as normal.

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    1. do you put it on a washcloth or a cotton ball or something or just wipe it all over your face?

      Thanks!

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  33. Thanks for this post! I have tried many things myself I was having this rash come and go every 2 weeks. It seemed I would be free of it for only a few days at a time. Mine is around my mouth, nose eyelids and temples. What was working great for me was a product called Derma e Tea Tree and E Antiseptic Cream and Witch Hazel Toner. I used them both everyday (I still do) and it stopped the PD. I went months without having a rash. My rash did come back a couple weeks ago, I have been exfoliating again though so not sure if that is what set it off. Anyway the other night it started up again and I put Destin Maximum Strength Diaper Rash Cream before bed it has 40% zinc oxide. I woke up the next day and the rash was in the drying faze already (which usually takes about a week normally) I was really impressed how fast it worked! I also use coconut oil on my skin everyday and have for 4 years now. Also back to the tea tree cream and witch hazel that I have been using daily this alone helped lower the breakout amounts and severity. So a mix of all these things has really helped me! I will also grab some of that cream you mentioned and have it on hand just incase!

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  34. I read your article and all the comments and I saw that you talked about using Family Care Clotrimazole Antifungal Cream originally but then brought up using Lotrimin AF Antifungal Cream.

    Is there a big difference in the products or just whatever is easiest to get?

    As of now I am trying out the apple vinegar with the coconut oil as moisturizer and hoping it goes well! I try to stay away from creams but it seems everyone is seeing a great results with it but I worry about the long term effects.

    Thank you so much though for posting this! You're helping so many of us :)

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    1. Hi! You have no idea how happy I am that this post is helping people :) I was so frustrated for so long, and it was a blog comment that saved my skin so I'm just hoping to pay it forward. The specific clotrimazole cream I mention in the post is just a generic for Lotrimin. From my research it seems like ANY antifungal cream (non steroid!) should work, though some seem to work differently for different people so it might be worth trying brands that use different active ingredients. Good luck!!

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  35. Amazing..worked like a charm! Thanks so so much! I have had a mild case of POD for six months. After seeing two doctors and using several types of creams, this annoying rash is gone!! Within 24 hrs of using clotrimazole the bumps were gone! The skin is still a little red but so much improved! Thanks again!

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  36. I also have PD and its been a frustrating 6 weeks. I've been on doxycycline for a week now along with erythromycin gel. While my PD is not getting any worse, its also not getting any better. I really want to stop the erythromycin and try clotrimazole cream, but I have heard that using an anti-fungal cream will help clear up the PD, but then the PD will come back soon after even stronger. Have any of you had this experience?

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  37. I think you may be thinking of the steroid cream.. It will help the rash but when you stop the redness and bumps can return and be worse than before! Go get the anti-fungal cream now~~ I have used the steroid cream and the antibiotic cream to no avail. The clotrimazole works!

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  38. Replying mostly to keep the Google ranking high on this article because I think it's very valuable.

    Same story as everyone else. Had good skin till this incident. Stubborn red dots around mouth and chin with some blistering. Wanted to hide and die. I think it was because my skin got dry and I drool when I sleep on my side and it caused the rash. Just my theory though, no proof.

    Things that made it worse:

    Zit cream
    Neosporin
    Hot water
    Antibiotics (because they kill good gut bacteria and allow yeast overgrowth)

    What kept it from spreading:

    Metrogel
    Clotrimazole
    Aloe vera
    Coconut oil

    What finally cleared it up:

    Candida diet + Candida Now supplement
    Probiotics
    Honeyskin Organics Manuka cream
    Vitamin E oil
    Sulpher soap
    Sleeping on my back (no pillow drool)

    Good luck everyone. It's extremely stubborn rash and a very frustrating experience!

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  39. Thank you, Jenny, for the info and product recommendations. I've ordered the cleanser, and will try the anti-fungal. You also listed Dr. Jart+ Premium BB Cream. I would love to try this product, but am concerned about the fact that it contains methylparaben and propylparaben, both of which ingredients are scored 7 (high hazard; reproductive toxicity and endocrine disruption) by the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep database. Also, the database has assigned the Dr. Jart product an overall safety score of 4. I've avoided parabens for many years now and am apprehensive to try the product. Can you say how much you think this product, by itself, has helped your POD condition? Thanks much, Cassandra

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  40. Hi! Firstly I cannot thank you enough for this blog post. It really saved my sanity. I have suffered with acne for most of my adult life but since being on the pill it always clears up. suddenly I broke out in a crazy dotted rash around my lower mouth and chin. For a month I thought it was just acne but I soon realised it was acting differently and was very consistant and tiny pimples. I then realised it came about after I had used some eye drops for an eye infection I had. I then came across perioral dermatitis and knew straight away this is what I had. I tried many natural treatments like vinegar, coconut oil etc but nothing worked at all. I was just starting to think I need to see a dermatologist (even though I'd read online this didn't help many people) when I came across this blog post. That very same day on the way home from work I bought some cream and the next day when I woke noticed I swear a 70% reduction in the rash. It has continued to improve and I'm amazed at how quickly. Thank you so much!

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  41. Has anyone developed perioral dermatitis because of prolonged use of Nasonex or Advair? I am post menopausal 60 woman and have just been diagnosed with perioral dermatitis. I would appreciate feedback. Thanks.

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    1. I believe that is how I got mine. I took Advair for years, and noone EVER told me you are supposed to rinse your mouth after inhaling it.

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  42. I have been on Advair or Symbicort for over 15 years and have seen the harm it has done to my body in the yeast arena. I am currently on Symbicort and I need it to breathe, so I am not planning on going off this anytime soon. BUT, I do believe that it causes my body to be 'yeasty'. I have had thrush more times than I can count, tinea versicolor (white patches on back and neck) every summer for 15 years, and vaginal yeast infections. I think my recent (started 9 months ago) onset of PD was caused by upping my Retin A prescription to .1% and my body's higher than normal yeast count flourishing because of the increase in the medicine. I now think it is my body's 'go to' expression of yeast. Ugh! I have had great success for the last two months by doing this:
    -I went completely face product free for 2 straight weeks. Was
    I washed my face with cool water only. It was miserable. My face got so dry and red but I think it needed to breathe. Once the PD was gone, I slowly introduced products. My skin has never looked as good as it has over the last few months. I use:
    -vegetable glycerin to wash my face and add one drop to my CC cream
    -SLS hair care products
    -brush teeth with baking soda and tea tree oil
    -jojoba oil for moisturizer
    -CC cream with zinc (mine is a Supergoop product)
    -I have IQ mineral makeup but only wear this 3 times a week or so
    -daily probiotic
    -ACV -I drink a few TB of this daily anyway but I do think it helps my yeast issues)
    Like I said, I have experienced RADIANt and plump skin with this beauty regimen overhaul....until this week. Ugh. I think my recent flare up is due to hormonal changes (cycle started yesterday) paired with a weakened immune system (I finished a 7 day course of Prednisone and Valtrex for Shingles).
    It's so frustrating but I am so much more optimistic that it will go away again (vs in the beginning of this journey).
    So, the short version of this long post is yes-I think the Advair contributes. It is an inhaled corticosteroid. Steroids are not good for PD but not breathing is not good for living, so I am managing this yeast side effect.

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  43. I've been reading this post with great interest! About a month ago, I was diagnosed with mild PD - I had a patch on my chin and cheek - and put on tetracycline. I thought that it helped. Two weeks ago, under my eyes swelled up and the skin turned bright red. I was put on another antibiotic in case it was cellulitis. It also works, but every time I finish the treatment it comes back. Yesterday, I got all hopeful because the flare started...and then subsided on its own. Granted, I'd tried putting coconut oil on it, so maybe that's what worked.
    In the afternoon, I noticed that my lips had started to swell! I found this post and bout the clotrimozole cream. This morning, My upper eye lids are swollen (lol, but not the lower) as are my lips. Sitting here, it feels like my whole face is swelling.
    Does this sound like PD to any of you? My family doctor and dermatologist aren't sure!

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  44. Hi everyone! I have been getting PD off and on since 2012. I had a flare up last year in sept. I had already been using flouride free toothpaste, only used sls free products and only wore mascara for makeup. So was baffled as to what is triggering the PD... I decided to get tested, to stop the guessing. I sent samples off to a lab to test for yeast overgrowth, parasites and allergies. This was during my last flare up. I was adamant about not taking antibiotics to treat myself so did everything anyone has ever suggested... including canestan. Of all the natural options and creams only canestan worked to relieve the PD, but it didnt get rid of it. So after 8weeks of hell I gave in and went back onto antibiotics. After a week the rash went away. I also got my test results back... NO candida, no parasites... everything in my gut was normal. Just low on mucus...sorry! In my case, there is no correlation with PD and yeast so why does canestan help? And why does it keep coming back? I was on antibiotic for 2 months and have been taking probiotics. I will continue with the probiotics and hope that it will help prevent an outbreak in future. It is a curse and hope a researcher finds the answer soon.

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    1. Hi Kristina, Quick question. Where did you send the tests for yeast overgrowth? What company did you use. Looking for a reliable place to get my son tested. Thanks.

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    2. Hi Kristina, Quick question. Where did you send the tests for yeast overgrowth? What company did you use. Looking for a reliable place to get my son tested. Thanks.

      Delete
  45. Thank you so much for this post! The anti-fungal cream helped a bit but didn't completely clear it up BUT I haven't done things like CO for moisturizing so that's next on the list. I have a question though...b/c I figure if it's working for you, I'll follow exactly what do! So, you wash your face at night, use aloe vera gel, then CO. What do you do in the morning pre-makeup? Any moisturizer at all?

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  46. Wow. I've had PD for about 5 months (probably stress induced from upcoming wedding, starting a business, etc) I read your post last night and figured nothing could hurt. So I bought the fungal cream and lightly put it on my face before bed. I cannot believe how much better my face looks! The bumps have gone down, and they have lightened from a purple red to a light peach red. Thank you so, so much. I've spent so much money trying to figure out my face, and you just saved me!!!


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  47. Hi! I read your post and decided to try apple cider vinegar for my POD. My outbreak is mainly due for this darn face mask that was too harsh and made the skin around my mouth really irritated. I made a homemade toner with unfiltered raw Apple cider vinegar with tea tree oil and put it near my mouth at night and in the morning after washing my face. I was careful with not letting the cotton pad touch the rest of my face. You're supposed to have 1:4 water to acv ratio and mine was maybe just a little stronger. Because my skin felt so dry, I would also put aquaphor or Elizabeth Arden's 8 hour cream through out the day. After nearly 6 days my skin is finally on the mend. I was going to try the cream next if the toner didn't fix it. The only downside of the POD is the pigmentation that has developed around my lips now. It looks awful! Did you experience that? Thank you for this article. I would certainly recommend aquaphor when the skin is healing.

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  48. This blog post has SAVED my face! After a year of suffering with POD because I was pregnant and nursing and my dr didn't want me on the antibiotics the anti fungal cream has finally cleared it up! I've been on for 10 days and it's barely even red anymore. I'm curious what is going to happen when I stop using it in 4 days, but for now I'm just glad that I can leave the house with confidence again!

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  49. This blog has saved my face!! After suffering with POD for over a year because I was pregnant and nursing and my dr didn't want me in such strong antibiotics the anti fungal cream has finally cleared it up! It's been 10 days and it's barely even red anymore! I don't know what's going to happen in 4 days when I stop using it like the directions say, but I'm just glad that for now it's clear and I can leave the house with confidence again!

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  50. Wow like most of the of the other people who have left comments here , I had tried everything and had an awful experience with steroid cream ! Ending up being put on an antibiotic which was out of desperation. It did clear it up after 2 weeks. But in the mean time I notice a fungal nail infection on 2 finger nails which I thought was contact dermatitis as my hands have been reacting to everything. But long story short I have put 2 and together and linked it all I feel fatigued crave sweet things and just felt plain awful. So I must have candida and need to treat it all whole. How I came across this post was asking if pod was releated to fungal nail infections. I will defo try said cream if mine returns and will discontinue antibiotics. I predict a shortage of fungal creams ! Why so many of us have it is wonder. I have a 10 month old and have finished Breast feeding a while ago I was thinking hormones but now I'm don't think so. Thank you to everyone who has contributed here it's so helpful.

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  51. THANK YOU!!! I'm running out on my lunch break to buy anti-fungal cream and starting right away! I had POD in my early twenties and tried antibiotics and they didn't work. It finally went away on it's own after a year. I'm 36 now, and it popped up again a month ago...I had to do an internet search and then remembered I had this fifteen years ago. In January I started working out like a fiend and eating right - I dropped 25 pounds in two months...I wonder if the weight loss (and resulting hormonal changes) triggered this outbreak.

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  52. This is beginning to work for me and my PD, thank's so much for the input! I just put on some of the cream this morning, and now it's been a few hours and I can already see the redness dying down. I also wanted to contribute that before this I was using aquaphor ointment, and although it does not completely rid me of PD, it does not add any fuel to the fire, so it's great for a moisturizer if you are worried about dry skin.

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  53. Thank you!!
    I have tried Clotrimazole 1 % (Lotrimin) for almost 3 weeks and I have noticed only 20% improvement. I have also noticed that when I have had processed cheese or desserts in my diet, it gets worse.

    I have been reading about Lotrimin Ultra with active ingredient of Butenafine Hydrochloride - 1 %.

    Question: Wondering if you have knowledge of Butenafine Hydrochloride - 1 %. Is it safe to use that or would it be like the steroid creams that would first make it clear up and as soon as leave it, it will make it worse? And also have you heard about SELSUN BLUE for one of the treatments?

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  54. Clotrimazole worked! I wish I had a picture to show you. It took about 1 week. I also stopped using fluoride toothpaste and switched to Tom's of Maine. No dietary changes and I still use the same makeup.

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  55. i'm going to try tonight , crossing fingers this works

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  56. trying tonight , crossing fingers this works !

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  57. ok. I hate this rash on the face! I've seen other people with it, but you never think that one day you might get it too. I'm in my 50's and the only thing that so far is working for me is a product I found on sale at amazon for $13.55 called Skinbiotics from DermaE (Whole Foods got it too but more expensive and amazon delivered in one day) it's says that's good for skin conditions including topical fungus, bacteria, germs, etc. FUNGUS! that's it! this page confirm my suspicions.The dermatologist gave me topical and oral antibiotics but I rather try natural ways to fight this rash. I'll try also some of the recommendations posted here. THANKS to everyone that took the time to post here!

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  58. Hi everyone!
    Thought I'd share my story too to see if I could help anyone. I borrowed my roommates acne spot medicine that her doctor prescribed called 'Differin' on her suggestion, because we have our grad photos coming up and I had an angry pimple come out of nowhere. It has a mild steroid in it. At first I noticed that the skin in the area I applied it to was getting really flaky, but I assumed that was just dry skin from the medicine. Then it turned into more of a rash after a day or two. After googling, I assumed that it was perioral. I tried the treatment this blogger suggested (the antifungal clotrimizole cream) and so far, it seems to be working! I've been applying it religiously to the area for the past twelve hours and already the rash seems smaller, less red, and less bumpy and dry. I'm not sure how tomorrow will be but I'd definitely recommend this treatment. Good luck!

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  59. Your story is mine exactly! I can't wait to try it! Thank you SO MUCH!!!

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  60. I am using Apple Cider vinegar, and a Candida Cleanse pill and fem-flora probiotic from amazon. Evening Primrose Oil capsules have helped my skin overall. I will continue this stuff. The Calendula salve takes away redness, but I got one with petroleum jelly and it doesnt seem to like that. I just added some anti-fungal now too!

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  61. you saved me girl... antifungal clotrimizole cream took everything away. I had it mainly under my eyes, and over cheek bones, sometimes also around my mouth. some days more (a damn red Christmas tree), some less, but almost for a year... nothing else really seem to make it better, even when I used coconut oil and ACV. It was first said by doctor it is some other type of dermatitis, she prescribed me DermaAid, it only got worse. then Perioral Dermatitis and antibiotics... I still use coconut oil now and can't be more thankful to you when I woke up the morning and saw it was all gone.

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  62. Thank you for your post.. I am going to try the antifungal stuff tonight. and I really hope it works! My PD isn't so much bumps, but more severe redness (seriously, at work right now but wishing I could just go home and hide under a blanket) that starts next to my nose, then spreads down to under my mouth.. like a red circle around my mouth, I hate it! I was diagnosed with PD last year.. did the antibiotics, helped some but it keeps coming back.. this time just seems to be SOOOOO much worse than the others... and now I am actually starting to believe it is spreading up my nose and under my eyes. =( definitely jumping on the antifungal cream wagon ASAP... wish me luck!

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  63. Hi, I just saw this blogpost. I decided to follow your advice and and get the antifungal cream. Can I ask you how long did it take you to see a change?

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  64. I am currently struggling with POD, it is really cramping my lifestyle, and my wallet!! I had my second visit to the dermatologist yesterday and they prescribed the Finacea, which is so expensive and they said it might not work. After reading this, I know I can avoid paying for that right now and try the cream you suggested. Thank you so much for hope, this has been going on for 6 months now and I'm so frustrated I could cry... like all the time. Thank you.

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  65. Hi! I also have POD, and it is a serious bummer. I spent so much money and time on traditional medicine. After it sort of repeatedly failed me I was forced to figure it out naturally or else resign to just living with it - which I really didn't want to do! I was able to get it under control naturally, using a lot of the methods you describe. I'm so thankful I'm not alone in this frustrating condition. I also put together a little timeline of my healing journey if you'd like to check it out: http://peri-oralautoimmune.weebly.com/

    Thanks again!

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  66. I'm 36 years old and I've had severe PD for the past two years. It kinda got better when I stopped using fluoride toothpaste, make up, sulfates, moisturizers, etc. but never went away completely. 30 days ago(in the middle of a bad breakout - I had scaley, itchy, painful red blotches over and under my eyes and around my mouth) I started the Whole30 diet. I KID YOU NOT - by day four, there was not a TRACE of PD on my face!!! And now 30 days later, my skin hasn't looked this good in years! If all else has failed you, please, please, please try Whole30 and see if it changes your life like it changed mine. PD is so debilitating and depressing, and I really hope this helps y'all too! I am a happy girl again, praise the Lord!

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  67. Hello, just wanted to let you all know that the minute I read this article I went and bought the antifungal cream. I put it for a week and not much happeneds (I've suffered for 2 years!!!) the second week I started to see and improvement. I really was trying to keep calm as it didn't get to excited. The third week my skin begun to clear completely. I stopped using it for a few days. I started eating gluten (I stopped before as I thought maybe was going to help) and my skin is looking amazing. Still a little red in some places but NOTHING like it used to be. It seriously has been a blessing!!!! Thank you sooooooo much! Now what I don't know if I should continue using it or I should stop. Once I find out I will let you guys know. Thank you again!

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  68. Thank you girlfriend:)

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  69. Hello, my issue with PD began back in August...every once in a while I would notice spurts of red bumps alongside my nose as well as on my chin. I spoke to a friend of mine about it and she gave me a tube of cream to try on it. So, desperately, I put it on the spots and just like magic, it all disappeared the next day! So for the next few months, every time I had one of those weird red bumps show up, I would put a little of my magic cream on it and POOF. Gone. I figured it must have been eczema or acne and didn't think too much of it.
    This was until lately I noticed the occurrences of red bumps happened more often than usual. Last week I had a glass of wine and then the next day, angry red bumps had destroyed my chin and around my mouth. I was so embarrassed, I didn't go out in public and felt self-conscious even around my boyfriend and family. I went straight to my magic cream and the next day it was gone. I realized this must have been a problem -- I never had such a reaction to alcohol! I scheduled an appointment with a derm for the first time in my life, and when I walked in, she took one look at my face and said I had PD. I showed her what I have been using and she told me to never use the cream again. Idiot me had no idea it was a cream with steroids in it and had been using it once in a while long-term...She prescribed me topical Clindamycin and told me to throw away my magic cream and to never be tempted to use it again. She also informed me that my face will get worse before it gets better because my steroid cream use.
    However, two days after I stopped using the steroid cream cold turkey, my face erupted. All around my eyes where I had previously applied the steroid cream (UGH thinking about it makes my skin crawl...I should have done my research instead of blindly applying this crap to my face) was a SWOLLEN, angry mottled red. I felt and looked like I had been punched in both eyes for two days. A few days ago the swollen eyes finally went down, but the PD has currently spread to a perfect, hideous circle around my mouth and on my chin. A few red spots still exist around my eyes, but absolutely nothing like the first two days off the steroid cream.
    I have been using the Clindamycin for five days now but I have been active in my search for something more natural...I'm usually very skeptical using antibiotics. I have started taking probiotics and came across this site a few days ago. Now, I have been alternating for three days between Clindamycin and Clotrimazole (taking both each day, one at different points of the day). I'm scared to stop taking one or the other because I don't want to stop taking something that might work even though I'm sure I shouldn't be taking both every day. I have the angriest red beard right now and I've been carefully avoiding public and I am depressed thinking about going to work with this.
    I believe my chin and around my mouth is getting better, ever so slightly. I know I should give it more time, but time sure goes by very slowly when your self-esteem is in the dumps. It's really great to see how many other people are going through this and understand the frustration of not really knowing how to battle this.
    I currently eat very well and healthy (although I am not always perfect!), with a lot of fruits, vegetables, protein, chicken, seafood, nothing fried, no fast food or soda, homemade bread, and plain greek yogurt. I do however have a love for cheese and bread. I'm wondering if I should go gluten and dairy free for a week to see if it has anything to do with an intolerance. Caffeine is also a thing I'm wondering if I should take a break from...I do enjoy coffee every once in a while and a lot of tea.
    Overall I'm just a little lost and struggling to find a fast and effective way to get rid of this PD because it makes me very self-conscious. :(
    I will continue using clotrimazole and post about results in the near future. Thanks for sharing. :)

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  70. Just put anti-fungal cream on my PD (mild) for the first time and I felt mild stinging almost immediately that seems to be subsiding a little now. Have others felt this? Just wondering if I should continue with it.

    If this means it's working, do you follow the instructions and apply 2 - 3 times per day for 2 weeks, is that what everyone is doing?
    Just notices that the anti-fungal I'm uising has 1% clotrimazole but also has benzoyl alcohol used as a preservative ... is this alright?
    I live in Australia and not sure I can purchase Lotrimin here ... would be most grateful for any advice?

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  71. Buy Canesten Clotrimazole Anti-fungal Cream in Oz, same thing as Lotrimin. Cheers Sharon of Perth,WA

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  72. Great to hear you finally got on top of your perioral dermatitis. It's funny you should mention aloe vera and coconut oil have helped because I used an eczema cream by mama nature (proskins) that has both of these in it. The only thing is it is from London, England but if you're prepared to wait around a week to get it then it's well worth the wait. It helped me no end.

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  73. My 10 year old daughter has had this since she was 3 years old. I actually bought the 2 percent Clotrimazole cream online (for vaginal yeast infections), applied it and within the last 2 hours her rash is 90 percent gone. HOORAY!! (and yes we are sulfate and fluoride free, using coconut oil, and have tried numerous other fixes over the last 6 years) This one is magic!!! THANK YOU!!!

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  74. CONTINUED FROM PREVIOUS POST: This is the 2% Clotrimazole that I bought. In the box there is a tube of the cream. You can discard the rest of the stuff and just use the regular tube. I'm so HAPPY!!!
    https://smile.amazon.com/Clotrimazole--Day-Vaginal-Cream-0-74/dp/B00PB5434S/ref=sr_1_3_a_it?rps=1&ie=UTF8&qid=1466377616&sr=8-3&keywords=Clotrimazole+vaginal&refinements=p_85%3A2470955011

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  75. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  76. I have PD around my chin only and had been taking elide (prescribed by my dermatologist) and fuciden (prescribed by my family doctor) with no results. I read this blog about 10 days ago and immediately went out and bought Canestan cream, with 2% clotrimazole. Almost immediately the tingling stopped. The next day, I could tell that the swelling of the bumps went down. I've been putting a small amount on between 4-5 times per day and my PD is pretty much gone. I also stopped using my daily moisturizer near by mouth and unfortunately will have to find some alternative to sunscreen, because I think that might be my trigger. I am so thankful for the info on this blog, but upset and confused as to why the heck our doctors don't know about this simple solution. I will certainly be telling my doctors about this.

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  77. Grapefruit seed extract helped mine heal. I take 2-3 tablets a day. I apply the liquid form to the POD ( dilute a little). I am also taking probiotics and garlic MSM evening Primrose and zinc. Gargling with a tablespoon of water and 4-5 drops of the grapefruit seed extract is helpful before bed too.

    Lotromin clears it up as quickly as the grapefruit seed extract. But the GSE taken internally helps if there is a candida issue.

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  78. I never comment on stuff like this but I i'm so moved and I'm so grateful that I had to say thank you. I've been battling this for over two years and the clotrimazole was the straw that broke the camels back. It's summer my skin is finally normal and beautiful again. Thank you so much!!!!!!

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  79. Cured my pd too. So happy!!! I was depressed and embarrassed with pd.

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  80. Thank you so much! The clotrimazole worked fast! Thank God I found your page! I was so depressed I didn't want to leave the house. In addition to the clotrimazole, I stopped all dairy, reduced my sugar intake, switched to fluoride free toothpaste, and use only natural soaps now. I know the clotrimazole jumped started my healing, the other changes helped too but it took weeks to a month for my body to detox. I really think what triggered my outbreak was dairy overload, I don't like meat and used dairy for protein...never again. Thank you again for sharing this!

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  81. I SWEAR TO GOD YOU SAVED MY LIFE GIRL, KARMA WILL DEFINITELY GIVE YOU BACK ALL THE BEST RIGHT NOW THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU !!!
    Long story short: I had POD for 6 years. Yes, 6 consecutive years. I had it under control by applying every damn night a light steroid cream called Protopic. I got it when I was 16, now I am 22. Just think about my struggle during all those sleep overs at my boyfriend's house, all parties etc when I really had to apply it in order to look "normal" during the next days. I was thinking to myself - how I will live when I will have a husband or what if my protopic tube will be lost with luggage while flying.
    THANK GOD. It's over. It was bad at first but now I am on 6th day of applying Clotrimazole and it's fairly pink, all the bumps almost gone.
    I applied it for more than 2 times a day tho, maybe something like 3-4. At first it will really hurt bad, then it will sting as hell, then it will flake (sign of healing!!!), it will be madness for 3-5 days BUT HANG IN THERE, IT'S FUCKING WORTH YOUR LIFE. Stay at home. Don't do any excersise for a week. Say to your friends that you're really busy with life. It's only a week, believe me. If it helped ME, it will SURELY help you.

    Btw, if you're in a hurry buy Alum Powder. Someone here above mentioned it - it's antifungus natural thing. What I did - it has to be pure Alum Powder (potassium alum) and you just have to mix it up with mineral water, lay down straight so it won't fall of your face, ask someone to apply it and lay there for 30 minutes. At the end it will really tickle. Do not wash your face afterwards. After first application POD was 50% gone, after next two 20%.

    During the healing process do not apply any cosmetics. Stay at home for those 7 days (if I could while being a pro athlete and having many many things to do and places to go you will too). Wash your face only once a day in the morning with sls-free shower gel or face wash. You can try washing your mouth with baking soda if you want earlier results and use fluoride-free toothpaste. Don't wash your hair (it will benefit by it btw).

    THANK YOU.

    Clotrimazole will do the thing, do not stop using it. But Alum Powder gives supernatural results in a matter of hours. Follow your intuition. Do not look in the mirror all the time, but it will heal quickly so whatevs. You will cry with joy like I did.

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  82. Thank you, Jenny!! This website has been my lifesaver!! I first started dealing with POD late last year - trying everything. I was able to get some relief from ACV, SLS-free toothpaste, African Black soap and coconut oil. For some reason this time that regimen did not work. I purchased a small tube of clotrimazole after coming across your website. First time use was yesterday - today, I'm in total shock!! The stinging, redness, itching has totally subsided. The area is beginning to look normal again. Thank you again!!!

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  83. I've been battling mild POD for 15 years. Within 24 hours of using Lotrimin my chin is almost clear! Thank you so much! I also get yeast infections very easily so I suspect the 2 issues must be related.

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  84. This is the first and probably only time I will post a comment on any website but I feel it is necessary to say that this has worked for me in clearing up my PD that I have had for 4 years. I did experience some benefits from removing all products containing SLS from my home, washing my face once a day and not wearing make up, but the Clotrimazole cream worked fantastically with no side-effects, irritation or anything. Within a few weeks it has cleared up completely! Thank you for sharing! Anyone struggling with PD, trust me, this works - give it a go.

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  85. I don't know if pure coconut oil works as I haven't tried that yet but I do know the cream I use has coconut oil in it and maybe thats contributing to the amazing effect it has had on my perioral dermatitis. This pro skin eczema has seemingly worked miracles. My skin was really crusty just under my lips and at each side beneath my nose. The rest was just bumpy and dark red. I'm completely pd free and will keep using this to moisutirize the area (just in case!!!).

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  86. I am so glad I found this last night. It may have just saved my sanity. I've had this rash around my mouth for about 4 weeks. I self diagnosed with PD. I started using coconut oil to wash my face, I have been toothpaste free for over three years, and also follow the curly girl method. I stopped using my allergy nasal spray b/c of the steriods a few weeks ago. But the burning and itching was just getting worse. Last night I read this post and RAN to the medicine cabinet...when I found a tube of Clotrimazole cream in there it was like angels starting singing. I slathered some on and the relief was instant! This morning most of the bumps are gone and the swelling and redness have reduced. My skin is not itchy, but it still feels tight and dry. So far so good! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

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  87. You are the 2nd person I have seen who has brought up this info in my search to finally eradicate this BITCH of a problem that I have had off and on for about 10 years. Someone's theory was that it was from Candida (an opportunistic fungal pathogen) and that when she got on Kolorex Advanced Candida Care it would go away within 4 or so days. I found it online at Swanson's vitamins and just ordered a bottle. It's an all natural supplement that kills candida in your system. I'm wondering if by taking the pills, plus avoiding all known flares (we all vary) we can continue to keep it at bay? And maybe use the cream for when a flare arises. That way you target not only the symptoms, but also the source. Thank you so much for your post! The power of the Internet. ❤️

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    1. Hi! I am new on this blog and I have ordered Kolorex advances candida, well it actually is called a bit different in The Netherlands, but its te same stuff. I would love to hear how you responded to it?

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  88. I have this too, i hade nose bleeds and had to use this topical steroid cream for a long period of time. I later started getting those red patches that look so awful under my nose and above my upper lip. I figure its that same thing as this post topic. I should have just used Coconut Oil the whole time, later I deiscovered that Raw Organic Coconut oil not only help the inside of my nose... but my skin rash as well. Seem like rash heals 1 day after putting Coconut Oil on... it also works for Tons of other cuts, scraps, etc. Its like magic!

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  89. Thank you...thank you for this post. It's been 4 days since I've used Clotrimazole, now my PD is gone. You rock!! :)

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  90. Like everyone else, I would like to send out a HUGE Thank You!! I applied the cream a couple hours ago and the inflammation on my chin is already a lot better. This has been so humiliating and I cannot wait to have my clear complexion back!!!

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  91. Thank you so much for your post! I felt the same way you did, spending so much time, money, and effort trying to cure it and everything that you listed I tried. I was so excited when you talked about that creme that I left straight for walgreens to go get it! We will see how it goes!

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  92. Wow, what amazing information you're all sharing!! I haven't tried antifungal creams yet, but have had some good results with a zinc-based cream that's generally used for diaper rash. I was given a prescription for Elidel, which worked a bit at first, but really didn't help much - and it was REALLLY expensive! I also have psoriasis in my scalp, so wondered if this POD is somewhat related? I'm anxious to try the antifungal, and hope it works as well as it has for you! God bless you all for your words of encouragement and advice!

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  93. I never comment on blogs, but this was such a miracle for me that I have to say THANK YOU!!! I bought generic jock itch cream (giggles), used it twice a day for a week, and have 90% improvement in a crazy bad POD outbreak. I also want to note that I have had outbreaks most of my adult life, but much smaller and much more mild than this last. I have been on a low carb diet for six months, and noticed that my skin was less finicky, which was a bonus to weight loss. But! I went on a carb/sugar bender on my birthday weekend and the week after, I had an angry red scaly goatee. So I definitely think it's related to diet (as well as I just have really sensitive skin), so this is kinda the best diet motivator ever lol! Anyway, again THANK YOU!

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  94. THANK YOU!!!!! After I read this article I bought a store brand lotrimin - worked like a charm. I suffered with perioral dermatitis for five months. Originally, something funky was on my eyelid - bumpy, itchy, weird. I solved that problem with baby shampoo and aloe. Went away, didn't come back. However, shortly following, I developed a rash near my mouth. Ugh. Did my own research, never saw a derm. Some things helped, but mildly - no one in my house said it was noticible - on most days. Then, I read about your experience and give lotrimin a try. Gone. Noticed a difference overnight, then within a week, barely anything left. If I see a spot, I apply and kill it. Here is my current regimen - face wash with baby shampoo, cerave cream to moisturize and lotrimin if needed. So happy to go make-up free and feel confident, or have fun with cosmetics again. THANK YOU!!!!

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  95. Hey guys, so something just clicked for me. PD is a yeast rash. Not a chronic illness that we have to deal with over and over. That's why antifungals work so well. I recommend seeing a doctor of course, but I would do a candida check as well. Some people get this once, clear it up and never get it again. I think doing a candida cleanse will be extremely beneficial to everyone. People with healthy immune systems and guts are able to fight candida off easily, this rash only appeared after a long time of eating very unhealthily and not working out. I think it could a combo of weakened immunity, candida overload and products on our face that are too strong for our skin, especially if we're having gut issues. I get kinda depressed thinking I will have to have flare ups of this ever again so I'm gonna visit a naturopath who has more info. look up "yeast rash" that's what this is!!!!
    I've been using lotrimin too except the antifungal ingredient in it is, Butenafine hydrochloride. It's working much better for me than the clotrimazole!

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  96. Lotromin is the only thing that has helped my POD. I struggled for years to find a solution. Lotrimin was the only thing that cleared up the redness & pustules around the nose & mouth area.

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  97. IT WORKS!!! Been doing a generic brand selsun blue wash on the affected areas followed by clotrimazole mixed with a little calendula ointment bc I have extremely sensitive skin and it was painfully tight and irritated and now, day 4, other than some residual redness.....all gone!!!!

    Been battling this for nearly 3 'months. So happy I could cry!

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  98. Ugh. I feel for all of you. PD sucks. And I have only had it for 3 months. I'm so fed up I think I might cry once the kids are in bed. It wouldn't be so bad if I knew that as soon as you find something that works, it would STAY gone. But the fact that it may come back at any time just kills me.

    My story: I have Celiac disease - the one where your gut attacks itself when it detects gluten. Been gluten-free since 2008 with no major slip-ups. In August 2016 I ate a whole plate of normal wheat pasta accidentally... Well after that I got 2 back to back yeast infections, the second went undiagnosed for 2 months, and somewhere in the first week or so of having the second one, I got my first rash - it actually began at the corner of both my eyes. I largely left it alone, and weeks later it appeared on my upper lip, and months later has shifted to my eyelids (nice surprise this morning) and to around my mouth. Oddly enough the original locations are clear. I changed everything to SLS- and fluoride- free (even water I wash my face with and drink) and do the 'less is more' approach. I was prescribed Elidel, which worked but did not clear it all, and use apple cider vinegar, which I thought was working great until today, where it's worse :( I took the fluconazole oral pill for my yeast infection (which worked) thinking that if maybe my PD was related to the yeast infection it would clear it up too...it did not. Anyway, I'm trying clotrimazole now, because those yeast infections and the gluten episode were the only things different in my life for years. UGH. It's also more than possible that it's a gut thing and I just have to wait for my gut to heal after that gluten attack, which can take 6 months. Wah. Pretty sure it's hormonal since my period is due and it's acting up. Super waaaah. I have lost so much weight over the last couple months, trying to eat healthier and not aggravate the situation, I'm definitely into dangerous territory. UGGHH. My son just told me an apple would make it go away...I'm eating the apple ;)

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  99. Like all of you I have been suffering all the symptoms, different topical creams, antibiotics. I also think I could have damaged the skin on my face with a steroid cream that was like a miracle or magic cream. When I would apply it at night I would wake up with a clear face. Did this on and off for about 2 years not knowing the downside of using steroid creams. After my last dr.visit and taking doxycycline(antibiotic)100mg 2x a day for about a month and a half bc I didn't take it during thanksgiving week. Went out of state and forgot it. But at the same time I was using a retin-a cream, well 2-3 weeks into treatment my skin look beautiful like I had not seen in years! I felt soooo happy. Until thanksgiving week when I didn't take it I was back to the awful breakouts you already know about, itchy red burning face. I called my dr. Told her about it and refered me to a derm bc theres nothing else I could take.But after reading this the other night I called and made an appointment and will see her today and talk to her about trying an antifungal pill bc I have noticed I have cleared up in the past when I've been prescribex fluconaxole for vaginal yeast infection. I'm praying she listens to me and goes along with giving it a try and treating it as a fungus and not bacteria. I'm very hopeful! I will definitely keep everyone posted as to what happens today. In the meantime I found Clotrimazole cream and have it on my face since last night. Regardless of what my dr. Says I will keep using it. Best of luck to all!!! I'll keep you updated loves!

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  100. You're not crazy. I swear mine started about 3 days after I started using my Clarasonic too but no one believed me!!

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  101. First off, thank you so much for posting this. You truly saved my face and peace of mind. I have had perioral dermatitis for 5 weeks. The past two weeks I have been using Clotrimazole 1% (Lotrim) on the affected area. However when I dry off after my shower the area around my mouth still looks dry with really fine barely noticeable white flaky skin. I barely have any redness or bumps but I'm afraid if I stop while I can still see some flaky skin will it just come right back? Should I stop the Clotrimazole and see what happens or keep using? I'm just not sure how I will know for sure that it is truly gone or if it is not recommended to use Lotrim for more than 2 weeks!Thank you so much for your input!

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  102. First off, thank you so much for posting this. You truly saved my face and peace of mind. I have had perioral dermatitis for 5 weeks. The past two weeks I have been using Clotrimazole 1% (Lotrim) on the affected area. However when I dry off after my shower the area around my mouth still looks dry with really fine barely noticeable white flaky skin. I barely have any redness or bumps but I'm afraid if I stop while I can still see some flaky skin will it just come right back? Should I stop the Clotrimazole and see what happens or keep using? I'm just not sure how I will know for sure that it is truly gone or if it is not recommended to use Lotrim for more than 2 weeks!Thank you so much for your input!

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  103. Duck by marriage: Jan 4, 2017. In October, I woke up one day with a red rash around my nose and nostrils. I had just come back from a trip to the mountains in Utah and my first thought was "poison ivy or poison oak". It never spread any further than my face; however, did spread down to the corners of my mouth and weird red spots near eye or between eyebrows - these spots had tiny white centers. I began with antibiotic cream - nothing happened. Went to internet and found PD. I changed toothpaste and stopped nasal spray (Fluonase) - used pressurized salt spray instead to help with chronic sinus/allergy from living in the desert. Anyway, 2 days prior to NYE 2016, I woke up with some itching in the night and looked in mirror and there was little change. I went to web that night and found this site. I walked to bathroom, took out athlete's foot tube of goo that I just happened to have in a drawer and applied it and went to bed - in AM I was surprised to see redness was lighter. I continued to apply 3-4 times a day; after washing my face in AM and PM and every day it has gotten better. Today, I have just a bit of red around my nostrils and if I go out, BB cream covers it. I do NOT wear make-up unless I'm going somewhere "important"; I am using a cleanser without sulfates; and only "just barely warm water". I apply Vitamin E or coconut oil for moisturizer. The athlete's foot med DEFINATELY worked for me and in just 6 short days. I do not fit the profile of the normal woman who gets this: I'm 65; very much past menopause; and have always had a near perfect complexion - even as a teen; so this really threw me for a loop! Hope it continues to work or it just goes away after this outbreak, never to return. Give the OTC, cost effective athlete's foot cream first.

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  105. THANK YOU A MILLION TIMES OVER! I have been struggling with this for 2 years. I am a natural health geek and have tried everything there is to try...ACV, coconut oil, supplements, gluten free diet for 4 years...nothing worked! Out of desperation and depression I went to the dermatologist and got the diagnosis of peri oral dermatitis. I was put on doxycycline and metronidazole cream. I took the doxy for 3 days and it made a huge improvement in my chin but I had to go off because I wasn't able to handle the side effects. Within a week the peri oral dermatitis was back. I came across your blog as I was searching for a solution without having to use antibiotics. After reading your post I went digging into my medicine cupboard and found an expired tube of Clotrimazole. I used it that evening before going to bed and in the morning saw noticeable improvement. I was so excited that I threw away my expired tube and went and bought a fresh tube of the actual Lotramin brand cream along with the Lotramin foot powder. After 4 days I am almost clear. I use the cream and then put a slight dusting of the powder on top. I also add the powder to my powder makeup if I'm going out and need to use some makeup. So happy I could cry! ;-)

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  106. Thank you so much for this blogpost it has saved my skins life! I thought I was getting a bad acne breakout when red bumpy spots started appearing on my chin and around my mouth! I went and bought anti fungal cream and it's been 3 days now and it has improved so so much! I can't thank you enough!!!

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  107. I have the same story as many above and after reading this blog 8 nights ago, found an OLD tube of Athlete's foot cream and started applying it 3-4 times daily. Noticeable difference after the first night and bought a couple different anti-fungal creams right away. I have been continues applying them 3-4 times a day and I can't tell if the POD is gone because my face is so red, dry, itchy and scaly from dryness that it is as bad as the POD was. THE BUMPS ARE GONE (I didn't even know that they were from POD) and I am coating my face with Coconut Oil as I have always preferred the natural route and rarely used any facial products and washed my face with water when I showered so no soaps or creams or makeups. Bottom line....I suggest that if you have dry skin, as I do, that you apply the anti-fungal AS DIRECTED so just a thin layer TWICE DAILY if you notice any dryness or the redness continues etc....otherwise, you might not even realize how well it is working :)

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  108. Thank heaven for the Internet...and thank you, Jenny! I read somewhere that POD always reflects some degree of breakdown in one's immune system, due to topical steroid use, illness, stress, allergy, etc. One of the things on the list was delayed reaction to antibiotics, and that resonated with me, as I was given 3 weeks of doxycycline treatment for Lyme Disease about 6 months ago. When my bout of POD started about 3 weeks ago, I blamed it on stress & overindulgence during the holidays, and switched back to a healthy diet + multivitamin, avoiding sugar & alcohol. Also began the obligatory middle-of-the-night medical research which led to trying: apple cider vinegar, yoghurt masks, coconut oil, antibiotic ointment, dandruff shampoo with selenium sulfate, cutting out fluoride toothpaste and all soaps & cleansers, and sea-salt compresses. Of these, only the sea salt had any effect. My rash is definitely of the "mild" variety now, but it still bugs me to look so blotchy and unhealthy when I feel fine. I've covered it with a bit of makeup when going out, but always pay a price the next day with increased redness and itching. When I read about your experience with the antifungal cream, a light bulb popped--of COURSE it's fungal! Why didn't I think of that cream? I just found an old tube and applied a bit to one of the patches as an experiment. If it helps, I'll get a new tube and hope to be rid of the whole mess. Good luck, everybody!

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  109. Woho!! This worked. I've been using Canesten for three days and my skin is as goos as new. Thank you ever so much lifesaver.

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  110. This is Anonymous Jan. 30th, with an almost-2-week update: Got a new tube of generic clotrimazole and began applying it morning and evening. At first the red patches became mottled and bumpy, then lighter and less bumpy, then lots of fine flaking, and now just a pale pink shadow. Clearly this condition is a fungal/yeast infection. WHY then do so many dermatologists continue to prescribe antibiotics for it? I urge anyone with perioral dermatitis to try this inexpensive over-the-counter remedy before embarking on costly, and potentially dangerous prescription medications. I should add that I've also taken the precaution of eliminating fluoride toothpaste and most products containing SLS. I do use a little make-up now (not every day--I try to give my skin a rest) and remove it with a wonderful mild soap called Grandma's Lye Soap (I know--sounds awful, but it's as simple and non-irritating as soap can get. I use it all over. In the morning, I wash my face with water only, but use sea-salt rinses once in a while, and moisturize with olive or coconut oil. Foods containing yeast and sugar are definitely triggers for me when I overdo, but I'm aiming for moderation and balance, and feeling so relieved finally to have some control over this maddening condition. Thanks again, Jenny.

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  111. Hello!
    I haven't been diagnosed with perioral dermatitis, but after researching the internet, it sounds like it may be the culprit. I'm still trying to get in with a dermatologist. After reading your post and all of these comments about the Clotrimazole cream, I'll be running to Walgreens first thing in the morning!

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  112. As a single mum with super white skin and super red PD this has been hard to handle working in a customer service job and people thinking they are going to catch a disease off you! I am a low income earner in australia and a dermatologist is way too expensive for me. This blog has been a god send. I tried a lot of natural products with no noticeable difference and this antifungal cream worked within hours. Couldnt believe i didnt search for an answer sooner. I have been suffering with this red soreness under my eye, nose and chin for over a year and now i can say goodbye to all the embarrassment. Thank you for your share xo bless you xo

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  113. Hi there
    I have had this horrible perioral dermatitis for about 6 weeks and I have tried so many things and I came across this blog! S I went to the chemist and bought a tube of Canesten cream but it didn't work at the start, then I used the diluted apple cider vinegar wiped the affected areas in n my face then put the cream on and it worked for me. It cleared up now but still not completely gone, and I clean my face with the mild baby shower liquid soap, I'm still scare to put my normal moisturiser on that area though. Thank you so much for sharing all the cure. I now hope that my face will be back to the way it was again soon. Thank you guys :)

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