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holothuroidea
December 8th, 2011, 11:50 PM
My sebum is giving me some problems. When I stopped using shampoo I started to get scalp acne and sores. I wash daily now and it isn't a problem other than I would like to not have to wash daily or use shampoo.

I'm also very acne prone for having dry skin and that stinks, too. OCM worked really well for me for about a month and then I developed a really bad, deep acne rash that is still healing. But once I stopped the OCM those stupid hard sebum balls came back and now I have whiteheads all over the place again. :mad:

I thought that this was just the way it was and I had to deal with it but then I did a search and found that some people think it is a dietary issue (omega 3/6 imbalance). I couldn't find any serious information on the subject though so I thought I'd ask all of you for your input.

Has anyone else had this kind of sebum and have you been able to fix it?

I've also heard a lot of mixed reviews for using jojoba oil to get rid of it (not to stop your skin from producing it, just to dissolve and lift the sebum balls so you can wash them away). Some people say it works and some people say it seems to make it worse. I like jojoba oil and it seems to work for me (I mix it with my shampoo and it has helped my scalp and my hair likes it too).

Any input on the subject would be greatly appreciated. TIA :flower:

ETA: The shampoo gets rid of it for about 12 hours and then I get the balls back again. The more I shampoo the worse it seems to get, but if I don't wash they develop into acne. Also when I scritch them they always seem to take a hair with them.

Moor_tu_lyfe
December 9th, 2011, 12:32 AM
I haven't ever had that type of sebum, I have the other extreme- greaseball, especially when using shampoo. :( But I have recently had a bit of a dietry makeover about 3 or 4 months ago, and I can't say I noticed a huge difference in my sebum production. I completely get the omega 3/6 ratio thing, and as a result, I eat lots of what I consider to be healthy fats- eggs from free range chickens, meat from pastured animals, evoo, organic butter etc. I also cut out all white sugar and the only grains I have been eating are soaked/fermented oats for porridge. I don't eat any prepackaged anything anymore, so I don't eat additives.

I thought this may have had an effected my hair when I went WO- after a while I wasn't a complete "otter in an oilslick" and I thought the reduced sebum may be partly to diet... but when WO failed miserable (ykwim) and I went back to shampoo, the oilies quickly returned (I'm now oily within 24hours of washing).

To sum up, my change in eating habits was pretty extreme (lots more fat and protein, lots less processed foods and sugar) and I can't say I've noticed a difference in sebum. Sorry- I wish I could be of more help. :( I hope you find your solution.:)

holothuroidea
December 9th, 2011, 07:57 AM
Bump!

Hey come on I can't be the only one, right?

hanne jensen
December 9th, 2011, 08:06 AM
I have the same kind of sebum you do. You are not alone! My sebum is actually worse than useless. Last summer I tried to stretch hairwashes and my sebum built up! After trying 3 times to wash it out with a clarifying poo, I had to use industrial strength dishwashing detergent to get this crap off my head. On top of that, I have super fine hair that fries very easily. Actually, the dirtier my hair is, the dryer it is.

I wash my hair every 3 days. I take a 250 ml bottle, put 1 inch ACV in it, fill the bottle almost full with hot water. Then, I put in a tiny amount of poo. I mean tiny! I wet my hair, put this concoction on my scalp, make washing motions and then put some on my length. I don't rub the length, just gently squeeze it through the hair. When my bottle is empty, I refill it with hot water and dump it on my head. Then rinse. It rinses very easily out and doesn't build up.

I fake my sebum by using a tiny amount of coconut oil on my hair and scalp.

Whatever you do, DO NOT USE HARSH POOS! They will just fry your fine hair and make your scalp produce even more of this useless stuff. Folks like us can't use WO or stretch hairwashes.We can't use heavy oils, conditioners or harsh stuff. We just can't.

I've been taking Omega 3-6-9 capsules for over a year. Hasn't helped my sebum. I've had this sebum all my life, and I'm 53. It ain't going away any time soon.

As for your facial skin, have you tried washing your face with honey? Honey is cleansing, antiseptic and moisturizing. It's also gentle. Many people with akne use too harsh cleansers.

One of the best moisturisers that is very skin friendly is good old fashioned Nivea in the blue tin.

Hope this helps. Remember, you are not alone.

chrystalevonne
December 9th, 2011, 08:17 AM
I know this may not help a whole lot but give you food for thought. I have heard that tea tree oil (the essential oil) can help scalp conditions and it even clears acne so that may be something to research. Also i am using monistat diulted on my scalp for growth and I did quite a bit of research on it and it does help people with sores on their head and I can honestly say that some oils tend to break my scalp out a bit but since using the monistat my scalp is in great condition. Hope that helps a little. Good luck.

ktani
December 9th, 2011, 08:32 AM
My sebum is giving me some problems. When I stopped using shampoo I started to get scalp acne and sores. I wash daily now and it isn't a problem other than I would like to not have to wash daily or use shampoo.

I'm also very acne prone for having dry skin and that stinks, too. OCM worked really well for me for about a month and then I developed a really bad, deep acne rash that is still healing. But once I stopped the OCM those stupid hard sebum balls came back and now I have whiteheads all over the place again. :mad:

I thought that this was just the way it was and I had to deal with it but then I did a search and found that some people think it is a dietary issue (omega 3/6 imbalance). I couldn't find any serious information on the subject though so I thought I'd ask all of you for your input.

Has anyone else had this kind of sebum and have you been able to fix it?

I've also heard a lot of mixed reviews for using jojoba oil to get rid of it (not to stop your skin from producing it, just to dissolve and lift the sebum balls so you can wash them away). Some people say it works and some people say it seems to make it worse. I like jojoba oil and it seems to work for me (I mix it with my shampoo and it has helped my scalp and my hair likes it too).

Any input on the subject would be greatly appreciated. TIA :flower:

ETA: The shampoo gets rid of it for about 12 hours and then I get the balls back again. The more I shampoo the worse it seems to get, but if I don't wash they develop into acne. Also when I scritch them they always seem to take a hair with them.

You may want to consider seeing a dermatologist who may recommend a specific shampoo or type of shampoo to help with the problem, that may be less irritating.

Diet may help as well. I would not scritch. That kind of irritation may make things worse, in terms of abrading skin as well as loss of a few hairs. Scratching the scalp also scratches hair and can abrade hair cuticles.

holothuroidea
December 9th, 2011, 08:32 AM
Thank you, hanne. :)

I haven't been using harsh shampoos. I use a decyl/lauryl glucoside baby shampoo and dilute it very heavily and mix it with jojoba. I wash with straight shampoo only once a week as a "clarifying" wash. It works really well but it doesn't take very long for the build up to come back, like I mentioned. Definitely very gentle daily washes have been my best solution.

I've been looking into making my own shampoo or getting a shampoo base with zero additives and I think this will help. I want to stick with the glucosides since my scalp seems to like them. I'm also trying to find a conditioner that doesn't build up.

For my face, I try to only wash with gentle cleanser once a day and wash with just water the rest of the time. Last night I did a jojoba oil OCM wash before using my gentle cleanser and that really seemed to help a lot. I just hope it doesn't give me the rash like just castor/evoo OCM did. I'm still using a salicylic acid astringent once a day to heal that rash. I have tried honey but it seems to dry my skin out and it doesn't remove the sebum balls, even if I use the exfoliating raw honey. It might be helpful to mix some oil in it, that way I can get the antiseptic and healing properties of the honey with the sebum-removing properties of the oil.

I think I'm finding the balance (or at least heading in the right direction) of things I need to keep my skin healthy with this kind of sebum. I would prefer not to have it, though! Especially if it is caused by a dietary deficiency.

Correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think taking a 3-6-9 supplement would fix an imbalance. From what I read (again, not very reliable sources) if your body has an excess of omega 6 it will use it to make the hard, waxy sebum instead of omega 3, which flows much more easily. If you take a supplement that also has 6 in it, your body will keep using the 6.

holothuroidea
December 9th, 2011, 08:37 AM
You may want to consider seeing a dermatologist who may recommend a specific shampoo or type of shampoo to help with the problem, that may be less irritating.

Diet may help as well. I would not scritch. That kind of irritation may make things worse, in terms of abrading skin as well as loss of a few hairs. Scratching the scalp also scratches hair and can abrade hair cuticles.

I am not going to see a dermatologist because I don't think this is really a "medical" issue. It is just an inconvenience, not a malady. I would like to go WO on my hair as well as my face and I can't because of it so this is why it bothers me.

I agree about the scritching. Do you think I should not even get use a scritching comb? It would be hard to use nothing, as it can get pretty itchy. I've been making a conscious effort to keep my hands out of my hair and off my face (hard habit to break!) but I have been using a comb because it drives me crazy.

Avital88
December 9th, 2011, 08:41 AM
i have the same, sometimes its extreme! especially acne on my head under the hairs, it hurts and itches!
I think using amla and taking omegas made it less and im now on a vegan raw diet since 3 days for mostly skin related issues like this
I heard good things about it, but its a total lifestyle change so not something you can just try..
or you can but it takes a lot.. i have no other solutions for the problem,sorry good luck

ktani
December 9th, 2011, 08:41 AM
I am not going to see a dermatologist because I don't think this is really a "medical" issue. It is just an inconvenience, not a malady. I would like to go WO on my hair as well as my face and I can't because of it so this is why it bothers me.

I agree about the scritching. Do you think I should not even get use a scritching comb? It would be hard to use nothing, as it can get pretty itchy. I've been making a conscious effort to keep my hands out of my hair and off my face (hard habit to break!) but I have been using a comb because it drives me crazy.

It may not be a medical issue but it is causing you plenty of grief. WO has its risks. Cleansers in products help keep skin healthy and avoid yeast and other infections. There is bacteria and yeast on the healthiest of scalps. Soaps and shampoos function to keep the ratio down and prevent an imbalance, which can lead to a medical issue.

Neya
December 9th, 2011, 09:19 AM
I cannot offer first hand experience on the sebum except finding something to break down the oil/sebum without drying your scalp(that would only produce more sebum- which you hve noticed when using 'poo). Other oils, BBB, scalp massage one thread mentioned a mister with water/aloe/oil followed by massage.

As far as dry skin + acne I can help some! I had alligator dry skin on my face and horrid moderate-severe acne. Everything acne related (topicals) made it worse. I found a new derm and began changing my own regimen at home. We started me on bactrim Ds (sulpha anti biotic) for the cystic acne) I was still left with other Misc acne and dry patches for awhile.
Things I've found that aggravate dry skins + acne : any "acne" or oily skin wash Except rX benzoyl peroxide wash %5 (unfortunately I was told this was discontinued recently). The rX was is completely smooth and non irritating. Since I can no longer find it I Now use just pure water for most of my face washes, and a gentle, preferably more natural, wash to remove make up.
I also began super moisturizing with low-comedogenic oils.
I began super moisturizing/oiling my face. This helped a LOT with removing plugs that were there forever!
I stopped scrubbing my skin. Anytime I need exfoliation I use a rubber scribble from the l'oreal line that looks like a tangle teezer. It's super gentle. I didn't use the face wash that came with it - the face wash was a bit too harsh.
I use hyaluronic acid %1 daily (I found an inexpensive supplier on eBay, you can also make your own with powder form from gardenofwisodom. This keeps my skin WELL hydrated without being sticky. Aloe works well too but not as well. I even use the HA in my hair (its awesome!).

Between all of the above my skin somewhere along the line went from dry/splitting acne to naturally producing a lot of facial oil with barely any acne. I don't mid having oily skin now (when remembering the alternative!). I now use a weekly %15 salicylic acid/mandelic acid peel to make my skin appear fresh and help cut through oil to remove the last few milia looking spots.
Before this transformation I couldn't even use anything with salicylic acid due to the dry skin.

When I talked to my doctor about why he thought I went from alligator to oily he said my skin has always been oily, but all that harsh stuff trapped it or overcleansed which created acne and dry skin.

ktani
December 9th, 2011, 09:42 AM
I cannot offer first hand experience on the sebum except finding something to break down the oil/sebum without drying your scalp(that would only produce more sebum- which you hve noticed when using 'poo). Other oils, BBB, scalp massage one thread mentioned a mister with water/aloe/oil followed by massage.

As far as dry skin + acne I can help some! I had alligator dry skin on my face and horrid moderate-severe acne. Everything acne related (topicals) made it worse. I found a new derm and began changing my own regimen at home. We started me on bactrim Ds (sulpha anti biotic) for the cystic acne) I was still left with other Misc acne and dry patches for awhile.
Things I've found that aggravate dry skins + acne : any "acne" or oily skin wash Except rX benzoyl peroxide wash %5 (unfortunately I was told this was discontinued recently). The rX was is completely smooth and non irritating. Since I can no longer find it I Now use just pure water for most of my face washes, and a gentle, preferably more natural, wash to remove make up.
I also began super moisturizing with low-comedogenic oils.
I began super moisturizing/oiling my face. This helped a LOT with removing plugs that were there forever!
I stopped scrubbing my skin. Anytime I need exfoliation I use a rubber scribble from the l'oreal line that looks like a tangle teezer. It's super gentle. I didn't use the face wash that came with it - the face wash was a bit too harsh.
I use hyaluronic acid %1 daily (I found an inexpensive supplier on eBay, you can also make your own with powder form from gardenofwisodom. This keeps my skin WELL hydrated without being sticky. Aloe works well too but not as well. I even use the HA in my hair (its awesome!).

Between all of the above my skin somewhere along the line went from dry/splitting acne to naturally producing a lot of facial oil with barely any acne. I don't mid having oily skin now (when remembering the alternative!). I now use a weekly %15 salicylic acid/mandelic acid peel to make my skin appear fresh and help cut through oil to remove the last few milia looking spots.
Before this transformation I couldn't even use anything with salicylic acid due to the dry skin.

When I talked to my doctor about why he thought I went from alligator to oily he said my skin has always been oily, but all that harsh stuff trapped it or overcleansed which created acne and dry skin.

This may help too - non pore clogging and moisturizing and cheap, http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1897749&postcount=46

holothuroidea
December 9th, 2011, 09:44 AM
Thank you for sharing your experience, Neya

My acne is usually very mild. I usually get patches of whiteheads and inflammatory redness on my cheeks, but most people don't notice it and I don't wear make up or anything. Those white heads are easy to clear up by popping (squicks some people out but I'm good at it) and the redness goes away with a little salicylic acid astringent.

Salicylic acid has always worked for me and I think it's because it is anti-inflammatory, which is half of my issue. I have had really bad reactions to benzoyl peroxide. One of my eyes swelled shut. Ack!

ETA: I've had problems with inflammation I think because I always scrubbed way to much trying to get those sebum balls out of my pores. I could never find an exfoliator that got rid of them, and I tried mostly everything. The only thing that does the trick is oil.

OCM gave me really really bad deeeeep acne papules that I've never had before. It was upsetting, and they are taking forever to heal. I started using salicylic acid about a week ago and now they are about 90% gone. The thing that hurts the most is before this happened, OCM worked so beautifully for me! It got rid of all of the whiteheads and inflammation and my skin was bright and beautiful and looked just like the rest of the skin on my body- clear and even.

I read that for some people OCM can cause these papules if you scrub your face to much (friction gives bacteria places to live), if the oil is contaminated (I used regular castor oil, not organic cold pressed, so that might have been an issue) or if you don't wash the oil off after your done, which I did not. So the sores are mostly healed and I'm going to start over again, using only jojoba, not scrubbing and washing with mild cleanser afterwards.

On the plus side, I've learned a lot about how to take care of facial skin during this whole ordeal. I didn't realize what a bad face-touching habit I had until I had to stop myself from doing it! I no longer rub my face with a towel to dry. Little things like that make a huge difference.

pheonixphire
December 13th, 2011, 08:24 PM
I have the problem of hardened sebum on my scalp. It's oily and pretty itchy too. Tea tree oil did absolutely nothing for me. I will definitely be watching this thread. Glad to know I'm not the only one.

KwaveT
December 13th, 2011, 08:39 PM
Most of my itching is on the back of the head since I went CO. It likes like some sort of flaky stuff. Itching doesn't get bad enough to really bother me. Most of the time I don't think nothing about it. I am going to do ACV rinse on my hair to see if it will help my problem. I have an oily scalp rather than a dry one though.

ellisbell
December 13th, 2011, 09:00 PM
I would be really careful about continuing the OCM if you are getting deep acne papules. Like you OCM worked well for me in the beginning and then slowly I started to develop terrible cystic acne that was super painful. Even after I stopped OCM it did not go away because the infection was so deep into my skin. I was lucky enough to go to a special facialist who was able to remove the infection and I had to use a topical medicated cream for a few months. In the long run it actually worked out because ever since that facial I have not broken out for almost a year. Sorry for the long winded story but my points are 1. Be careful of the OCM if you are having a bad reaction 2. Sometimes it is best to consult a specialist in these situations

Anje
December 13th, 2011, 09:39 PM
For what it's worth, I know Mira-chan has complained of this variety of sebum, and I believe she's said it's genetic. All I remember off-hand is that she oils her scalp to help break it up.

holothuroidea
December 13th, 2011, 09:43 PM
I would be really careful about continuing the OCM if you are getting deep acne papules. Like you OCM worked well for me in the beginning and then slowly I started to develop terrible cystic acne that was super painful. Even after I stopped OCM it did not go away because the infection was so deep into my skin. I was lucky enough to go to a special facialist who was able to remove the infection and I had to use a topical medicated cream for a few months. In the long run it actually worked out because ever since that facial I have not broken out for almost a year. Sorry for the long winded story but my points are 1. Be careful of the OCM if you are having a bad reaction 2. Sometimes it is best to consult a specialist in these situations

Thank you for this. When I got the papules I did some research and saw that many people had experiences like you describe. Mine weren't painful or even very inflamed, but I know they were a lot different than regular acne so I stopped OCM immediately. They sure are taking their sweet time healing, but they are healing on their own. I'm almost certain they aren't cystic but they might have become that way if I didn't catch it so early.

I'm very careful with oil on my face now, but I do still use it. I haven't found anything else that gets rid of the sebum balls that were the original cause of my acne in the first place. I mix it with honey, I don't scrub, I wash afterwards, and I only do it once a week. This has made my skin very happy.

An update:

I'm hoping that increasing my omega 3's will help. I am going to buy some sardines on my next shopping trip. I am not looking forward to them, but they are the best and safest whole-food source of EPA and DHA. I've been taking cod liver oil for a long time, which is also a good source, but I have read that for some reason the body doesn't absorb it readily in this form.

I was very suspicious of the whole omega 3 deficiency thing, because I cook with walnut oil and eat walnuts and flax in significant portions every day and I eat relatively few omega 6's. I read, though, that some people are inefficient in turning the ALA's in the plant based sources into EPA and DHA. Also, breastfeeding and lactation can deplete your resources and I have been doing one or the other for over 4 years now.

So, I have reduced myself to eating sardines twice a week and increasing food sources of the vitamins that help the body convert ALA to EPA and DHA. I will let you know what my results are.

I'm going to be mad if I end up eating stinking sardines for nothing!!!

@KwaveT- I don't have flakes, it's really like teeny tiny wax balls. If you made dots on a piece of paper with a very sharp pencil they'd be about that size. They also don't stick to the scalp like flakes do, they come off very easily. But on my face they get stuck in my pores and they are really difficult to get out without scratching, which isn't good!

It sounds to me, and I'm no expert, that you are having an oil/dead skin build up on your scalp. The conditioner probably keeps the oil off of your hair but doesn't clean the scalp sufficiently. I'd post in the CO thread to see if anyone else has had that problem.

@pheonixphire- Have you been doing anything to help this? Have you tried anything that doesn't work? I'd like to know so I don't try them. :D

Kaelee
December 13th, 2011, 11:46 PM
I have this same issue but I don't have any advice...I thought it was normal. I have a hard time not picking at it, too, lol.

mira-chan
February 18th, 2012, 11:30 PM
For what it's worth, I know Mira-chan has complained of this variety of sebum, and I believe she's said it's genetic. All I remember off-hand is that she oils her scalp to help break it up.
It could be an omega oil deficiency, it can be hormonal, or it could be genetic. I get this from my mother so it's clearly genetic in my case. Oiling the scalp about 2 hours before wash helps as "like dissolves like" and sebum is a wax thus hydrophobic like oils. Scritching gently helps too when it gets really bad. A diluted ACV rinse on the scalp after wash helps too. I do not put conditioner on my scalp.

I can't use sulfates so I'm not sure how whose would affect it but when I use a sulfate-free shampoo I dilute in and use half the liquid to massage it into the scalp, then rinse off and repeat (lather, rise repeat) and that has helped too. This is always after oiling.

marioma
February 20th, 2012, 03:16 PM
see a dermatologist ! it may be a medical condition .

heidi w.
February 20th, 2012, 05:14 PM
IF you have a scalp skin issue, be really, really wary of applying topical anything to the scalp skin as it's possible it could blow up in your face.

It's remotely possible that you may have a scalp skin condition that is undiagnosed. For example, it took some time for me to get a Dermatologist to realize that I have Seborheic Dermatitus, which is a condition of over-productive sebaceous glands. It begins with a red bump that eventually fills with sebum and itches, eventually breaking open from the scratching (which is very hard to avoid -- it's highly itchy) Enough itching, it breaks open and weeps clear fluid, and not infrequently actual blood. It turns out that this is a rather serious condition not wholly unrelated to Dandruff, I have learned.

I have learned to never apply conditioner to my scalp skin hair.

I never oil my scalp skin hair.

I always wash my hair comb each time I wash my hair. This includes a bit of scrubbing the comb to remove dirt, grime, sebum.

I fairly frequently wash my pillowcase, too.

Know that allowing your hair to go with non-hairwashing for much longer than a week is generally a bad idea. The goal is to maintain the health of the Acid Mantle, a combination of sweat and sebum and a thin film of protection on the scalp skin. This is necessary for clean skin. Hair washing, to me, is more of a hygienic practice as it concerns scalp skin, not so much the hair per se.

All sebum can ball up as it is a waxy ester. It is not "oil" really.

I recommend you read up on Acid Mantle and learn the basics of how this works, and its dovetailing with pH balancing. All shampoo and conditioner tends to upset the Acid Mantle as they tend to leave the scalp skin in a more "alkali" state, and needs a little tweak toward the acidic end of the pH scale, to achieve "neutrality" a pH of approximately 6.8 on a pH scale.

I would say that if you wash around twice a week, all would be fine. I'm unclear why you might need to wash every day. You might benefit from low- to no-poo shampoos, essentially shampoos with low to no sulfates, which are available from Devashan Salon online. The purveyor is Lorraine Massey, if I recall accurately, who has super curly coils. She authored the book Curly Girl, and is big on the hairdressing scene in training stylists regarding the care and management of curly hair.


http://www.devachansalon.com/about/staff
this is about the staff, but you can find PRODUCTS on this too. Just click elsewhere for products.

heidi w.