Gave it about a year and a half before I gave up on it. It did help with my cystic acne but the entire time I was red. Tomato red. I was probably 3-4 shades darker in the face vs my neck due to the redness. I tried to cut down to twice a week, still red. Buffered it by applying after moisturizer, no change. Waited an hour after washing before applying, still the same. I had no problems with flaking and peeling after the first few weeks. Nothing a washcloth couldn't remedy. It's the dark redness that I could not handle, the colouring of a chronic drunk. People with very sensitive and thin skin might not find this wonder cream that wondrous after all.
I got a prescription for this acne cream from my normal pediatrician (I am 16) in the highest dosage, along with a gel for the morning. She recommended I start using every night, but if it is too strong, do every other night. Being a self-conscious teen I wanted my acne gone right away so I used it every night. The first week was the worst week of my entire life, my skin burned, peeled and felt the worst it has every felt BUT since then I have noticed great leaps in my skin. Many old scars are gone and my acne overall have gotten much more under control. I live in Minnesota and during the winter, it gets extremely dry and cold and it doesn't help how retin A already makes my skin peel. My skin is a struggle to keep moisturized and exfoliated but as soon as it warms up this problem is gone. Another thing I notice it that retin A will not prevent or help my stress breakouts what so ever.
Overall, I really really like retin A, it cleared up my skin quickly and nicely. Its side effects are a pain in the butt to deal with but I get lots of compliments on my skin now and definitely feel better about it. I have had friends try this product and have the complete opposite affect so it really depends on the person.
This stuff made my face bleed! I tried using it every other night, every 3 nights, etc....but my face looked like it had been burned. It was so painful. Went back to dermatologist and got switched to Adapalene and its working wonders and not pain like Retin A did.
It has been a few days since I have been using a proper tretinoin (Airol 0.05 cream) but I had been using some other daily retinoids before for quite some time (BabyFace 0.02 tretinoin / 4% hydroquinone in alcohol) and before that, BASF RetiStar 1% in a cream base. In total, I have been using retinoids / retinols for about 4 months. I put them on at night before other moisturizers.
The first thing I noticed when I applied Airol was how non-burning it was. Transitioning from using something with alcohol to using something alcohol-free was well worth the price. I paid $12 for a 20gm tube of Airol (a Greek brand) including shipping. I did not peel, I did not flake as I did when I started BabyFace, which is intended to be a peel.
Ever since beginning retinols and retinoids, I noticed that a wrinkle in the side of my nose, as well as a laugh line, nasolabial fold has disappeared. My pimples have "flattened" and become less red, although I still get them, when I made the leap from retinol to tretinoin. They are like pyramids without the capstone.
My pores first got big and weird, and the skin on my forehead began to grey out and get a coarse texture. I was afraid but persisted through the "dark night". Eventually the coarse skin went away especially when I did salicylic acid. Although I don't have pure "baby skin" since I didn't peel in sheets, tretinoin has "calmed down" my skin a lot and I feel that I now have more of a clean slate.
I am 67 and been using retin a since I was 47. Back than I had noticed a couple of wrinkles on my face so my dermatologist prescribed retin a . I used it for a couple of months and the wrinkles actually disappeared. I have been using it occasionally ever since when I remember to apply it and have really smooth skin. I have noticed a few fine lines around my mouth so I am again going to Start applying it more frequently now to stop or hopefully get rid of those lines. My only problem with it is when I start using it more frequently I start breaking out and have to get past all the blind pimples surfacing. It does work ,I see other people my age and there skin looks like wrinkled leather. I have med skin and never used sunscreen and for years used sun reflectors to get a tan ,but because of retin a my skin looks great.
I used the lowest strength retin-a for 7 months. I had a very bad reaction to it at first and later my skin kind of got used to it. Then i suddenly realized that my skin was worse before I started. My face looked like it was made of wax, it was 10 shades lighter then my neck, and my skin was very thin, and less plump. I had no acne problem prior to starting this, just had very slight laugh lines. Now I have deep laugh lines, forehead wrinkles and my cheeks look saggy. Before I started using this God Forsaken cream I used to look much younger. I often got confused for a high school student, now I look 10-15 years older then my age. My eyes also look sunken in, and have very visible under eye bags. I did not use this cream under my eyes ever, by the way. I deeply regret using retin-A, I am very depressed about how my skin looks, to the point of being suicidal sometimes. It has destroyed my self confidence. I have been off it for 3 months and there has been no improvement. I'm afraid the damage it's done to my skin is irreversible. If anyone has gone through this and their skin improved, please send me a message and let me know what you did and how long it took for your skin to recover.
This product saved my skin after 10 years of battling with acne. Just wrote a review of this on my blog - http://bellabae.net/2014/11/28/finally-how-i-cured-my-acne/
This is an amazing product for acne and hyperpigmentation; I started using Retin-A 0.05% one year ago. I now use Retin-A micro 0.04% and feel that it is better suited for my skin. A lot of the excessive irritation that many write about in their reviews, can easily be avoided by using the correct amount of product, and by keeping with a simple skincare routine. I use Cerave's Foaming Cleanser to cleanse my skin and I wait 30 minutes prior to applying the Retin-A Micro. I use less than a pea and that covers my entire face. I take less than a pea and place one dot of the product on each cheek, my forehead, chin and nose. I then lightly spread the product around each area of my face. I found that applying the product this way significantly reduced the dryness that I had for the short amount of time that I had the dryness. I then apply Cerave's moisturizing cream 30 minutes later.
In the daytime I use the same Cerave cleanser and I use the ZO Skin Health Daily Power Defence and the ZO Skin Oclipse SPF 30. I also use the Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Original Peel once a week during the nighttime and I have never had any sort of irritation. I don't use tretinoin on the night that I use the peel. I also did not peel while using Retin-A at all. For the first two weeks of using tretinoin, I had a little bit of dryness in the morning, but this is normal and goes away after your skin gets accustomed to the product.
I decided to write this review because I see a lot of negative reviews that might hinder someone from using this product and everyone's skin is different. If you are not watching how someone applies the product, nor what they use before during and after use, you cannot take their negative reviews seriously. Something else could be affecting their skin that they nor you know about. Unless you are allergic to the product, which your dermatologist would find out prior to use, you will not get any swelling on your face. It should also not take a year for your skin to get used to the product - especially if you are using this product under a dermatologist's guidance. Of course, if you stop using the product, especially before your skin becomes accustomed to it, your skin is going to revert back to the way it was before you started using it. This is a product that almost every dermatologist/ physician recommends to their patient (including celebrities). The before and after photos speak for themselves. If you ever wonder why someone's skin is amazing even when their in their in their 60s and up, it's definitely because of Tretinoin, peels, and a simple skincare routine.
Been using this regularly for 20 years. 2 to 3 times a week.
I swear by it.
Can't live without it.
Clears up skin, but not any better than other topical products. Even the pea sized amount causes swelling that looks like minimal weight gain. Makes skin peel. And the peeling never goes away, that is how the product works, by peeling the skin. My skin peels every day/every other day, and I've been using it for years. May prevent future photo aging. Overall, improved my skin. I mean, my skin looks great, except for the minor swelling that is always there.
However, do not stop using this product - and I do mean...EVER - it will be worse than before you started it. My dermatologist told me that after years of use, the skin gets used to Retin-A/tretinoin. It gets 'lazy' in effect. I took off for a about a month & it was a disaster. My skin was was rough, dull, hard & dry...like it had lost it's ability to naturally exfoliate itself. And my acne was worse than before I had ever started on it. While I had mild acne before, my acne was much worse after using this product for a few years, and then stopping it. My skin never looked like that before I started on Retin-A. I also never had hardness or dullness, or skin that was 'lazy' in exfoliating itself.
I asked my dermatologist why she never warned me that if I stop using it, this may happen, and she just shrugged and said "it's not something most patients worry about". Now I'm stuck using it, whether I want to or not. Guess I'm OK with this though, since my skin looks so good. But, I'll never know if my skin would have just cleared up on it's own had I given it enough time, or just used something less severe.