Considerably reduced the whiteheads in my T-zone but left my skin reddish, blotchy and very dry after a few weeks. Too bad as it made my face look fresh and younger looking at first. Even tried skipping a day with no better results. Harsh in Canadian winter even for my oily skin. Mine was .04% retinol and my insurance covered it. However, after reading other posts on this site, I'll give it another shot. I want to look young and be whiteheads-free for once in my life. It would be a miracle if this happened.
An alternative I've found while off RAM are honey masks. I've been trying this twice daily in the last two weeks and whiteheads are almost gone but not the wrinkles. Honey makes your skin marvellously soft and non greasy.
Edit Oct. 23, 2014: Thanks to some of your tips, I've been reusing RAM but only after my skin is done flaking from the previous application, which is 2-3 days. My skin already looks more luminous and fresh. I use a very hydrating face cream the day after to avoid the dry feel on my skin as well as reduce the flakiness.
I'd been using Neutrogena healthy skin night cream and Dennis Gross alpha beta pads for years, but finally decided it was time to step up my anti-aging efforts. Thankfully, I don't have major skin problems or wrinkles. Just want to keep my skin looking good. I avoided retin-a cream due to acne triggering ingredients, and instead opted for the micro formulation. Some points about the micro:
1) It can be used right after cleansing with no need to wait;
2) Do not buffer it with any other creams as that will render the product ineffective;
3) Do not apply anything over it if possible;
4) Remember to wear sunscreen and/or stay out of the sun
5) Be nice to your face. Use a gentle cleanser and don't scrub it.
I started off with the 0.04% strength, using just less than a pea-sized amount (less is best!) every 2 days. On off days, I applied a small amount of cerave at night to help with minor flakes that went away within a week. After 2 months, I added 2% bha on the off-mornings, while still keeping RAM application to every 2 days (no need to change frequency). So far it has been ~6 months and my skin looks great. I don't get flakes or peeling, but once in a while my face can feel a little dry and tight. Those days I skip the RAM and just apply cerave. So does it work? Well, I regularly get told how great my skin is and how even and natural my face looks (psssst....I normally go bare faced!)
I just start using it last May 20 so I'm still experiencing breakouts so I'm just gonna use it for 8 weeks since that was my dr said and so scared about all the breakouts I'm 40 yrs old and scred that I'm might have more acne.. If somebody could advice me with this product I'll appreciate it. I was prescribe to use it 2x a day. Need help and advice Thanks a lot
In my teens, i had horrible oily skin, large pores, whiteheads, always had at least 2 or 3 cystics pimples, and acne scars. I was so self conscious of my skin that I never socialized with anyone nor did I join any high school activites or sports, it was that bad. I discovered retin-a and chemical peels at a dermatologist visit back in 2003. I did strong peels once a month and used the retina-a nightly religiously. After a year passed and I stopped getting chemical peels, my skin has never been better although not perfect. Im now 26 years old and still use retina-a to upkeep my skin, i only use it twice a week though because I do have to admit, it makes your skin very thin and sensitive. I was first prescribed the cream years ago but something in that made my face greasy, so the micro gel works the best for me. I can tell i will not have any wrinkles as well anytime soon because of the retin-a, my skin is super smooth. Just a note: never wax any part of your face if on retin-a, parts of your skin WILL rip off! And when applying retin-a at night, make sure your skin is completely dry and use a pea sized amount, pat it onto your skin DO NOT rub it in. Also, your skin will become dry so use a nourishing moisturizer even if you have oily skin. Trust me, those little tips make a huge difference in preventing irritation.
My experience seems to be the same as many others - Used this product years ago and could NOT stick with it. It was unbearable. I know, however, that if you can make this stuff work for you, it will produce benefits that no other product can. So I've begun using it once again, differently than before. I used to use it for one night then wait until the severe burning, redness and peeling died down to use it again, which ended up being once a week usage. I wasn't able to use it consistently enough to see real results. My skin just couldn't handle it. I should mention two important points - I have incredibly sensitive skin that reacts in a huge way to seemingly anything, and my goal in using this product is to decrease pigmentation/acne scarring, decrease breakouts/clogged pores, and smooth out my skin texture. Other info: I'm a 28 year old female, I'm using the .04% strength, my skin is very oily but still gets flaky really easily.
Here is what I'm doing: Every day during a span of time that I'm home alone and it's ok to be makeupless I wash my face and WAIT 30 minutes. I then apply a pea-sized amount (in actuality it's probably half that) to my whole face - dot it all around then smooth it out. I do not apply any more under any circumstance. In the beginning, I left it on for 1-2 hours. Sure enough I had peeling so I knew that was an appropriate amount of time to start with. After a few days of this, I increased to 2-3 hours. I'm currently using it for 3-4 hours, and I've been using it now for 3 weeks. I did try 5 hours one day and ended up with a chemical type burn, very painful. So I stopped for a few days. Even at this duration, I sometimes will skip a day or two here and there to let the reaction calm down. I must say tho, this is much more manageable doing it this way. I also use Paula's Choice BHA, ProActiv Glycolic Toner, and ProActiv Benzoyl Peroxide lotion every day (one layered over the other, at night/under makeup - Never in combo with the Retin A Micro). I exfoliate with a baby face cloth or the ProActiv cleanser, and I moisturize with a Paula's Choice gel moisturizer. Some days my makeup goes on ok, and some days it doesn't. But I'm willing to stick it out. If I have an important event and really want to make sure my makeup looks good, I will make sure to skip at least the day before so that I can minimize flaking as much as possible. Usually the day of is ok as long as the peeling is under control that day (peeling is usually delayed by a day or two).
What I'm noticing after 3 weeks, currently in week 4: My skin texture is becoming smoother.
I'm determined to keep using this so I can see full results. I will update in a few weeks or sooner if I notice any bigger changes.
Update: It's been one month, currently using it almost every day for about 4 hours each time, give or take a half hour. Today I used it for 5 hours. My skin looks the best it has looked in a long time. Old hyperpigmentation is fading. Texture is smoother and skin seems to be peeling less (although may take that comment back tomorrow haha). No active breakouts.
Update #2: It's now been just about 6 weeks. I'm noticing that my skin is thinning and I have to be more careful with it now. I can use the retin a micro for up to 8 hours at a time, with no crazy burning/major redness, just very dry peeling/flaky skin. For some reason it seems to depend on the day how well my skin will tolerate it/how much dryness and how long it lasts. My skin doesn't look as good as it did two weeks ago - my skin can literally look fairly good one day and pretty awful the next (blotchy, red, uneven, broken out) - For me it pretty much all depends on my hormones. That said, overall there is a *definite* improvement. I'm currently using it every second or third night (it's tough to use it more because I want my skin to look good in makeup...). I'm going to start every second night religiously and I'll update. It was a bit easier to use it daily for a shorter amount of time but I know the duration is important as this topical is time-released... To get the full benefit, you need to use it for more than a few hours. It's been a great way to ease into it tho and I don't think I could have done it otherwise! One thing I find is helping is to spray my face lightly after I've set my makeup with powder with a hydrating spray - The one I'm currently using is by Earth Science. I don't think it really matters what you use as long as it doesn't irritate your skin. It helps disguise the peeling. Some days it looks pretty great, other days it's quite noticeable. Random observance: My skin seems to feel more firm. Will update in a couple weeks. :)
Update #3: It's been 2 full months. I took a week off when I was away on vacation because I didn't want my skin to look peely. 2-3 days after stopping, my skin looked pretty great. Makeup was a pleasure to apply and much quicker bc I wasn't spending my time carefully concealing. I'm back to using it - the first time I used it since the week break I peeled big time and waited three full nights in between use again. The second time was less severe, more manageable. I'm due to use it again tonight, so I'm back to every second night (if/when possible, I decide the night of if my skin's ready). Spots where I had a blemish and it peeled are leaving large red marks that gradually fade. Life cycle of blemishes is greatly reduced. Still few breakouts in comparison to when I wasn't using this product.
Will update in a month.
I have suffered with acne since my early teens and Retin-A is one of the only products that has worked for me. It's not a quick fix and took over a month to show results, but over time it has really controlled my breakouts and helped to clear my skin. I started out using .04% a few times a week, but now my skin is no longer sensitive to the medication and I use it every night. Occasionally, I get a few dry spots but I put moisturizer on the dry area and have no further issues. It's been a lifesaver for me and really transformed my "problem skin' into 'great skin". I recommended Retin-A to a friend of mine who has cystic acne and it dramatically changed her skin as well after a few month. It's definitely worth a try!
I like this incredible well! It has transformed my skin!
This is the best skincare product I have ever used in my life, hands down.
I've had acne since I was a teenager (along with rosacea, but that's a separate issue), and nothing I ever tried REALLY stopped it. Not only did I have the horrible pimples popping up ALL the time, but on top of that, they left PIH marks on my very delicate skin, making it look like I'm constantly in the middle of a breakout all over my cheeks.
I tried just about everything, and while some things were slightly more effective than others, none REALLY fixed my skin...until I finally got on Retin A Micro.
Prior to this, I did try regular Retin A (cream), but an ingredient in it caused me to break out. Still, I was having some good effects from the Retin A, so I decided to look into the Micro instead, and I'm SO glad I did.
I never experienced any sort of break in period with this, where my pimples got worse than before. They just...over time...vanished. I'm now in my third month of using this, and I don't have a single pimple on my face. Not ONE. Not only am I breakout free, but my pores are looking much smaller due to the fast turnover rate of my skin...and my undereye circles are less noticeable because the Retin A Micro is causing my skin to thicken and produce collagen (I do use eye cream before I apply, though, and let it dry for 30 minutes before applying the Retin A).
The only issue I've really had with it is that it can be VERY drying...but I'm using the .1%, which is the highest Retin A Micro goes. In order to deal with the flaking, I've started to put moisturizer on top of the Retin A Micro, about 30-40 minutes after. I also alternate nights with a glycolic acid creme, but I don't recommend this when you're beginning to use Tretinoin, because your skin is much thinner and more sensitive in the beginning. After a few months, you can try to patch test it to see if you skin can handle it. But for my skin, the combination works really well to keep me from getting too flaky.
I order this from http://www.inhousepharmacy.biz/ , where (as of my writing this review) you can buy three 20 gm tubes of Retin A Micro for $113...for reference, one 20 gm tube lasts me around five months, so that is over a years supply. If you break that down by month, it's not even 8 dollars a month for this miracle product...definitely worth it!
I HIGHLY recommend trying this product...I usually consider my skin extremely sensitive, but even I can make it work with little to no hassle. And when you try it, do try it for at least 12 weeks, to give it a fair shot. It takes a while to work it's magic, but it's SO worth it.
I have finally found my miracle cream! I highly recommend anyone with severe acne try this. I am a 24 year old female and have always had acne prone skin. I have experimented with many different products and nothing seemed to work. My acne became more severe when I turned 21 and that's when I began to get desperate. After numerous trips to the aestheticism, my doctor, and the dermatologist nothing was working I was starting to loose hope. My roommate then told me about RAM and insisted I try it. After about 4 weeks of horrible breakouts I began to see clearer skin. I am now in week 8 of using this and I haven't had a single breakout in 2 weeks.
I wash my face every night with my clarisonic and aveeno face wash. Then ill use CeravePM immediately after washing. I then wait about 15 minutes for the lotion to absorb and apply a very thin layer to my entire face. Once the RAM has dried I use a heavier lotion like Burt's Bees intense moisturizer. My face is a little dry when I wake up but nothing a little lotion doesn't take care of.
I order my retina a micro 0.1% from inhousepharmacy.biz and only pay $40 for a 20g tube. This cream has changed my life. Highly recommended!
I've struggled with mild acne since I was 16. A couple of years ago (in my early 20s) I went to the dermatologist who prescribed me Retina-A-Micro - my skin seriously has not been the same since.
First of all - I should point out that I'm also on birth control (which I think you have to be if you're female and using this product ...) which has greatly helped my skin (as most of my acne was hormonal) as well as Clindoxyl. However, I have noticed that since adding Retina-A-Micro to my routine about a year ago - the texture of my skin has changed immensely.
I gotta start out with the fact that I really didn't follow the doctor's instructions as to how to use the cream - I know you're supposed to apply all over your face ... but I cheated and only really applied to affected area. So basically my T-Zone. Since I also don't get acne on my forehead - I never really tried this up there either. I do however stick it right between my eyebrows when I get the occasional pimple.
What I've discovered is: yes, this cream dries out your skin tremendously. So to counter balance that - I've started using some pretty heavy duty moisturizers. I now use the Korres Wild Roses 24h Brightening cream for the day & a combination of the Origins Night-A-Min & Origins Drink It Up Intense Overnight Mask (2 nights a week or over spots where I'm extra dry) for the night & Hydraluron Moisture Booster from Indeed labs underneath during the winter anddddd my skin has never been happier.
I've found that my acne is not as severe as it used to be - spots (especially when I zap them at night with Retina-A) tend to go away in (sometimes) hours or 1/2 days. I don't get those deep spots that hurt like hell anymore. Old spots as well do not scar the way they used to & dark spots go away within a week. I do find however that at the end of the day - if I rub areas where I have been using the Retina-A cream (chin, inner cheeks near nose) .. concealer & dried skin comes off (usually during the winter - not really during the summer).
Regardless of the above - my skin has never looked brighter & better - so lovveeee it!!!