Retin A


533 reviews

82% would repurchase

Package Quality: 3.7

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 3.7

Price: $$$


Retin A Cream Each g of cream contains: tretinoin 0.01%, 0.025%, 0.05% or 0.1% in a bland, hydrophilic base. Nonmedicinal ingredients: butylated hydroxytoluene, isopropyl myristate, polyoxyl (40) stearate, purified water, sorbic acid, stearic acid, stearyl alcohol and xanthan gum. Retin A Gel Each g of gel contains: tretinoin 0.01% or 0.025%. Nonmedicinal ingredients: butylated hydroxytoluene, ethanol undenatured and hydroxypropyl cellulose. Retin-A Liquid (0.05% Tretinoin w/w) polyethylene glycol 400, butylated hydroxytoluene and alcohol (denatured with tert-butyl alcohol and brucine sulfate) 55%

on 1/23/2012 12:01:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Dry, Tan, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

How to use: Use this on a clean face after you have exfoliated. Wait at least an hour before applying any other facial product such as lotions or makeup so that the ingredients have time to sink into your face.
Tip1: Do not go directly into the sun while using this product especially tanning beds because your face will burn and peel.
Tip2: This product will dry your skin out for the first 2 weeks of usage.
Tip3: Be consistant with the use or it will be ineffective.
Usage: This product is not a spot treatment for acne, it will attempt to clean and purify infected pores but it will not automatically fix sever cystic acne, it is more geared for long term use.
Usage: In the long run if used as directed everyday this product will make your pores smaller, skin smoother, and it will prevent and smooth out wrinkles.

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

on 1/21/2012 11:50:00 AM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

I have been on Retin A for about a month now, and so far everything is dreamy and perfect!

I was really worried about the initial skin peeling and breakout that many MakeupAlley users have reported. BUT, I also have a very excellent, top-notch dermatologist on New York's upper east side who is a complete pro. I asked her about the peeling and initial purging and she said that this happens when people use Retin-A incorrectly, freaking out their skin by doing the following:

a) They use too much product
b) They use too strong a product
c) They use the product too often
d) They don't wait at least 20 minutes between washing/application.
e) They don't use enough regular moisturizer

She says she has many "tricks" she's developed over the years to ensure that Retin-A doesn't cause peeling or a huge initial purge. Here is what she has me doing:

a) I'm on .025%
b) I use a pea-sized amount. I squeeze the pea-sized amount onto my index finger, then touch all my fingertips so a tiny amount is on each finger, then gently dot my entire face -- keeping away from the eyes.
c) I use a simple moisturizer both day and night, as well as a 30+ SPF sunscreen during the day.
d) Only use at night, wash it off in the morning.

And rather than skip a night or two if my face feels too tight, she recommended more moisturizer.

She also has me on a Sodium Sulfacetamide wash which I use both in the morning and night.

My skin is clear, tight, and the red marks from old acne are really fading fast. I've been on Retin-A for a month now and have only had one tiny pimple on my cheek in an unusual spot. And of course, the red mark from that blemish is fading super fast now. I usually breakout around my period and while on this regimen, I did not breakout at all this month.

So far, I think Retin-A is pretty amazing and I look forward to waking up every morning and checking how clear and smooth my skin is. I will update again after six months, but I am truly amazed -- and hope many MUA users can take my derm's advice to have a smooth, breakout-free beginning to Retin-A usage. continued >>

61 out of 61 people found this review helpful.

on 1/10/2012 8:43:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Black, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I promised myself if there ever came a day where my skin was relatively clear the first thing I would do was go online and share my routine because I know how often I turned to forums and sites such as MUA for advice to clear myself of that wretched thing called acne. Thank God I've finally come to a point where I can say that my acne is so much better and no longer ravaging my face. Retin A was essential in the process. I was put on Retin A at night and Dalacin T during the day. When I first started putting it on my face at night my skin started to peal like crazy (I likened it to dandruff on the face) but at the same time I saw that new clearer skin was revealing itself after the old scarred skin shed. It was a long process that left my skin dry for nearly two months. I used cliniderm lotion to combat the dryness. But to be honest nothing really helped my skin just soaked it up and continued to peal. When I washed my face I could feel layers of old dead skin on my finger tips. I was told to stay on it until I was completely cleared. There finally came a day thank God that my skin no longer broke out. I was absolutely ecstatic with the results. The dermatologist recommend I use a light cleanser thats main purpose was to simply clean my skin and not clear my acne (that was the medications job) he recommended Spectro jel. I use that to wash my face day and night. It doesnt take off makeup well. So I decided to invest in a makeup remover. I use bioderma to clean my makeup first and then this cleanser afterwards and that does the job. If anyone is suffering from acne, the last part essential to my regime was drinking two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar (braggs with mother) in a large glass of water, morning and night. It cleanses the system. Also, I was put on antibiotics for six weeks it was called erythromycin. I did two courses. I hope this helps someone suffering from bad breakouts.. I know how hurtful they can be physically and mentally.

9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

on 12/26/2011 9:31:00 PM

Age: 56 & Over

Skin: Dry, Other, Not Sure

Hair: Red, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I used Retin A in my forties and liked the way it evened out my skintone. After awhile, I stopped using it for a number of years. At sixty-three, my wrinkles had started becoming more pronounced although I've always had pretty good skin. So, I decided to try Retin A again. In three short weeks of four times a week at nights, I've already noticed a BIG difference and so have others. "Your skin looks wonderful! Did you have something done?" a friend remarked. No, it wasn't catty. She just wanted to know so she could follow suit.

During this time, I also gave myself a weekly glycolic acid treatment (after stopping Retin A for two days). Murad makes an excellent product.

The combination of Retin A and occasional glycolic acid has made a really remarkable transformation in a short period of time. Follow up with a good night time moisturizer. I still recommend Nivea Visage Co Q-10 products which are more difficult to find but available online and less expensive than the other Biersdorf line - La Prairie - which is very pricey. It's not necessary unless you like throwing money away.

Nobody believes I am my age, and most of the time, I hear "OMG - you look like you're in your forties!". Well, you can look like your forties to. Don't stop caring about your appearance. You're only as old as you feel, and when you look your best, you'll feel younger. I promise.;-)

51 out of 51 people found this review helpful.

on 12/25/2011 10:53:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Acne-prone, Olive, Not Sure

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

I have been using the 0.05 % Retin A cream for just over 8 weeks. I absolutely love it! My skin has never looked so good. I have hormonal cystic acne that I have never found a solution for...until now! I used to get huge painful ance cysts every month before and during my cycle that would stay for weeks and leave a scar when they finally did go away:( Anyway, I have tried everything under the sun and nothing ever helped. Retin A has been a miracle for me. I haven't experienced any terrible side effects, just some peeling and a few tiny zits here and there. I just use a wash cloth for the peeling and moisturize well every day. My skin is soft,clear and luminous! I'm so thrilled with this product! Give it a try!

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

on 11/22/2011 12:38:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Very Oily, Fair, Warm

Hair: Black, Straight, Medium

Eyes: Hazel

i've been using retin-a for almost a month now. i've been experiencing mixed feelings within that period and as of now i's still confused. but it's still way too early to conclude anything with it so i will update weekly/monthly to help others regarding its effects. btw i started with .025% cream-based. i'm so thankful and amazed it's not a prescription drug here in my country. and i'm 100% sure mine's authentic 'cause i bought it from the most reputable pharmacy here. 5g costs US$5 and 20g costs US$15.

week 1- i experienced slight stinging/burning effects and very minimal peeling because i have very oily skin. after about 3-4 days my forehead and cheekbones were so smooth i don't know maybe becausemy skin's still adjusting. i was very happy then.

week 2- still stings but milder, redness increased and my skin looked so thinned after washing maybe because i use this nightly without skipping and i also use glycolic/salicylic exfoliant cream by day. actually i'm a bit alarmed with the thinned look. and by this period i significantly noticed my smooth forehead became leathery/wrinkly and my pores became prominent that i almost stopped usage. thank goodness i've read some reviews and i believe this is included in the "ugly stage" thing everyone's talking about. others said (from other sites - yes i've read almost all sites regarding retin-a) their enlarged pores and wrinkled skin from using retin-a subsided after about 2 months of using (sigh.. i'm so relieved).

week 3- no sting and less red. i've upped to 0.05% alternating with 0.025% nightly. thinned skin normalized but enlarged pores are still there. my skin's elasticity significantly increased ( i have scar on my laugh line that's causing to disrupt my mouth from opening wide when eating), now i can eat without my scar interrupting.

week 4 onwards - my depressed scars from acne are li'l bit less prominent but because of STILL enlarged pores it accentuates it. LOL. i hope i'm not confusing you. what i mean with this is that if the enlarged pores were normalized my scars will be less prominent than before using retin-a. i find that my face is less red if i'm not trying to massage the cream onto my skin, instead i just apply it like buffing. i believe massaging/rubbing the cream irritates my skin causing these pores to accentuate.

i'm really hoping these enlarged pores will subside in succeeding weeks/months of use. one thing i almost forgot, it significantly faded my post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation from injury about 70% already (because the stain's quite new). i will update as often as i can.

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

on 11/12/2011 7:14:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Medium Brown, Warm

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Black

I was prescribed this by my dermatologist a few months before my wedding cuz I had acne prone skin with a couple of bumps here and there on my face. I was asked to use this every night and wear sunscreen in the daytime cuz it it a photoreactive compound. I did everything that he skin cleared up slowly over 2 months...I don't know if it compares to the NORMAL tym it takes for skin to heal...and since he also gave me an antibiotic to take every morning, I thought that was t reason for no new acne forming. Around 2 months into t treatment, I was out in the sun...doing some wedding purchases,...and I felt my skin was burning! I got home soon only to see my face was BURNT esp in the areas I had applied more Retin-A!!! Maybe I am just one of those super sensitive people...but I HAD A WEDDING COMING UP and I actually had to stop using that and I used a whole lot of home remedies and makeup to fix my face before D-day. Being a chemical burn, it took me around a year for my skin to renew itself..I still have a light scar but nobody can notice it till I point it out. I wouldn't repurchase...not even for its anti-ageing benefits!

on 11/7/2011 11:05:00 AM

Age: 36-43

Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Started using Retin A Micro .04% 5 weeks ago, applying it every night at least a half hour after washing my face. I had mild acne which was brought on mostly by stress I believe. It did exactly what the Dr. and all the reviews said it would. It made my whole face break out terribly!! It peeled and got red....there were little pus filled pimples EVERYWHERE!! It truly was a nightmare. I did stop using it for a few nights and I seriously cried at the thought of going to work with this face!! That was probably 3 weeks into it. I decided I had to stick with it because everyone said it will get worse before it gets better. At 4 weeks I began using the .1% (the derm gave me many samples of both .04% and .1%) that point I really turned a corner. It was a tough road no doubt but well worth it. It has been 5 weeks of use now and I have filled my prescription for the .1% RAM. It is AMAZING!! I believe I will use this product forever!! My skin is practically flawless and feels amazing. Not a bump anywhere!! I can honestly say I was going to quit because the breakout was unbelievably bad....totally embarrassing to go anywhere, but all the med is doing is pulling everything out of your pores and cleansing them. Once that is done it is smooth sailing and completely beautiful skin. It has taken away all of the tiny wrinkles I was getting and made my skin radiant. Stick with it and don't stop during the tough will get better!!

6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

on 11/3/2011 7:45:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Green

I have been on Retin A for about 10 months. I have been extremely patient this this product, hoping it would take away my stubburn acne that i have been battling with for four years. My Doctor said i will see results within three months and AMAZING results within six months, i've seen absolutely no changes in my skin, it's quite depressing because i had such high hopes for this product.

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

on 11/3/2011 5:53:00 PM

Age: 19-24

Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Warm

Hair: Black, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Brown

I have used this product religiously for the past 4 years. Yes this is a very harsh treatment. Not a lot of people I know could and would want to deal with the side effects. And though doctors tell you this is only temporary, this was not the case for me. So lets first talk about the good: it makes your skin incredibly smooth. The constant exfoliation will give you the clearest skin you have ever had. It will prevent your acne, smooth out your lines, remove unevenness. I've used it faithfully and I can tell you it works like no other treatment I've ever tried, including other retinoid products like tazorac, differin, etc... Now on to the bad. I experience persistent redness everywhere I put this treatment, which meant a demarcation like across my entire jawline. For the past 4 years my foundation has never matched my neck because my face would always have an extra red tint unless I caked my face with full coverage foundation everyday. Next is the peeling. Literally peeled every 2-3 days. And lastly the irritation. Everything you put on your skin would have to cater to sensitive skin. Because the skin you wore was always new skin. Now you might be saying oh well you put on too much, or you're using it wrong or you haven't gotten past the "retinization of the skin". I have researched all the rules: wait 20 mins out of the shower, dilute it with moisturizer, serum, whatever it may be, try to use is every week and build up tolerance. I have done the once a week application, I've done the wait 2 hours after washing your face application, you name a method I've done it. And after 4 years of patience, I've moved on to other things. If this works for you, lucky you. Unfortunately my skin cannot tolerate this and I sincerely regret putting my skin through it. Acne is such a horrible experience to go through and the fact that I stubbornly continued to use this product will tell you how desperate I was to get rid of it and never go through it again. If I have any advice for anyone dealing with acne it's that everybody's skin is different. Pay attention to how your treatment is effecting your skin and please be gentle with your skin. I have since moved on to other products and methods. Even though it takes more work to get the same results, it's worth it. You want clear and beautiful skin, not clear but peeling, red, irritated skin.

Edit: 4/30/2014
I did not think it was possible but at 22 my skin has become even more oily and acne prone than ever before. It's gotten to the point where all my lesions are hurting because they are so deep, and unresponsive to any skincare treatment what so ever, and I've already had several injected with cortisone by my dermatologist. In fact my first visit to the dermatologist in over a year ended with a conversation about isotretinoin(accutane). For the first time my dermatologist agreed that my skin was bad enough to go on it. I did the whole blood test thing, pregnancy tests, I've already been on bcp for over 2 years, and waited 30 days. Today is my second day on isotretinoin. Wish me luck...

9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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