I am using Retin-A Micro .04% for moderately severe acne (cystic) and I love it! I used it along time ago, but I gave up on it when it irritated my skin. This time, I gave it a chance and made it through the initial irritation stage, and my skin is looking fantastic. I get 1-2 tiny little bumps around that time of the month and that's it. They go away within a day, and the spots left over disappear within a matter of a week or so. Compared to my previous problems, in which I had cysts, scarring, etc., I can handle a few small spots. My derm says that with continued use, I could very well be free of any pimples. My skin texture and tone are also lovely now-I don't need to wear makeup anymore, save for some concealer under my eyes and teh basics (blush, mascara, and a little mineral-based translucent powder on the t-zone). The very small line I had between my eyes is nearly gone, and the few tiny expression lines on my forehead are markedly decreased. This stuff is fabulous. Derm might increase my retin-A to a higher concentration for even better results--we'll see. Highly recommend, but wear a good sunscreen!!
I was first introduced to Retin-A as an ingredient in Neutrogena's "Fine Fairness" line (probably only available in Asia) almost 10 years ago. I didn't know what Retin-A was then, but I remember being quite amazed at how smooth my skin became. But I was not disciplined about sunscreen, and acne took over my life and I had to start using stuff that was specifically targeted at controlling acne. Then a friend properly introduced me to Retin-A, which was prescribed to her for her acne. I tried it and it worked for awhile, but then I'd get breakouts from it (now I know it's because I used Retin-A CREAM) so I stopped. So older and wiser now, and having finally gotten my acne under control (no huge puss-filled pimple in almost 6 months! Woo hoo!), I've turned to Retin-A GEL to help fade the scars (which lingers close to forever). I'm not sure if it's working because have only used it for about 2 weeks, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed!
I've been using Retin A since 1997. I was 24 at the time and never quite cleared up and finally asked my doctor for something. I used it over clindamycin liquid nightly, and did not have the major outbreak that some report, my skin just gradually cleared up. It did hurt like mad, and my skin was very chapped for awhile. I have used it off and on over the past 10 years & have no real complaints. It has always caused a cystic breakout on my chin, so when I use it I avoid the area.
My favorite way to use it is as a mini-peel. I put it on a couple times a day until it gives me a minor chemical "burn" and then taper off. After the peeling stops and the redness vanishes what is left looks damn good. My routine is more varied than when I began, I use it under or over other products, except forthe clindamycin, which stopped working long ago...
I am 56 and have been using Retin-A since the middle '80's. Originally used to fight acne that returned with a vengance in my 30's. Initially Retin-A caused made my skin red, irritated, and itchy---to the point I almost quit--- but I noticed my pores started to become less noticable and in 2-3 months my acne did go away. At this time, I also began the habit of staying out of the sun and applying SPF 15-30 sunscreen every single day. In my 40's I paired Retin-A ( 2-3 X week) application with perscription strength Lac-Hydrin-12% @ night and started to get compliments on my skin with people often guessing I was still in my 30's--- ( Oh yeah, and hair dye helps too!.) I continue to use Retin-A in my 50's, but with hormone changes ( think, pimples on fine wrinkles!)I only use it every 2-3 months to maintain a clear skin.
I started using tretonin .025% about 6 or so years ago because my friend told me it would help fight wrinkles. I prefer not to give my age, but I can tell you that people think my younger sister is older than I am.
I am quite certain the retin A is to thank for my good skin as I am a ppp who smoked for many years & spent up to the age of 21 baking in the sun (didn't know any better). Then I used what are basically unstable sunscreens after that point until I found mua 2+ years ago.
I eat a really good diet and get regular exercise, but that alone wouldn't be making the difference I can see between my face and those of my friends.
I've been using Retin-A since age 12 (I'm now 27). It is truly a miracle for those with severe cystic acne. I found this out the hard way recently when I decided to stop using it because I thought my skin had gotten drier and that my acne would go away with using the Alpha Hydrox 12% AHA souffle instead. BAD DECISION. Suddenly within a week or two I remembered how life was before I started using this. My skin was an oil slick, I was breaking out all over my face and had about six cysts on my chin,my pores were huge and disgusting, and I generally looked and felt like crap. Obtained a .05% tube from my mom and within three days the pimples were gone, even though I'd been off of Retin-A (I used .025% previously) for six weeks. Yes, my skin is scaly and peeling as it becomes accustomed to the medicine again, but it is also smooth and pimple-free, and my pores are once again TINY. I'll probably go back to using the lower percentage eventually, but I was desperate to get my good skin back! This is, BY FAR, the only reason I have ever had good skin and I will NEVER stop using it again. I have to use nothing but Cetaphil products on my face while using it, but that's fine by me. It is expensive but my whole family who use it resort to buying it elsewhere.... because being older than 22, my insurance won't cover it.
I've been using Retin-A ever since i had my first major breakout. Initially, i didn't like it as i found it rather oily & gave my face an oily sheen (i already have combination-oily skin to start with). Yikes! Then my dermatologist recommended that i use this all over my face only @ night & to use it on problem spots during the day. My complexion cleared within 2 weeks (i had mild acne) & it's been clear since then. Great product that's affordable too!
retin-a has been a god send to me. when you have acne, you always worry when one little pimple will become twenty. this little tube has kept me clear for about three months now and i regretted not trying this out sooner. i am on the lowest dosage 0.025% and have not dealt with any irratations of any kind. the only thing i really miss is that i can not longer do my monthly microderms and glycolic peels but in regards the the reviewers'post below, i may try to use this twice a week as well. this is a wonderful thing.
I've been using Retin-A for 2 years now. I have combination oily skin with a dark tan complexion. Like everyone else, the 1st 6 weeks it got worse, but after that 6 weeks, it was uphill from there. My cystic acne went away, my skin evened out and was so clear, I didn't have to worry about covering my pimples anymore. When a breakout would occur, I'd simply apply Retin-A at night and in the morning it was 90% gone. This stuff is amazing and even wonderful because it smooths out your wrinkles since it is constantly removing the dead skin cells from your face. My face is so smooth! I'm 34 and no one ever guesses my age right. I usually get guessed as being 25!
What also helps is getting microdermabrasion once a month to get rid of the dark discoloration acne leaves behind on my skin. My esthetician recommends I use Retin-A all over my face at least twice a week to combat against acne and wrinkles! I get microderm done once a month and it's kept my complexion gorgeous and soft! I love Retin-A and would never do without!
I started this because I developed acne (at age 43) that wouldn't go away. No over the counter meds could touch it. My Plastic surgeon prescribed this and my acne cleared up almost immediately. I didn't have a terrible time with dry, peeling skin since I am SOOO oily. I did have some but it was manageable. Recently I have been receiving compliments on my skin...A lady walked up to me the other day and said my skin was beautiful...I don't think I've ever heard that compliment before! AND, I've only been using retin a about 2 months now! So far I like it and will continue using it!!!