It is easy to get discouraged with Retin A, because your skin will look worse before it gets better. Not only more breakouts, but redness, peeling, etc. YOu will be convinced that this is ruining your skin and want to throw in the towel. Then, if you make it to about week 6, you will get a new crop of zits, but hang in there. The results are soooo worth it. I am turning 50 this year and people are quite surprised. I know there are a few sensitive-skinned people who just can't tolerate this, my daughter was one of them who did the 6 week thing and gave up. Be sure to use a high SPF with this.
Oh my beloved Retin-A. I was on the .025% gel and had to go off recently since we're trying for another baby. It helped immensely with clogged pores and I didn't think it was helping much with fine lines and wrinkes...until I went off of it. It was making such a gradual improvement in my skin that I didn't notice the difference until I went off of it. One month later the forehead lines I had before are back. They were completely gone while I was on this stuff and I kind of forgot I had them! I can't wait to restart again in the future. It is great stuff for my skin! Just make sure to start slowly on any retinoid. I highly recommend Dr. Baumann's method of starting retinoids in her book, "The Skin Type Solution". The method varies depending on your skin type, but really helps you to use it with minimal to no irritation. I am a DSNW/OSNW according to the book, and I had no problems at all with it.
If you have problems with painful, cystic acne, and want to avoid scarring up your face - this is the stuff for you. Keep in mind you must see a dermatologist in order to get a prescription for it. I unfortunately never struggled too much with acne until a few years ago (28/29 yo). I finally went to a derm for help last fall and i was placed on minocycline and retin a micro. Since my insurance would not cover these products, I paid a pretty penny for them (especially the retin-a micro 0.04%)so also keep that in mind. Considering how little you need to use, I am still working on my original tube from last year, and will get my refill soon before it expires. It made me peel horribly at first, and like the pamphlet states, you may notice an increase in acne over 4 weeks as it purges everything from your skin (and it did so bad that I almost gave up on it)! Don't give up on it after only 2-3 weeks!!! To taper down the redness I experience, I only use it every other day and sometimes every couple of days. I cannot thank the people who developed this product enough. Since using it, I have had so many compliments on how much better my skin looks, and has even helped with some fine lines i had and clearing up any remaining acne marks. I don't need the minocycline as long as I have this product (plus minocycline made me horribly ill when I first began taking it and gain weight). Love love love this product - really helped my self esteem come back to life!!
This is for the Trentoin version ... i have pretty good skin ... but am turning 30 next year and have noticed small lines where there used to be none ...
so - i have heard from various folk the wonders of this retin-A so i went to my doc and he gave me a prescription for this. I wear a sunscreen everyday anyway and always moisturise (i reckon thats the key).
anyway, ive been using this everynight (all over my face) and wow!!! this is the best product ever. my skin is smooooooth, velvety soft and i have had no dryness or peeling (i always put a heavy moisturiser over the top).
If i could have only one product it would be this. And a bonus - no breakouts (i would get the odd small pimple at times).
My small lines on my forehead are going and my skin is plump!
would recommend this to everyone and will probably use it forever!
I've been using Retin-A Micro for almost two months and have noticed a HUGE improvement in my skin. Initially, my skin purged like crazy and was super dry, which was annoying but tolerable. I use RAM at night and a topical benzo/eurythromician creme during the day, which is one of the more effective ways to treat acne. I wash my face with Neutrogena's Fresh Foaming Clenser at night and Dermalogica's Anti-bac during the day (I don't like Anti-bac anymore, but I have a massive bottle to go through!), and use Extra Protection Moisturizer by Eucerin during the day. Vaseline at night around my eyes and mouth have helped with controlling flaking during the day.
After using RAM for a few months, my skin is clear, my pores are basically invisible, and my fine lines have vanished. You need to stay with it and use it religiously to see any improvements. The first month or so does suck, but it is important to just deal with it and wait it out because the results are so worth it.
Retin A Micro has been very good to me.
Started in April, within a week skin became very clear. There wasn't any real initial-breakout period, but I wasn't really prone to breakouts, just a little comedonal acne (ie blackheads) here and there. It's like the skin simply went from clear to very clear within a few days of RAM.
However, one needs to be aware of how RAM and retinoids affect the skin. It may clear your skin, but in return it becomes much more sensitive and vulnerable.
In my particular case, face no longer tolerates acid or anything with a pH of less than 4ish, that means no more AHA for me.
Have to treat skin like a baby, no more harsh products because it can't handle it. It's much harder to pick your face too, because the skin is so thin and more fragile that it gets bruised easily, I'm not kidding! Which is probably good in my case if it keeps my hands away from my face, as picking can easily make me end up with purpura marks for a couple of weeks. I can get purple marks if I scrub too hard, or pick on dead skin flakes too.
With regards to the dreaded redness, this is my observation with retinoids in general: Retinoids are actually anti-inflammatories, but it INDIRECTLY contributes to redness by thinning the skin, which makes it much more sensitive. Also, there seems to be a delay in its effect. IE, the effect from tonight's application will show up 2 days later.
Usually, after a night of RAM, face looks less red, but a couple of days later, it starts peeling, and if i overexfoliate (which one may be inclined to do if freaking out over the sight of a bunch of flakes and peelies) it gets red..if i control myself and just gently remove the flakes, it doesn't get red. Sun tolerance is also reduced considerably, now a few minutes outside will make my face tomato red, then get lizardy and peel (like a sunburn) for about a week, which kinda sucks as it also seems to lose its ability to hold a tan also.
In terms of photoaging, I just haven't seen anything personally as I don't have wrinkles yet, but i think it definitely works for acne. My face was pretty clear most of the time, but RAM made my face really 'clean'. I was told by dermatologists & estheticians that i actually had the "cleanest pores" they had ever seen on an adult. I definitely recommend RAM for acne due to its comedolytic effect.
I adore Retin-A Micro 0.1% (RAM). Here is my story: In 1997 I was placed on a 5-month routine of Accutane for moderate cystic acne. The Accutane cleared my skin beautifully, but by 2004 my skin was a mess again (this often happens to Accutane patients as time passes). At that time my Derm. prescribed me a routine of Differin gel, Benzaclin gel, and instructed me to use a gentle cleanser (I chose Dermalogica). This combination worked well enough for me for about a year & a half. Then, in mid-2005 this combo basically petered out. I was getting milia again and more than one cystic pimple enough. Irritated, I went back to my Derm and asked for something else. She rx'ed me RAM + Benzaclin gel. I began to slowly transition to the RAM-- uing it every other day at first. My skin purged like crazy! Of course, I didn't see this as purging at the time... I saw it as a worsening of my skin. I ended up ditching the RAM at the beginning of week 2 and going back to the Differin... which again, gave me poor results.
About two months ago I had 'had it' with the Differin. I promised myself to give the RAM three full weeks of use. I also switched to Dove bar soap at the same time b/c I was tired of the dry-out my cleanser was giving me. Well, almost two months later and I can't even get over how wonderful my skin looks! No more milia, no more whiteheads, no more cysts. My skin is clear and smoother than it has been in years! I'm also experiencing absolutely no irritation or excessive dryness (thanks Dove). I'm about to turn 30 and my skin looks better than it did when I was a teen! LOVE the anti-aging effects of RAM!!!
Bottom line... use as instructed and suffer through the purging! You won't regret it! continued >>
i have a love/hate relationship with retin a. Some days it makes my skin extra unaturally dry, but then im relieved some mornings when my skin is shedding its outer dermis layers.
Retin a in the long run thins the skin, I have been researching into copper peptides more which works like retin a but, instead of thinning the dermis copper peptides builds strength and collagen to dermis.
Retin a a does make your skin pore less and beautiful looking, but its also causes fragility and thins your skin.
Dont get me wrong I still use retin a maybe a whole month then stop and then take a break continue ect.., but I cut back on it alot, dont use it as much as i need to.
I find I like the Gel rather than the cream, cream is more irritating to me for some reason and perhaps more drying.
I started the .5% gel again.
Use as little as possible, the more you put the more photo sensitize your skin will become.
Wow. This is my sixth week on generic tretinoin, and I am absolutely kicking myself for not doing this a decade ago. I have struggled with moderate cystic acne pretty much since I hit puberty, and I have spent hundreds (thousands?) of dollars over the years on OTC products that never did anything. Finally I decided to suck it up and see the derm. To my delight, I found out that generic Retin-A costs $25 for a three months supply (30g tube), so I said sure. The derm also put me on a 30 day doxycycline scrip as well. Basically, from day 1, the zits stopped forming. I did go thru the icky scaly skin, but Aquaphor as a night moisturizer and Purpose cleanser fixed that right up. It took about 3-4 weeks for my skin to get retinized, and now I have far fewer problems with dryness. My face did have a minor eruption when the antibiotic course was done with, but the zits were gone in 3-4 days, and I have not had a single breakout since. My skin is clear and smooth and glowing now. I hope hope hope this continues to work this well. The current regimen that has worked so well is:
AM: Purpose cleanser, Neutrogena Active Breathable sunblock SPF 45
PM: Purpose cleanser, tretinoin .025% gel applied 3-4x weekly, Aquaphor as needed for dry spots.
(oh yes, I am also on low-dose BCP to help control the monthly breakouts. It helps a little.)
I HIGHLY recommend this for acne. It is the ONLY thing that has ever worked for me in 10 years of fighting off cysts. Give it time, purchase the generic gel and some Aquaphor, prepare yourself for a few weeks of dryness... but it WORKS.
I tried. I really did. A couple of times. Tried the traditional way and the short contact way. I give up. I just can't take this stuff. I am close to 40 and have good skin, no wrinkles, no acne, but I do have very mild rosacea. The only reason I wanted to use retin-A is because it is supposed to help with the blackheads, which is really the only problem I have, they are quite stubborn. Originally, I stuck it out past the peeling phase (which lasted about 3-4 weeks for me), but even after that messiness was over, my skin was so red all the time and HURT, it even hurt to splash my skin with tepid water. I wasn't seeing any improvement in the blackheads nor any other improvement in my skin, and the redness and constant painful feeling - even the slighest touch on my skin would hurt - just weren't worth it. I recently tried again using the short contact therapy, and the peeling started again and my skin is starting to hurt again and looks...old and dried up. So I'm done, side effects are just not worth it for me, probably is just too irritating with the rosacea.