I've had acne since I was 14. I'm 21 now. I tried so many different things for my skin, and nothing seemed to work. I've been on antibiotics (Minocin), and other prescription creams (Clindoxyl Gel, Differin XP). Differin completely dried out and burned my skin to the point where it was so raw that it hurt to touch. Clindoxyl gel worked to a point where my skin was better, but not getting better from there. I went to a dermatologist where I was perscribed Retin-A Micro (0.04%). This strength comes in a tube (I believe 15g) and a pump (I believe 30g, which I use and personally perfer). I found that it definitely took time and patience to see improvement - I found my skin purging and as they say - it got worse before it got better.
I was using it every night for a year or so - until October, where suddenly my skin became extremely flaky and dry, especially around my mouth and nose. I thought it was the weather, so I didn't think much of it, but it just got more dry and irritated. I was so self-consious about the dry areas (no moisturizer could save me...) and I found myself touching it throughout the day to conceal the dryness and I actually started getting more breakouts! When I was washing my face with a gentle cleanser (Spectro Jel), I found that when I was rubbing my face, even gently, I had dead skin rolling into little balls on my face. There was just so much dead skin accumulating, and I didn't understand what was going on. I talked to a co-worker of mine, who also uses Retin-A, and she told me it the cream, not the weather. I started using it every other night or so, and the dryness and excessive accumulation of dead skin cells subsided immediately.
I've now been using Retin-A Micro (0.04%) every third night or so, and I have not had any dryness or redness whatsoever. My acne is now almost all gone (besides a breakout once in a while), and I'm so greatful for finally having clear skin.
* Now, I urge everyone to please read below (you can skip everything above if you don't want to read!). These are things that I wish I knew while using this cream:
1) Apply only a small amount, such as the size of a pea. More cream will NOT produce quicker or more drastic results. A little goes a long way.
2) WAIT 20+ minutes AFTER cleansing your skin to apply the cream. Ensure your skin is clean and DRY. Why? Applying Retin-A to your skin right after cleansing can cause greater irritation and side effects.
3) WAIT 20+ minutes AFTER applying Retin-A to apply a moisturizer. Give it time to absorb into the skin. You don't wait to dilute it with your moisturizer or face oil.
4) If you find yourself with very irritated, dry, flaky or pink/red skin, use it every second or third night. As I learned, moisturizer did not help with the side effects. Let your skin heal, and ease your skin into tolerating it. Everyone's skin is different - some people will be sensitive, some will not.
I love my retin a! I have been using it religiously for 1.5 years now. I am 52 and people think I'm 42. You need to start out with the .025% for a few months then use the .05% several more months before the .01%. Just the other day a cousin asked what I've been doing to my skin that it looked great. The best place to buy retin a is at alldaychemist.com. The cheapest 20gm tube is about $2.50 (.025%)and the most expensive about 4.96 (.01%). The company is in India and don't be afraid! The shipping is $25 with $5 credit card use charge and takes about 2 weeks due to customs inspection. I usually order with a friend and place a $200 order each time. They carry one Johnson & Johnson retin a but I don't think it works as well as the Indian brands. India has stricter manufacture policies than the U.S. does!
Once you see what this miracle cream does you'll never give it up.
Just makes my skin peel like absolute crazy. Cannot tolerate it.
Retin-A is the best skin treatment out there. I have been using it consistently since 2010. At first I got the horrible Retin-A induced purging of the skin and my face broke out horribly in these gross cysts and whiteheads for a good 6 months. But the Dr. put me on oral antibiotics and Topical Clindamycin as an extra measure combined with BP in the day time to knock out those suckers and it totally worked. It was soooo gross at first and I was soooo depressed, my makeup looked like crap because my skin was peeling, red, irritated and yet at the same time, oily - I was a hot mess; and for someone who is totally vain, it did a number on my mental health. Suffice it to say, three years later, I am more than pleased with the results. My skin is smooth, healthy and all the post acne hyperpigmentation is gone! My skin exfoliates wonderfully, in the morning when I cleanse, the dead skin comes off, its kinda gross but after I exfoliate with a wash cloth, a fresh, smooth pink layer of skin is revealed. I think it totally plumped up my skin and made it produce more collagen because it looks firmer, and healthier overall, and the small wrinkles on my 32 year old forehead and the tiny furrow between my brows have faded, I swear I look like someone in their early 20s. I will definitely stay on this stuff long term I don't care how much it costs, I have to have it!
I have read that Retin-A is the only cosmetic drug that has been scientifically shown to: increase collagen production; smooth out wrinkles; increase vascular flow in skin tissue; flush out pore clogging folicular debris; normalize the shedding of dead skin cells, and all while keeping your pores clean. When I do get a small pimple, it usually comes to a head very soon and its as though the Retin-A sucks the crap out of the pore, brings it to the surface and makes it easy to extrude.
I would recommend this for anyone suffering from acne. I hated it. But I stuck with Retin-A through the initial break out, no matter how terrible it made me look and feel, and now I can totally see the results and I love it. If you are going to start using it, try to start when you don't have to be around people, like during summer vacay. I wish I could have gone away for six months, but I started using it at the end of the Fall semester and totally broke out over winter break and had to come back to law school looking affright! LOL. But if a vain ole queen like me can stick it out, you can too. Don't give up. Also, try to use oral and topical antibiotics to cut down on the initial flare up. I mixed my Clinda with BP during the day. The Dr. said this would help to prevent AB resistance and help both drugs to work better. I still use this combo in the day time and Retin-A Gel at o.o25% every night.
I also found that properly removing your makeup is essential, followed by proper cleansing, toning, moisturizing and then treatment. Yes you have to moisturize, you will have to when on this drug or else you will end up with dry patches and your makeup will look horrid. I like Neutrogena Oil Free Moisturize for Sensitive Skin.
Anyway, thanks for reading and if you are gonna use this stuff, read up on it. Be sure to moisturize and STICK WITH IT! IT WORKS!
This product did not work for me. In fact, it caused my skin to develop a horrible, burning rash. I am certain it was this product which caused the reaction as the only location on my skin which was effected was the area which I applied the product (under the eyes).
I have attempted to use this product on three separate occasions (three separate years) and I have had a similar result each time. I was using it to soften the deep wrinkles I have under my eyes.
The last time I started this product was about a month ago. I started using a very small amount (about the quarter of a pea) under my eyes each evening. I would wash my face with mild cleanser (can't recall the name), wait 30 minutes then apply the retin a. After about 30 minutes I would apply organic coconut oil. For the first two weeks I only experienced some dryness, but now the skin under my eyes is incredibly sore, raw, peeling, and incredibly unsightly (see attached photo). I have been applying hydrocortosone cream in hopes of clearing this mess up, as I'm mortified to leave the house as I look like a red-eyed panda.
I'm done with this stuff! (can't say I didn't try!)
I've been using this for about 3 years now. It is hands down the most effective anti-aging, anti-dark spot, ant-whatever skin flaw you may have. It's also the only thing that has actually helped with my acne. The only thing about retinal is that you HAVE to give it ATLEAST 6 months until you start seeing tremendous results for fine lines. It helped with acne right away. What it does is constantly speeds up cell turnover for your skin, so it is constantly buffing it and exfoliating it, speeding up collagen and the natural heeling process of skin.
My skin literally looks like a baby's bum. People comment on my skin DAILY, and have for the past 3 years since I started using it. I still get surprised when people comment on my skin, because I used to have horrible acne.
Beware that this does cause 1/month peeling- it's a good thing, trust me.
You MUST wear sunscreen daily with retinol, and ALWAYS moisturize after applying a thin layer.
And a lil secret- it works wonders on ingrown hairs... my bikini area is friggen flawless, kinda proud of that.
It runs for about $35 per prescribed tube (here in Ontario at least), and should last at leas 8 months if used correctly.
Screw all the other anti aging creams. It's all hype.
Prescribed retinal is the real deal.
I used this product at the height of my acne problems and I did not find it effective at all. Like most acne medications, it also makes your skin very sensitive to the sun.
I used the generic version(tretinoin). Was very inexpensive($5 copay) I really wanted this product to work, but I used it for almost 3 months and I gave up. I was in denial for a while and told myself that my skin was getting better, but it wasn't. I'm broken out now than when I started. I know you're supposed to give it 6 months to see final results, but really, 6 months? Now I know no acne product works over night, but there's plenty that work so much faster! Why go through the months of endless purging and horrible skin? If you're using this for anti-aging purposes, then go for it. However if you're going to be using this for acne I'd stay clear. The only thing I can say is that it smoothed out the texture of my skin. I don't know if it would of worked in the long run, as it did somewhat clear some breakouts, but with every one it cleared, 2 more came. Just, not for me. If you're patient and determined to use this product then go for it, but be prepared to purge like no other. I don't want to dishearten anyone, but I think waiting 6 months and going through persistent purging all throughout isn't worth it. Unless you've tried every other product for acne, then to each is own. I'm currently on DUAC and it seems to already working, with NO PURGING. Not all acne products purge, just some. However with Retin A, it's almost a 90% you will purge. Duac has great reviews and I'm hoping my face will be cleared within 1-2 months. For reference I have no acne on my t-zone and forehead. A few on my left cheek, but moderate on my right. I wish you all the best.
This cream is a miracle. It's corrected my skin tone and texture within 3 weeks. I had some acne scarring and fine lines. My scars are almost gone and fine lines are less visible. But I need to say you have to be really careful if you purchased this product without prescription. You might damage your skin severely. Here is my routine for Retin-A. I've started to use 0.5 twice a week first and gradually increased to 3 times a week and now I am using it daily. It's been 6 weeks now and I will quit using it within 2 weeks cos summer is on the way.First I wash my face with organic olive oil soap and then wait half an hour and apply Retin-A before I go to bed. I don't apply moisturizer. I use a external usage dexpantenol cream called Bepanthene which is available here in Turkey. Bepanthene is an external cream normally used for sunburns and this kind of small dryness skin problems but I like to use it as moisturizer cos it has healing affect. Probably that's why I didn't feel that much of flakiness and dryness while I am on Retin-A. I also avoid sun during daytime. If I have to go out I apply Origins Dr. Weil's Mega Bright UV Protector SPF 40. It's good to add an antioxidant serum to your daily routine. I just ordered Replenix Serum to give a try.But try to avoid heavy vitamin C serums if you have sensitive skin when you are using Retin-A. Cos my skin basically couldn't tolerate it. That's it from my side. I will continue to use Retin-A during winter. Don't forget Retin-A can be dangerous weapon on wrong hands.
I think anyone and everyone should use retin a. BF's brother in law is a dermatologist and even he uses it. BF is 43, I am 33, mom is 58, we all use it! First eight weeks can be rough, but stick with it, you'll be so glad you did. Retinol is the only thing clinically and FDA approved for wrinkles.
I've been using it for three years and constantly get compliments on my skin. I also accredit that to two doses of accutane years ago. I use the lower strength and only a pea size. Any more will just cause dryness and not work any better. I also use it under my eyes. Love.