November 28, 2014 | 1885 users online

Treatments (Face) - Differin Gel

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rated 4.0(172 reviews)

  • Average Rating: 4.0
  • 77% would buy again
  • Package Quality: 4.1
  • Price: $$$

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 12/20/2010 10:25:00 PM More reviews by Banjos

Age: 56 & Over Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Hazel

After almost two years of struggling to use tretinoin gel (first in .01% and then .025%) I finally accepted that my skin just does not tolerate it very well at all. The carrier/base of the generic product could be partially to blame..not sure.
So now I am using Differin .1% gel and, although it has only been three weeks, I can see that it is going to be more helpful and much better tolerated. My pharmacy did not have the generic Differin in .1% so they gave me the brand-name Differin at the generic price. Differin gel is very easy to spread over the face and is not particularly drying in this low strength. It makes a nice primer for powder mineral makeup. I do avoid the sun as that could deactivate the product.
The generic tretinoin was practically impossible to obtain a thin, even coat, even trying to mix it with aloe vera gel. I just hope when I have to use the generic Differin that it is not compounded in an inferior base.
EDIT: I continue to be pleased with Differin and it is not flaking or irritating my skin even in the dead of winter. However, like tretinoin it seems to bring out rough bumps on my cheeks and forehead. Maybe, this category of treatment is just not right for my skin.

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rated 1 of 5 on 11/28/2010 4:41:00 PM More reviews by Mkm5

Age: 25-29 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Blond, Other, Other Eyes: Blue

This product seriously ruined my skin. I had mild acne to begin with and my dermatologist prescribed this to me and told me my acne would get worse to start out with and get better after a few months. It instantly made me break out like crazy all over my face but i stuck with it for about 9 months. I still had horrible skin. Now, 5 years later... i have never been able to get my skin back to where it was. I have to wear makeup now and can't seem to break that cycle. I have a lot of scarring from this product as well. It gave me a lot of stress and self esteem problems and I didnt even want to leave the house! I would say that if you only have mild acne or if you have sensitive skin then AVOID this product!!!

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rated 2 of 5 on 11/27/2010 12:45:00 AM More reviews by xVanniex

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Other Eyes: Brown

My doctor prescribed this to me and at first i was excited. i had finally thought that my skin would get better after using this. boy was i wrong. she (the doctor) told me that in the beginning when using this product, my skin may act up worse but it would improve later on. yeah, im still waiting on that day. hah! improve? i used up the whole thing without any sign of it getting better. all this did was dry my skin out. honestly, i wanted to love this. i just couldnt. it's no better than the clean and clear products on the aisles of walmart... or toothpaste.

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 11/27/2010 12:19:00 AM More reviews by definesinister

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Fair-Medium, Warm Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

Ok, I've been on this for about 5 weeks now. I use this in conjuction with Doryx. So far, the results are getting better. I did take some advice from some of the reviewers on here, and I would apply this gel, then wait a good 20-30 minutes before applying a serum. Now I use a serum instead of a moisturizer, simply because moisturizer tends to be more pore clogging. Serum is meant to penetrate deeper into the skin, thus it is meant to do what it does. If you still worried about going out in public with a peeling face, then I would suggest a moisturizer. I did have a little peeling at first, but that goes away and the peeling didn't really hurt. I still have hyperpigmentation spots, a few cystic acnes. Some of my cystic acnes pop up, then they go away in a few days. I am currently using 0.1% gel. I asked the derm how long it would take to get rid of the spots, he told me the average is 10 months. So don't give up so easily, try to apply it and wait 30 minutes and then apply a serum or moisturizer. Make sure you do use a high sunscreen (at least spf 30). Some people complain about dry lids and dry mouth. So be careful during winter, make sure you keep yourself hydrated.

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rated 3 of 5 on 11/25/2010 4:43:00 AM More reviews by qtpie90

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Olive, Warm Hair: Black, Straight, Fine Eyes: Brown

I got this through a doctor's prescription a few weeks ago when I was starting to get a lot of pimples again, and I started using this daily at night. Was cheap because it is now government subsidised in NZ, and my doctor said I could even use this for keratosis pilarus (the tiny red bumps frequently seen on arms and legs). At first, the pimples seemed to be getting worse, and I expected this since my doctor warned me beforehand, but I wasn't sure if I wanted to deal with bad acne all summer long before it got better, so I stopped for a few days. Also, I think it made my skin really dry and flaky, especially on the cheeks, it was soo dry, but it got better after using Cetaphil moisturiser. So now it's been roughly a week, and yesterday my skin was really good, even had a slight glow and hardly any visible pimples. However, this morning I've got quite a few annoying large ones again, so it's up and down. Overall, can't judge yet. But it appears to be having some effect, however small. Will let you know how it goes in a few weeks.

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rated 5 of 5 top reviewer on 11/22/2010 10:14:00 PM More reviews by Ihavequestions

Age: 30-35 Skin: Normal, Fair, Cool Hair: Other, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Grey

I have used Differin cream for quite a long time and feel like it has made a tremendous difference in my skin both in terms of my adult acne and in terms of how 'glowy' my skin looks. I am naturally quite young looking for my age, but after I'd been using the cream just over 6 months I saw my sister, who I had not seen in a year, and she commented on how young my skin looked and wanted to know how she could get some too.


I wanted to get more of the cream from Alldaychemist, but they only sell the gel and only in this concentration. I was concerned because the cream definitely still causes flakiness depending on where I am in my cycle. So I was concerned that the gel was going to cause *worse* flakiness or even worse, chemical burns like Tazorac gel did. I'm pleasantly surprised to report that not only does Differin gel NOT cause more flaking --- it actually causes LESS for me, and less irritation! I'm really pleased.


You can get a small tube of this (15 grams) for $5 on Alldaychemist.com. :)

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rated 5 of 5 on 11/8/2010 2:08:00 PM More reviews by jennyfury1

Age: 19-24 Skin: Acne-prone, Other, Not Sure Hair: Black, Other, Fine Eyes: Brown

I love differin. My face used to be so horrible with breakouts all over my cheeks and forehead. I tried BP, tretinoin and oral antibiotics but they didn't have a lasting effect. Then my doctor prescribed me Differin 0.1% and I saw results after 1 week. My skin started to getting clear and all my whiteheads dried up. After a month or so, my skin looked so much better except there were a couple persistent red bumps here and there. Around the time of my period, I still broke out with red bumps but Differin kept it to a minmum.

I just finished using the tube, which lasted me about 6 months or so. I think after using it for awhile, my skin got used to it so I'm now on Differin 0.3% and I'm loving it.

So I won't be purchasing this again since I'm using a stronger version of it but Differin 0.1% helped me so much!!

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rated 5 of 5 on 10/1/2010 3:13:00 PM More reviews by laydeexsav

Age: 25-29 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Neutral Hair: Black, Straight, Other Eyes: Brown

I've been using Differin Gel 0.1% a little over a month now, and I am seeing promising results. My doctor told me that initially I would break out pretty bad, and in time and with persistent use, it will get better. Fortunately, I didn't break out too bad as others have stated, and I noticed that when I do get pimples, it clears up pretty fast. I was told to use this only at night and only on the affected areas, not on your entire face. So far so good, with a bit of flaky areas on my face, but a good moisturizer will help with that. You will also need a moisturizer that contains spf15 or spf30 to protect your sensitive skin, and to help your acne scarring to not darken even more due to the sun.


My face looks alot better, and some of my acne scarring has noticeably faded. This may or may not work for you because everyones skin reacts differently, but I definitely would recommend this to people suffering from acne. It's not a miracle worker, but it does help reduce the amount of breakouts, fades acne scarring (not the deeper ones), and people will notice your face looking better.

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rated 3 of 5 on 9/27/2010 2:01:00 AM More reviews by shellbaby3

Age: 18 & Under Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure Hair: Brunette, Straight, Medium Eyes: Brown

I used to have bad acne on my forehead and i tried a lot of products but nothing seemed to work so i went to the doctors and he prescribed this to me. It cleared up most of the acne at first but when i kept using it, it didn't really seem to do anything anymore & i still had breakouts. I used differin with benzaclin (another prescription) and they're both very expensive if you don't have insurance.

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rated 4 of 5 top reviewer on 9/20/2010 1:09:00 AM More reviews by missn74

Age: 30-35 Skin: Acne-prone, Medium, Warm Hair: Brown, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown

I had a giant pimple on the side of my nose and dabbed the gel right away. The pimple finely reduced in size in about a week. I apply it every other night to reduce irritation and dryness. Over applying may cause the skin to break out more. Some acne medication will cause you to flame up in acne before the skin gets better but this hasn't. It does not treat blackheads or whiteheads (salicylic acid works for that). This is made of a retinoid called adapalene that reduces pimple but when you feel a pimple from forming is the best to use this to prevent it from happening.

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