Average Rating 4.1/5
Review by shi000
I began using Retin A last July, so I've been using it for about 10 months now.
Some background on my skin first. I have mild to moderate, persistent acne. Combination skin, with an oily t-zone. I have enlarged, raised pores around my nose area and very stubborn blackheads.
After 10 months of use, I feel fairly disappointed. I never got the miracle results that so many other users reported. I never got the bad initial breakout either, but my skin did get very, very dry and peeled horribly during the first few months. I would exfoliate in the morning, and be a peely mess by lunchtime. It was such a pain! At one point the peeling was so bad, I would have to reapply my makeup at work several times a day. (This was a necessity since I worked in a client-facing position and had to appear polished at all times).
I started with Retin-a-micro 0.04%, hoping the micro formulation would be more gentle to begin with. I used this for about 5 months and yet my skin never adjusted to it. I couldn't use it for more than three or four nights in a row without major skin irritation and peeling. Then, I decided to change to the cream version in 0.025%. My skin instantly liked this much better. But I also heard the cream version clogged pores for some people. So then I switched to the gel 0.025% which I am currently using now.
I will say that my acne has improved dramatically. I still get some pimples from time to time, especially around that time of the month, but less in number and severity. I notice they also heal a bit faster. Right now, I only have one active pimple which is a huge deal for me.
The main problem I have with Retin A, and my reasoning for my average rating, is that it has completely dried out my skin. I know Retin A is supposed to help with wrinkles. I'm only 21, so I only have a few small lines, but Retin A has made them more noticeable due to my skin's dryness. And my makeup never looks quite right due to my flaky skin texture. Physical exfoliation and moisturizer beforehand doesn't even completely alleviate this. Also, it seems nothing will help get rid of my stubborn blackheads. My forehead also has a few small tiny bumps; I'm not sure if Retin A has caused this or not.
I know a lot of people's experiences involved their old skin peeling away to reveal clear and beautiful skin underneath. This was not my experience at all! I'm still waiting for that wonderful skin. So would I buy again? Yes, because it has helped my acne. I am going to try some new moisturizers in the meantime to try to alleviate the side effects. I have heard essential oils work wonderfully, and I will try that next. It is worth noting that I have previously used clindamycin gel with success for acne. It never cleared up my acne as much as Retin A, but I'm not sure if Retin A is the better choice overall considering the side effects I am experiencing. I will continue using Retin A gel until my tube runs out before reevaluating whether or not I want to continue this regimen.
For the record, I purchased my Retin A online from alldaychemist. I was sure to use a temporary credit card number though, as I've read on forums of cases of fraudulent charges happening after ordering from there.