Differin Acne Treatment Gel

Filtered by skin type : Combination
 Differin Acne Treatment Gel

3.9

63 reviews

74% would repurchase

Package Quality: 4.0

Price: $$$

Package Quality: 4.0

Price: $$$

INGREDIENTS

DIFFERIN Gel contains adapalene 0.1% (1 mg) in a vehicle consisting of carbomer 940, poloxamer 182, edetate disodium, methylparaben, sodium carbomer 940, edentate disodium, methylparaben poloxamer 182, propylene glycol, purified water and sodium hydroxide. May contain hydrochloric acid to adjust pH

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on 10/19/2018 8:47:00 AM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Green

So this is a very premature review - I’ve only been using for a week - but I’ve already started to see results! I don’t have terrible acne, but in the last few weeks, my chin has been erupting with really big, deep, painful pimples (I think it’s hormonal??). So off I went to Walmart to find SOMETHING to help. Originally, I was planning on picking up some Neutrogena acne products and a face mask, but I saw the differin gel and decided to give it a try. I had some minor peeling for about two days only, but nothing major. And it started helping! My giant pimples weren’t going away, but they were definitely shrinking! I’m nervous because I’ve heard there’s a major purge period around 2-3 weeks, so I’m crossing my fingers it doesn’t get too bad! In general, my skin is looking a little better though, so I’ve been thrilled! In the mornings when I wash my face (I only use the differin at night), my skin definitely feels more sensitive - the skin around my mouth and nose is a little dry and almost sore (if that makes any sense!), but I just make sure to use tepid water and load up on moisturizer and then I’m fine. I got the larger tube that supposedly will last for about 4-5 months. I’m curious to see how well it works over the next month or so as we head into much colder weather. As long as it keeps clearing my chin, it’ll be a definite repurchase!



on 10/10/2018 8:48:00 PM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Hazel

A retinoid that now is available OTC in the US, this is a lightweight gel formula of 0.1% adapalene. In the UK it is still prescription only. It is effective for the treatment of mild to moderate acne, acting to settle inflammation, "loosen" sebum plugs, and more effective skin cell turnover. Some people will experience a purge in the first few weeks - I personally didn't, but it is a known issue. As the retinoid acts to normalise skin cell division and turnover, the increased activity can aggravate pores with sebum plugs as they come to the surface. After that, skin noticeably appears clearer and smoother, although it can take weeks for it to reach maximal results.

I use this myself, I'm prone to hormonal acne and oily skin but this has dramatically improved the overall evenness of my skin tone as well as reducing both inflammatory and comedonal acne lesions. First week or so I had to use on alternate nights as I did get some dry, tight and flaky skin, but now I use it daily without issue. I do still get premenstrual breakouts, but lesions are not as inflamed and tenacious as they once were, and I feel the number of lesions overall is reduced.

Of the most commonly used topical retinoids - tretinoin, tazarotene, isotretinoin, and adapalene - adapalene has the weakest effect on fine lines and wrinkles although it does still improve their appearance, Just not as much as tretinoin, so in my opinion this one is best suited for use as an acne treatment rather than as an anti-ageing one. It also has the mildest side effect profile of the lot in terms of skin irritation. Compared to retinol, which must undergo conversion by skin cells into an active form, it has a much more noticeable effect on acne, and is backed up by clinical trials and evidence. I'm really happy with the way this is clearing my face, would recommend this in a heartbeat to anyone with mild-moderate acne. Just make sure you wear sunscreen in the day!

4 of 4 people found this helpful.


on 7/24/2018 8:22:00 PM

Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Medium Brown, Neutral

Hair: Brown, Kinky, Medium

Eyes: Brown

This gel made my skin rougher, drier, oiler and pimples multiplied. Since I stopped using this my skin is slowly getting better.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.


Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Medium, Not Sure

Hair: Other, Other, Other

Eyes: Hazel

I am 30 and I’ve had mild to moderate acne since I was 16. It’s not mostly hormonal around my jaw line with a few hear and there. I’ve had enough of it so I decided to give differin a try. I’ve been using it for 6 weeks. This is not a product that gives quick results, although I am now finding that it is helping my skin a lot. I did have an initial break out /purging about 2-3 weeks in. I could see the stuff coming out of my pores and hard white heads that I could pull out with tweezers and breakouts. It sucks but it’s also good to know that all that stuff is coming out of your pores. I think I am not past the purging and my break outs are subsiding. My break outs are also healing much much faster and everything comes to the surface extremely quickly and then heals. What really helped me was watching dr dray on YouTube. She’s a dermatologist. She recommends that you moisturize your face while still damp in order to reduce moisture loss. I use the avene tolerance extreme emulsion moisturizer. It’s amazing. I am very sensitive to ingredients so it’s a basic moisturizer that works. I also stopped using harsh face washed and I stick to cerave moisturizing cleanser. After moisturizing my face I use a tiny amount of differin fall over. I have also been using some benzoyl peroxide over that to help with the initial break out but that might cause burning and irritation for some people so be careful. I also use Lilly of the desert aloe on my face to help with the irritation with a small drop of glycerin for added moisture if needed. If my face starts to feel burning and irritated I will stop the differin for a day or two and moisturize and use aloe until that feeling goes away. Do not use differin if your face is burning and irritated because it will get worse. Take a break and then resume once it’s gone. :). It’s all about listening to your skin and keeping irritation to a minimum. I really feel like this stuff is helping my skin a lot. My skin heals way faster and I can see that my pores are clearer. Also my skin is more even. It’s also important to note that you NEED to wear SUNSCREEN with this or your face will burn extremely easily even if you usually do not burn. I am sensitive to a lot of sunscreen but I am using derma e mineral face sunscreen (oil free) with no issues.

6 of 6 people found this helpful.


Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair, Warm

Hair: Red, Wavy, Fine

Eyes: Blue

Differin is a wild ride for sure. I used it when it was prescription many years ago, and at that time I had no real skincare routine other than washing my face to speak of, and on top of that I had no idea what the side effects were. It was a terrible experience, but it did clear my acne (in addition to drying my face out so badly that my skin occasionally cracked and bled.) I have continued to struggle with acne, and I am pretty much done with that BS now that I am in my 30s. Once I heard that Differin was becoming an OTC treatment I debated whether or not I'd give it another try since things that had previously been working well for me weren't anymore. I finally bought a small tube about three months ago and did a lot of research on how to prevent the nasty peeling and cracking while still getting an anti-acne benefit from this product. I learned through MUA and other avenues that buffering the gel by using something else underneath it helps to ease the irritation, especially on sensitive skin. I've also been piling on loads of additional moisture and using the gel on alternating nights up to about four times a week. It does still make my skin a little dry and peely, but nowhere nearly as bad as when I used it before. My acne still isn't 100% clear since I am neither using the product full strength directly on my skin and adding a ton of moisturizer/oil to help mitigate the intense dryness this causes, but I am definitely seeing an improvement in the texture of my skin, the appearance of deep pimples, and the healing time of existing pimples. It hasn't been a miracle, but again, I am not using it nearly as often as is recommended. The results are worth the time and the extra work, and I will continue using it this way until my acne has cleared sufficiently. Of course, your mileage may vary, but if you have sensitive skin and acne, I'd recommend this product if you do some research for buffering it and how to moisturize while still letting the product be effective.

9 of 9 people found this helpful.


on 10/27/2017 4:07:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Tan, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Other

I started using this product in February of this year, used it for three months before stopping (I got a bit lazy to be honest) and have recently started using it again. If I'm honest, I purchased this product because I wanted to diminish some fine lines around my mouth and eyes. I realize there isn't sufficient research out there to market this as a wrinkle treatment, and that Retin A is much more effective for this purpose, but I don't have insurance, and have mild rosacea. Given how mild adapalene is supposed to be, I thought I'd give it a shot. I get a few hormonal pimples around my period but lately, I have also broken out terribly under my jaw line. Since I am prone to hyper pigmentation, the result of these breakouts are ugly, purple brown scars down one side of my jaw/neck area. I started applying Differin to my face and upper neck and was impressed by the results. I have fewer breakouts (and the few I do get heal quickly), has lightened my hyper pigmentation (30-40% better) and the larger pores on and around my nose are definitely smaller. I have also noticed the fine lines around my mouth are also much less noticeable. It hasn't done anything for the lines forming near my eyes, but then again, I haven't used this around my eyes since your aren't supposed to, oh well! It definitely works slowly, but it does work. I did experience some initial purging in February, but now that my skin is used to it, It seems as if I can stop and restart treatment without purging. It definitely made my skin flakey the first time around but it did not cause any additional redness or discomfort.

The way I use this is to apply a VERY small amount (pea sized) onto my ring finger and dab onto my cheeks, forehead, chin and nose before bed every other night. I then apply an even smaller amount to my jaw/neck area. It's a bit difficult to spread at first, but since I follow up with a very emollient moisturizer afterwards (DE Lala whipped) I'm confident the product is being evenly distributed. Lastly, since retinoids make your skin especially sensitive to the sun, be sure to use and reapply sunscreen everyday! Seriously, though, don't use this product if you're going to skimp on the sunscreen you'll end up making things worse. (I like Elta MD UV Elements). I will try to remember to update my review in six months time, I hope by then with continued use and sun protection, I'll have gotten rid of any remaining (or at least 80%) hyper pigmentation! Wish me luck!

13 of 15 people found this helpful.


Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Blond, Other, Other

Eyes: Blue

I was so excited to try this when it became over the counter. I try to buy it on sale or with a coupon which helps it to become reasonably priced for me. My skin had already been doing much better in the year prior to using differin but I do think this has helped clear the last 10% or so of my acne and helps to treat any pimples I get here and there. I use every other night and only experience dryness in the winter. I only wish this had a reputation for anti aging as well.

6 of 6 people found this helpful.


Age: 30-35

Skin: Combination, Fair, Neutral

Hair: Brunette, Curly, Other

Eyes: Green

I have sensitive, combination skin with mild but stubborn acne, in my 30s. I'm so glad this is now available without a prescription. It's changed my skin dramatically for the better. I no longer need to use benzoyl peroxide, which is effective but drying. I've tried tretinoin (Retinin A) but my skin is just too sensitive.

A few tips:
* It will take a few weeks to see a result. Skin cycle time is about 6 weeks, plan on it. I saw results in 3 weeks.
* Apply immediately after cleansing to be most effective, unless you are trying to reduce irritation, in which case apply after moisturisers.
* As this is a retinol, your skin may purge. I didn't, possibly because I switched directly from BP.

8 of 8 people found this helpful.


Age: 36-43

Skin: Combination, Fair, Cool

Hair: Blond, Wavy, Medium

Eyes: Green

I purchased this because I wanted to see if this would work for me instead of using retin a. I will say this works very well and on my skin is quite gentle. I have been using this for months daily at bedtime and am very happy with the results. My skin is clear and smooth. But I do still get hormonal spots that I sometimes have to use my retin a on. Reason being the Differin gel works but it's not as strong as retin a so it takes longer for spots to go away. I had a cluster of underground spots and it took months with the differin gel to finally clear it. In the end I did use some retin a to finally get rid of the acne spots I had. So I rated this 5 lippies because if you don't mind waiting and putting in the effort in time this does work.

But if you are still dealing with spots for quite a long time I find the retin a works better. Now granted one is now otc while the other is by RX. So I find now that I use them both but not at the same time. I use differin gel daily while I'll spot treat with the retin a when I have a spot that's taking forever to heal. The Differin gel though is an excellent product no doubt about it as both me and my sig other loves it. I use it on his spots too but he only needs it as a spot treatment. For me it comes down to speed and convenience if you have the patience to use this for the long haul it will work. But if you want speed and rapid exfoliation the retin a is the route to go.

I will continue to use differin gel everyday and that is the key with this you must stick with it. I find it very gentle and it's a great daily acne treatment. So to me this does work as long as I use this daily without fail. Also I do not peel at all with this whereas with the other I peel and that's something I really dislike. So for me I prefer the Differin but if I want anti aging use plus acne treatment the retin a is better hands down. So if you're looking for an acne treatment my advice with this is to just stick with it. Give it at least 8 solid weeks or longer. It does work and it does work well. Plus being able to get this otc I think is excellent and a great product for me. Also the fact that it's so gentle makes it a great product for my sensitive skin. Recommended.

10 of 10 people found this helpful.


on 4/26/2017 2:47:00 AM

Age: 25-29

Skin: Combination, Fair, Not Sure

Hair: Brunette, Other, Other

Eyes: Brown

Please note, no reviews should be even considered if they use the gel less than 8 weeks. Results may even take slightly longer. There is a purge, READ the documents included in the differin package, and FOLLOW them. In 5 weeks I noticed smoother skin, smaller pores, less blackheads, less redness (it's also an antinflammatory). Who needs highlighter when your skin is smooth and glowing. Give it a shot, but only if you can commit to a purge and at least 8 weeks of nightly application.

13 of 16 people found this helpful.


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