Tretinoin, a powerful retinoid normally used to fight acne, is getting new life as an anti-aging ingredient. It can dramatically reduce the appearance of fine lines and dark spots.
Before using tretinoin, make sure your skin is completely clean. Wash it gently, using a mild soap and water. Avoid excessive washing and scrubbing, which can irritate your skin.
What is Tretinoin Cream?
Tretinoin is a form of Vitamin A that’s prescribed by doctors for treating acne. It’s similar to retinol but stronger and it only works with a doctor’s prescription. It’s often combined with antibacterial ingredients for acne treatment and in a pill version called isotretinoin for severe cases of acne.
Unlike most skin treatments that claim to erase fine lines, reduce hyperpigmentation or boost collagen levels, tretinoin actually changes the way your body creates new skin cells. It’s a superpower topical ingredient that works to treat both acne and signs of aging, says New York City dermatologist Joshua Zeichner.
It also helps prevent excess oil production that leads to breakouts and speeds up the healing of existing pimples. But getting the results you want can be a challenge because it takes patience and a steady approach. The best skin care strategy is to titrate your dose (starting out with just a few times a week and increasing gradually as tolerated) & listen to your skin.
How to Use Tretinoin Cream
Tretinoin is available in cream and gel, although the cream formulation tends to be better for dry or sensitive skin. Your doctor will advise you which one is most appropriate for your condition.
Ensure that you have clean hands before applying the medication and use a non-abrasive, gentle cleanser. You should then gently dab (don’t rub) your face semi-dry with a towel. You should then apply a pea-sized amount of tretinoin to your finger and then smooth it over your face, initially avoiding the lips, eyes, and corners of the mouth.
It can take weeks or even months before you notice any changes in your skin with tretinoin, but it is important to continue using the product as directed by your physician or dermatologist. It is also recommended that you avoid direct sunlight, and apply a good broad-spectrum sunscreen to any exposed areas of your skin while using tretinoin. This will help to prevent sunburn and reduce the risk of hyperpigmentation from tretinoin.
Side Effects of Tretinoin Cream
Tretinoin is likely to irritate your skin a bit when you first start using it. This is normal and should go away with time or when you adjust your routine. It may also cause “purging” in some people, which means that existing acne pimples surface more quickly due to increased cell turnover. This is also normal and should go away with time or when the medication is stopped.
It’s important to use this medication exactly as directed. This helps to avoid side effects like red, swollen, crusted, or blistered skin. You should be careful to avoid exposing your skin to sunlight while you’re using this medication. If you have to go outdoors, wear a hat and apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF of at least 30. This medication can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight, and sun exposure while you’re using this medication can increase your risk of early skin aging or skin cancer.
Precautions of Tretinoin Cream
While using tretinoin cream, it is important to avoid excessive washing or scrubbing of the face. This can irritate the skin and cause additional acne to develop. It is also a good idea to use moisturizers with sun protection while taking this medication.
This medication is not recommended for use during pregnancy, as it may harm the fetus. It is also not known if tretinoin passes through breast milk, so it should not be used by breastfeeding mothers.
Avoid contact with the eyes while using tretinoin cream, as it can sting and cause pain. You should also avoid smoking and using any other medications that affect blood flow to the skin, including alcohol, as they can lead to serious side effects.
It is a good idea to give your doctor a list of all the prescription and non-prescription medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements you are currently taking. This information will help to prevent any possible drug interactions. Tretinoin 0.05% Cream