Page 5 of Tretinoin (Retin-A, Retisol-A) reviews
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Tretinoin (0.01%), Parsol MCX (7.5%) and Parsol 1789 (2%) SPF 15.
Butylated hydroxytoluene, carbomer 934, cyclomethicone, diisopropyl adipate, glycerin, imidurea/parabens, octyldodecyl neopentanoate, light mineral oil, phenyl trimethicone, polysorbate 60, purified water USP, sodium hydroxide 10%, sorbitan monosterate, and stearyl alcohol.
The list of ingredients above is provided for informational purposes only. Always check the actual product label in your possession for the most accurate ingredient information due to product changes or upgrades that may not yet be reflected on our web site.
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I am a 22 year-old female who started Retin-A Micro gel (tretinoin) in September 2015 for moderate acne. It is now mid December and my skin is nearly perfect aside from hyperpigmentation (which will go away over time). No more acne, no more under-the-skin bumps. This medication works if you use it correctly and religiously. When I started Retin-A, I applied it twice a week for three weeks, then three times a week for another three weeks, etc., allowing my skin to adjust to the medication. This is important to do because this medicine can cause a lot of peeling, redness and irritation for the first month or two. You can reduce those problems by starting yourself on the medication slowly. Application of this medicine is also important. Follow the exact instructions in the provided pamphlet and apply a pea-sized amount to your forehead, cheeks and chin. A little goes a long way. Only apply this before bedtime. It can make your skin very sensitive to the sun so always apply sunscreen in the morning before going about your day. I recommend Cera Vae AM Facial Lotion with SPF 30. Tretinoin is the only acne treatment that targets all causes of acne and it is commonly used with antibiotics which can be prescribed by your dermatologist. I have been taking doxycyline since August 2015 and it helped reduce inflammation when I experienced bad breakouts. I believe it was beneficial for me to decide to start the antibiotic one month before I began tretinoin because it allowed the medicine to build up in my system first. Side effects of the antibiotic were minimal. I only experienced a slight upset stomach if I took the pill without food and water.
To get the amazing results you want, you must be dedicated. This is a very challenging process and it will test your patience. For the first two and a half months on tretinoin I experienced terrible breakouts because my skin was purging. There was a lot of acne that I didn't even know was there that needed to be brought to the surface. It was incredibly difficult to deal with this mentally and emotionally, however, had I not decided to go through with the treatment plan I would still be dealing with acne. It is best to push through and tell yourself that you are taking a step in the right direction and being proactive about your skin condition. A lot of people stop treatment in the first month or two because they are not seeing quick results or they are unhappy with the side effects they are experiencing such as extreme dryness / peeling, sensitive, red skin and worsening acne. If you are on this treatment plan and see that your acne is getting so much worse, this is a good sign. It means the medicine is working and your skin is purging. It's a long waiting game and depending on your acne / skin-type and it could take anywhere between 3-7 months to see results. I was fortunate enough to be cleared in 12 weeks. I would encourage anyone who is genuinely interested in this treatment plan to also ask your dermatologist for an antibiotic to help fight the instant breakouts.
Since Day 1 I have religiously followed this routine:
Morning - Wash skin with Cetaphil, apply LUSH Tea Tree toner, follow up with Cera Vae AM lotion with SPF, apply another layer of regular Cera Vae moisturizer for extra hydration.
Night - Wash skin with Cetaphil, apply LUSH Tea Tree toner, follow up with Cera Vae PM lotion, apply another layer of regular Cera Vae moisturizer for extra hydration, set timer for 30 minutes, then apply tretinoin.
It is important to always wait at least 20-30 minutes to apply tretinoin. Your skin needs to be dry for the medication to absorb. The products I have listed above are the best options to use for this treatment because your skin is already going to be sensitive on this medicine. It would be too irritating for the skin to use any acne washes such as Neutrogena, Clean & Clear, etc. Quit them all together - it helps more than you realize. I found LUSH's Tea Tree toner and fell in love with it because it's so hydrating. It helps even out your skin tone and the tea tree is beneficial for fighting redness and excess oil. This product is 100% natural and vegan.
I wanted to write a genuine, real review on Acne.org because throughout my acne struggles I have visited this website many times reading endless reviews and looking for the best solution, hoping I was on the right treatment plan. I hope this medication works for anyone who is truly dedicated to clearing their skin. It brought back my confidence and self-esteem and made me a much happier person. If you find that tretinoin was a solution for you, never stop using it. Quitting the medicine could allow your acne to return so stick to a routine!
The following statements are my experiences and my opinions.
I was prescribed Tretinoin after a topical antibiotic worked for a while and then decreased in effectiveness. Also, I was prescribed an oral antibiotic along with staying with the same the topical antibiotic. After about a month, my face broke out worse than it ever had before and I was severely dry and had irritation. This caused permanent scarring and my face looked like it was on fire and somebody put it out with a brick. I underwent several chemical peels around this time and completely switched prescriptions. After becoming completely disillusioned with dermatology, I switched to a more natural and superior product.
Acne sucks we all know that, you feel ashamed of yourself, you can't look at people's eyes and ugh it's hard, I know.
This product WILL cure you. In two weeks, three, or even months, but it will trust me. It just depends on your skin.
Well my skin is 40% cured in the last two days in the FIRST WEEK! the first five days my face peeled alot, it was red i mean, too red. but it's not as bad as it sounds, i handled it fine, and you will too! yes, i broke out, but so what? we always break out, but this time you will break out for a reason, to clear your skin, consider it as process, believe me i was too afraid to use it, but i'm so gad i did! just take it easy and go for it! PLEASE! IT WILL WORK!
i tried 5 month long period before, it worked for my back and chest acne (not completely gone, really more better than before), but it was partly good on my face. especially around my chin and nose area it did nothing. so i ended for my face. then two weeks ago, i decided to use it again (now with vaseline for moisturising and imex soap for cleaning). today i have two deep and persistent ones and a couple of smaller. everybody knows that tretinoin can develope plenty of them at the first weeks of the treatment (i experienced before). i think if this treatment is working for my body, it can work on my face as well. maybe it needs longer time. i hope.
WEEK 3: i decided to use tretinoin with clindoxyl for only initial breakouts because it helps to heal persistent and deep acne faster. 2 more huge and deeper breakouts in this week and so far the total number is 5 huge/deeper (3 gone), lots of (8-10 maybe more) smaller (all of them around my chin area and left side of my nose -right side no problem). the smallers are ok, they don't disturb me, nobody notices. the initial breakouts started with the second week. a little bit peeling and no redness so far because of vaselin. i use tretinoin (%0.1) every other night.
i will try to write the stiuation every week.
WEEK 4: this week i have no more huge and deep acne. they have been nearly cured, some dark areas remained. three medium size (papules) around my chin and nose and a couple of smaller acnes recently. i hope initial breakouts have just started to calm down. within next weeks i will see the first result i hope. i'm still using clindoxyl gel but not everyday. there have been lots of minor, non-infectious white spots which come to surface since the treatment began.
WEEK 5: i had 3 medium-size and 5-6 small-size acnes in this 5th week of tretinoin treatment with vaselin and clindoxyl gel. as i said before, i'm using clindoxyl for only breakouts for quick results. no more deep and huge breakouts in this week as well. but my skin remains uneven after breakouts. a little bit peeling no redness.
note: when i edit, helpful votes disappear ;)
WEEK 6: only one medium size pimple and lots of fast-growing small white heads around my bottom lip and nose (maybe 12-14 totally). sizes are decreasing which is good but breakouts are increasing so far. at the same time there are lots of non-infectious white spots around my chin, the most problematic part. uneven skin appearance is not good at all, some darker spots, pimples...
WEEK 7: medium size pimples (5-6) around chin and more small size white heads. nothing better.
WEEK 8: last week i was in holiday and i discovered that it is better to use bepanthen plus cream with tretinoin and vaseline. it is good for redness and also pimples themselves. the pimples become less visible. so this week it was a bit more better than last week. less medium size pimples and white heads, but not a big difference.
WEEK 9: only one middle-size and a deep cystic one in the right side of face, close to my ear but it is hardly noticable because it is really deep. i think this is not related to tretinoin because i didn't use it in this area regularly. except this, this week was relatively better.
WEEK 10: best week ever! no new huge or medium-size acnes, just some tiny whiteheads. i hope this is not temporary.
WEEK 11: better than last week! just a few whiteheads...
WEEK 12: a few whiteheads, one bigger (not too big) deep but hardly noticeable acne around my chin.
WEEK 13-14: no new bigger acne, just a few whiteheads and i completly quited using vaseline. BEPANTHEN PLUS is the best for acne problem and also good for moistrizing.
I have struggled with acne as an adult for years. At first I thought I could treat it myself however it quickly became evident I was loosing the battle. My dermatologist initially prescribed me onexton, which helped at first but then seemed to stop. When she prescribed me retin A I was nervous because I had read about the "purge" that users experienced. Retin A has been a miracle! I did not experience a purge and although it makes my skin dry, it has cleared my acne completely!!!
So ive been using 0.1 tretinoin for just over two years and my skin, my confidence, as well as my relationship with my skin (and myself) has changed so much. Now instead of getting panic attacks near mirrors and obsessively checking my skin, I love staring at my smooth complexion and admiring just how much better it gets every day.
This was not the case when i first began my treatment as many of you know the purging stage happens at around the first few weeks/months of daily use and I was still very emotionally vulnerable and sensitive about my skin problem so it was a difficult time seeing my skin go from problematic to lots of clogged pores unplugging themselves all at once all whilst going to school and interacting with people. There was no hiding my skin problem anymore as concealers only made my dry bumpy and healing skin look worse and redness persisted as my skin tried to adjust to this new irritant routine.
At that point I knew there was no going back and i continued to use retin a daily slowly incorporating a non irritating moisturizer into my night time routine as my skin needed it and it didnt slow the process but helped my skin heal quicker. I find paraffin/petrolatum based creams for very dry and sensitive skin are best as they deeply moisturize, arent irritating and help remove flakes.
Retin a has taught be to be patient with my skin as before I would scrub and squeeze the hell out of it and for what? Temporary feeling of gratification which resulted in superficial scarring. With retin a i learned to give my skin time to heal and clear itself naturally and I havent gotten a scar since. I am much MUCH less compulsive about my appearance now than i was and I have also grown to be OKAY with whenever i do get acne, because i know it wont harm me. its normal, its only temporary and most of all doesnt define me as a person. <--This was not how i felt before i began my treatment, it took about 7 months for me to adjust to the routine and develop the patience and discipline required to have and maintain the baby soft baby smooth skin i have now.
I had acne in highschool and it cleared my sophomore year of college, via differn gel (accutane helped to clear me in hs). After the accutane i was pretty clear and really didnt do much to fight the acne. It eventually went away 100 percent with differin. when i was 25 I noticed i was developing a few pimple here and there which blew up into full blown acne. I tried over the counter BP gel and this absolutely made my skin worse. I think my skin is too sensitive for bp. After this i tried doxycycline and ziana for my face. the ziana definitely gave me an initial breakout pretty bad, it was very hard to get through. After a month of that i swithched to bactrim and retin a micro .08. Immediately i noticed a difference in my skin (2 days). the bactrim made my skin look almost tan and it definitely helped dry out pimples. I retin a was much better on my skin than ziana which gave me a sticky feel. Retin a micro made my face feel smooth the next day, although there was some sensitivity the next day it was nothing compared to 10 percent BP. After 2 months on this regimen i can say that i am 100 percent clear. i give it 4 stars bc the initial breakout is vey difficult.
My thoughts on acne:
Acne is a seriously challenging monster to battle, don't let anyone convince you that just because it is common that it isn't serious. I dont know if I will ever go through anything as traumatic as acne. I've told a friend before that i would trade a hand or foot to have clear skin and i'm sure some of you out there would do the same. Acne is on your face everyday and in the way of every face to face interaction you have. A friend of mine from high school just got in a car wreck and is having facial reconstructing surgery and i'm sure she will be dealing with a similar challenge as an acne sufferer goes through. The reclusiveness, the tears and anger at her situation. She will atleast have one thing an acne suffer doesn't have, she will have the full compassion and understanding of all of her friends and family. Because acne is so common, acne, even server forms often get down played and or ignored by our friends and family. Also people will even blame our acne on us being unsanitary or not properly washing our face like 'they' do. as acne sufferers we are traped in this tug of war between being a victim and being at fault. We are told it is normal and nothing to worry about, but we see the scars forming and we see the picture of those with more serious acne. I can say i understand how confusing it is to be in this living hell.
Just know you aren't alone, and you can get 100 percent better. And for now know that people will love you,and jesus will love all the same. Maybe we go through these events in our lives and can create positive outcomes from them. Maybe we will be that inspiration for someone who is on the verge of suicide and they see your positive outlook despite having acne and decide not to take their lives. just know we live and a broken world with car wrecks and acne and evil all around us but we can have peace and love and satisfaction with jesus in our hearts. And ironically our struggles are our best tool to spread the love we find to others.
However.... does work, to a certain extent. I find the 3 month rule bullsh*t. The retin-a 0.05 only started to show signs of improvement at the end of june (i started in february, 5.5 months ish) and that was only after a HORRENDOUS belated purging phase. I had a lottos under the skin bumps prior to retin-a, thus why i got it, and since then i only have a few on my face and nothing else, I'm not 100% clear but around 80%. The under the skin bumps only went away around month 5 though, so be patient. Use sunscreen.
I've only done one round of Retin A. Fortunately I did it when the only thing I had to do was stay home and hide for a week and a half. Yes, you will peel like you have never peeled before. If you're someone who doesn't have the luxury of getting to stay home and hide, I would recommend something else. BUT, I have also found that If i put a tiny bit in with my nightly moisturizer it works pretty well in maintaining clear skin once the "uglies" are over. If you really want clear skin, just bite the bullet for a week or two, and make sure you DON'T OVERDO IT. It's worth it in the end.
I'm writing this review because reading reviews of retin-a, the side effects and the trials and tribulations helped me stick at it & get where I am today.
Retin-a does work but yes, as everyone else says, it takes a serious commitment. I have been using it for just over 4 months and I am finally starting to see the results I want.
My face was a state when I first started using it. I actually had folliculitus on my forehead and medium acne around my chin, but it just never got better. Everytime a spot started to go away, another one would come up. I decided to buy retin-a (off prescription and online - obviously I don't recommend this - you should probably see a dermatologist!) after reading about how it could help.
For the first 8-10 weeks of using retin-a my face was pretty much a mess. Spots everywhere - skin erupting where it wouldn't usually erupt (cheeks), dryness, flakiness, redness, sensitivity etc etc. It was bad and I felt very self-conscious a lot of the time.
Where as my face was relatively oily before, it was now super dry, so I had to go out and by all new skincare, makeup products. I used cerave moisturisers, and around week 4 ish I came up with a system to keep the crazy peeling at bay.
Step 1: Wash face (using oil to remove makeup, then tea tree soap)
Step 2: Apply rich moisturiser all over (I used a caudalie one)
Step 3: After 20 minutes apply retin-a
Step 4: After another 20 minutes apply cerave night moisturiser
I did this for up until about week 12, which was when my skin finally to recover from the crazy dryness and I started to see the results I wanted.
At this point I had A LOT of hyperpigmentation - all the scars from my breakouts over the last 3 months were so red, I also have pockmarks from some of the really bad spots, but not many. And now retin-a is taking care of both of those.
Now my regimen is:
Step 1: Wash face with an oil - either jojoba or hemp right now (I haven't yet found any other cleanser that works for my skin)
Step 2: Let dry and apply moisturiser to only parts of skin that are very dry (not very many - usually around lips)
Step 3: Apply retin-a after 20 mins
In the morning, I wash face with water usually and then every other day I am using a 5% glycolic acid treatment to help with skin renewal and removal of dead skin cells.
Yes my skin is still dry and I do still get spots - because it is hormonal - but overall I am very happy with the results. The scars are fading, my pores are clearer and my skin is smooth. It has also helped a bit with fine lines.
I will continue using it, and I would encourage others, unless they have an allergic reaction to it, to stay the course for 12 weeks or longer to actually see any real improvement.
Hope that's helpful!