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James Lander

Combining Retin-A and Azelaic acid (finacea,Skinoren,Azelex)?

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Hi everyone!

Since I am new to this board I have also added my full skin care routine to the end of this post. And would appreciate any body which has had any experience with combining Azelaic acid (Skinoren, Finacea, Azelex) with Retin-A.

Here is my story; I have been to dermatologist before and they have prescribed me loads of things for my terrible acne and with a lot of experience I now self prescribe because I am able to get prescription topical medications OTC in my country for almost one 5th the price of UK & US. I have been on many oral antibiotics which were prescribed by dermatologists which I was not a big fan of, because of the many side effects and having to jump from antibiotic to antibiotic every 6 months so instead I decided to take the topical route.

So basically I use Retin-A 0.025 gel and Topical erythromycin which seem to keep my skin 85-90% clear but I usually get 1-2 cysts per week which will disapear quite quickly but will leave behind terrible post-inflammatory hyper pigmentation and red marks which can take months to fade.

So my question is, is it possible to combine Azelaic acid and Retin-A? I have heard of many people who have used them in combination ie. Azelaic acid in the am and Retin-A in the pm, but is it possible to use both Retin-A and Azelaic acid at night? and if so which should I apply first and how long should I wait in between?

Also I can only get Azelaic acid in 20% cream form (Skinoren) which is not meant to be as effective as finacea 15% gel, is this true?

I was also thinking of ramping up the 0.025% Retin-A to 0.05 because I find that it is starting to become less effective over time but sadly 0.05% is not available in gel, but instead only in cream and I am scared to use it because I have heard that the cream can actually make acne worse because it contains a comodogenic ingredient called Isopropyl myristate. So if you have any advice on this it would also be very helpful. Also I wanted to purchase Retin-A micro because it is less irritating and more effective but it is not available. The only things available are Retin-A gel 0.025 & 0.01% and Retin-A cream 0.025%,0.05%,0.1%.

Also as mentioned this is my everyday skincare routine for my oily skin and moderately severe acne;

Morning

-Wash face with Zeniac gentle cleanser (very mild and gentle cleanser with Zinc)

-Wait 5-10 mins and apply topical erythromycin solution

-Wait 20 mins and then apply moisturizer with SPF 30

-Then after 10 mins I apply Dermalogica clearing mattifier (which is very pricey but gives you a lovely smooth matte finish, but it only last for 3 hours which absolutely sucks so if anyone can recommend a very good mattifier which goes on clear? because I am a guy and don't want to wear any makeup, that would be excellent)

During the day I would blot my face every 2-3 hours with Clean & Clear blotting sheets just to get all the oil off my face.

Night

-Wash face with Zeniac gentle cleanser

-Wait 30mins and then apply a very small amount of Retin-A 0.025% gel to my face

-Wait 15-20 mins and then apply cetaphil moisturizing lotion all over my face

-Also I alway cover my pillows with a towel so I don't get my pillow case dirty and full of the creams.

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