Wednesday 17th April 2024
Durbar Marg, Kathmandu

When it comes to tackling acne breakouts and smoothing out the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, few skincare ingredients have as much pedigree as tretinoin. But what is it exactly and how does it work? To find out we spoke to dermatologists and WH’s resident skincare expert, Dr Elif Benar.

‘Tretinoin is topical retinoic acid which helps to treat acne, signs of ageing and pigmentation, and improves skin tone, elasticity and texture,’ explains dermatologist Alicia Zirwassy. It’s also thought to partly reverse the damage caused by sun exposure, and increase collagen production – making your skin firmer and more elastic.

In terms of reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, tretinoin speeds up the process of skin cell renewal by cleansing dead skin cells. This’skin purging’ can appear worse at first, but this is actually a good thing as it uncovers and treats any dormant breakouts. Then fresh new skin cells can grow and replace the old ones, improving the look of your complexion.

To get the best results, it’s important to use tretinoin regularly and correctly. This means avoiding over exfoliating with any other products (so no glycolic, lactic or salicylic acids), and following your doctor’s usage instructions to the letter. It’s also a good idea to use a gentle moisturiser that’s formulated for sensitive skin as this can help reduce any initial irritation and help the medication penetrate the deeper layers of your skin.

It’s also a good idea to wear a high SPF whilst using tretinoin as it makes your skin very sensitive to sunlight. And you shouldn’t use it if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or trying to conceive as it can cause harm to the baby. tretinoin uk

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