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What is Retinol Cream?

Retinol can help reduce wrinkles and shrink pores.
Retinol, which helps makes skin look younger, is found in many antiaging creams and lotions.
Retinol is used as a topical acne treatment.
Virtually everyone should use a sunscreen that offers as high a sun protection factor (SPF) as possible.
A diagram of younger and older skin showing the decrease in collagen in older skin. Retinol can help boost collagen production.
Retinol creams can help reduce the appearance of sun damage.
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  • Written By: K T Solis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 02 December 2014
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Retinol cream is a topical cream used as a skin care product. The medicine contains Vitamin A and can treat serious skin ailments such as acne. It can also be used to counteract the effects of aging. Since this cream is such a strong medication, it is usually only prescribed by a dermatologist or doctor. Creams that can be bought without a prescription usually do not work as well as prescription medication.

Retinol cream increases the production of cells in the top layer of skin, helping to rejuvenate the skin. As a result, the skin gradually looks younger in appearance. The cream also causes more collagen production, making the skin appear plumper. It may also reduce pigmentation issues that stem from sun damage.

A medicine like retinol cream may cause reactions in some people. After using the cream, some patients may experience flaky, red skin. This will usually occur when a patient uses prescription strength retinol cream and not an over-the-counter version. No matter which medication strength a person uses, the skin will be sensitive to light. For this reason, it's important to wear sunscreen each day in order to protect the skin from the sun.

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If someone has sensitive skin, they should use retinol-based cream on a gradual basis, applying it every three days. Once the skin has grown accustomed to the retinol, the cream can be applied each night. Those with sensitive skin may still suffer from peeling skin, burning, and stinging. If this occurs for more than two days, discontinue use.

In order to eliminate stinging, apply the cream to the area 30 minutes after washing the skin. Only apply a small amount to the areas that need to be treated and avoid applying it near the eyes or mouth. Used over time, retinol cream can eliminate acne, alleviate sun damage, and reduce wrinkles. It makes the skin look smoother and its pores appear smaller. In short, the cream can contribute to a younger, fresher appearance.

Despite the positive effects of retinol cream, people concerned with achieving healthy skin should take steps to nourish it through internal methods as well. For example, eating a balanced diet of fruits and vegetables helps the skin receive valuable nutrients. Strive to get at least eight hours of sleep each night in order to feel rested. Drink plenty of water to eliminate toxins from the body and contribute to healthy skin. By taking the time to effectively care for the skin both internally and externally, a person can enjoy healthy, smooth skin that will last for years to come.

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Discuss this Article

anon955424
Post 8

Retinol is very mild, and can be found in popular moisturizers and creams that are over the counter, and doesn't need a doctor's prescription. It's Retin A that is very harsh and need a prescription. I'm not sure what this article meant.

anon305404
Post 7

Will retinol get rid of freckles on the face?

anon287633
Post 6

What is the difference between stem cell cream, retinol and collagen?

anon279215
Post 5

Can I use retinol under my make up?

anon126207
Post 4

I use Retinol Cream prescribed by my doctor and it's absolutely wonderful for wrinkles and smooth skin. I'm 41 and people think I'm in my late 20's all the time.

There are some things you have to be careful of, though. If you have sensitive skin, start out with the .05 first. Only apply an amount the size of a pea. Always wear sunscreen. You can seriously burn your skin in regular sunlight.

If you wear makeup daily, a great one to wear that is non-greasy is Neutrogena- Healthy Defensive-liquid moisturizer-SPF 50. This is a really daily moisturizer.

Also, be careful to never put the Retinol around your eyes or mouth. Your mouth will become cracked and it will appear like you have cold sores. Not pretty! The first few weeks, you will experience some burning and redness, tightening and peeling. It may be a little uncomfortable and annoying with the peeling but after you get through those few hurdles, it's all worth it.

googie98
Post 3

@cmsmith10: It is true that retinol cream, with its high doses of Vitamin A, is a great wrinkle-fighter. However, it should be used carefully. It can dry your skin out after a while. Moisturize your skin regularly when using retinol. Apply extra moisturizer after you have used your retinol cream. Although it is good to use for sun exposure, it can also lead to sun sensitivity.

alex94
Post 2

Always be sure that you are not pregnant if planning to use retinol cream on a regular basis. It contains a lot of Vitamin A and can harm an unborn baby.

cmsmith10
Post 1

Retinol cream is great for treating sun damage. I also use it daily to diminish the signs of aging. My dermatologist told me that it works underneath the skin’s surface so it is helpful in fixing deep wrinkles. I used it for about five weeks and started noticing results. My complexion looks much better and my skin is firmer and a lot softer.

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