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Retinoid and Frequently Answered Questions


For a long time, many patients have asked me about using vitamin A for skincare. In an attempt to provide a deeper understanding, I have summarized some key points.

Which type of vitamin A is most effective for the skin? Tretinoin, also known as vitamin A acid, is the most effective medication in the vitamin A category. However, it is a prescription drug and must be prescribed by a doctor. Research shows that a concentration of 0.05% or higher is required for clinical effectiveness. Other vitamin A products have lower side effects and lower potency.

What are the side effects of vitamin A products? The skin may become dry, flaky, and red. The higher the concentration, the greater the side effects, but the effectiveness is also correspondingly better. After six weeks of continuous use, the skin begins to adapt, and dryness, flaking, and redness will decrease.

What are the effects of continuous use? It can improve skin aging issues such as fine lines, pigmentation, dullness, and collagen loss. Research shows that it can increase collagen proliferation and speed up metabolism.

How long do you need to use it continuously to see results? Generally, it takes about three months of continuous use to see results, and the best results are seen after six to nine months of use.

How long can you use it for since the effects are so good? There is no data to support permanent use, and research shows that the longest period of use is six years. However, there is no evidence of side effects from long-term use. It is generally recommended to reduce the concentration or dosage for maintenance therapy.

If you stop using it, will your skin get worse? If you stop using vitamin A products, your skin will gradually return to its original state and will not be worse than before.

Can vitamin A be combined with other treatments? Research shows that after using tretinoin, other treatments such as chemical peels, dermabrasion, and laser rejuvenation can speed up recovery time and reduce the chance of pigmentation. Therefore, I usually recommend that patients at high risk of pigmentation undergo other treatments after using tretinoin for a period of time.

These are all common questions, but if you have other questions, please consult your doctor!