The #1 anti-aging treatment is a prescription retinoid. Topical retinoids boost cell turnover to fight fine lines. It baffles me, on a daily basis, the number of people I know that do not understand its importance. Well okay, it seems simple to me. Prior to visiting my dermatologist, I guess I would have to admit I didn’t quite understand the power of a retinoid. However, I must point out that I certainly knew the importance of visiting a dermatologist once I hit 30. Since then, it has become part of my annual or semi-annual routine for me. My skin has never looked better, brighter or clearer. Now in my late 30s, wrinkles are my worst enemy! I will do everything humanly possible to treat wrinkles while preventing new wrinkles from forming (if that is actually possible).

Using a retinoid:

You will apply your retinoid once a day, at night, 10 minutes after you have cleansed and moisturized your skin. It’s important, especially if you have dry skin, to let your night time moisturizer sink into your skin prior to applying a retinoid. If your skin can handle it, you can apply the retinoid before your moisturizer. Please note: if you are a beginner, go easy. Differin cream seems to be a good starting point for most (as was for me with sensitive skin and acne rosacea). You should use once every third day to see how your skin adjusts to the product before applying daily. If you experience any reactions, please consult your dermatologist. Within 6 months to a year, you may be able to graduate to the Differin gel, which is about the same strength as Retin-A Microgel (I switch up between these two). If your dermatologist confirms that your skin cannot handle a retinoid, ask for other prescription recommendations.

Buyer beware

It kills me when I hear “retinol products aren’t really necessary” from skin consultants (I won’t mention names). About 6 months ago, I was shopping with my sister, who is one year older than I and completely clueless to proper skin care. We went into a self-titled skin/beauty store to pick up an antioxidant for her. The skin consultants, both in their mid-twenties, had the gull to say that retinol products aren’t really necessary. Not really necessary….blasphemy! The moral here, your dermatologist knows best.

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