Table of Content:
Are tretinoin and Retin-A the same? | Are tretinoin and Retin-A Micro the same? | What is the difference between tretinoin and retinol? | What conditions can you treat with tretinoin? | How to get a prescription? | Are there similar medications to tretinoin?
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So, is there a difference between tretinoin and Retin A?
The short answer is no, tretinoin and Retin A are the exact same product. The only difference relies on the fact that tretinoin is the active ingredient in the medication commercially known as Retin A, which is manufactured by several pharmaceutical companies such as: Bausch Health, Johnson and Johnson and Valeant Pharmaceuticals.
Tretinoin is also the active ingredient in the medications commercially known as Refissa, Renova and Altreno.
Is there a difference between Retin-A and Retin-A Micro?
Yes, there is a slight difference between Retin A and Retin A Micro which relies on the formulation.
Tretinoin (Retin-A) is available in various formulations, including creams and gels that come in different strengths.
Retin-A Micro (Tretinoin microsphere gel)
Retin-A Micro, on the other hand, is a specific formulation of tretinoin in a microsphere gel. The microsphere technology allows for a slower release of tretinoin into the skin over time, which can result in reduced irritation compared to some other tretinoin formulations. Retin-A Micro can provide the benefits of tretinoin with potentially fewer side effects.
This can be particularly beneficial for individuals with sensitive or easily irritated skin, but the choice between these two products may depend on individual skin type, tolerance, and the specific condition being treated, and it is best made in consultation with a healthcare provider or dermatologist.
Ok, so what is tretinoin?
Tretinoin is FDA-approved for the topical treatment of acne vulgaris, making it a valuable tool in managing mild, moderate, and severe cases of acne. Tretinoin has also been approved for the treatment of photoaging (including fine facial wrinkles), facial skin roughness, and hyperpigmentation (commonly referred to as ‘sun spots’). This versatility highlights its effectiveness in improving skin quality and appearance, addressing both medical and cosmetic concerns related to skin health1.
To learn more in depth about tretinoin, read the Tretinoin Patient Guide by board-certified dermatologist Dr. Mohta.
But what about retinol, is it the same thing as tretinoin and Retin A?
No, tretinoin (and Retin A) are not the same thing as retinol. Both tretinoin and retinol are retinoids but they have very different properties and uses in skin care. And although retinol and tretinoin come in many different strengths, retinol can be bought over the counter, while you need a doctor’s prescription to get tretinoin.
Can tretinoin be combined with other medications to improve results?
Yes, tretinoin can be combined with many different medications depending on the results you wish to obtain. Here is a list of common tretinoin combinations for different uses:
How can I get a prescription for tretinoin?
You can have a photo consultation with a virtual dermatologist for $59.After the consultation, which usually takes 1-2 days to get an answer, you will receive a customized prescription that is adequate for your skin problem..
Request a tretinoin prescription for acne or anti-aging!
How often should I apply tretinoin on my skin?
In the beginning, you should only apply tretinoin two to three times per week and increase slowly. Read our Dermatologist Guide on How to use tretinoin.
How long does tretinoin take to work?
It depends on how often you apply it, but you will be able to see visible results after three months. Read our Weekly progress: How long does it take for tretinoin to work?
Are there other similar medications to tretinoin and Retin A?
Yes, there a few similar prescription retinoids that work similarly to tretinoin but that have slightly different properties and uses:
Adapalene (also known as Differin) is a topical medication commonly used to treat acne. It belongs to the retinoid class of drugs and works by promoting skin cell turnover, preventing the formation of acne lesions, and reducing inflammation2. Adapalene is available in various formulations, such as gels and creams, and is applied directly to the skin to help manage acne and improve skin texture.
Tazarotene (also known as Arazlo lotion or Fabior foam) is a topical medication used primarily to treat acne3, psoriasis4 and photoaging5. It belongs to the retinoid class of drugs and works by promoting skin cell turnover and reducing inflammation. Tazarotene is available in gel or cream formulations and is applied directly to the affected skin areas to improve skin health and manage specific dermatological conditions.
Trifarotene (also known as Aklief) is a topical medication used for the treatment of acne and melasma6. It is a retinoid, specifically designed to target and improve skin conditions associated with acne, such as clogged pores and inflammation. Trifarotene comes in a cream formulation and is applied directly to the affected skin areas to help manage and clear acne lesions.
Although tretinoin and Retin-A are the same product per se, you can find a wide variety of tretinoin formulas that are widely available or available through compounding pharmacies. Your virtual independent dermatologist will guide you through the different options available and will make sure you get the best treatment for your skin problem.
Request a tretinoin prescription for acne or anti-aging!