Retinol and Retin-A (Tretinoin) – what’s the difference?
What is the difference between Retinol and Retin-A (or any form of Tretinoin)? I get this question a lot.
Both Retinol and Retin-A are a form of Vitamin A. Retinol is the natural form of Vitamin A and Retin-A is derived from retinoic acid, a synthetic derivative of vitamin A.
Retin-A is only available by prescription and it’s very strong. The majority of people who use Retin-A experience a lot of irritation from it in the form of redness, peeling dye and flaky skin.
Retinol is an over the counter (OTC) ingredient. It’s not as strong as Retin-A. Our All-Trans Retinol is encapsulated in liposomes and time released which is why even at 2.0%, it will not irritate your skin.
Which one works better? In the long run, retinol works better. I’m sure all of you Retin-A users are not going to agree with me. They work much the same as far as what results you can expect but Retin-A will have more dramatic results – but for how long? Here’s the thing, because of Retin-A’s aggressiveness, 20 years from now, your skin would have fared better if you used Retinol. Doctors all over the country that have been prescribing Retin-A to their patients for years are now seeing the cumulative results of using it over time and it’s not so pretty. They’re finding that their older patients who never used Retin-A have younger looking skin that their patients who have been using Retin-A for a long period. So if you use Retin-A, I would make it short term and be sure to slater on the sunscreen.
See also: Anti-Aging Products