When retinol first exploded onto the skincare scene it was like the Marmite of beauty – some hailed its effective results and were happy to put up with the dry, irritated skin that accompanied it; others hated it and ran back to their old products. However, a few years later and you can’t open a magazine or scroll through Instagram without seeing a retinol-related article or advert claiming it reduces fine lines, erases dark spots and corrects hyperpigmentation. But retinol is just the tip of the iceberg, it’s actually a powerful big sister called tretinoin that’s even more effective and has been hailed as the best cream for wrinkles.
When it comes to wrinkles, tretinoin is one of the most effective treatments available, with a range of proven benefits including increasing cell turnover and boosting collagen production. It also helps to soften and flatten raised scars and is a key ingredient in many anti-ageing skincare treatments. It’s also the best product for treating blemishes and clearing acne scars.
While there are some retinol-containing products that claim to improve skin firmness, tretinoin is the only one to have been clinically proven to significantly reduce lines and wrinkles. It works by accelerating cell turnover, reducing hyperpigmentation and promoting the growth of new blood vessels. It’s also been shown to boost collagen production, which in turn softens and smooths the appearance of the skin, making it look younger.
The main reason it’s so effective is that it’s a form of Vitamin A, which has been linked to the skin’s regenerative and healing properties. In fact, tretinoin was originally developed as a treatment for inflammatory skin conditions such as acne and eczema and is one of the most commonly prescribed dermatological drugs in the world.
It’s important to note that tretinoin should be used in strict compliance with the instructions provided by your doctor, and only on clean, dry skin. If you apply it to wet skin, it can irritate it and cause peeling. It is also advisable to use a rich moisturiser alongside it to prevent your skin becoming dehydrated. If you notice any negative side effects, contact your doctor immediately as it may be a sign that the treatment is not working for you.
Tretinoin is a prescription-only product and can only be purchased online at The Online Clinic after booking a virtual consultation with one of our doctors. They will assess your condition and prescribe the correct frequency and strength of tretinoin cream for you. Most people start with a 0.05 cream and work up to a higher strength and frequency, but this is completely personalised to your needs.
It’s also worth remembering that tretinoin will increase your sensitivity to sunlight and should be avoided entirely if you’re planning on sunbathing or getting a tan. If you do expose your skin to the sun, make sure you use high SPF protection, wear a hat and cover any areas of exposed skin with protective clothing to avoid burning or peeling. tretinoin cream uk