I started using tretinoin in mid-April. I used it until a week before I went to the beach and the week I was there. Sun exposure can damage your skin when you use tretinoin and I wanted to avoid that. You can learn more by reading Tretinoin (Retin A) and Tretinoin / Retin-A Cheat Sheet. I discussed my initial experience in Starting Tretinoin. If you are interested in following my journey after returning from vacation you can do that here, here, here, and here.
My skin is basically normal in the cooler months. When it gets really cold and dry outside my gets more dry. In the warm weather, it is combo/normal and I need to use mattifying products to reduce the shine. I have fine lines and wrinkles with several areas of hyperpigmentation.
About midway through month 5 I finally went to daily use. The flaking was down to just an occasional, mild annoyance. I had planned to skip a day of use to be able to use products with alpha hydroxy acids. I feel like they are an important part of skincare and want to include them in my routine but only did this for 1 of the weeks in the month.
I also made some changes to my morning and night skincare routines. I finished up some of my products and wanted to try some samples and products that I had on hand. When I finished one of my nighttime moisturizers from my P.M. Skincare Routine I started on Clinique Turnaround Overnight Revitalizing Moisturizer. This is what I was using last year and I liked it. I did not realize that it has Salicylic Acid which is a Beta Hydroxy Acid.
I also changed my morning moisturizer after finishing up what I had been using. You can see what I was using in A.M. Skincare Routine – Fall. Some of my changes are related to it getting colder and needing more hydrating and gentle products. I started using a sample size of Renewed Hope in a Jar moisturizer. I did not realize that it contained Alpha Hydroxy Acids.
All of the added hydroxy acids were a bit much. I noticed some initial stinging on my face. I dealt with that by cutting back on how often I was using my Clarisonic Mia. I used more hydrating masks to keep my skin from getting too dry. I did notice a tiny bit of flaking but nothing major.
My face adjusted pretty well but not my neck and chest! The combination of going to daily tretinoin use and adding a beta and alpha hydroxy acid was just too much. My neck and chest stung when I applied anything and looked red and irritated. I started to see heavy flaking and peeling by the end of this month. I knew I needed to make changes and I will discuss those in my month 6 post.
I am seeing changes in my skin after the past 5 moths + the 3 months before my 2-week break. My skin looks more luminous. I feel like the lines under my eyes are not as obvious and my skin is so soft feeling. My skin feels firmer and looks tighter. I am more than satisfied with what tretinoin is doing for my skin.
Do you use tretinoin? Is it working for you? Have you been able to incorporate hydroxy acids?
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