Many of my Dallas dermatology patients have heard about topical retinoids in cosmetic magazines or from friends and are interested in learning more about the use of the popular products. Retinoids are very beneficial in treating the cosmetic imperfections that come with aging, particularly in smoothing fine lines and fading dark spots. Retinoids slough off dead skin cells and stimulate new cell growth.
Retinoids work similarly to a light chemical peel. As the layers of the dermis are sloughed off, fine lines are smoothed away, and age spots or sun-damaged dark spots fade. Additionally, retinoids help patients with minor adult acne by preventing breakouts and by removing the dead skin cells that clog pores. The results are brighter, smoother, softer, and more evenly toned skin, creating a more youthful and refreshed appearance.
Careful Skin Care
While retinoids come with a lot of benefits, it’s important for patients to remember that they are powerful products that need to be used with care. As the layers of dead skin are removed, so is the skin’s natural protection from harmful UV exposure. Because the skin is more vulnerable, it’s critical for patients to wear sunscreen. Retinoids are vitamin A derivatives and can cause dryness and peeling. It’s normal to want to treat any dryness by using a facial moisturizer, but it’s important to make sure that your moisturizer and other skincare products don’t contain additional retinoids, because overuse can cause skin sensitivity and burning.
To find out whether your skin can benefit from these highly effective topical agents, make sure you consult with a board-certified dermatologist.