Tretinoin is the buzzy skincare ingredient that’s causing a stir in Gen-z’s favourite app TikTok, with the topical treatment popping up for acne, fine lines and hyperpigmentation. But before you jump on the tretinoin bandwagon, it’s important to understand the ‘what’, ’why’ and ’how’ of this miracle ingredient.
Tretionin is a form of Vitamin A that’s used topically to help improve skin, minimise blemishes, and limit discolouration and wrinkles. It also promotes cell turnover and helps your skin shed dead cells more quickly. It’s a powerful ingredient that can have some significant side effects, but when taken as prescribed by your doctor, the benefits can be life changing.
There are a number of different strengths of tretinoin available in the UK. You will need to discuss your options with your GP or dermatologist before being prescribed the right strength for you. It’s recommended that you start with the lowest strength and only increase your dosage gradually. It can take weeks or even months to see the full results, so be patient!
The retinoid you’ll be prescribed will come in either cream or gel form. Both do the same thing for your skin, but the cream formulations are better suited to dry and normal skin types. Gel formulations can be a good option for oily skin types – the formula is less sticky, and will absorb into your pores quicker than a cream would.
Both forms of tretinoin can make your skin sensitive to the sun. So, make sure you wear a high SPF and avoid tanning beds while using the product. You’ll also need to be careful with other skincare products, especially astringents and shaving lotions that contain alcohol or alpha hydroxy acids, as well as facial hair dyes and perms.
It’s important to use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every day while you’re using tretinoin. This is because the increased cell turnover means that your skin can become more sensitive to UV rays while you’re using it.
While there’s no guarantee that tretinoin will work for you, it’s widely considered safe to use for short and long-term periods as directed by your GP or dermatologist. However, you should avoid using it if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, and do not expose your skin to direct sunlight for at least 24 hours after applying it.
Tretinoin – the UK Meds answer
The good news is that you can buy a prescription-only medication like tretinoin online in the UK. This is because you can complete a medical consultation with a licensed GP or dermatologist through a company such as UK Meds, AllDayChemist, ReliableRxPharmacy, Globalpharmarx and Cosmeticsandyou. The consultation will ask a series of questions about your health and medical history and ensure that you’re suitable for the product before it can be shipped to you. This saves you time and money by allowing you to skip the trip to your local pharmacy or GP. This way, you can get your tretinoin in the comfort of your own home. tretinoin uk