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What is the difference between retinol and tretinoin?

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“Retinol” and “tretinoin” fall under the unbrella-term RETINOIDS. This also includes the ingredient called “adapalene,” among others.

Retinoids are vitamin A derivatives that prompts the skin cells to turn over faster and stimulates collagen under the skin to renew. This makes the skin look fresher, younger and more plump.

Retinol is the mildest form of retinoid, commonly classified as a cosmeceutical. Adapalene is a retinoid that is said to be of similar efficacy as tretinoin but is less irritating. Tretinoin, on the other hands, is the most well-known and most bioactive form among the retinoids. The strength of a product does not only depend on the ingredient. The percentage concentration of the ingredient and the type of vehicle it is packaged in also affects the strength of a given product.

With today’s technology, many companies research and develop ways to deliver the ingredient without causing irritation to the skin. So, to be honest, there are many things to consider when labeling a certain brand or product as mild or strong. But one thing is for certain, stronger does not necessarily mean it is a better product. You must also listen to your skin. If your skin is dry, dehydrated and sensitive, go for a milder product. Patience and consistency are keys to good skin care. So once your skin is comfortable with the mild product, then you can try to step up to a stronger one.


Please note that the information given is for educational purposes only. Treatments are customized to our patients’ needs. For inquiries, contact: Mobile: (0998)5673765 Landline: (02) 75010962 Email: Website: FB/ IG/ TikTok: Dermalogique YouTube: MabelleMD #drmabellecolayco #dermalogique #shopdermalogique #skincare #skincaretips #dermatology #dermatologist #dermatologistph #dermatologistmakati #skin #hair #nails #onlineconsultation #acne #antiaging #retinoid #retinol #adapalene #tretinoin

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