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3 Active Ingredients Derms Love: Tretinoin, Azelaic Acid & Niacinamide

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Another day, another do-it-all ingredient being hyped as the next skincare superstar by the beauty industry. How about we drill down on all the Instagram and TikTok noise with what Dermatologists really rate?

Retinoids are really an absolute powerhouse when it comes to skin care and the benefits that they have on overall skin health hi i’m dr marvina cunningham and i’m a consultant dermatologist here at skin and me the first ingredient i’d like to talk about are of course the retinoids and these are by far a dermatologist’s favorite all-rounder they improve skin texture

They’re good at reducing fine lines and wrinkles they’re improving pores and they can help pigmentation tretinoin is your most powerful retinoid and that is available on prescription it’s a common myth that tretinoin thins the skin which is not correct so our skin is made up of a few layers and the two relevant to tretinoin are the top layer which is called the

Epidermis and then there’s a layer below which is called the dermis so think of the epidermis as a bit of a brick wall that constantly renews itself and sheds its outmost layer which is called the stratum corneal so tretinoin speeds up this process of shedding and so actually initially the epidermis becomes thicker not thinner and the stratum canal becomes more

Compact and that gives you that feeling of smoothness this increased shedding then also helps the skin to unblock those pores and that’s why it’s such a good treatment for acne as well now in the dermis tretinoin works actually to increase collagen and elastin and glycosaminoglycans and these are your building blocks of your dermis what it means is that your dermis

It becomes thicker and that’s why your skin appears more plump now collagen is a main building block of the dermis and we lose it through age and photo damage so that leaves our skin slightly rougher and also gives us the appearance of wrinkles so retinol retinaldehyde for example are all slightly weaker retinoids that you can get over the counter in cosmetic

Products whereas things like tretinoin and also a cousin of tretinoin which is adapylene you can only get on prescription retinol is a weaker cousin of tretinoin and that’s because it needs to be converted first to retinoic acid which is the active ingredient that actually activates the retinoid receptor this conversion of retinol to retinoic acid is what slows

Down the process and sort of slows down the effect of the retinol step one remove your spf or your makeup with a gentle cleanse step two perform a further deeper cleanse of your skin using something gentle so that your skin doesn’t feel dry or tight afterwards step three pat dry your skin so that your skin is completely dry to avoid any irritation before you

Apply the retinoid step four apply the tretinoin all over your face initially use a pea size amount spread it thinly and avoid the immediate eye area step five apply your favorite moisturizer 10 minutes after you applied the retinoid common side effects for tritium use a dry skin your skin can be a little bit red it can be irritated um and you can experience

Some mild peeling now these effects usually last only for a few weeks with the treatment and as your skin adjusts through the treatment and to tretinoin um they improve over time but you can do a lot with your skincare to minimize and avoid some of these side effects it’s also a chance of purging and this is where the skin cell turnover so that shedding of the

Epidermis increases and that can lead to breakouts and they again take a few weeks to clear up again ketone can make your skin also a little bit more sensitive to sunlight we always advise it’s absolutely essential to use sunscreen if you are treating your skin with tretinoin and you should be using an spf of at least 30 which is broad spectrum so it covers uva

And uvb you should be applying it every day azelaic acid is another brilliant all-arounder that helps to unblock your pores it can fight dark spots and it can reduce redness and also fight bacteria azealic acid works as a chemical exfoliator and unblocks pores that have become blocked in acne and it can also kill the bacteria that are implicated in acne azelaic

Acid is also great at fighting inflammation and reducing the swelling and the redness that you can see in acne azelaic acid slows the production of melanin so it helps fight pigmentation caused by sun damage and melasma and also acne it’s been shown to improve skin texture as well i like azelaic acid because generally actually it’s really well tolerated even on

Quite sensitive skin it is available in different concentrations and the top concentration availability so far is twenty percent when you first apply as a leg acid it can sting a little bit so again start using it gradually maybe two to three times a week and start with a lower percentage first and then increase the percentage as you can tolerate it on your skin

Use it at night when you’re first starting off and again use it on a cleansed face that is patterned to dry and then follow it by applying a moisturizer your favorite moisturizer 10 minutes later finally another favorite of mine is niacinamide so niacinamide is another great ingredient that improves the physical appearance of fine lines and wrinkles niacinamide

Can also help hyperpigmentation so increased pigmentation on the skin it’s a great moisturizer for the skin and it also helps to regulate the skin’s oil production so that’s why nice cinnamon is great and also battling acne and rosacea and it’s also a really great alternative to other slightly harsher ingredients such as for example retinoids it also increases

The production of ceramides in your skin so that helps moisturize your skin reason why i like niacinamide is because it’s really well tolerated by all skin types so it’s a great addition to your normal routine that was my deep dive on the three popular skincare ingredients that asked dermatologists love to use i hope you enjoyed this and i’ll see you next time you

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3 Active Ingredients Derms Love: Tretinoin, Azelaic Acid & Niacinamide By Skin + Me