Skin To Die For

One of the most alluring features a woman can have is delicious, soft, supple, kiss me skin.  We are fortunate in these times that there are different ways to get this skin.  One of my favourite treatments to get this ‘kiss me’ kind of skin is Retin A also known as Tretinoin.

But before I share my experience with you I must say first and foremost this is purely my own experience with Retin A.  I am not a dermatologist and will only use Retin A under the guidance of my dermatologist Dr. Jeffrey Roth.  If you decide that you want to try this as a treatment for your skin I would strongly advise doing this under your dermatologist’s guidance.  Retin A is an intense product that requires respect.  After all you do need a prescription.  At the end of the day I can only tell you what it feels and looks like to me as a respected makeup artist.

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I would liken Retin A to a deep, deep exfoliation.  My skin really does take on a beautiful glow and the texture becomes soft and supple and far more evenly toned.  So much so everyone around is compelled to say how beautiful my skin looks, and who doesn’t like to hear that.

There are a few downsides, but as far as I’m concerned they aren’t that bad.  Patches of red, flaky skin in the  first few days and an overall pinkness to my face and neck.  Sun sensitivity and a very mild burnt sensation are the other 2 effects that are unavoidable. This sun sensitivity is something you MUST pay attention to.  This is the reason I will only use Retin A from fall to very early spring and wear sunscreen at all times, yes even in the dead of winter!

As I’ve said before, my fave sunscreen is coppertone.  I can’t tell you how many times people ask me “what is that scent you’re wearing?  I absolutely love it”.  It’s the scent of carefree childhoods on the beach.  Try it.  It’s a feel good scent.

This is me at day 2.  You can start to see the redness and flakiness appear.  There’s also a lovely pimple appearing on my nose although I am not too sure if this is a result of the Retin A or an anomaly.  I have never been prone to pimples even as a teen, hence my easily wrinkled skin.  But I digress and will bring you “A different skin types” post at a later date.

This next pic is day 4.  Puffy eyed, post washed face in the morning before Aquaphor or sunscreen.  So you are really seeing it before any kind of cream relief.  It looks like a horror show right now.  This is at it’s peak of unattractiveness.  It is however not as painful as it may look to you.

When I have finished a 5 or 6 day course of Retin A I use Aquaphor on my face, at night and in the morning.  It’s a super heavy, super greasy ointment from Duane Reade (Duane Reade and CVS have there own brand of this ointment which are not only cheaper but identical, any of which I will use at any given time).  Most women don’t like using Aquaphor because of this heavy greasiness but the relief and results are just undeniable.  Aquaphor is not what I call a “pretty product” but Retin A is not a pretty product either.

My main goal is to use something that is going to heal the trauma I just put my skin through.  Scented/perfumed products will cause irritation.  This is why your favourite products may not be appropriate at this time.  Makeup is also something that is not advised during this time as it will just draw attention to the flakiness.  The results are cumulative so after a several day break from the initial peel I will continue to use Retin A every 2 – 3 days until spring comes and then I stop due to the sun.

In todays world we all want the end result without the work.  Alas, I have not found anything that has longevity that doesn’t require some effort in the beginning.  Just remember the result will be truly breathtaking.

And for the kicker when you’re skin has acclimatized to Retin A, knock it out of the ball park with these two amazingly advanced beauty products Lancome’s Genifique and Laura Mercier’s Repair Eye Serum.  Or if you’re a one product kind of woman BOTH Lancome and Laura Mercier have complimentary serum’s for your face and eyes. Lancome, with there magical Genifique Eyes or Laura Mercier with her heavenly Repair Serum.

So stay tuned in the following days to see the results as the immediate effects of the Retin A subside and the gorgeousness of new skin emerge.  I can’t wait to share it with you.

“True Beauty Only Comes Through Lifes Experiences” – Stephen Dimmick

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About Stephen Dimmick

I've learnt how to not judge others by doing what I've judged others for.
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4 Responses to Skin To Die For

  1. Chip says:

    great post stephen! i’ve been using retin A since i was 16 – a long, long time ago! it was prescribed for my acne and it worked like a charm, but it also had a wonderful side effect – it left me with beautiful, clear, soft skin! I have continued to use it throughout the years and it is definitely my beauty secret. well, it used to be! :)

  2. Liz says:

    I just found your site, and it is great. I totally agree with everything you said about retinoids (especially the sun-sensitivity, and the need to do it under the supervision of a dermatologist). As a possible tip to your other readers, I have EXTREMELY sensitive skin, and I have found that I am able to tolerate Renova–which is a .02% retinoid concentration–very well. It does not leave my skin quite as irritated or red as the Retin-A, and I am able to use it year-round. It isn’t as potent as Retin-A, but it does really help with exfoliation and has greatly reduced my fine lines, so it may be easier for some users to handle–both in terms of skin sensitivity and appearance. It is also prescription only, but absolutely worth it.

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