Ask a doctor

Does Using Retin-A During the Day Damage Skin?

I'm 20, and I used generic Retin-A 0.05% cream on my eye area/eyelids nightly for a few weeks, and used SPF 15 when I went out. For about a week I would stay in the house all day and wait a few hours before washing the leftover Retin-A off my eyes (I wanted to maximize its effects). I was exposed to soft (not direct beams) of sunlight from windows/windows with closed blinds in the house. I never got sunburned at the time. I am now off the Retin-A. Did I permanently damage my eyelid skin?

Doctor Answers (3)

Retinoids at night make most sense

+1

Retinoids are notoriously unstable to light, so you will not get the full benefits. Besides, collagen STIMULATION and REPAIR is best accomplished during the evening rest time. Daytime, it should be anti-oxidants added to your sunscreen to PROTECT from further damage. Your dermatologist can best advise you on your individualized program based on your unique needs. You have done no harm, just not as much good as you would have liked.


New Orleans Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Retin A should be used at night

+1

Retin A shold be used at night because the sunlight will "deactivate" it and it will lose its efficacy.  Using it during the day will not harm your skin at all. It just means that the potency is less.  I generally have my patients use it at night and then use a sunscreen during the day because the skin can be very sensitive.

Matthew Schulman, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 155 reviews

Retin A

+1

Retin A is safe. I tell my patients to use sunscreen SPF 30 and up all the time. Also use moisturizer liberally.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

You might also like...

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.