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Retin-A and Sun Exposure

If you are using retin-a on your face, can you get sun exposure on your body (with sunscreen) while using sunscreen on your face and covering it up with a towel?

Doctor Answers 2

Retin-A and Sun Exposure are Opposites

Sun exposure causes wrinkles, dark spots, aging, and skin cancer. Retin-A helps reverse and helps prevent these same skin issues, so one should think of them as opposing forces. While you "can" get sun exposure on the body while using Retin-A on the face, it will cause all of the above issues. In other words, any sun exposure is best avoided without protection. Activities in the sun are best enjoyed while wearing a sunscreen of at least SPF 30. That said, however, sun exposure does not cause more harm than it otherwise would when Retin-A is being used.


Baton Rouge Dermatologic Surgeon

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