Morning wash after Retin-A?

Dear Professionals, The next morning after putting the retin a , should we again wash our face with cleanser and then apply the sun protection creme? I am asking this question because I am not sure if washing the face with cleanser is ok twice a day since we are on medication by retin a and the retin a is already make the face dryer.

Doctor Answers 2

Cleansing after Retin-A

Thank you for your question! Both myself, and my skin care nurse, Annie Bruno advise our patients to cleanse their face both AM + PM, and especially in the AM if retin-a, retinol, tretinoin, or other vitamin a derivatives were used in the evening before sleep. Also, you are correct that wearing a broad-spectrum SPF will further to protect the skin (and is highly advised) after vitamin a products, and on a daily basis. 

You also mentioned that retin-a is making your skin dry- this is a common "side effect" of vitamin a products, and I would advise using a heavy and occlusive moisturizer both AM + PM to minimize this from happening. 

I hope this is helpful to you!

Be well,

Dr. Todd Hobgood, MD


Phoenix Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Face Wash with Retin A

In general, I think it is a good idea to was your face twice daily.  Retin A can definitely make your skin more dry and sensitive, so I would make sure that you are using a mild, gentle cleanser that does not further irritate your skin.  Sunscreen is absolutely essential when using Retin A, as Retin A will make your skin more sensitive to sunlight.  I hope this helps!

Faiyaaz Kalimullah, MD
Chicago Dermatologic Surgeon

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.