Using Retinoids, Antioxidants, Moisturisers Together?

I have been prescribed Retin-A 0.01% for acne, collagen and elastin production. I have also recently purchased the highly touted Bellaplex, plus Kiehl's Abyssine SPF25 moisturiser. For the past week, I've been applying them in that order, approximately 2 minutes apart in mornings and evernings. Could someone tell me if it's safe to be using all these things together? If so, how long should I leave between applying each one?

Doctor Answers 2

Use Retin-A at night

I agree one hundred percent with my colleague Dr Lambert. Retin-A should always be used at night and the anti-oxidants and sunscreen in the morning. What I like to tell patients is you protect your skin during the day (anti-oxidants and sunscreen) and repair your skin at night (Retin-A). There are some products that can be layers but Retin-A isn't one of them.

Metairie Dermatologic Surgeon

Layering product dilutes the active ingredients

It is safe to use those products together, however you may not be optimizing your rejuvination regimen. Retin-A really only needs to be used at night, as sunlight can inactivate the retinoid. Antioxidants work best during the day when free radicals are being generated. Furthermore, layering products will dilute the active ingredients. Sometimes my patients want to dilute their Retin-A because it is too drying or irritating, especially when they first start using it. My recommendation to you to get the most out of your products without wasting them, is to use your antioxidant and sunscreen in the morning, waiting as long as possible between the two, and use your Retin-A by itself in the evenings.

Rebecca Lambert, MD
Naples 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.