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Combining Cosmetic and Beauty Treatments with Tretinoin

Which cosmetic and beauty treatments can you get while using active ingredients like tretinoin?

If you’re using powerful prescription skincare, such as Skin + Me’s personalised solutions, you’re already working on your skin goals. But what about other cosmetic treatments you want to undertake at the same time?

From dermabrasion to botox or facial hair removal the key here is best results with minimal side effects. Active ingredients such as retinoids like tretinoin increase skin cell turnover and renewal. While this can boost our complexion over time, it can slightly increase skin sensitivity levels whilst your skin gets used to it.  

If you’re thinking about a cosmetic treatment at this time, our Consultant Dermatologist, Dr Malvina Cunningham offers good starting advice, “Any procedures performed should be discussed with the clinician or aesthetician performing them. Depending on the type of treatment they’re offering, they’ll be able to advise and give their preference on when tretinoin treatment should be stopped. Similarly, reactions to treatment and downtime post-procedure varies between individuals. If you have any concerns, contact the relevant person to check when to reapply your active ingredients, especially if the skin has not healed as predicted.”

Below, we offer a non-exhaustive list of cosmetic treatments you may be considering and some general advice around what to expect when combining them with skincare that contains retinol, or stronger retinoids like tretinoin.

Any procedures performed should be discussed with the clinician or aesthetician performing them. Depending on the type of treatment they’re offering, they’ll be able to advise and give their preference on when tretinoin treatment should be stopped.” 

Dr Malvina Cunningham

Microdermabrasion

Microdermabrasion can improve the appearance of sun damage, fine lines, acne scarring and other skin concerns. It uses an applicator with an abrasive surface to sand away the outer layer of the skin to rejuvenate it. Alternatively, some types of microdermabrasion involve spraying fine particles of aluminium oxide or sodium bicarbonate with a vacuum or suction.

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before microdermabrasion treatment, and begin using it again when your skin is completely healed.

If you’re using tretinoin:

You’ll need to give your skin a break from tretinoin before microdermabrasion. We recommend that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before. Only start using it again when your skin is completely healed.

Botox

Botox is an injectable muscle relaxer. It temporarily paralyses muscles, which reduces the appearance of facial wrinkles.

Whether you’re using tretinoin or not:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you don’t apply your Daily Doser on the day of treatment, but you may begin using it again the following day.

Lip filler

Lip fillers are injections designed to make lips appear fuller and plumper. They often use hyaluronic acid but sometimes other substances are used. 

Whether you’re using tretinoin or not:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you don’t apply your Daily Doser on the day of your lip fillers, but you may begin using it again the following day.

Chemical peel or superficial peel

Chemical peels involve applying a solution to your face that peels away damaged skin cells. They help improve the appearance of wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, acne and uneven texture. Chemical peels vary greatly in strength, so it’s important that you discuss what type will work best for you with your dermatologist. 

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before treatment and recommence when your skin is completely healed.

If you’re using tretinoin:

You’ll need to give your skin a break from tretinoin before a chemical peel. We recommend that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before. Only start using it again when your skin is completely healed.

Facial waxing or plucking

Facial waxing or plucking is generally used to remove hair from the face. This is often in the area of the eyebrows and upper lip. 

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before treatment and recommence two days after your waxing treatment.

If you’re using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before your waxing, and begin using it two days after treatment.

Facial laser treatments or electrolysis

Whether they’re for hair removal or to improve the appearance of a skin concern such as acne scars, laser treatments and electrolysis are popular treatments.

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before treatment and recommence when your skin is completely healed.

If you’re using tretinoin:

You’ll need to give your skin a break from tretinoin before a laser treatment or electrolysis. We recommend that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before. Only start using it again when your skin is completely healed.

Microneedling

Also known as dermarolling or collagen induction therapy, microneedling is a cosmetic procedure used to increase collagen production. It is principally used to reduce the appearance of scars.

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before treatment and recommence when your skin is completely healed.

If you’re using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before your microneedling, and begin using it two days after treatment.

Facials involving extractions

Sometimes facials include ‘extraction’, which is clearing a clogged-pore. This is either done by hand or using a tool.

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before a facial and recommence when your skin is completely settled down.

If you’re using tretinoin:

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop using your Daily Doser three days before your facial, and begin using it again when your skin has settled down.

Surgery or non-surgical facelifts

Surgical or non-surgical face lifts are generally used to improve the appearance of wrinkles, and should be approached with care, especially if you’re using tretinoin. Always mention your current skincare to the clinician doing the procedure ahead of time, and make sure to tell them your Daily Doser ingredients. 

If you’re not using tretinoin:

Skin + Me recommends that you stop applying your Daily Doser the day before treatment and recommence when your skin is completely healed.

If you’re using tretinoin: 

Skin + Me Dermatology Team recommends that you stop using your Daily Doser from five to seven days before a surgical or non-surgical treatment, and then recommence when your skin is completely healed.

LED masks

The use of LED masks is growing in popularity both at home and in salons. They claim to be able to help with acne, reduce inflammation and reduce the appearance of fine lines.

If you’re not using tretinoin:

There’s nothing to worry about!

If you’re using tretinoin:

You don’t need to make any special allowances, but you should use your LED mask before applying your Skin + Me treatment as there is a potential for LED light to degrade tretinoin and make the treatment ineffective.

Bleaching products

Bleaching is generally used in beauty to lighten dark facial hairs

If you’re using tretinoin:

If your skin is irritated after bleaching you should not use your Daily Doser until your skin has returned to normal. 

Sunbeds

Sunbeds use UV rays to tan the skin. Tanning is a sign of skin damage. Using sunbeds is never advised by our Dermatology Team as they can cause skin cancer.

If you’re using tretinoin:

There are additional risks when using tretinoin, as it can make your skin more sensitive to UV, so there is an increased risk of burning. We also always advise that you use SPF 30+ sunscreen daily, even if you are not using sunbeds or outdoors in the sunshine.

Shaving

Shaving is used to remove hair by cutting it close to the skin. It can increase skin sensitivity if the blade is not sharp or sufficiently lubricated, and may cause microscopic tears in the skin.

If you’re using tretinoin:

Time your shave in the morning, Buffer and prevent razor friction with a moisturising shaving balm and apply your Daily Doser in the evening, providing your skin isn’t damaged or feeling more sensitive than usual.

Medical facts checked by Consultant Dermatologist, Dr Malvina Cunningham.

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