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Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment

Sun damage that won't go away? Wrinkles keeping you up at night? Don't get mad, get powerful.
Item #: 801
  • Acne Breakouts, Anti-Aging, Brown Spots, Wrinkles
  • For All Skin Types
  • Firms skin, smoothing deep wrinkles and fine lines
  • Reduces dark spots and uneven skin tone, refines pore size

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Customer Ratings:

88 out of 100
(Based on 96 Reviews)
Page of 4 Next »
  1. LAURA W.
    Reviewed on Tuesday, September 16, 2014
    60 out of 100
    • Rating
      Neutral / 4
    Not for the eye area...
    • I am glad I only ordered a sample size of this product. I applied it very carefully and avoided the eye area completely. The next morning my eyes were itchy and red. So I waited a week and tried applying it again over a serum and again avoided the eye area completely. My eyes were red and itchy the next morning. Maybe I am allergic to an ingredient. I have never had a reaction like this before, so be careful with this product because it is strong. I wish this product worked for me.

    Customer Service Response
    Replied on: Tuesday, September 16, 2014

    Thanks for your review! We're sorry this product didn't work for you, and agree that you likely experienced an allergic reaction to one or more ingredients in this treatment. Please contact us to discuss a refund or exchange.

    —Admin
  2. Lori
    Reviewed on Sunday, September 14, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    This really does work!
    • I was going to take a before and after picture, but thought this is going to be a failure just like everything else I try. This is fantastic, my skin is clearer, wrinkles aren't as deep, and I need less makeup! I do have a suggestion for the bottle, a clear strip down the bottle would be great so we can see how much product is left and can replace it before it runs out.

  3. Lili
    Reviewed on Wednesday, September 10, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Love this!
    • I've only been using this for less than 2 weeks but I LOVE it so far. I have been using it every night and have just started to get a little flaking but no irritation. My skin feels smooth and nourished in the morning. The consistency is moisturizing but not slippery or overly "silicony"...I love it. I can't speak to the long term improvements to my skin but so far i have definitely noticed my skin feeling more "youthful". Another great product!

  4. Holly C.
    Reviewed on Wednesday, September 10, 2014
    20 out of 100
    • Rating
      Worst / 4
    So Sad
    • I really hate to leave a bad review but if you have break out prone skin……this stuff might be a problem!! When I first started using it I really did like it but after about a week my whole face was broken out with painful acne! Im starting to think my skin just can't handle Retinol! I didn't peel or have any other problems using this everyday until my face was a mess! Im sure if you don't have acne issues this product would be amazing!! Wish it had worked for me :(

  5. Cherl M.
    Reviewed on Monday, September 08, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Works great love it
    • I am 57 have oily, sensitive skin and large pores and fair skin! I love this my skin looks great. My wrinkles and pores look so much better and I have only used five times so far. I was able to use 3 nights in a row without in redness. I ordered the trail size but reordered the large size. It is a great price for 1%. I had tried Poetry in Lotion and Help me but had issue with both.

  6. LACEY M.
    Reviewed on Thursday, September 04, 2014
    20 out of 100
    • Rating
      Worst / 4
    Didn't work for my acne/oily skin
    • I used it sparingly as the directions suggest to let my skin adjust to it but it never did. I got tiny red pimples around my mouth and nose where I normally don't break out. It didn't seem to help at all but just gave me more acne. I hoped a cream formula like this Clinical Retinol treatment would be an improvement over the Resist Intensive Retinol Serum which is too heavy for me to use nightly, it makes me breakout too but not as bad as this Clinical one does. I will go back to the Resist.

    Customer Service Response
    Replied on: Friday, September 05, 2014

    Thanks for your comments! It's possible your skin is allergic to retinol, in which case the breakouts you're seeing are an irritant dermatitis. These can resemble acne breakouts, but are not the same thing. You may want to experiment with anti-aging treatments that do not contain retinol.

    —Admin
  7. jann
    Reviewed on Wednesday, September 03, 2014
    40 out of 100
    • Rating
      Poor / 4
    Too strong for my skin
    • I bought a sample of this and read the instructions so I only used it once a week to begin with. I started with week one and my skin seemed to tolerate it. On week two my skin reacted with redness and soreness. By week three I had started to break out with whiteheads. I really wanted to try a retinol product but I guess my combo skin found it too strong. It was nice to try but I think I'll stick to my BHA. I'm glad that PC has samples to try out before committing to a full size.

  8. Elizabeth N.
    Reviewed on Tuesday, September 02, 2014
    60 out of 100
    • Rating
      Neutral / 4
    I really wanted to love this
    • I have used 1% tretinoin for a long time with no problems. I was surprised when I had so much difficulty tolerating this product, even when following the directions exactly. I ended up with peeling, burning and extreme irritation and gave it a chance up to 60 days. When I went back to the prescription product, I was fine again. I don't understand why this happened. it seems like such a wonderful product from all the other reviews. I truly love Paula's line overall!

    Customer Service Response
    Replied on: Wednesday, September 03, 2014

    Thanks for your review! We suspect this product was too strong for you. Also, just to clarify, tretinoin is not offered commercially in a 1% strength. You can get a 0.1% or 0.2% strength, or lesser amounts, but 1% tretinoin would be too potent.

    —Admin
  9. John H
    Reviewed on Tuesday, September 02, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Overnight results
    • Outstanding addition to my routine. For anyone who has found the product a bit too strong, try diluting it with your nighttime moisturizer. I mix a pea size amount of the retinol treatment into my Resist Clear Skin Hydrator and I am able to tolerate nightly use and using this over my Resist 2% BHA. No irritation and noticeably brighter, smoother skin each morning.

  10. ginav
    Reviewed on Tuesday, September 02, 2014
    80 out of 100
    • Rating
      Good / 4
    re-review
    • I tried again in the eveneing. This time no red face. I am going to purchase based on my marionette lines looking so much better. They looked deep to the bone and I am not even 50 yet! After the treatment they looked 60-70 % filled.

  11. Alexandra M.
    Reviewed on Monday, September 01, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Excellent retinol product and it's even affordable! (compared to other brands)
    • It took me 6 weeks to get my skin to accept this every day, but WOW, what a difference! My skin is looking and feeling thicker, and minor wrinkles and the "crepey" look is slowly disappearing. The milia are nearly gone, acne is clearing, and dark spots are fading. I hate to use the word miracle because it's so overused in cosmetic advertising, but seriously, this is a miracle product. I use it on the backs of my hands, forearms and neck/upper chest with the same great results.

  12. Kara
    Reviewed on Saturday, August 30, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    This is some miracle goo, and it might be causing the early stages of narcissism, for which I will n
    • Ridiculous humidity paired with my really oily skin gave me absolutely crippling breakouts, worse than anything I dealt with as a teen. The PC 2.5% benzoyl peroxide eventually cleared that junk away, but this Retinol has given me the best skin OF. MY. LIFE. Took to it immediately - no redness, flaking, or peeling - and I have used it every night since it arrived. I can leave my house without makeup now, which, to me, is a freaking miracle, and it's clearing away sun damage. Never change it!

  13. Brianna V.
    Reviewed on Saturday, August 30, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Powerful!
    • My sensitive, mild rosacea skin loves PC's Resist Retinol Serum, but knowing that this treatment was much stronger I approached it with caution. I can't use BHA or C15 on the nights that I use this. Here in hot, dry California I can use this 2-3 X per week, but I spent the summer in India during the hot, humid monsoon season and was able to use it daily without irritation. Now that I'm home I'm back to 2-3X per week, so climate seems to be a factor in how well I tolerate it. I love it.

  14. JENNIFER S.
    Reviewed on Thursday, August 28, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Unexpected bonus
    • I have tried nearly every PC BHA product to combat my stubborn blackheads. That includes BHA9. I have been using Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment for about 3 weeks now. First off, I did not know my skin could get any softer as I have been using PC products for about 10 years now. I followed the rules and am satisfied with the results so far. What I did not see coming was a major decrease in blackheads! I am thrilled. Thank you for this product.

  15. SABINE K.
    Reviewed on Thursday, August 28, 2014
    80 out of 100
    • Rating
      Good / 4
    Nice texture - have been using it on my body
    • I've actually been mixing 6 pumps of this with 3 pumps of the Retinol Skin Smoothing Body Lotion for an extra "kick" to speed up the effects on my legs and forearms. It mixes nicely into the lotion, and - while I haven't noticed any effects yet (not as regular with applications as I should be) - I figure it can't hurt! Since skin on arms & legs is usually tougher, it'd be great if this higher-strength retinol formula could also be developed for the body, and offered in a larger bottle.

  16. ML
    Reviewed on Tuesday, August 26, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    NO Rx YAY
    • Great stuff. First, I thought followed the directions. But soon I had “dandruff face!” I stopped my exfoliant and then gradually tried the PC Retinol again. I restarted with every other night but now it’s every night. My skin loves this; it literally feels thicker and plumper. The lines where my dimples used to be are a lot less noticeable. Do not use this with an exfoliant (at least at first) this is really something. I tried for years to use Rx Retin-A but this is much better for me.

  17. robin
    Reviewed on Sunday, August 24, 2014
    80 out of 100
    • Rating
      Good / 4
    Very effective but had to adapt application
    • Yes, the initial 2 applications had me peeling like a lizard (as expected) but after that my skin became smooth, radiant, and fine lines & wrinkles vanished - wow!! That said, I found that used full strength, this product caused terrible, deep blemishes that took days to surface and heal. I've experimented with using a BHA exfoliant in conjunction with this product, and so far that seems to help prevent the blemishes.

  18. Danny
    Reviewed on Wednesday, August 20, 2014
    40 out of 100
    • Rating
      Poor / 4
    Bad decision
    • I decided to try this Retinol , first night and second night was okay but after that i couldn't believe my eyes ..breakouts all over my face , i wish i could attach a pic on here . Then i stopped for few day and then start again but this time i mixed it with antioxidant serum and use it only 3 night a week and i still have the same reaction . Now i have to deal with the marks caused by this product . Maybe this product is good for other people ...but not for me .

    Customer Service Response
    Replied on: Wednesday, August 20, 2014

    We're sorry this porduct seemed to be problematic for you. It's always tricky to pinpoint what may have triggered the breakouts. Sometimes it can be from a combination of products rather than just one, or it may have been an irritant response that resembles acne. Please contact us if you wish to return this product for a full refund.
     

    —Admin
  19. Jannette B.
    Reviewed on Monday, August 18, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Effective, terrific!
    • Previously I was using a product that claimed to be 1.5% retinol nightly. I never appreciated any benefit from the product and when it ran out switched to 1% PC retinol. Now I know that my why the old product wasn't effective...certainly was not the concentration of retinol it claimed. I began PC at 3x/wk use and had red, peeling skin at the end of week 1. I backed off the every 5 nights, working up to every other night. No more redness or peeling, just happier skin!

  20. MARIA M.
    Reviewed on Monday, August 18, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Fantastic product!
    • Rx retinol (every brand) is on backorder in Canada with unknown re-supply dates so I was happy to see Paula's Choice offer this product. I was using 0.025% Retin-A every other day and sometimes every third day to avoid irritation. I'm able to use this product nightly with no irritation and my skin has never looked better! I use it with Paula's 2% BHA exfoliant and the vit C serum - incredible results!!

  21. EDWINA A.
    Reviewed on Saturday, August 16, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Could Probably Give Up Foundation
    • This is a fabulous product. A few things: You have to follow the directions. Frequency of use - I learned from using it, that I can only use this product three times per week. It depends upon your individual skin. Results: My almost sixty-one-year old skin hasn't had such great texture since my twenties, it feels fantastic and my pores are pretty much gone. To be fair, I've always worn sunscreen so I didn't have sun damage or major lines in my face to deal with. Thanks again for a great product.

  22. Stanley B.
    Reviewed on Thursday, August 14, 2014
    60 out of 100
    • Rating
      Neutral / 4
    .. Too pricey
    • I really want to love this as it has 1% retinol and I love all the ingredients and smell and texture and hydration... However I wish it was the same price as the serum.. 60$ is a crazy price for a moisturizer. Even though it works because it's all about preventing aging with sunscreen and retinol. Just because I'm a student doesn't mean I shouldn't be able to afford the basics of skin care .

  23. HEATHER E.
    Reviewed on Tuesday, August 12, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    Superior Retinol Treatment
    • This is the only OTC product I've ever used that was as effective as prescription tretinoin. Though I've been alternating retinol, BHA, and AHA for years, I followed the instructions carefully, using one pump for my whole face every 3rd night. The other two nights I used RESIST 2% BHA followed by Skin Recovery Antioxidant Serum with Retinol. RESIST C15 and SPF 30 zinc oxide sunscreen every morning. Minor redness and peeling during week 2. Definite improvements to skin texture and tone in week 4.

  24. Jocelyn
    Reviewed on Monday, August 11, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    The REAL DEAL!
    • I'm really very pleased with this new retinol product! I have used all of Paula's products for years now, and now that I'm in my mid-thirties I have been hoping for something that really makes a significant different in the fine lines I'm starting to find, and the ruddy texture I seem to have acquired. Start SLOWLY! My skin was a bit angry initially, as is typical of retinol products. It's now growing accustomed to it, and I'm in love with the results. Thanks again, Paula!

  25. spencer c.
    Reviewed on Sunday, August 10, 2014
    100 out of 100
    • Rating
      Best / 4
    1% Retinol
    • This is an excellent product ! I've searched for good retinol products for years and this is the real thing and it works. My 69 year old skin is looking smoother and brighter. Its better than the Retin A prescription strength I used years ago. Not as harsh but the same results. I LIKE this product !

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What makes this product unique?
Combined with potent antioxidants, Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment is specially formulated to smooth and firm skin by helping to boost cell regeneration and stimulate collagen production. Its light, silky texture absorbs quickly and goes to work immediately to refine pore size, reduce deep wrinkles, fine lines, brown spots—it can even help breakouts, too! Licorice, oat extract and other anti-irritants help to minimize the irritation some people may get from products containing high amounts of retinol. You’ll be amazed at how much younger and radiant your skin will look and feel.

A consumer panel test showed that 92% of users preferred this retinol product over other, similar products they've used.

Who is this product for?
Those looking for a more potent product designed to preserve young skin and repair more advanced signs of aging, including: deep wrinkles, fine lines, and brown spots. In addition, Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment will help prevent blemishes and correct red marks from past breakouts.

Sources to support the claims made for the Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment

Journal of Investigative Dermatology, August 2013, ePublication; Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, May 2013, pages 533–540; March 2013, pages S42–S44; and January 2012, online; Pharmaceutical Research, February 2013, pages 538–551; Advances in Skin and Wound Care, May 2013, pages 224–229; Journal of Dermatological Science, April 2012, pages 51–59; Experimental Dermatology, July 2011, pages 572–576; International Journal of Cosmetic Science, February 2011, pages 62–69; British Journal of Dermatology, December 2010, pages 1,157–1,165; Bioscience, American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, Volume 9, 2008, pages 369–381; Biotechnology, and Biochemistry, October 2008, pages 2,589–2,597; and New England Journal of Medicine, May 1993, pages 1,438–1,443.

Key Ingredients: Salix alba extract, dipotassium glycyrrhizate, Arctium lappa, phytosterol, cetyl esters, tetrahexyldecyl ascorbate, retinol, tribehenin, Glycine soja sterols, glycerin, sodium hyaluronate, allantoin, Avena sativa, palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7, lecithin, dimethicone, laurdimonium hydroxypropyl hydrolyzed soy protein, Glycyrrhiza glabra, ceramide 2, palmitoyl hexapeptide-12, tocopheryl acetate

Product Ingredients:

Water, Dimethicone (silicone slip agent), Glycerin (skin-repairing ingredient), Butylene Glycol (slip agent/penetration enhancer), Isononyl Isononanoate (emollient), Castor Isostearate Succinate (skin-conditioning agent), Glyceryl Stearate (emulsifier), C12-15 Alkyl Benzoate (thickener), Dimethicone Crosspolymer (silicone thickener/texture enhancer), PEG-33 (binding agent), Polysorbate 20 (emulsifier), Behenyl Alcohol (fatty alcohol thickener), Retinol (cell-communicating ingredient), Tetrahexyldecyl Ascorbate (vitamin C/antioxidant), Ceramide 2 (skin-repairing ingredient), Palmitoyl Tetrapeptide-7, Palmitoyl Hexapeptide-12 (cell-communicating ingredients), Sodium Hyaluronate (skin-repairing ingredient), Dipotassium Glycyrrhizate, Glycyrrhiza Glabra (Licorice) Root Extract, Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Extract, Arctium Lappa (Burdock) Root Extract, Salix Alba (Willow) Bark Extract (antioxidant plant extracts/anti-irritants), Glycine Soja (Soybean) Sterols (antioxidant/skin-conditioning agent), Lecithin (cell-communicating ingredient), Allantoin (anti-irritant), Tocopheryl Acetate (vitamin E/antioxidant), Hydrolyzed Soy Protein (antioxidant), Sorbitan Laurate (emulsifier), Acetyl Dipeptide-1 Cetyl Ester (anti-irritant), Disodium EDTA (stabilizer), Hydroxyethylcellulose (thickener), Sodium Hydroxide (pH adjuster), Tribehenin (emollient), Caprylyl Glycol, Ethylhexylglycerin (skin conditioning agents),Pentylene Glycol (slip agent), PEG-100 Stearate (thickener), PEG-75 Shea Butter Glycerides (emollient), PPG-12/SMDI Copolymer (film-forming agent), PEG-10 Phytosterol (fatty acid-based thickener), PEG-8 Dimethicone (silicone-based skin-conditioning agent), PEG-14 (thickener), Pentaerythrityl Tetraisostearate (binding agent), Polymethylsilsesquioxane (silicone-based opacifying agent), Magnesium Aluminum Silicate (slip agent), Arachidyl Glucoside (emulsifier), Sclerotium Gum (thickener) Arachidyl Alcohol (thickener), Benzoic Acid (preservative), Carbomer (gel-based thickener), Phenoxyethanol (preservative).

DIRECTIONS: Apply a pea-sized amount after cleansing and toning, and then follow with your Paula's Choice serum and/or nighttime moisturizer. When first using the Clinical 1% Retinol, start with no more than three evenings per week, then gradually increase frequency to every other night and, finally, every evening as tolerated (measure how your skin responds). Avoid the lips, direct contact with the eye, and corners of the eyes. You may apply up to the orbital bone of the eye area.

May be applied at the same time as your AHA or BHA exfoliant, but pay attention to how your skin responds. If you notice signs of sensitivity, apply your AHA or BHA exfoliant in the morning and this treatment at night or reduce frequency of application of Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment.

Note: Some people may experience a delayed sensitized reaction to 1% retinol. Do not assume that if no reaction is seen after a few applications that you can apply this treatment more frequently. Pay close attention to how your skin responds and adjust usage accordingly.

If sensitization occurs (redness, flaking, tenderness, or drying of skin), reduce frequency of use or mix one pump of the Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment with your favorite Paula’s Choice serum or PM moisturizer. If sensitization persists, discontinue use. Protect skin daily with sunscreen rated SPF 25 or greater, or layer sunscreens (moisturizer, foundation with sunscreen, and pressed powder with sunscreen) if they are all rated SPF 15 or greater (and greater is better).

Do not apply this treatment on the same day as facial waxing or sugaring. Doing so may increase the risk of an irritant response.

TIPS AND TROUBLESHOOTING:

  • Can be worn under or over your PM moisturizer.
  • May be combined with any prescription retinoid product, including Renova, Retin-A, Refissa, Differin, Tazorac, or Avita. Discontinue or reduce frequency of use if irritation develops or persists.
  • Despite the many benefits retinol has, there is no single “best” anti-aging ingredient for skin. The retinol in this product is combined with other anti-aging ingredients for optimal results. The antioxidants and skin-repairing ingredients in this formula were chosen for their well-researched track records and history of being able to improve multiple signs of aging. We’ve also included potent anti-irritants to ensure compatibility with sensitive skin.
  • Remember, not everyone’s skin will be able to tolerate a high percentage of retinol, especially if you’re already using a prescription retinoid or other skincare products that contain retinol.

Detailed instructions on how/when to apply your Paula's Choice products can be found in our How to Put Together Your Own Skincare Routine article.

At what point in my skincare routine would I use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment?

This nighttime treatment is best applied after cleansing and toning. If you use an AHA or BHA exfoliant, apply that first, then follow with Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment. If you use a skin-lightening product that would be applied next, followed by your serum and nighttime moisturizer.

If you are planning to use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment with a prescription retinoid, apply the prescription retinoid after cleansing, toning, and exfoliating. Follow with Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment and the rest of your skincare routine. Note that combining this product with a prescription retinoid increases the risk of side effects such as dryness, flaking, and sensitivity.

How does Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment differ from the other retinol products Paula’s Choice offers?

The most notable difference is that Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment contains a higher amount of retinol than our other products with retinol. It is formulated for those whose skin can tolerate prescription-strength retinol but want an over-the-counter alternative or whose skin has more advanced signs of sun damage, including deep wrinkles.

The percentage of retinol needed for efficacy is generally between 0.01%–1%, which is quite a range, but further proof of just how powerful retinol is! Below is the percentage of retinol in other Paula’s Choice products that contain this ingredient:
  • Resist Barrier Repair Moisturizer: 0.089%
  • Resist Intensive Wrinkle-Repair Retinol Serum: 0.1%
  • Skin Recovery Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum: 0.01%
  • Skin Balancing Super Antioxidant Concentrate Serum: 0.03%
All of these products may be used with Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment or on their own, as each treats skin to a beneficial range of anti-aging ingredients.

Can I use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment if I am using other Paula’s Choice products that contain retinol?

Yes, though you may wish to alternate rather than layer—this will depend on how your skin responds. You can also apply your usual retinol product (serum or moisturizer) all over your face and neck, then apply Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment to areas showing more advanced signs of aging: Crow’s feet around the eyes, laugh lines, expression lines, and dark spots.

Is Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment suitable for sensitive skin?

Yes, although of course it always depends on how skin reacts. Our fragrance-free formula contains several anti-irritants designed to minimize any discomfort those with sensitive skin may experience from using a stronger retinol treatment; however, if skin is very sensitive it’s best to apply this treatment less often, perhaps twice per week rather than every night.

Is Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment suitable for rosacea-affected skin?

Yes, although of course it always depends on how skin reacts. There’s research showing retinol can help reduce the inflammation that’s an underlying factor in rosacea.

Can I use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment if I have oily skin and breakouts?

Yes; in fact, the amount of retinol is akin to prescription-strength retinoids which are often prescribed by dermatologists to manage all types of acne. The silky-smooth finish won’t make oily skin look or feel greasy.

How does Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment compare to prescription retinoids?

This product contains retinol, which is weaker than prescription retinoids but, over time, produces comparable anti-aging and anti-acne results. A prescription retinoid may produce faster results, but it does so with the added risk of side effects like redness, flaking, and increased sensitivity.

A product with 1% retinol is more comparable to a prescription retinoid with 0.02 tretinoin (the active ingredient in Renova and Retin-A).

As with most well formulated anti-aging products, consistent use and daily sun protection will produce the best results.

Is it OK to use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment with a product that contains hydroquinone, such as Resist Dark Spot Eraser?

Yes, this is fine. Apply the Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment first, and follow with the skin-lightening product, either applied to areas of concern or all over the face.

Is it OK to use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment with an anti-acne product that contains benzoyl peroxide?

Yes. For best results, apply the benzoyl peroxide product to breakout-prone areas, allow to dry, then follow with Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment.

You may have read or heard that retinol and benzoyl peroxide cannot be used together for fear they will adversely affect each other’s stability.  However, what is often missing from these claims is any cited corroborative studies, and with good reason, because the scientific and medical research actually says the two ingredients can complement each other—which is good to know, whether you’re dealing with acne alone or the unwelcome mix of wrinkles plus breakouts! (Cutis 2009 & 2012, Journal of Drugs and Dermatology 2013).

Are there any products I shouldn’t combine with Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment?

No, it can be used with any other skincare products. However, if you’re combining it with more “active” products such as AHAs, BHA, skin-lightening products, anti-acne products, other retinol or prescription retinoid or prescription anti-acne products, it’s important to pay attention to how your skin responds and adjust usage accordingly. You don’t want to tip the scale in favor of irritation!

How soon will I see results?

From the first use, you will see improved skin texture and radiance. Over the next few weeks, these improvements will continue and you will begin to see a reduction in breakouts, red marks from past breakouts, brown spots, deeper wrinkles, and loss of firmness. After three to four months of consistent use along with daily sun protection (every day, no exceptions) you will see dramatically younger-looking skin with a smooth texture and remarkably even skin tone.

Why should I use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment instead of one of your other retinol products—and why should I use one of those other retinol products instead of Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment?

You should use Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment if you feel your current retinol product isn’t giving you the results you hoped for after several weeks to months of consistent use (along with daily sun protection, a key component of any anti-aging routine). Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment is a more potent product designed to repair more advanced signs of aging.

You should consider using one of our other retinol products if you suspect your skin may react negatively to a stronger retinol product because attempts to use more potent retinol products (including prescription retinoids) haven’t been successful. Even then, you may still want to consider using Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment once or twice weekly, combined with your regular retinol product or used alone.

Is this the strongest retinol product I can buy over-the-counter?

No, there are a few companies selling over-the-counter products with higher amounts of retinol. Although those may seem intriguing, our in-house and external panel testing revealed that amounts of retinol above 1% came with a much higher likelihood of unwanted side effects such as redness, persistent flaking or peeling, and a sunburn-like sensation. Retinol is an active ingredient, and with any such ingredient you never want to tip the scale from benefits to irritation.

Is Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment safe for me to use while pregnant or nursing?

Due to the higher amount of retinol being closer to the strength of prescription retinoids (which are contraindicated for use while pregnant or breast feeding), we advise against such use unless OK’ed by your physician. If your physician does not provide a clear answer, it’s generally best to be cautious and refrain from use until you are no longer pregnant or breast feeding.

If I see great results after the first or second use, is it OK to begin applying Clinical 1% Retinol Treatment every night?

Because potential side effects from a high-strength retinol product may be delayed, we advise you to not apply this product nightly or every other night until you have been using it for 2–4 weeks with no signs of sensitivity (such as flaking, dryness, or redness). This is very important for those who’ve never used a high-strength or prescription retinoid product, as not everyone’s skin can tolerate stronger retinoids—and you never want to tip the scales in favor of irritation.

Remember: Only a pea-sized amount is needed for the entire face and neck. Using more than this per application will not provide better or faster results.

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