Your Key
To Healthy Skin.

Retinoids don’t need to be a best kept secret anymore. With over 50 years of research, retinoids are scientifically prove to improve fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, uneven skin tone, enlarged pores and acne.

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The Power of Retinoids


Retinoid stimulates the production of collagen, softening the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. They also boost new blood vessels, which can give you a youthful rosy glow.


Yes! Retinoids clear cellular debris around enlarged pores, making them appear smaller and keeping them cleaner.


Retinoids are a first-line defense for treating and preventing blackheads as they decrease comedones and their precursor, thereby decreasing non inflammatory and inflammatory acne.


Tough acne that hasn’t responded to your usual treatments may respond well to a topical tretinoin prescription online. Retinoids unclog pores, which means your skin will absorb creams more efficiently.


Since topical retinoids exfoliate the skin, they definitely aid in the natural elimination of milia. It also iImproves roughness by reducing the layer of dead skin cells and increasing glycosaminoglycan (GAG).

Sun and Dark Spots

While not a cure-all for every type of hyperpigmentation, anti-inflammatory topical retinoids can improve pigmentation of freckles, melasma, sun spots and dark spots by dispersing melanin granules.

Why Derm
Grade Retinoid?

  Derm-Grade Retinoid Over The Counter Retinol
20X more potent than retinol
derm-grade retinoid
over the counter
The only FDA approved retinoid for photoaging
derm-grade retinoid
over the counter
50 years of research proves its long-term safety and efficacy
derm-grade retinoid
over the counter
Stronger than over-the-counter Differin, which is not FDA approved for photoaging
derm-grade retinoid
over the counter

Your questions answered


Retinoids are vitamin A and its natural derivatives. The body uses vitamin A in many ways beyond skincare: to improve vision, regulate cell proliferation and differentiation, grow bone tissue, and activate immune function and tumor suppressor genes. In the context of skin, retinoids stimulate collagen production, normalize melanocyte function, and regulate skin cell turnover.

When dermatologists refer to “retinoids,” they refer to prescription-grade retinoids, which contain the active ingredient retinoic acid. Upon direct contact with your skin, retinoic acid is converted by your skin to boost collagen. It improves pigmentation, skin texture and roughness, fine lines and wrinkles, and acne. It also has protective effects against precancerous skin lesions.


Retinol is a type of non-prescription-grade retinoid often found in anti-aging creams. Retinol is the precursor of retinoic acid, the active ingredient in prescription-grade retinoids like Tretinoin and Retin-A. Because retinols require further conversion to retinoic acid, they are not as potent as prescription-grade retinoids.

Retin-A is the brand name and has the same active ingredient, Tretinoin, which stimulates collagen production and increases cell turnover to improve fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, enlarged pores, uneven skin tone, and acne. Retin-A differs from the Night Shift because the base and strength level is different and not tailored, so sometimes it can be very harsh on one’s skin, especially if you are first starting out. The base used in the Night Shift is a premium ingredient that is normally used for cuts and burns, so it has a very emollient texture. Additionally, the ingredients of the Night Shift are cruelty-free, paraben-free, gluten-free, mineral oil-free, and vegan. And, of course, the strength is tailored by your provider depending on your skin type and history. If you’re currently using or have used Retin-A™ or Tretinoin, please let your provider know via your Skin Profile or by messaging the provider through our portal.

Retinoids improve fine/coarse wrinkles, mottled hyperpigmentation, pore size, lentigines, elastosis, irregular depigmentation, tactile roughness, and acne. They also stimulate collagen production to thicken and repair the epidermis.

Yes! Retinoids improve wrinkles by increasing the production of collagen. Fine lines appear over time because your cells produce less collagen (the structural protein of the skin), causing your skin to appear thinner and looser. The less collagen your skin has, the less water it can retain, causing structural folds (i.e., wrinkles and lines).

No, there have been no side effects resulting from the long-term use of topical retinoids.

No. Retinoids do the opposite and thicken your skin. While they decrease the layer of dead skin cells on the surface of your skin (this is where the thinning myth comes from), they have been proven to increase collagen production to actually thicken your skin.

Sunscreen to the rescue! It’s a myth that you can’t use retinoids and go out into the sun. Without sunscreen, your skin can temporarily become more sensitive to the sun, but your skin’s response to UV rays will return to normal after a month. Either way, always apply sunscreen to prevent photoaging and skin cancer. Our NeverSkip100% mineral sunscreen is an excellent addition to your routine whether you're using a retinoid or not.

Yes! Retinoids can improve mottled or irregular hyperpigmentation.

Dermatologists say you can start using retinoids as early as your 20’s to prevent side effects of photoaging. There is no age restriction for using retinoids, but they are not recommended for children under the age of 13, and we do not accept customers under the age of 18.

Any skin type can benefit from retinoids, even dry or sensitive skin. There are three things to keep in mind:

  1. Your provider will start you off with a strength that is appropriate for your skin type.
  2. Be sure to moisturize twice a day. We have a moisturizer that is designed to be used with retinoids.
  3. Start applying your retinoid once a week and then increase to nightly as your skin learns to tolerate the products.

Some common side effects of retinoids are sensitivity to the sun, peeling, and redness. Good news, though! Side effects can be significantly minimized with good instructions and proper use. For example, your skin will better tolerate retinoids if you start with an appropriate strength or by applying a moisturizer before the retinoid. Applying SPF will also mitigate your sensitivity to the sun (We’re assuming you’re already using daily SPF, though, right?). Keep in mind that your skin’s response to UV rays will return to normal after a few months. Side effects are also temporary, usually lasting 2-4 weeks as your skin learns to tolerate the product.

For those prone to acne, there may be a two to four-week “purging” period where you experience acne breakouts before your skin clears up. Patience is key. Over the past 40+ years, no systemic side-effects or risks on the long-term treatment of topical retinoids have been observed.

Yes. In fact, retinoids are used to treat acne. Keep in mind that you may experience an initial breakout period for 2-4 weeks, especially if you have acne-prone skin. Your skin will eventually clear up. Patience is key!

Retinoids may cause acne breakouts for the first two to four weeks of using the product, especially for people with acne-prone skin. This process, in which your acne gets worse before it gets better, is called “purging.” Your skin will eventually clear up. Patience is key.

Results vary for prescription-grade retinoids, depending on the type of changes you are expecting to see, your skin type, or how consistently you use it. The following is a rough time frame:

  • Rough spots 3 - 4 weeks
  • Discoloration 3 - 4 weeks
  • Brown spots 6 - 8 weeks
  • Fine wrinkles 3 - 6 weeks

When first using retinoids, your provider will evaluate your skin and start you off with an appropriate strength for your skin type. That way, your skin can learn to tolerate a higher strength. You may experiencesome peeling, dryness, and sensitivity, all of which can be managed and prevented by the right strength and proper usage. Feel free to communicate with your provider about your ongoing progress. Don’t worry; we will guide you through the process, so you get the best experience.

You should discontinue using your retinoid as soon as you find out that you are pregnant and connect with your provider through the portal.

nless otherwise instructed by your primary care physician, you should not use retinoids if you are pregnant, trying to conceive, or nursing. If you find that you are pregnant, stop the use of your retinoid and contact your provider in our HIPAA-compliant portal. It is not proven that topical retinoids are 100% safe for pregnant or nursing women.

Feel free to reach out to if you'd like help pausing your account. We're here to help! 

Of course! Retinoids are not specific to a particular gender.

History of Retinoids

With over 50 years of research proving its efficacy and long-term benefits and safety, retinoids are scientifically proven to improve fine lines and wrinkles, pigmentation, uneven skin tone, and enlarged pores. They were first FDA approved in 1971 as a treatment for acne, buthas since been recognized as a treatment for signs of photoaging in the 1980s. Topical retinoids are one of the most effective skincare products for signs of photoaging in the market.