Retin-A (tretinoin) is a topically-applied form of vitamin A. It can help diminish the appearance of age spots and discolorations due to sun damage, hyperpigmentation or acne scarring. Retin-A comes in gel and cream formulas.
Originally used to treat acne, Retin-A is now used to lighten age spots and other discolorations, smooth rough skin and reduce the visibility of fine lines and wrinkles.
Retin-A must be prescribed by a physician. Other retinoids can be obtained over-the-counter but are not as strong as prescription-strength products containing trenitoin.
Drugs.com recommends applying Retin-A to clean, dry skin and waiting at least one hour before applying other skin care products.
Because Retin-A reduces the amount of pigment the skin produces, care must be taken when exposing the skin to sunlight. An effective sunscreen should be applied before going out in the sun while using Retin-A and other products containing retinoids.
Tretinoin is sold as Aberela, Renova, Atralin, Retin-A, Avita or Stieva-A.