Is Proactiv More Effective Than Retin-A?


Many teenagers as well as adults suffer from acne and troubled skin. There are many products on the market that claim to provide a clear complexion.

Proactiv Pros

  • According to Paula Begoun, an author and consumer expert for the cosmetics industry, some of the strengths of the Proactiv Solution product line are ts "effective, elegant-textured AHA, BHA, and skin-lightening options," as well as being a good option for excess oil control.

Proactiv Cons

  • Begoun states that the weakness of the Proactiv Solution line is that several of its products contain ingredients that not only are ineffective with skin acne, but also irritate skin. She argues that there are a lot of "gimmicky" products in the Proactiv line and that "it is not the answer for acne-prone skin."

Retin-A Pros

  • Retin-A or Tretinoin is another product used to treat certain types of acne. According to C-Health, an online health resource, Retin-A treats acne by exfoliating the outer layer of skin, reducing blackheads and whiteheads. Retin-A comes in cream or gel form.

Retin-A Cons

  • There are certain side-effects to Retin-A that have been experienced by one percent of its users. According to C-Health, some side-effects include burning or stinging, peeling and dryness, and skin rash

    While these side-effects are mild and happen in a small number of users, doctors warn that excessive pain, swelling or burning must be treated by a physician.

Proactive Versus Retin-A

  • It is difficult to compare skin treatments for acne. Skin is varied and complex and reacts to different skin regiments and products uniquely. Retin-A comes in different dosages, from 0.01 percent to 0.1 percent, which is advantageous for people with sensitive skin who would most benefit with starting off with a lower dosage, or people with more severe acne who need a higher dosage. Proactiv's toner is alcohol free and its moisturizer is oil free, a big plus in acne treatments. Retin-A is a spot or area treatment while Proactiv is a full line skin regimen. In the end, it all depends on what works for your own skin and personal preference in skin treatments.

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