Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin. It can be consumed in food or supplements or applied to the skin in topical forms such as a cream. Retinoids are derivatives of vitamin A that are used to treat skin disorders. Examples of retinoids include retinol and tretinoin. According to the book “Secrets Of Great Skin: The Definitive Guide To Anti-Aging Skin Care,” tretinoin is effective in the treatment of certain skin issues. A prescription is needed to purchase tretinoin-based creams such as Renova, Retin-A, Refissa, Atralin and Avita.
Fights Sun Damage
Ultraviolet light from the sun is harmful to your skin because it causes it to burn, dry out and wrinkle. Tretinoin-based creams can help plump up and smooth out fine wrinkles caused by the sun. According to the book “The New Harvard Guide to Women’s Health,” it does this by rebuilding the outer layer of your skin that has been damaged by the sun. The book states that tretinoin reverses sun damage by increasing skin cell renewal and blood supply to the skin.
Boosts Collagen Production
According to “The New Harvard Guide to Women’s Health,” collagen is a fibrous protein that gives the skin its elasticity. It is found in the dermis of your skin and, together with elastin, keeps the skin firm and supple. Excessive sunlight exposure leads to a decrease in the production of collagen and this leads to sagging and wrinkling of your skin. Tretinoin stimulates your skin to produce collagen.
Fades Age Spots
Vitamin A creams, such as those derived from tretinoin, can be used to fade away age spots and other discoloration of your skin. According to Mayo Clinic, these creams stimulate new skin development to replace old, discolored skin. The book “Secrets Of Great Skin: The Definitive Guide To Anti-Aging Skin Care” states that age spots are sloughed off with the top layers of your skin with the application of tretinoin-based creams.
Tretinoin-based creams are prescribed to treat acne. According to Mayo Clinic, tretinoin fights acne by promoting cell turnover and unclogging skin pores. The National Institutes of Health notes that acne may get worse with this treatment before it gets better, but improvement is usually visible after two to three weeks.
About this Author
Ngozi Oguejiofo has been writing on a freelance basis since 2009 and most of her writings are focused on health. She is currently a registered nurse. She is interested in teaching, and writes articles focused on student nurses for various online publications.